Sustainable Temporary Stairs
The age of the do-it-yourself inventor/entrepeneur is not dead. A few months ago, I called a local stair-builder about writing an article. Richard Walston has built stairs for probably close to forty years, I’m guessing, so he’s just the guy I wanted to contact. After I introduced myself, he said, “Hey, you have to see my new invention – it’s a set of temporary stairs that can be moved from job to job. And it’s completely adjustable!” That raised my curiosity a couple of notches.
Now, temp stairs are a fixture on job sites, and they usually slapped together so that everyone can get from floor to floor with a minimum of fuss. The real stairs are usually one of the last things to be completed. Richard said he was tired of seeing stairs that were shoddily built job-ste hazards with no railings. Plus, it was a task that ate up a couple of days worth of labor to erect and pull down. And a waste of lumber. So Walston came up with the idea of a temporary stair system made of interlocking parts that went up and came down in less time than it takes to cut a set of stringers.
The system, called TeleFlight (www.teleflightstair.com), is made from structural-grade aluminum. An adjustable pair of telescoping stringers are mounted in the stair opening, and a combination tread/riser assembly is dropped into slots in the stringer. The tread angle can be adjusted to compensate for the run. Handrails and balusters complete the package, which is both code-compliant and UL-classified. The day I went to one of Richard’s jobs, his son Ed set the whole thing up in about 30 minutes, with only a little help from his dad. And when they’re done, they’ll dissasemble the stairs and take them to the next job.
The system is in production, and he hopes to attract both residential and commercial builders who want to streamline their production. And the price is surprisingly low – for more info, check out the website.