Do I just router the bullnose?

Q imported from our old site, Face Lift Floors: I am replacing my stair treads with oak ‘slabs’ and want to know how to address the ends of the treads that are exposed (open staircase). Do I just router the bullnose along the “grain end” of the board, or should I miter in a piece whereby the grain runs along the open edge and then bullnose with the grain?

My current stair treads (partial hardwood/carpet) has been installed whereby on the exposed end a piece has been attached such that there is no exposed end-grain and the bullnose is along this edge.. is this needed? I would prefer to just bullnose the exposed end.

A: You should be able to purchase the oak slabs with “relief” (rounded, finished edge) on both or only one end as well as along the front edge, of course. I know I can get the treads like this here, so surely you can too.

One thing you will have to do with the existing treads if you are installing the slabs on top of them. Cut the existing tread overhang back flush with the riser and or stringer. It will be about 1 1/2 inches or thereabouts to cut off. Then you can put a veneer on the riser which will cover the old tread which has been cut back.

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