According to wikipedia, the appropriate hand rail strength is 50 plf (pounds linear foot) with an active load of 200 plf. That makes sense, about the weight of a person.
However, I can't find any calculators to tell me the span or wood I'd need to do this. I'm using 4x4 equivalent for the posts and similar for the rail (I know, not code, but wider is allowed if it can be gripped appropriately by its shape)
We're putting a handrail along our front walk as we re-do the steps - we have eighty steps (yes, that's right, our house is about three stories up from the street), so a handrail isn't just something I can put off.
I don't think I need balustrade because it's not a sheer cliff, but a long hillside covered in ferns and other garden features.
However, I can't figure out how many supports I really need, and I'd hate to have to re-do this.This message has been edited. Last edited by: Crissa Kentavr,
Jul 05, 2012, 01:37 PM
your code office has the answers.
if not, mine does... here's their deck expectations.
sig: if this is a new economy, how come they still want my old-fashioned money?
Jul 05, 2012, 05:14 PM
But I knew that part. It doesn't say the spacing of supports needed to meet the weight requirements. And the spacing of supports is unrelated to the 6" or 4" sphere test, since this is a hand rail, not a guard rail.