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Path Stair _ Landing Issues_Editing Issues


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The Path Stair command raises some issues concerning how the stair runs attach to landings.  


In particular, the "Beam Stair" type creates a landing whenever the V-Line path changes direction.

Strangely, if one wants to create a curved landing the curved portion where the V-Line changes to an arc become the stairs instead of a landing.  post-20019-0-32969100-1493853755_thumb.png.  


1. So the first question is how does one create a curved landing?  

Suggestion: Add a means to create any shape landing.


2. The second question, how does one control the thickness of the riser run?  


3. How does one control the thickness of the landing?


Generally speaking most landings (I've worked with) are co-planar on the top surface and on the under surface.  The structure and finish on the bottom of the landing are parallel to the floor not sloped as the Path Stair/ Beam Stair type command creates. 


4. How does one adjust the sloping underside of a landing? 



Suggestion: Add controls to adjust the "flatness" of the underside of the landing.


If one has two or more landings, each landing follows the same landing offset.  This isn't necessarily useful. There are many cases where one landing length may be different from another landing. 


5. How to make each landing offset unique at each landing?   I've tried the S-split tool. This not only splits the landing but the stair changes from a solid to a surface object.  I find it difficult to changes the resulting surface objects back into solids.  


Suggestion:  Add controls to the stair so that the landings can be "stretched" or lengthened without destruction of the stair.


Sometimes landings tuck under the stair riser runs.  This is typical with wood construction where the stair stringers are supported on top of a landing beam or header. 


6. Suggestion: Provide a mechanism to recess a landing beneath a stair run.


Note:  A workaround for all of this is to create a stair on a layer, ghost that layer, set snap options to "Snap to Ghosted" and draw over the "close-but-no-cigar" stair piece-by-piece on a new layer.  Make adjustments as necessary.   This allows one to create curved landings, custom railings, correct thickness of stair run structure and landings, tuck under landings, and "non-sloped" landings.  This takes some work.  It isn't quite the time saver one expects from a Stair command.  


Suggestion:  Provide an edit mode to edit the stair using the drawing tools.


Well, that's all for now.





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There are a number of standard stair configurations that should be addressed in the stair commands. post-20019-0-56798900-1493942563_thumb.png  


The first stair is a branched stair with a common landing.post-20019-0-08465700-1493943256_thumb.png  This was created by joining an L-shaped stair with a straight run.  It's not quite right.  Problem would be connections to the stair.


The second stair is a straight run - curved run - straight run stair.  Unable to create this stair configuration.


The third stair is a simple straight run stair with a landing within the run. This is common when you have floor to floor over 12-feet in height.

Unable to create this configuration using the stair tools available.


Suggestion: Add ability to create these types of stair configurations to the stair tools.



Other issues that should be addressed:  It is very common in commercial construction ... particularly metal pan stairs and concrete stairs that risers slope slightly back under the tread and are not always vertical


Suggestion: Add this capability to the stair tools.


Nosings are not always square as created using the stair tools.  They may have other profiles ... rounded nosings are common.


Suggestion: Add this capability to the stair tools.


When I apply a clipping plane to a stair (with or without a railing) the tool options palette is blank.  I was hoping to add a crosshatch pattern.  Would like to be able to add a different cross hatch pattern to railing and stair.  I appears I'm unable to add any hatch pattern.


Suggestion:  Add ability to add different hatch patterns to stair components. 



ps. If anyone who has created the stair landing configurations using the stair tools mentioned above please let me know? 






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Hi Pauli, 


Thank you for your elaborate suggestions.  I will probably miss some of the questions you have, but I will try to make this reply succinct:


• You CAN edit the stairs after construction.  Right click on the stairs and select Show Controls or Parameters

• A curved landing can be created by drawing an arc with one side along the base of the stairs and extruding it.  You can easily control the thickness with the extrusion tool after you create this object.

• Creating "any shape landing" would be near impossible to include in this toolset.  There are hundreds of shapes that can be made which would indefinitely bloat the complexity of this tool and, unfortunately, more complexity can mean more problems.  Sometimes its best to create various parts of objects manually for the best result. Following up on your other suggestions, manually creating a landing will also allow you to change the length and width of your landings without needing to access the Parameters of the stairs... you can just do it with the reshape tool and the stairs never have to change.

• Perhaps it would be useful to add some other stair types to this tool...

• Adding rounded edges and a sloped rise could also be useful, but historically the stair tool has been intended to be a "basic representation" of stairs.  Rarely would one want to waste hundreds or thousands of polygons on a staircase if the model is an entire house or mixed use building with detailed rooms with furnishings.


