different views of spiral staircases including the cathedral light option

Spiral Staircase Glossary


Handrails are solid oak.

Landing Platform

Landings, where required, are attached to the top of the staircase and provide the path to the upper level. The landing, in turn, is attached to the structure. Landings come in various shapes and standard sizes.

Landing balusters are added to the landing to provide a safe exit or entrance to or from the staircase. The standard rail configurations are rail one side, rail two sides (parallel) and rail two sides “L” shape. The handrails and balusters on the landing rails are normally made to match the handrails and balusters on the staircase.

Top Cap

Normally the bottom of the center post on a spiral stair is attached to the floor and the stair is mounted at the top to a landing or balcony face. The top of the column is not attached; therefore, the top requires some type of “top cap” to cover the opening on the top of the column.


Treads are are what you step on as you climb the staircase and rest on the risers in oak spirals. In steel spirals, the treads hook directly into the center post. 

Tread materials come in a wide variety of metal and wood types. A smooth plate step is used so carpet can be applied to the surface with contact cement. Pan type treads are used to hold concrete, terrazzo, tile, or marble. The pan tread is also used to hold wood overlays for a combined metal-wood look.

Many standard tread designs are available to meet that special job need or application.

Center Post

All oak spirals have a center post to which the riser\end-piece\baluster (REB) assemblies are attached to form the spiral stair. Steel spirals use a cylindrical column that is hollow and wood stairs use a solid square oak post.