Here are a few examples of handrail profiles, the handrail is basically a large molding made up from a collection of smaller molding detail.
Any combination may be used but as everything else, some combinations work better than others.
The majority of handrails will have an almost oval top to them; this gives a comfortable shape to hold, allowing your palm to rest on the handrail and your fingers to grasp around the sides of the profile.
There are changes in design to the top of the handrail to embellish the look, these do not make much difference to the comfort of holding the handrail.
These examples many of which are mainly scanned from handrails around London, are just to give an idea of profile, we can match any profile you have, we can scale the profile down to make a matching handrail for wall rail additions, keeping the look of the handrail on both sides of the staircase matching each other.
Handrail profile 1.
This is a very traditional profile, this profile will work on most staircases, it would be hard to date this profile.
Due to the popularity of its simplicity this profile has been used for years and is still popular today.
Handrail profile 2.
This profile has the “frog’s back” detail set to the top of the handrail and the bead detail at the bottom, the frog’s back flows smoothly into the sides of the handrail before being scalloped back in and sitting over the bottom bead detail.
Handrail profile 3.
This profile has the raised back, created by a quirk that lifts the top of the handrail, giving a slightly more elaborate finish than the smooth back.
A lambs tongue detail is used on the side to take the larger bead detail at the top of the handrail to the the small bead detail at the bottom of the handrail.
Handrail profile 4.
This handrail profile has the oval top and then coming down the side there is a quirk line set under the oval, this is followed by a thumb groove that leads into the thumb bead at the bottom of the handrail.
This is just a small selection of the handrail profiles available, on many period staircases the handrail profiles were very similar to these profiles shown here, modern handrails have a lot more variety but in general are very simple in design.
To look at more handrail profiles visit London handrails sister site’s handrail profile information page, this has more profiles and further information including cad downloads, plate prints, scaled drawings etc.