Railing Design Tips

Stainless Steel Cable Handrail System – Customization Guidelines

Stainless Steel Handrail/Guardrail Systems require special engineering and tension to redirect a load impact. Please adhere to the following guidelines to assure a safe, durable and an aesthetically appealing stainless steel handrail/guardrail that will last for years. Some special finishes are available upon request.

How to choose a railing system

  1. Browse the following pages and decide which cable system you like by referring to the part number.
  2. Choose which railing frame design you like according to its part number.
  3. Decide what cable diameter you would like to use.
  • 1/8" is typically only used for vertical cable systems.
  • 3/16" and 1/4" are typically used for horizontal cable systems.

Note: some cable systems are not compatible with certain railing frame designs. Please contact us for more information.

Designing your own custom stainless steel cable handrail

If you prefer to design your own railing system for use with our cable systems instead of using one of our standard designs, please refer to the following information for important points of interest that will help to build a suitable railing system.

Cable assemblies require a significant amount of tension in order to minimize the deflection in the cable when a load is applied to them. The following is a list of items that will help insure your design will support our cable systems.

Terminating Posts

  • Round Post – Minimum wall thickness required .145".
  • Square Post – Minimum wall thickness required .120".
  • Angle Post – Minimum wall thickness required .375".
  • Flat Bar/Plate – Minimum thickness .5" doubled and bridged by additional material between the plates.
  • Wood Post – Minimum of 4" × 6" lumber connected through the 6" side. The lumber should be pressure treated.

Stainless Steel Cable Length

40 feet is the maximum recommended length for a horizontal cable system; however, additional lengths may be utilized as long as the cable and termination points can withstand the tension and load.

Intermediate Posts

Do not exceed more than four feet between intermediate post for a horizontal cable to assure proper weight deflection if a person stood on the cable and no more than three feet for a vertical cable system.

Cable Spacing, Diameter and Type

Proper cable spacing should be 1" to 1 1/2" less than the local code. A 1/4" or 3/16" cable should be utilized horizontally or 1/8" or 3/16" for a vertical cable. A 1×19 or 7×7 type cable should be utilized.


The following corner designs are acceptable:

  1. Terminating cables from opposite directions at the corner, by positioning two posts side by side and passing cable from one post to the opposite post.
  2. Bending tubing at least 3".
  3. Welding two posts in the corner.


If pre-manufactured fittings are selected, the holes will need to be large enough for the fittings; however, if the fittings are installed on-site, the hole will only need to be large enough for the cable.