How Do You Replace Woodworking Spindles? Manufacturing Spindle Failures

Updated on October 20, 2022 | By Alex

When it comes to woodworking, spindles are one of the most common pieces of equipment. They are used to hold up stairs, railings, and other structures. Without them, these structures would collapse.

Spindles made of wood can break down over down. The most common cause of spindle failure is rot. When wood rots, it breaks down into small pieces and eventually disintegrates. It can happen because of water damage, insect damage, or age.

When a spindle breaks, you have to replace it. Spindle replacement can be difficult, especially if you don’t have the right tools. However, if you follow these simple steps below, you can successfully replace your spindles.

How Do You Make Wooden Spindles?

Remove The Old One

The first step is to remove the old spindle. You can remove it with a chisel and hammer. Be careful not to damage the surrounding wood. You can protect the surrounding wood by covering it with a cloth.


Next, you need to measure the length of the new spindle. It should be the same length as the old one. Once you have the right size, cut the spindle to length.


Now you need to drill a hole in the center of the new spindle. This hole will be used to attach the spindle to the railing.

Once the hole is drilled, you can now attach the spindle to the railing. Use a screw and washer to secure it in place.


Finally, it is time to sand the new spindle. Sanding it will help it match the rest of the railing. You can sand it by hand or with a power sander.

How Much Do Spindles Cost?

Spindles vary in price depending on the material, size, and amount of work that needs to be done. You could spend $75 on steel spindles or $500 on wrought iron spindles. Wooden spindles can cost as little as $3 to $55 each.

The cost can be influenced by the detail work, such as carving or scrollwork. The more intricate the design, the more expensive it will be.

What is the Difference Between a Picket and a Spindle?

A picket is a vertical piece of wood used for fencing, but a spindle is a vertical piece of wood for stair railings and other structures.

Fencing pickets are usually shorter than spindles and have a point on the top. Spindles are round and do not have a point on the top.

If you need to repair a picket fence, it can be a simple task you can do on your own. However, if you need to repair a spindle railing, you might need to hire a professional.

In terms of life span, a spindle will usually last longer than a picket. It is because spindles are not exposed to the elements as much as pickets.

The materials used to create spindles are also usually of a higher quality. Wood or metal can create a spindle. However, pickets are usually made of wood.

How Do You Make Balusters?

The baluster is the part of the railing that connects the top rail to the bottom rail. It is usually a vertical rod or piece of wood.

The most common type of wood used for balusters is oak. Other woods that can be used include maple, cherry, and poplar. Metal can also form balusters. Wrought iron is a popular choice.

Making balusters is not a difficult task. The most important thing is to make sure that they are the same size and shape. This will ensure that the railing is level and looks uniform.

There are two main ways to make balusters. The first is to carve them out of wood. The second is to use a lathe.

Carving Method

If you are going to carve the balusters, you will need to use a chisel and router.

First, you need to mark out the shape of the baluster on the wood. Then, you need to use the chisel to remove the waste material.

Next, you need to use the router to create the desired shape. A router works by spinning a bit at high speed. The bit is guided along the wood to create the desired shape.

Once that is done, you must sand the baluster until it is smooth.

Lathe Method

If you are going to use a lathe, you will need to use a woodworking lathe. A lathe is a machine that turns a block of wood into a cylindrical shape.

First, attach the wood to the lathe. Then turn on the lathe and shape the wood. Finish by sanding the baluster until it is smooth.

Both of these methods will result in a high-quality baluster. It is up to you to decide which method is best for you. You can make balusters yourself or you can buy them premade. If you buy them premade, they will be more expensive.

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