Our house has one set of stairs and an area that is open to below that needed a railing. I avoided thinking about what we were going to use for as long as possible, mostly because I couldn’t really find anything that #1: looked the way I wanted it to, and #2: wasn’t super expensive.
All of the hardware on the posts in our house is a silver, galvanized colour…along with the roof, siding, and the light fixtures.
One day when I was working on something in the garage, my eye caught some metal tubing leaning against the wall. Looking more closely at it, it was very close to the color and slight texture I was looking for to match the other metal in the house.
It was none other than galvanized electrical metal conduit!
I pitched the idea to David that I think this would make the perfect balusters for our railings, and he agreed! It’s extremely inexpensive and very sturdy!
I really liked the look of metal in between chunkier pieces of wood. I also went that direction because I thought it would complement the structural beams that are exposed throughout the house.
So we found I couple cedar rough cut 6×6’s while on vacation in B.C. that was perfect for the bottom anchoring post, and got a couple cedar 4×4’s from a local lumber yard for the top and bottom.
We anchored the bottom 6×6 to the stairs with two lag bolts.
The challenging part was figuring out the correct angle to both cut the 4×4’s on and drill the holes at. We used 1/2 inch conduit and a 3/4 inch bit to drill the holes. We spaced them according to our local building code requirements. I would have loved to install the tubing horizontally as I think that looks so good but unfortunately that’s not allowed here!
Above is how we dry-fit everything…the straps worked pretty well to keep the pipes in place to test how everything fit. As you can see there is a structural post that we attached the top part to.
This is how we attached the bottom part. Some free-hand drilled holes pilot holes are hidden under the railing.
I sanded and stained everything a chocolate brown with enough coats to match all the other posts, and 2 years later, we are still very happy with how they’ve turned out! The railing is sturdy, functional and just the right amount of rustic to fit perfectly with the other aspects of the home 🙂