How to Finish Open Side of Riser

by Stacy
(riverside, ca. usa)

Cutting the riser at 45 degrees at the corner

Cutting the riser at 45 degrees at the corner

I have one side of my stairs that is open. How do I finish the riser of the open side? Also which way is correct....the riser to sit on the tread or visa versa?


A- The riser needs to be cut to wrap around the stair. This means that the end of the front riser will need to be cut at 45 degrees, as well as the side part of your riser.

I used a compound miter saw to cut the ends of the riser. In this photo I was installing laminate flooring as the riser. When cutting the laminate at 45 degrees it leaves a sharp edge. Use sandpaper to get rid of the sharp edge.

As to the other question you asked, I always install the tread first so the riser sets down on top of the tread. Sometimes the tread may dip down or hump up. In this case you can scribe the riser so it fits tight to the tread. Its not that hard to do just scribe the bottom of the riser then when it fits good to the tread cut the top of the riser to fit.

I always start the stairs at the bottom and work up the staircase. Others may differ in their methods.

Anthony Garrison

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Apr 08, 2019
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Covering Riser edge on Open Sided stairs
by: Anonymous

I'm in the process of installing new oak treads and risers on my stairs and the area of concern to me is the bottom seven steps. These are open on one side and butt up against the wall on the other. With the rough looking edges of the risers, what would you suggest in covering up the rough looking edges? My thought was to run another skirt board along the wall on the drywall to cover that edge.
I do have an image that I could share but the site wont allow me to put it here.

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