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Subject:
this is a large question *LINK*

Bill Houghton, Sebastopol, CA
>Your best bet is to check at your local library and see if they have any books on stairs, or if any of the general carpentry books have a stair chapter.

There are also online resources. I googled "stair making" and got over two million possibilities, of which the top three seemed like useful resources for you - I linked one example below.

Your post implies that you're not terribly experienced with carpentry. If that's true, building stairs is not a good first project, although I appreciate that you may not have much choice. If you need to tackle it anyway, read every resource you can find and check every step several times. My first set of stairs were "off" by the thickness of the tread, because I forgot that, in laying out the stairs, you measure from where the top of the tread will be, not from the top of the stringer (the term for what I think you meant by "cut out thingy"). My second set were fine (although I need to replace them now). By the third set, I was doing OK.

You'll also need tools you probably don't have - at least one long level (4 to 6 foot) and, depending on how you're fastening the steps at the bottom, concrete drilling tools. You may be able to rent what you don't have ("Rental" in the yellow pages).

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