The drawing shows a method that I use to position balusters accurately on stair treads with a minimum of effort. The beauty of this system is that an off-center dowel hole in the bottom of the baluster doesn’t throw things off.
I start by laying out the position of the baluster on the tread. Then I drill a hole for the dowel in the approximate center of the baluster’s base. Here’s a critical step: Once I’ve drilled the hole, I don’t knock the dust out of the hole. Instead, I put the baluster back on the layout lines on the stair tread and tap the baluster from the top. This deposits a ring of sawdust on the tread that exactly marks the position of the dowel.
Dave Gosse, Vancouver, None