Tuesday, March 28, 2017

Homeowners Take Note: What to Know Before Installing Steel Wire Railing

steel wire railing
It is every homeowner's goal to create a safe environment for their family. One of the best ways to do this without losing curb appeal is by investing in a wire rail system throughout your home. Generally, steel wire railing is used as a method of safety instead of other glass or wood options and is great because of its ability to offer almost completely unobstructed views.

Whether it is cable deck railing or interior design rails, it is important to know everything you can able this unique home fixture before you install. Lucky for you, we have come up with a list of the top four things any homeowner should know before making the splurge.

There must be a solid foundation first

Steel wire railing is quite strong, and because of the tension put on them when installed, the edges it is connected too must be strong. Check with your installer about force and load requirements first just to make sure you can actually support the rails.

The spacing is important

The spaces between the cables are incredibly important for the minimization of cable deflection. As a rule of thumb, the maximum spacing that is recommended by installers is no bigger than a three-inch opening between each cable. If you can fit your fist between the cables, they are too flexible and not rigid enough to pass safety standards.

It is possible to use what you have

Just as long as your current railing is sturdy, there is no reason why you cannot install steel cables into what you already have! Many homeowners believe that to have wire railings you need to completely remove what you have and start from a fresh slate, but this is untrue. Not only is it possible if the strength is sufficient, this option is cheaper in the long run.

Your wish is our command

There is no wrong place to put a steel cable. They can go up stairwells, around pools, and can even be used as a pet enclosure if you'd like! This is your home we're talking about, so go ahead and get creative!

Interested in learning more about steel wire railing in your home? Call our professionals today.

Wednesday, March 22, 2017

The 12 Best Scenic Views in the U.S. and One Very Cool Thing to Do Nearby

The U.S. is brimming with stunning scenery and some of the best views in the world. Perhaps you’re lucky enough that you can look out your window or step out onto your deck and marvel at the natural beauty that surrounds you. But no matter where you live you don’t have to go far to find amazing views.

We’ve compiled this list of 12 places in the U.S.A. that have scenic overlooks and other spots where you can take in the views, and included links to information about area attractions. As a special bonus, we’ve picked one cool thing—an activity,  experience or view—that is a little offbeat or unexpected and, to be honest, definitely not for everyone. But there is something for everyone on this list!

1. Rocky Mountain National Park, Colorado

The Trail Ridge Road covers 48 miles, eleven of them above the treeline, where you’ll see Wyoming to the north, the Great Plains on the east and the Rockies on the south and west. Family activities

One cool thing: Stay at The Stanley, the hotel that inspired Stephen King to write “The Shining.” It wasn’t filmed there. A writer named Jack Torrence did not go crazy there. Nothing happened there. Totally safe, except that it might be haunted.

2. Finger Lakes Region, New York

The Finger Lakes region is named for its series of long, thin lakes, and known for its vineyards, waterfalls, gorges, woods, rolling hills and miles of spectacular shoreline on 11 glacial lakes and one Great Lake.

One cool thing: Visit the town of Skaneateles on weekend during Christmastime for a traditional Dickens Christmas, when “Charles Dickens” and his cast of over 50 characters interact with residents and visitors in the streets, stores and restaurants. Any other time of year, visit the Jello Museum. That’s two cool things but, come on, there’s always room for Jello!

3. 17-Mile Drive, California

17-Mile Drive along California’s Monterey Peninsula features beautiful coastlines, famous golf courses, artist colonies, and spectacular mansions.

One cool thing: Visit the lobby lounge at the Inn at Spanish Bay, where if you’re there a half hour before dusk, you’ll be serenaded by a bagpiper. If you can’t stand the sound of bagpipes, you should probably avoid evening hours.

4. Blue Ridge Mountains, Carolinas and Virginia

The 469 mile Blue Ridge Parkway connects the Great Smoky Mountains National Park in North Carolina to the Shenandoah National Park in Virginia. It’s  is a slow-paced and relaxing drive with stunning long-range vistas and close-up views of the rugged mountains.

One cool thing: Stop at Blowing Rock for amazing views and to experience wind currents from the gorge that blow vertically, causing light objects to float upwards. Ripley’s Believe it or Not claims this is the only place in the world where it snows upside down. An unsubstantiated claim, apparently.

