Cable Railing Continuing to Trend for Stairs, Balconies, Decks

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Cable Railing - A Trend Worth Following

The current minimalism aesthetic is not only continuing to trend, but also gaining in popularity. Many seem to enjoy the uninterrupted view cable railing affords; the unparalleled simplicity of this style arguably fits well within the minimalistic approach. Cable railing not only offers great sightlines, but also affords safety and security. It is no doubt the combination of these qualities that is driving the move towards this style in stair and deck railing.

imageThe reason this minimalist style appeals is the difference between it and traditional railing systems. In the traditional style, balusters are much bulkier. The thin cable systems offer the maximum view and minimal interference in line of sight. Cable railing achieves this with two different styles; vertical that typically comes pre-assembled and horizontal cables that stretch between two posts.

Let’s back up a bit and talk about what cable railing is. Cable railing is, put simply, a system in which traditional balusters are replaced by cables. It can be horizontal or vertical, either stretched between top and bottom rails or, between posts. If horizontal, the cables must be specially fitted to receive the cables and the proper tension must be applied for safety reasons. Usually, you can tension the cables with a simple tool such as an allen (hex) wrench. Often when you are using vertical cable railing system it comes pre-made, making for simple installation. Also, typical will be replacing one of the cables with a post or baluster to provide additional strength and stability.

There are aesthetic reasons to use cable railing instead of glass to achieve a minimalistic look. Though glass railing remains hugely popular, many find cable railing to be an attractive alternative to glass. The look of glass railing remains the go-to when it comes to stair, balcony, and porch railing systems currently, however cable is an increasingly popular alternative.

Benefits of Cable Railing vs. Traditional Railing

One of the primary benefits of cable railing is ease of installation. You usually need only a few easily obtained tools (if you do not already have them on hand), and you can often customize the installation process itself. Most of the time cable railing for stairs and decks can easily blend into your doors, windows and frames, giving you the sleek, minimal approach you are aiming for. In addition to this, cable railings can add value to your project with the pleasing design it offers.

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Cable railing does have several benefits over traditional railing systems. Cable railing on decks and outdoor stairs allows for uninterrupted line of sight from the outside. The design of the building itself does not have to compete with the railing; in fact, the railing tends to enhance the homes natural aesthetics.

Most of the time cable railing for stairs and decks can easily blend into your doors, windows and frames, giving you the sleek, minimal approach you are aiming for.

Cable railings are typically made of materials that are resistant to corrosion, keeping your stair and balcony railings looking great through rain, snow, sun, etc. For instance, our systems are made of beautiful stainless steel, highly resistant to corrosion, rust or fading of any kind. This allows for easy cleaning or polishing, if necessary. Also, it saves you on maintenance and replacement costs.

Some Things to Know About Cable Railing

Some important things to know about cable railing for decks, stairs. In general, the idea behind cable railing Is once the cable is installed the correct tension must be applied to it. There are a lot of factors that influence the tension including spacing of the posts, the type of material of the railing and the posts, etc. This requires rigid framing in comparison to many traditional railing types. Cables generally have strong tensile strength, which can be good but also requires roper care in installation to not put undue strain on the rest of the components. If this is not carefully monitored or balanced, this can deform the rest of the components of the system and/or even break railing or posts. Stainless steel is often the best choice for creating your railing system due to its strength and ability to hold up to the tension required. Stainless steel is durable, beautiful, and easy to care for.image (4)

There are other reasons why stainless steel should be the material you choose for your project. Those would be that often cable railings (and even hand railings) can be curved. Stainless steel provides strength for this. However, stainless steel is flexible enough to bend where and when needed and is relatively easy to use for this purpose. It’s important to hire someone familiar with these needs to make sure your system is up to code. We can’t stress that enough. Make sure you are hiring someone that knows how to do this properly or risk being out of code and potentially having to do the same work over again.

Important Cable Railing Tips

  • Cable railing tension is critical
  • Damage can occur if not careful with tension
  • It is best to use experienced installers because of the above
  • Stainless steel is the best material to use for cable railing
  • Installing cable railing is not hard to do, but can be time consuming.
  • Some cities do not allow horizontal railing options; be sure to check local regulations before deciding on it
  • Cable railing has the potential to increase the value of your structure
  • Cable railing can potentially be more expensive than traditional railing systems

Cable Railing Offers Unobtrusive Views

Cable railing systems are typically made of narrow, horizontal cables that are spaced evenly for a symmetrical view. This space between the cables creates an unobtrusive view in stairways, decks and balconies creating that beautiful, low-key look in your building space, no matter what building that might be. In fact, the use of cable railing in any space can make that space look bigger by providing a way to separate areas without anything obstructing the view.


Modern cable railings are easy to install and even easier to maintain in comparison to more traditional cable railing systems. They offer a low-profile look while maximizing your view of the environment. They easily complement different building styles and provide artistic, minimalist visual appeal. By choosing cable railings for your building design, you are choosing the hottest trend in railing of the past several years, potentially adding value to the building itself.

In closing, make sure you purchase quality cables from a reputable company to provide your project value and durability that will last for the life of the building.

Morse Architectural offers high quality stainless steel railing system cable sets, replacement fittings and cable stoppers. Complete cable sets are available in various lengths. Give us a call for more information.

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