Should you really carpet the top step.

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Oh, I was envisioning an entire tread at the top. If you insist on carpeting these steps, I'd carpet to the top of the top riser and paint the bull-nose to match the carpeting. You could even stop the carpeting at the back of the top full step and paint the top riser and bull-nose to match the wall, since it's continuous. I see you've already started. ;-)
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re: "Yes, there is a door and it leads into the kitchen floor and is covered (with linoleum), and the covering stops in the middle of the door ( w/bull-nose)."
No, it doesn't. It stops well beyond the door, not in the middle of it. In addition, the covering isn't "w/bull-nose" as implied in your post.
No wonder I was confused.
What you have is very close to what I imagined, but I wonder why the linoleum (vinyl?) installer stopped the flooring where (s)he did and didn't carry it to the edge of the step and use something like this:
http://www.floorandwallsolutions.co.uk/images/NHD07.JPG
I guess you *could* pull up that transition strip, carpet up to the linoleum and put a new transition strip over the seam. I don't think I'd like the look of that any better than I like the look of what you have now, but the view as you look into the door of "carpet on the riser then a wooden bull nose then a metal transition strip then linoleum" isn't going to look all the great either.
IMO, the problem all started with the installation of the kitchen flooring.
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DerbyDad03 wrote: (snip)

Given how the stairs were constructed, the installer broke it at the appropriate place. Having an actual tread on the upper floor level is not the usual way of building basement stairs. Usually, the 'top step' front edge is the threshold of the door, more or less in line with the door slab. Cut away the sole plate, hang the door, and put another piece of underlayment to extend the surface out to the edge. A good carpenter cuts that hunk of underlayment near the door with a tongue rather than using a little filler piece, so as to keep the threshold nice and solid and level. Apply vinyl, and add a metal transition strip that serves as the edge of top step. With that scenario, the vinyl as-laid would have worked, or nearly so.
--
aem sends...

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OK, so you're saying the floor/'top step' was installed incorrectly - or at least not in the "usual" way.
Usually, the 'top step' front edge is the threshold of the door, more or less in line with the door slab.
Not in my house. I have a landing at the top of the basement stairs. Coming up the stairs you make a right and step up into the kitchen, entering through the garage you walk straight across the landing and step up into the kitchen.
With the door to the kitchen closed, I can see a thin strip of the kitchen vinyl and then the metal overhang transition strip.
Given that, why do you say "the (vinyl) installer broke it at the appropriate place"?
If I were installing the vinyl or carpet or any other finish material, I'd have extended it to the edge and covered the bull nose with metal overhang transition strip like I posted earlier. That's how it is in my house - except that I don't have bull nose. I have "unfinished" subflooring.
Think about how you negotiate a top step. Don't you approach the step and extend a portion of your foot out into space?
I can't access tinypic at work, but if I recall the picture correctly, that would mean that the current transition strip would end up somewhere in the middle of your foot.
With a wrap-around transition strip like I suggested, the top of the step/transition would be at the ball of foot where it belongs, and also more flush with the flooring than the strip currently used.
As installed now, coming up the stairs would just be just as weird.
Again, just my opinion.
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I made an attempt at stripping the step. With the bull-nose and paint removed, can someone tell what kind of wood it is and if it will take stain ?
http://i51.tinypic.com/8yi3y9.jpg
http://i53.tinypic.com/2mpitmc.jpg
http://i53.tinypic.com/11ij1cp.jpg
Thanks
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"sid" wrote

Hard to tell. Might be white oak. Unfortunately might be ash which s meant to be covered if used in that location as it damages easy.
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Finished, here are the final pics:
http://i55.tinypic.com/fuxcpj.jpg
http://i52.tinypic.com/2945bwm.jpg
http://i56.tinypic.com/28a5c2w.jpg
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Look very good. Did you use the carpet guy who wanted to carpet the "top step"? Did you talk him out of it?
I have a question:
In your post of Sept 6 you said:
"With the bull-nose and paint removed, can someone tell what kind of wood it is..." and included this picture:
http://i51.tinypic.com/8yi3y9.jpg
It doesn't look to me like the bull-nose has been removed. It's still there as far as I can tell.
In your post of Aug 29 you said:
"the kitchen floor ... is covered (with linoleum), and the covering stops in the middle of the door ( w/bull-nose)" and included this picture:
http://i34.tinypic.com/eqt3bo.jpg
The linoleum is not "w/bull-nose", the end of the kitchen floor is.
Don't take this the wrong way, but do you know what a bull-nose is? Why did you say it was "removed" in your post of Sept 6?
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On 9/12/2010 8:11 PM, DerbyDad03 wrote:

it wasn't bull-nose, it was just a transition strip- he just didn't know the right word. No Biggie. I like the nice clean look of no transition strip, but I hope OP sealed the crack with something, otherwise at some point that crack is gonna open up, and the vinyl will start to curl. I think OP did good- that soft wood will show scuffs a lot quicker than hardwood would (say that fast three times), but it will be easy to touch up, and the casual observer will think it is oak. If it ever gets too nasty looking, he can figure out how to replace it with hardwood, or find something metal to cover it with, but for light duty, he should get several years out of it with no problem.
--
aem sends...

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re: "it wasn't bull-nose, it was just a transition strip- he just didn't know the right word."
I agree. The thing is, that was pointed out to him at least twice in this thread - which makes me wonder why he keeps calling it a bull- nose.
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"sid" wrote "cshenk" wrote:

Nice job! If the wood itself weas well it is white oak. If it doesn't, I think it''s ash. That's ok, it's not gong to be hard to replace if so and should last well enough for quite a bit.
I see you narrow in on where the framing above doesn't quite meet at one corner. You can fill that with wood putty then kinda sculpt it to match above wood pattern fairly well then paint white. You'll need a few applications as it shrinks a bit as it dries and that's a fairly deep cleft of about an inch I'd say back and maybe 1/4 top to bottom. It actually looks ok as it is but since you narrowed in on it, thats how I'd fix it if I wanted to.
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