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I Forge Iron

The Bad Ol' Days


macbruce

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Back when I started in architectural iron work in the 70's the allowable space between pickets/balusters was 6''-. For a time for whatever reason that was deemed excessive at least here in Colorado and it grew to 9''-. What you see is my size 9 feet at a corner of a railing at my Mothers apt built in the 80's with a space at 8''+ and the rest are a little tighter. She used to have chicken mesh on this balcony rail to keep the nippers in...... :lol: ......There are still many of these ''Grandfathered in'' railings everywhere and to my knowledge theres never been a problem..... :huh: ......Somewhere in the later 80's Colorado and the US in general went to the world standard of 4'' or 100mm- and boy did we howl, but it was probly for the best..... B)

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I never liked the 4 inch rule. Our son was born in 1996, and we decided to build a guard railing around the free-standing woodstove. Being of a rebellious disposition, I put the pickets at 5 inch intervals. The little buckaroo wasn't crawling for a month, and one day my wife started yelling real loud. I ran in the house, he had stuck his head in between, clear past his ears, and got stuck. I did the footbrace/ both hands trick spreading the offending pickets and was sucessful at extrication. I'm okay with the 4 inch rule now.

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What rankled us in Colorado so much was first it was 6....It is what it is..... B) ....Then went to 9 for a short time..... :unsure: .....Then it was 4 when we woke up one morning, It just seemed like a kick in the teeth.... :angry: ...At least they didn't adopt the all vertical baluster rule............. :rolleyes:
Other rules boggle my mind though. Like the one that sez that a stair railing (commercial) will extend 2' past the bottom riser and only 1' past the top, like they're more concerned someone will fall UP the stairs....... :blink: .....I personally wacked off a foot or so at an owners request off a griprail that extended out into a hallway after he got his CO.........I know, I know, the Gestapo will drag me away one day..... :lol:

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There are rules that make sense in the real world and then there are rules that make sense on paper. Sometimes the two look very different, but those of us with several decades experience all understand that.
Our local code enforcement officer comes from a prominent local family and was promoted to the position after he failed as dog catcher (animal control officer). Enough said. <_<

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Codes can be strange critters at times, here in Phoenix, AZ we have the 4" rule for fencing and for the most part it is OK. However some of my friends found out that their four year old grandson could scale the pool fence just fine by wedging his feet in between that 4" gap and grasping the uprights and just going up and sitting on the top rail and then dropping down to the pools cool deck and jumping into the pool. The kid thought it great fun to out wit his grandparents that way. To break him of doing that they wired stag horn cholla cuttings along the top rail of the pool fence.

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