After all, there are reasons why stairwells are often hidden in their own part of buildings, they are usually not very attractive  ;)

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Hi Tech,

I'm aware of the ability to edit stairs after construction using the context menu/ Parameters.  

Curved and other shaped landings can be added to parametric straight flights as you mention.


One issue I've been trying to figure out is how to get radius portions of a flight to combine with straight portions without any luck.

See attached experiment. post-20019-0-54098000-1494020245_thumb.png


One of the issues on radius stairs with winders is how to accomplish code requirements for tread depths along walklines.  I've referenced the 2013 California Building codes requirements for winders below:


1009.6  Walkline. The walkline across winder treads shall be concentric to the direction of travel through the tum and located 12 inches (305 mm) from the side where the winders are narrower. The 12-inch (305 mm) dimension shall be measured from the widest point of the clear stair width at the walking surface of the winder.  If winders are adjacent within the flight, the point of the widest clear stair width of the adjacent winders shall be used.


1009.4 Width. … Winder treads shall have a minimum tread depth of 11 inches (279 mm) between the vertical planes of the foremost projection of adjacent treads at the intersections with the walkline and a minimum tread depth of 10 inches (254 mm) within the clear width of the stair.



1009.7.2 Riser height and tread depth,

(Exception 5 applies to stairs within dwelling units)

… the minimum winder tread depth at the walkline shall be 10 inches (254 mm); and the minimum winder tread depth shall be 6 inches (152 mm).


Suggestion: See if there may be a way to allow control of the winder tread depths along a stair's walkline. 


Another suggestion:  Ability to explode the stair using the explode tool as one can do with a component.  The stair could remain a solid and be manipulated easier.  


Thanks for getting back to me on this.  




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Hi Paul, 


We will see if we can add some better functionality when combining arcs and vector lines with the stair tools.  Thanks for the suggestion. 


I don't believe the Stair tool was written with specific state construction codes in mind since they were originally meant to just be a basic representation of stairs, but controlling the tread depths could be useful.  Thanks again!

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Hi Tech,


Thankyou for looking into combining arcs and vector lines.


You are correct about the Stair tool not written with specific state construction codes.


All 50 states in the US use the International Building Code (IBC).  Each state has adopted an IBC code version from 2003 to 2017.   In 2009 IBC Section 1009.3 introduced the concept of the "walkline" as applied to winder treads. To my knowledge all states use the 11-inch deep tread at a "walkline" 12-inches from the narrow end of a winder....except Hawaii.   Winders in residential dwelling units have exceptions to this. 


Another suggestion you might consider is allowing one to check the Tread width and # of steps in the Step Calculation group at the same time rather than a radio toggle buttons. It would also be great if one had the ability to change the tread dimension using Show Controls and/or by entering a value in the Tread edit box.


The most successful stair tool option I like using is the Steps Only type.   


Thanks again for considering these ideas.



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I, too, would like to see some more flexibility and reliability with the stair tool.  Often I use the tool as a kind of template or basic representation (as tech notes earlier), then convert to a plain object and add some details (like rounding the edges).  Works well for me.


But what I think tech is trying to say that incorporating every building code into the stair tool (or other tools, for that matter) is going to be nearly impossible.  Sure, that might be the US code, but what about the other 195 countries in the world?  Adding building code parameters that seems more like BIM thing to me, anyways... 



All 50 states in the US use the International Building Code (IBC).  Each state has adopted an IBC code version from 2003 to 2017.   In 2009 IBC Section 1009.3 introduced the concept of the "walkline" as applied to winder treads. To my knowledge all states use the 11-inch deep tread at a "walkline" 12-inches from the narrow end of a winder....except Hawaii.   Winders in residential dwelling units have exceptions to this. 


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Hi Paul, 


After you create a stair object, use the Convert Object Type tool and convert it to a plain object.  This will still appear as one single object, so then use the Separate tool to create separate objects.  This should work for stairs with and without rails and tiles.  Does that help?




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Hi Tech,

That helps alot.




I did want to respond to your comment that trying to incorporate every building code into a stair tool would be nearly impossible. I have to agree with you.  For the past couple of days,  I've been researching building codes in different countries to determine how tapered or angled treads were regulated.  It's practically impossible to find this information online. 


The building codes of countries I found (ie. UK, Australia, and New Zealand) regulated curved public stairs by specifying walklines at some distance from both the narrow and wide ends of stairs.  This suggests a simple solution that could very simply applied to a stair tool.  The tool would allow placement of walklines offset at a user's choice of one or both sides of a curved stair.  In addition, it would allow the user to specify the dimension of the narrow end of the tread.  This I believe would satisfy any code.  The safety issue with curved treads is giving one's foot enough purchase or support at the narrow end making sure the wide end of the tread is not excessively different.  


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