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Old 05-05-2009, 01:33 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Steel tube (railing) fab Q?

Is 16 gauge 1" square steel tube going to be stiff enough for a horizontal railing spanning 8'? It will be on the angled run of stairs, less than 8ft between the posts and welded to 1/8 strap at either end.

Any way to look it up? Basically I am worried about deflection, but I am pretty sure it will be OK - but before I order the tubing I would like to have an idea.

I did find this:
http://metalgeek.com/static/deflection.php
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Last edited by TLCObsession; 05-05-2009 at 01:44 PM.
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Old 05-05-2009, 07:16 PM   #2 (permalink)
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Id say youd be fine...especially if the posts are less than 8" apart, meaning there would be another anchor point somewhere along the 8' span, ,not including the end anchor points.

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Old 05-05-2009, 07:33 PM   #3 (permalink)
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Why square instead of (more common) pipe? 1" will be hard to grip. 1.5"-2" round is fairly common.

Top rail at 42", middle rail at 21", and able to support 200lbs is the common railing standard.

Last edited by lumberjack1986; 05-05-2009 at 07:34 PM.
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Old 05-05-2009, 08:05 PM   #4 (permalink)
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A stair railing shall be of construction similar to a standard railing but the vertical height shall be not more than 34 inches nor less than 30 inches from upper surface of top rail to surface of tread in line with face of riser at forward edge of tread.

1910.23(e)(3)

[Reserved]

1910.23(e)(3)(i)

For wood railings, the posts shall be of at least 2-inch by 4-inch stock spaced not to exceed 6 feet; the top and intermediate rails shall be of at least 2-inch by 4-inch stock. If top rail is made of two right-angle pieces of 1-inch by 4-inch stock, posts may be spaced on 8-foot centers, with 2-inch by 4-inch intermediate rail.

..1910.23(e)(3)(ii)

1910.23(e)(3)(ii)

For pipe railings, posts and top and intermediate railings shall be at least 1 1/2 inches nominal diameter with posts spaced not more than 8 feet on centers.

1910.23(e)(3)(iii)

For structural steel railings, posts and top and intermediate rails shall be of 2-inch by 2-inch by 3/8-inch angles or other metal shapes of equivalent bending strength with posts spaced not more than 8 feet on centers.

1910.23(e)(3)(iv)

The anchoring of posts and framing of members for railings of all types shall be of such construction that the completed structure shall be capable of withstanding a load of at least 200 pounds applied in any direction at any point on the top rail.

1910.23(e)(3)(v)

Other types, sizes, and arrangements of railing construction are acceptable provided they meet the following conditions:

1910.23(e)(3)(v)(a)

A smooth-surfaced top rail at a height above floor, platform, runway, or ramp level of 42 inches nominal;

1910.23(e)(3)(v)(b)

A strength to withstand at least the minimum requirement of 200 pounds top rail pressure;

1910.23(e)(3)(v)(c)

Protection between top rail and floor, platform, runway, ramp, or stair treads, equivalent at least to that afforded by a standard intermediate rail;

..1910.23(e)(4)

1910.23(e)(4)

A standard toeboard shall be 4 inches nominal in vertical height from its top edge to the level of the floor, platform, runway, or ramp. It shall be securely fastened in place and with not more than 1/4-inch clearance above floor level. It may be made of any substantial material either solid or with openings not over 1 inch in greatest dimension.

Where material is piled to such height that a standard toeboard does not provide protection, paneling from floor to intermediate rail, or to top rail shall be provided.

1910.23(e)(5)

1910.23(e)(5)(i)

A handrail shall consist of a lengthwise member mounted directly on a wall or partition by means of brackets attached to the lower side of the handrail so as to offer no obstruction to a smooth surface along the top and both sides of the handrail. The handrail shall be of rounded or other section that will furnish an adequate handhold for anyone grasping it to avoid falling. The ends of the handrail should be turned in to the supporting wall or otherwise arranged so as not to constitute a projection hazard.

1910.23(e)(5)(ii)

The height of handrails shall be not more than 34 inches nor less than 30 inches from upper surface of handrail to surface of tread in line with face of riser or to surface of ramp.

1910.23(e)(5)(iii)

The size of handrails shall be: When of hardwood, at least 2 inches in diameter; when of metal pipe, at least 1 1/2 inches in diameter. The length of brackets shall be such as will give a clearance between handrail and wall or any projection thereon of at least 3 inches. The spacing of brackets shall not exceed 8 feet.

..1910.23(e)(5)(iv)

1910.23(e)(5)(iv)

The mounting of handrails shall be such that the completed structure is capable of withstanding a load of at least 200 pounds applied in any direction at any point on the rail.

1910.23(e)(6)

All handrails and railings shall be provided with a clearance of not less than 3 inches between the handrail or railing and any other object.

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Old 05-05-2009, 08:24 PM   #5 (permalink)
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Guys -

I know the code. This is the decorative linear runs in between the posts, not the handrail/grip itself. I just want to make sure it won't sag or rattle too much. IIRC Residential code specs a min diameter of 1.25 and max of 2" with it being a min of 1.5 inches from the wall.

I think the code above (some of it) is OSHA/commercial, not residential, and I don't have the IBC books at home. We run into it all the time making nice, timber framed rails....
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Old 05-05-2009, 09:12 PM   #6 (permalink)
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Originally Posted by TLCObsession View Post
Guys -

I know the code. This is the decorative linear runs in between the posts, not the handrail/grip itself. I just want to make sure it won't sag or rattle too much. IIRC Residential code specs a min diameter of 1.25 and max of 2" with it being a min of 1.5 inches from the wall.

I think the code above (some of it) is OSHA/commercial, not residential, and I don't have the IBC books at home. We run into it all the time making nice, timber framed rails....
It's straight from OSHA's website. That's the standard I have to work with.

Here's your IBC
1009.11.3 Handrail Graspability.

Handrails with circular cross section shall have an outside diameter of at least 1.25 inches (32 mm) and not greater than 2 inches (51 mm) or shall provide equivalent graspability. If the handrail is not circular, it shall have a perimeter dimension of at least 4 inches (102 mm) and not greater than 6.25 inches (160 mm) with a maximum cross- section dimension of 2.25 inches (57 mm). Edges shall have a minimum radius of 0.01 inch (0.25 mm).
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Old 05-06-2009, 07:01 AM   #7 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TLCObsession View Post
Is 16 gauge 1" square steel tube going to be stiff enough for a horizontal railing spanning 8'? It will be on the angled run of stairs, less than 8ft between the posts and welded to 1/8 strap at either end.

Any way to look it up? Basically I am worried about deflection, but I am pretty sure it will be OK - but before I order the tubing I would like to have an idea.

I did find this:
http://metalgeek.com/static/deflection.php
Yes, it will deflect. 1x14 gauge deflects somewhat noticeably between eight foot centers, but for your application, I would think it would work fine. 16 gauge would be unnacceptable in my opinion.
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Old 05-06-2009, 10:48 AM   #8 (permalink)
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Yes, it will deflect. 1x14 gauge deflects somewhat noticeably between eight foot centers, but for your application, I would think it would work fine. 16 gauge would be unnacceptable in my opinion.
That's the info I really need. Thanks!
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Old 05-06-2009, 10:57 AM   #9 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by threadkiller View Post
Yes, it will deflect. 1x14 gauge deflects somewhat noticeably between eight foot centers, but for your application, I would think it would work fine. 16 gauge would be unnacceptable in my opinion.
What he said. I can bend a 6' section of 1" 16g square with my hand. An 8' section would probably sway with the wind.
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