Complete your staircase design with our collection of elegant stair spindles. Find the perfect design for your spindle or baluster project amongst our collection of metal and wood spindles. Get expert planning and stair spindle fitting advice from our team, or get in touch for help with design inspiration.
What is a Stair Spindle?
Stair spindles, sometimes called balusters, line the staircase and stand between the lower baserail and the handrail. There are lots of different stair spindle styles, ranging from classic simple designs to elaborate modern decorative styles. Spindles, when combined with a handrail, baserail and newel post, make up a complete stair balustrade.
Square staircase spindles offer a clean, minimalist look that’s perfect for a modern style, and pair equally well with wooden or metal stair balustrade detailing. Simple square spindles are usually the cheapest option, though square tapered spindles are also available, offering a slightly more intricate look.
Within the twisted spindle category there are a number of different styles. Single twist spindles are well-suited for older houses or more classical designs, and have a simple twist to differentiate from the more plain square design. Double twist spindles are usually made from metal, and feature two separate twists along the length. More intricate still are barley twist spindles, which have a section towards the middle which resembles a barley twist - these are most often made from wood, but metal barley twist spindles are available.
Chamfered spindles are usually square at the top and bottom, with a patterned or decorated middle portion. Made from wood, chamfered balusters or spindles are available from Richard Burbidge in oak, pine, hemlock and white-finished wood.
At Richard Burbidge we carry a number of staircase spindle styles to fit into any design theme. For traditional staircase designs encompassing timber elements, try choosing a spindle with a wood finish for a classic look. As well as being solid and durable, wood is easy to treat and paint, should you decide to change the design of your stairway.
Our wooden stair spindles range includes:
- Oak spindles
- Pine spindles
- Hemlock spindles
- White finish spindles
Pairing equally well with natural wood, painted or metal balustrades, metal spindles are favoured for their durability and easy maintenance. Metal is often a popular choice for modern stair spindles, and can complement virtually any aesthetic style.
Metal spindles are available in simple or more intricate patterns, which can be mixed and matched to create interest in your staircase design. For example, our Elements collection combines wooden and metallic parts for a twist on the usual stair design.
Stair Spindle Installation, Finishing & Maintenance
After you’ve decided on the design you’d like for your staircase, you need to think about installation and construction. Whether you’re building a brand new stair balustrade or are simply replacing old spindles, you’ll need to know exactly what you need for the project...
How far apart should stair spindles be?
In the UK, staircase spindles need to be installed close enough together that a 100mm sphere can’t pass between them. Therefore, when you’re working out stair spindle spacing, the absolute maximum space between posts can be no more than 99mm.
How many spindles do I need for my stairs?
This will of course depend on the length of your staircase, depth of stairs and a variety of other factors. But a good rule of thumb is to allow for 2 spindles per stair tread, except for the tread with the newel post, where you’ll only need 1. For example a standard 12-tread staircase would require 22 spindles (based on standard 32mm or 41mm timber spindles).
If you choose wooden stair spindles, you may also need to think about wood preservative and stain. You can also alter the colour of your spindles to change the whole look of your staircase. Metal spindles are typically low maintenance, and usually just need the odd dusting or polishing.
If the spindles in your staircase get damaged or age-worn, it’s important to replace them as soon as possible for safety reasons. A broken spindle can look out of place in your design, but it can also be dangerous for people using the stairs, too. For help with replacing spindles, get in touch with our experts for advice on how to get started.