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Rick
Rick, General Contractor
Category: Home Improvement
Satisfied Customers: 20068
Experience:  Licensed construction supervisor with 35+ yrs. experience.
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Help on evenly spacing balusters on porch rail...

Customer Question

help on evenly spacing balusters on porch rail...
Submitted: 1 year ago.
Category: Home Improvement
Expert:  Rick replied 1 year ago.

Welcome to Just Answer, my name is ***** ***** I will do my best to help you with your issue. If my initial response doesn’t answer your question then let me know and we can

continue our conversation.

There are a number of calculators for determining spacing and how many balusters you need. Here's one of the better ones.
http://www.blocklayer.com/CentersLevelEng.aspx

Let me know if you need more help

Customer: replied 1 year ago.

ok i have a 4x4 on each end and a baluster right beside the 4x4s as a starting place so then i measure the space i need to fill ...i understand up to that point, but when i get the spacing for each baluster from the calculator, where do i measure from and to to place the first one.

Expert:  Rick replied 1 year ago.

Just use the calculator I linked above. It gives you the layout with the center (or far or near side) measurement for each baluster. Measuring this way is a better way to lay them out rather than trying to figure out the spacing.

Customer: replied 1 year ago.

i see that, but do i measure from the left side of first baluster to begin? or center

Expert:  Rick replied 1 year ago.

The best (and I believe default) option for this calculator is far side. So you start your measuring with the edge of the post then the next dimension is the far side of the first baluster.

Customer: replied 1 year ago.

so what edge of the post, the far left edge facing it or the right edge

Expert:  Rick replied 1 year ago.

The edge at the start of the run. So if you're working left to right it would be the right edge of the post. Left edge if you're working right to left.

Customer: replied 1 year ago.

ok can i try this today and write back on results?

Expert:  Rick replied 1 year ago.

Sure, let me know how it works out.

Customer: replied 1 year ago.

rick

hi

i cannot seem to get this, forgive my ignorance, if i give you measurements could you walk me thorough just one?

Expert:  Rick replied 1 year ago.

If you want me to run the numbers I need the space you are going to fill and the width of the balusters. I'm going to assume a max spacing of 4"

Customer: replied 1 year ago.

measurement is 63 and 3/4 inches from outside of first baluster to outside of last baluster

Expert:  Rick replied 1 year ago.

I need the width of the balusters and the dimension between the posts not the first and last baluster

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
Width of baluster is 1 and 1/4 inch. Between post is 61 1/8 inch
Expert:  Rick replied 1 year ago.

I just realized I can't link you to the results so I try it 2 ways first the entry parameters if that doesn't work for you then I guess I'll have to list the measurements for each one. Here is the link again
http://www.blocklayer.com/CentersLevelEng.aspx

First field>Length 61 1/8"
2nd field>Member width 1 1/4"

3rd field>member height (NA)

4th field> Angle (NA)

5th field> members = no ends

6th field> Max spaces = 4"

Calculate

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
I can put
In the numbers. Im asking you how far will the first baluster be from the starting point which is the right edge of the baluster that meets the post.
Expert:  Rick replied 1 year ago.

It's clearly illustrated in the layout below the calculator (scroll down if you missed it). As well as every subsequent baluster down the line.

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
I use the space in between for the initial measurement meaning right edge of first member to left edge of last member?
Expert:  Rick replied 1 year ago.

Yes, if by member you mean post.

Customer: replied 1 year ago.

i got it thanks, ***** ***** on how i could figure the angle for my handrails, i see this calculator will do it, but i dont know the degree angle i have.

Expert:  Rick replied 1 year ago.

The easy way is with an electronic level that reads the angle but you probably don't have one so you can use a calculator. Here's one
https://www.easycalculation.com/trigonometry/triangle-angles.php

If that doesn't work for you there are many others online just google "calculate angles in right triangle".
To get the info you need you'll at least need a framing square. You put one leg of the square against the post at the bottom of your rail then read the dimensions on the triangle where the railing intersects each leg of the square.

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