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How to Template a Railing on a Curved Wall

Updated April 17, 2017

When installing railing for stairs that wind around a curved wall, you must be extremely careful to create a consistent rise throughout the stairs. Creating a template for the railing along the curved wall is the ideal way to ensure consistency throughout the process. With the help of two friends, you can create a rail template along the curved wall in a short amount of time.

Measure 36 inches up the wall from the top, front edge of the first step on the staircase. Mark the 36-inch location with a pencil.

Measure 36 inches up the wall from the top, front edge of the centre step on the staircase. Mark this 36-inch location with a pencil. For example, if the staircase has 11 steps, go to the sixth step and measure up 36 inches from the front edge closest to the wall.

Measure 36 inches up the wall from the top, front edge of the last step on the staircase. Again, mark the 36-inch location with a pencil.

Stand at the top stair measurement and unwind the chalk line around the wall to the bottom step. Have a friend hold the chalk line away from the wall in the centre while a third friend holds the chalk line away from the wall at the base of the staircase.

Hold the chalk line against the wall at the middle mark tightly. Have the friend at the bottom of the stairs hold the chalk line firmly at the base and snap the line between the midpoint and the base.

Hold the chalk line tight against the wall at the middle mark and the top mark and snap the line between the two. The chalk line will create a template that wraps around the wall to create a consistent rise to install the railing.

Things You'll Need

  • Tape measure
  • Pencil
  • Chalk line
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About the Author

Nicole Byerly has been writing since 2003. She has published multiple works that have appeared in "Campus Philly." Byerly is pursuing a Bachelor of Science in cybersecurity at Utica College.