End Return on a Trim Under Railing - Woodworking Talk - Woodworkers Forum
 
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post #1 of 7 Old 10-07-2012, 01:00 AM Thread Starter
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End Return on a Trim Under Railing

This is making me mental.

For the stairs going into my basement, I am using a half wall for the hand rail. I want to run a piece of casing trim under the railing. At the top of the stairs I want to finish the casing trim with a miter cut at 45 degrees and an end return. The problem is that I don't know what angle to cut the bevel cut for the return. Normally, I'd just do a 45 degree bevel cut. However, it does not work in this case, because the trim runs along the wall at a 45 degree angle (the same angle as the railing).

How do I determine to angle of the bevel cut in this case? Is there some other way to do a end return on the trim?
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post #2 of 7 Old 10-07-2012, 08:00 AM
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Could use a picture.
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post #3 of 7 Old 10-07-2012, 08:21 AM
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If the moulding ends at a wall, just cut to butt. Unless I'm reading your description wrong, sounds like the trim is a straight line, and ending it at the end of a straight line. A 45 on each piece stops the run...it just makes an end to a straight line (the return).

If you are wanting the end to be vertical, a returned end is on a different plane. You could make a transition block to end vertically, and the moulding would stop on it at a 45.

Or, you could just cut the end vertically, and cut a 45 on the face of the moulding.




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post #4 of 7 Old 10-07-2012, 09:01 AM
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If you want the cut to be plumb with the stair, it's a compound miter. The saw tips to a 45 bevel and it's swung to the plumb angle. The return is cut the same only opposite.
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post #5 of 7 Old 10-07-2012, 09:30 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Hammer1
If you want the cut to be plumb with the stair, it's a compound miter. The saw tips to a 45 bevel and it's swung to the plumb angle. The return is cut the same only opposite.
That will give you a return, but the return will travel away from the face of the casing at the opposite of the plumb angle, instead of continuing the profile square into the wall like normal. I've encountered this problem before and used a transition block like Cabinetman suggested. Also, your stair angle should not be a 45. More like a 40.5 if memory serves me correctly. Staircases and balustrades are a craft unto themselves. I know a few decent trimmers who are clueless when it comes to stairs
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post #6 of 7 Old 10-10-2012, 02:16 PM
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Maybe I misunderstood Smbarney's question. It sounded to me like he had a sloping half wall on the side of a stair. There is a cap board on top of the wall, I assume with an overhang, and he wanted to put molding underneath it. At the top, where the molding stops and not against anything, he didn't want to just make a straight butt cut but wanted to return it on itself to the wall. What is commonly called a mitered return.

The 45 degree cut I referred to was not the plumb cut, which would be established by the angle of the stair, but the return cut. It's true that with complex profiles and larger moldings, parts of the profile will be off skew, but with most profiles, it's not obvious. On the chair rail style molding in the picture, there is only a slight angle difference at the bottom of the mitered return where it comes to a point, barely 1/8".

Compound cuts can be more complicated, making a slope sided octagon, for example. This is a link to a calculator that can help solve these type of situations but I don't think it's necessary if I understood the question.
http://www.csgnetwork.com/sawmitercalc.html
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post #7 of 7 Old 10-10-2012, 05:37 PM
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Yeah that's definitely the return, but the distorted profile caused by the compound miter is exactly what I was talking about. I understand what you're saying, just don't like the look.
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