At this time my little dog, often referred to as my “Little Helper”, was patiently waiting to use her new dog steps. In the two previous posts a base carcass for the steps was built as well as the steps made of reclaimed walnut.
Next part was to add some trim to the carcass, paint everything up and attach the stairs.
All the trim was cut to 1 ½ inches and was made from the same sheet of 1/2 inch mdf as the toe kick. It was all glued and tacked in place with small brads.
The steps were put in place before the small trim on the toe kicks was installed. This was to ensure the trim was above the steps.
The toe kick trim was made by
- Splitting the left over ½ inch mdf trim pieces used above
- Making those split pieces 1 inch in width
At this point I was really running out of that sheet of scrap mdf.
When installing this trim, the step was kept in place while the piece on top of it was being glued and nailed in place.
With all the trim installed it was time to get ready to prime and paint the carcass.
One of the last steps was to fill in any gaps and nail holes with wood filler.
Everything was given a quick sanding to level any wood filler from the previous step. I used 120 grit sandpaper because it was aggressive enough to smooth out the filler but didn’t leave a lot of scratches the paint couldn’t fill.
A primer was used on the raw wood before painting.
This step wasn’t really necessary since the Behr Premium Plus Ultra paint used for the final coats has a primer mixed in it, but I had it lying around.
Two coats of Ultra Pure White semi-gloss were applied. I really like the that white from Behr. It is really clean looking and makes anything next to it really pop.
The walnut was so beautiful it would be a shame to hide that natural beauty with a stain. A danish oil and eventually furniture wax was used to finish the steps.
To install the step, the carcass was flipped upside down while the top step was maneuvered into position. When possible a storage container was used to help hold up the carcass.
Once everything was in position a drill was used to drill 6 holes for screws that would hold the step in place.
This was really overkill but you never know if your furniture pieces will be used by the circus and have an elephant step on it.
Pilot holes are necessary so the step wouldn’t split.
Installing the other steps was similar to the first one except the steps were held in place with clamps instead of resting on the floor.
Finally a coat of furniture wax was applied to add a little bit of protection.
It might seem that the steps on the dog stairs would be slick, but the natural grain of the walnut seems to be enough grip for my dog to walk up them.
For more anti-slip factor I would use stair tread installation kit along with some custom cut ruminant carpet.
Funny thing is after a month or two of finishing these stairs she got better and was able to jump on things again. At least we have something nice to sit on while getting ready.
If you’ve enjoyed seeing how I’ve made some fancy dog steps for my “Little Helper” please share these post with people on your social network.
Making a Fancy Dog Step links.
- Part 1 – Carcass Construction
- Part 2 – Making the Walnut Steps
- Part 3 – Installing Fancy Trim, Painting and Installing the Steps
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