Enclosed are pictures of the railing. As you can see I have attempted to use a miter cut to join the 2 railings together. I was also thinking about mitering the other railing so the angled one could fit right in. I was wondering what the most secure way would be? Thanksenter image description here

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  • Looks already installed - are you looking to replace it or alter the current version of it? Oct 20, 2016 at 19:57
  • Both pieces of wood are just sitting on the posts. I left extra length on both so I can make final cuts before I stain and clear coat. I just need some feedback on joint. If there is a better way to join both together Im all ears.
    – JuicyJuice
    Oct 20, 2016 at 20:54
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    I would say simply glue the thing first, using water-proof I think, just to be safe. Then from under put in a screw and from the side. To keep the good looks I would use a wood plug to cover that up. All I have to say. And by the way. Great job, looks great!
    – Ljk2000
    Oct 21, 2016 at 0:44

1 Answer 1


I was wondering what the most secure way would be?

Probably either would be fine.

As it sits currently all you'd need to do to make a firm connection would be to glue and fix the joint. You could even fix it with nails but I'll discount those :-)

One screw is probably sufficient given the nature of the installation, but use two side by side if you feel the extra strength is needed.

You need to drill clearance and pilot holes first of course. Then after lightly sanding the mating surfaces to ensure a good glue bond, glue the joint and drive the screw/screws in.

No need for clamps as the screws will supply the clamping force.

If you want to make the glue joint a little more secure you could size the end grain surface prior to applying the main bonding glue.

Plug the clearance holes with face-grain plugs if you want the fixings to be hidden, but I don't think this is a must-do since the drilled holes will be hard to see given their position.

As an alternative to screwing you could use one fat dowel or two narrower ones, again driven in from below into drilled holes. Leave the dowel slightly over-long and it will plug its own hole, simply saw off the excess and pare any remainder with a very sharp chisel until completely flush.

  • Thank you very much for your recommendation. What is the best type of glue for this situation?
    – JuicyJuice
    Oct 21, 2016 at 14:34
  • @JuicyJuice Well what glues do you have? :-) But whatever you normally use for wood will do fine here, stair railing doesn't have any particular requirements that call for a special glue.
    – Graphus
    Oct 21, 2016 at 14:39
  • I've been using PL for all the stairs, but I imagine wood glue could work as well.
    – JuicyJuice
    Oct 21, 2016 at 16:03
  • @JuicyJuice Yes either one will produce joints stronger than the wood around them if you do everything right, so no need to prefer one over the other in this application.
    – Graphus
    Oct 21, 2016 at 16:57
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    @Ljk2000 Not that there's anything wrong with Titebond but the reality is that any type of PVA glue is capable of making strong enough joints in wood if you do the joint right and clamp hard enough. What you pay more for with any branded glue is the name on the label.
    – Graphus
    Oct 22, 2016 at 7:26

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