5. Oregon Coastline

Highway 101 winds down the entire Oregon Coast from the Columbia River to the California border.

One cool thing: Whalewatching all along the coast, including Devil’s Punchbowl State Park, where you might see whales, and for sure will see a spectacular show of waves churning and crashing into a rock formation that looks like, you guessed it, a giant punch bowl

6. Going to the Sun Road, Montana

Going to the Sun Road boasts impressive glaciers, beautiful valleys, cascading waterfalls, towering mountains and colorful wildflowers. Plus, you might see wildlife crossing the Sun Road.

One cool thing: Swim in the only glacial lake in the area in which you won’t freeze to death. Lake McDonald in Apgar Village in Glacier National Park is relatively shallow and there are times where the sun warms it up to a point where some people might want to take a dip.

7. Sleeping Bear Dunes, Michigan

Pierce Stocking Scenic Drive is a scenic route within Sleeping Bear Dunes National Lakeshore that provide access to scenic overlooks of the Lake Michigan shoreline and the surrounding park land.

One cool thing: Visit Cherry Republic for cherry salsa, cherry sausage, cherry coffee beans—pretty much everything here is made of out cherries. Which makes so much sense when you realize that Northern Michigan is the cherry capital of the United States.

8. Lemhi Pass, Montana and Idaho

Lemhi Pass on the boundary of Montana and Idaho is part of the Lewis and Clark National Historic Trail, where they came upon one of the most difficult mountain passes in the Rocky Mountain range. Even now, the road is rugged, but offers wild and unspoiled views of jagged peaks, pristine valleys, and distant snow-capped mountains.

One cool thing: Visit the Sacajawea Memorial Area and the nearby Sacajawea Center and learn about the Native American heroine who accompanied Lewis and Clark on their famous expedition—and saved their butts countless times while simultaneously carrying her baby on her back.

9. Route 12, Utah

Route 12 showcases sandstone sculpted into a wide variety of amazing canyons and formations in numerous parks and locales. It offers access to the entire northern region of Grand Staircase-Escalante National Monument, the Escalante River and its unique side canyons, and state and national parks.

One cool thing: visit Hell’s Backbone Grill in Boulder, Utah, one of the most remote towns in the United States (population: 180). A great place to go if you’re not a “people person,” and want to support a restaurant that follows Buddhist principles.

10. Acadia National Park, Maine

Park Loop Road in Acadia National Park is the primary avenue for navigating through Acadia National Park by vehicle. It connects the park's lakes, mountains, forests and rocky shores for easy exploration.

One cool thing: Hike to Bubble Rock. If you want to see an enormous rock that was moved by ancient glaciers to where it sits today—perched precariously on the edge a cliff—this is the hike for you.

11. Napa Valley, California

The Silverado Trail in Napa Valley is a scenic route that travels 29 miles along the Eastern edge of the Napa Valley, a world-famous wine region.

One cool thing: It’s a trail surrounded by wineries. Figure it out. Seriously, if you find yourself on the trail and have zero interest in wine, take a tour of the Jelly Belly jelly bean factory and have a bean shaped burger or bean shaped pizza at the Jelly Belly cafe.

12. Hana Highway, Maui

Hana Highway leads you through flourishing rainforests, flowing waterfalls, plunging pools and dramatic seascapes and provides plenty of opportunities to stop and enjoy the views.

One cool thing: Hike to the Bamboo Forest. It’s a forest literally filled with towering bamboo. Apparently, bamboo makes a peaceful, musical sound when the wind blows. If that doesn’t do it for you, the beautiful waterfalls probably will.

So there you go! 12 of the most stunning scenic views and overlooks in the U.S.

3 Materials You Should be Considering for Your Deck Railings

Approximately 64% of homeowners upgrading their outdoor spaces tend to focus on the backyard and its fixtures. One of the most common upgrades in the backyard is a deck or a patio. But there's one thing that people often underestimate when it comes to deck design: railings.

Cable deck railings are not only an important safety feature on a deck, they can be an excellent design statement. But it takes knowing what materials are available and what would look best to design the best cable handrail system possible. Here are a few options you should be considering.

