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Thursday, March 11, 2010

Add a Decorative Newel Post

After the maple countertop was installed (this post), it was time to finish up by adding the trim. For the most part, I was able to reuse the casings and jambs from the old doorway that was here except for across the top of the new opening. In addition to the casings, the homeowners wanted me to add a decorative post at the end.

For the post, I used a poplar newel post that is normally used as part of a stairway handrail. Ahead of installation I cut off the ball on top and then primed and painted it.

I hated to write on or put screws into the beautiful countertop, but alas, it had to be done! First, I taped a scrap of building paper to the spot so that I could mark my guidelines and make sure that I didn't make any unnecessary pencil marks on the counter. I left this here through the installation and just tore off the paper after the post was in place.

I bought a 'newel post bracket kit' to install the post. The kit includes four brackets to attach the post and then some decorative trim that is pre-cut and meant to cover the brackets. (I painted these ahead of time as well.)

I cut the post around 1/8" short and then used shims underneath to press it snugly up against the top jamb. The gap on the bottom will be covered by the brackets and this prevents it from being so tightly fitting that I risk any scratches to that countertop. (Yes, I'm being very protective of that counter, they aren't cheap to replace!! :)

I fastened the top of the post with some finish nails and then covered the holes with putty and paint.


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