How to Build a Portable Handrail

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There are several reasons why you might want a portable handrail. For example, if you are completing construction and you want to keep people away from a hole, you could place the handrail in front of the hole to act as a warning. Unfortunately, you will likely not have success going to a home improvement store for a portable handrail. However, you can use several items purchased at a home improvement store to build your own.

Things You'll Need

  • 2 5-gallon buckets
  • Quick-dry cement
  • 2-by-4 lumber
  • Level
  • Miter saw
  • Handrail
  • Handrail risers
  • Handrail mounting brackets
  • Pour a bag of quick-dry concrete into two five-gallon buckets and mix the concrete with the appropriate amount of water as listed on the bag. This will vary depending on the brand you purchase.

  • Cut two pieces of 2-by-4-lumber between 32 and 34 inches in length with a miter saw. In most areas, a handrail must be between 32 and 34 inches high.

  • Place one board into the center of each bucket. Place a level on each board and adjust it until it's level. Allow at least 24 hours of drying time so the cement can harden around the lumber.

  • Place handrail risers onto the top of the boards and secure them with wood screws.

  • Position a handrail over the risers. Spread the buckets apart until each riser rests three to five inches from the ends of the handrail.

  • Secure the handrail to the handrail risers with mounting brackets and a screwdriver.

Tips & Warnings

  • When you need to store or transport your portable handrail, you can remove the mounting brackets from the risers. By doing this, you have three separate pieces that are easier to move.
  • Check with local authorities to ensure that the use of a portable handrail is allowed by local codes and guidelines. Although the weighted buckets will add stability to the handrail, it will still be possible to knock it over.

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