Handrails and Balustrades

Understanding Balustrading

A Balustrade system is a collective term for a row of repeating balusters: posts that support the upper rail. Glass, Sheet, Wire and bar are the normal materials that can be used as means of infill. Alternatively, any material which can be connected to the uprights safely can also be used, providing it is safe and mechanically possible to do so.

A balustrade is most often found on stairways, porches, decking and balconies.

General Definitions

Handrail – Using various materials such as tube, wood, metal, plastic etc. as a rail which can be held, such as on the side of a staircase, ramp or other walkway and serving as a support or guard.

Normally supports by means of brackets either wall or post and can include bends, corners and any other inline fitting that caters for a change in direction.

Ends – Normally, same size as the handrail diameter and is used to terminate the ends of the handrail. Various configurations such as domed, mitred, flat, bulbous and wall sockets form the range.

Infill – A material that fills in an otherwise unoccupied space between two adjacent posts. Normally made from glass, tube, rod, wire and perforated sheet.

Mounting – This refers to the base detail and the format of how it fixes to the deck or structure top and side are options.

When laying out the bases it is important that they are inline and square to each other and that all fittings are securely bolted down using suitable fittings adequate for purpose.
Handrail supports in conjunction with suitable glue are tapped into place using a rubber hammer, it is also advisable to use some form of wooden block to avoid damage.
Care must be taken to ensure that handrail supports are in line. This can be done by making a line on both tube and handrail support. Ensure that the handrail support is fully secure before this is attempted.
Once the base has been secured, ensure that the post is securely fastened to the base.
Place the handrail on the upright and mark position. Remove top rail and drill in a safe manor.
Re-align top rail and connect using suitable fixings.
The handrail parts are many and varied, but normally are taken into the wall by using a wall socket. Care should be taken on corners to avoid finger traps.
When using the glue ensure that both elements, male and female are free from contaminants. Once in place do not tamper as this will “crack” the glue and cause the procedure to be restarted.
All applications within the CROSINOX range should be used in conjunction with suitable glue.

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