Woman Cave – Finished Staircase

Well, there you have it – a project finished. Mmmm, maybe not completely, let’s just call it a photo-finish.

1 stair well

I’m not going to bore you with the tedious, multi corner drywall finishing. I counted 28 outside corners and 11 inside corners for the stairwell area. Why so many? Bulkheads and plumbing runs will make that happen. You’ll get glimpses of all the angles – the memories are too painful for me to show just how many there are in one shot.

2 wall insulation

The walls were finished and painted before the final stair goes in. The area under the stair stringers was framed with 2X4’s and was insulated with spray foam. Drywall was then placed to finish.

3 riser measurements

I’ve added the stair skirt boards and wrapped it around the tricky angled wall. The wall is reinforced for the stair tread supports.

4 all risers in place

All the risers are cut to the width of the opening.

5 stair tread template

Since this will be a carpeted stair, I used 1″ pine treads. Here is my handy cardboard template to figure the angle cut.

6 trim pieces

Speaking of angle cuts – these are the trim pieces I needed to fabricate to trim out the stair/wall junctions. Top Clockwise: 1st tread back trim, Bottom RH trim, Top RH trim, LH Top trim bottom block, LH Top trim.

7 buscit joiner layout

The bottom RH trim required a piece 14″ wide. So out comes the biscuit joiner. 1st we mark the biscuit locations.

8 biscut joiner

Cut the slots for the biscuits and glue it all up. The moisture in the glue expands the beech wood biscuits and makes for a solid joint.

9 finished stair

And that finished the stair – time to move on.

Time’s a wasting.


23 thoughts on “Woman Cave – Finished Staircase

    • Hi Barbara! Thanks for the note. It’s a long process, I’m up over 135 posts or so…but I’ll get this place finished before I hit the retirement home. Thanks again!

    • Thanks so much! I hope your renovation is quicker than mine! That hole next to the stair looks like a place for an electrical box, but it’s actually a recess for a coffee maker for my wife.After a 6 year renovation, you gotta keep the wife happy.

    • Hi Lauren! This set is carpeted to match the basement – it’s like an echo chamber down there without some sort of sound absorbing materials. The stairs to the second floor – now that’s where the stain and paint come in. Stay tuned.

      • The ceilings are 7’2″ and drywall, so lot’s of echos. The upstairs will be done in a 6″ white oak with a Swedish white oil finish – we’ll see how that turns out later this year.

  1. Hi Curt,

    Great job on the stairs – we took an early decision to renovate ours rather than refit them but I think the end result would’ve been better replacing them. Great attention to detail with the biscuits, they make for neat and strong joins.

    Keep up the great work, your results speak for themselves.


    • Hi Pete! Thanks so much for the note. Love your reno blog and just started following. Most people are more practical that me. I finished most of the upstairs and then decided to rip out the stairs so I had to redo everything up there. I had to build a mud room so I could get enough run to get a normal staircase to the basement. Next house will be a single story ranch. Here’s to smooth renovation sailing.

  2. I’m intrigued by the faceted header above the stairs. And I’m sure working with all those corners was a royal pain in the ass. You have more patience than I do fine man. Cheers!

    • Hey Chris! Yep, that dang bulkhead – I hated to have it there, but it has 2nd floor plumbing lines, a 6″ bathroom vent and other utilities that couldn’t be routed any other way. The key to these unpleasant projects is that I have so many other things going on that I just drop it and go to something different. Keeps me sane – I think.

  3. Well done on those stairs!
    The new ones we cut in 2010 are still in the cave.
    They were all stacked in order, then the mason moved them to open up the new access door way through the two foor spine wall….. They are all over the place now; don;’t tell Trev

    • Ha, ha Gil – see what happens when you have contractors around. At least you still have the pieces. Seems like my concrete contractor walked off with an angle grinder and plate joiner. Perhaps they are on extended loan and I didn’t see that in the contract.

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