Aluminum in particular is a great choice in metal for a wire rail system. It's an incredibly low maintenance metal and it looks beautiful no matter what material it's paired with. Cable railing posts made from this material will offer a sleek, modern finish to any deck or patio. This is an especially great choice for commercial buildings such as restaurants with outdoor seating areas, as it will provide a low maintenance, low cost alternative to other materials that you may have thought about using.

Glass railings, especially those made up of seamless, large glass panes, are best used if you really want to showcase a spectacular view. If you want to design rail for coastal or mountainous regions with amazing scenery, this is the way that you need to do it. They're fairly low maintenance, but the glass does need to be cleaned more often than other materials for deck railings would be. In addition, these panes are expensive to install, so make sure they're exactly what you want!

Wood railings work very well with wooden decks, especially if you enjoy a natural-looking aesthetic. But be warned: wood railings don't look seamless when they're placed next to synthetic materials like vinyl. Wood, while it does require a fair amount of work to maintain and install, is still a go-to for many home and business owners because of the aesthetic appeal.

Whether you're installing a wire rail system or a wooden railing, these are certainly some excellent options to choose from in terms of materials.

Monday, March 20, 2017

Improve Your Property With These 2 Tips

wire rail system
The best part of being a homeowner is the ability to customize your property. You might find that you're bored with the layout of your home or how your property looks, but the wonderful thing about homeownership is that you never have to permanently settle. There are so many wonderful projects you can do to improve your home's value and you'll end up appreciating your home even more. Here are a few great home addition ideas that can significantly improve your home's value.

Adding a Deck

Building a large deck on the back of your home can be amazing for just about any homeowner. A deck will clearly increase your home's resale value but the main benefit of having a deck on your property is having social gatherings. Everyone wants their home to be the fun spot for family parties, neighborhood cookouts, and nice social gatherings. If the weather is nice and you want to have people over, although standing around your yard with your friends and family can be fun, after a while it's just not going to cut it. Having a nice deck on your property, however, will give everyone a great place to socialize and have fun

If you want to really have a beautiful deck on your property, you should consider a quality wire rail system as well. It's important to work with the right teams when you're having your deck built on your property. Wire railing for decks can really make it look even better, as well as provide safety benefits by protecting children and pets from walking off the edge.

Adding a Patio

Although decks can be great for a party and large hangout environment, having a patio on your property has advantages of its own. No matter what kind of job you have, what your family situation is like, and what kind of problems are causing you stress, relaxing on a nice patio at the end of the night can feel amazing

About one-third of homes in the U.S. that went on the market in 2014 came with a patio, and that trend looks like it's going to increase. Wire rail systems can also make an outdoor patio look even nicer as well. If you want to find quality cable railing posts and wire rail systems for your property additions, contact Cable Rail Direct today!

Thursday, March 2, 2017

Some of the Most Common Deck Building Mistakes You Need to Avoid

Did you know that adding a simple deck or patio to any establishment can bring in up to a 30% increase in revenue? That's right, simple adding a nice deck to your outdoor seating area can increase revenue. It might sound extremely simple, but deck construction isn't exactly something you can become an expert at overnight. 

Unless you're familiar with all the ins and outs of deck building, there are certain things you might not know. Without this knowledge, you'll probably make a few blunders along the way. Here are some of the most common deck construction mistakes and how you can avoid them.

No Continuous Handrail
It might be aesthetically pleasing to design rail for decks that is interrupted by decorative posts, but the whole point of wire railing installation is to provide a continuous railing for people to grasp while walking. This is especially important on stairs leading up to and away from the deck. The solution? If you have a guardrail with decorative posts, your wire railing installation should include an additional continuous support rail inside of that for people to grasp.

Lack of Building Permits
No matter the project, whether it's installing cable rail systems or knocking down a wall, you should always have the proper building permits and permissions from your city or state. Without these permissions, you could find yourself in serious trouble or even removing your deck altogether.

Lack of Access
If your deck is being built to the back of your establishment and you have a room in the basement where staff or customers travel to and from frequently, you need to have at least one point of access. If your deck is built above that point of access, it's important to make sure there is enough clearance above the exit for people to escape in the event of an emergency.

Building a deck can be a beautiful addition to any building, regardless of location or services provided. But that being said, it's important to make sure you build it right the first time and avoid these mistakes!