Monday, November 7, 2011

Calculate The Distance Between Balusters

Without the proper calculations, your balusters will not look even.

Since there is no set distance between railing posts, getting your balusters evenly spaced can be a bit of a chore. To get the correct distance between balusters you have to determine the quantity and width of the balusters, and use those measurements to determine how much total space will be between each post. The process requires a bit of math, but it's all simple math functions that can be completed with even the most basic of calculators. Does this Spark an idea?


1. Measure the number of inches between the two end posts.

2. Add 1.5 inches, or the exact width of your baluster if you are not using 2-by-2s, to the distance that you would ideally want between each baluster. Most building codes require that the space be no more than four inches wide.

3. Divide the total distance between the posts by the number you got when you added 1.5 to the distance you want between the balusters. For example, if your posts are 52 inches apart and you wanted the maximum spacing, you would divide 52 by 5.5 (4 inches plus 1.5 inches) to get a total of 9.45. Round this number up to the nearest whole number to determine the number of balusters you will need.

4. Multiply the number of balusters that you just determined by the width of each baluster. Continuing the example, you would multiple 10 by 1.5 and get 15. This number represents the total amount in inches that will be taken up by your balusters.

5. Subtract the space taken by balusters from the total distance between the posts. This result will give you the total empty space between each post. In the example, you would subtract 15 from 52 and get 37 inches of space.

6. Divide the total amount of space by the total number of spaces. Since there should be a space between the balusters and the end posts, there will be one more space than there are balusters. So, again using the example, we would divide 37 by 11 to come up with 3.36 inches of space between each baluster. Convert the decimal to a fraction to make measuring easier. Use the table in the Resources section and round the measurement to the nearest 1/8 inch.

Tags: between each, distance between, between posts, each baluster, example would, space between