Style Feature | Box Newel Posts

One of the hottest products in stair parts are box newels. By definition, box newels are oversized, multi-piece constructed posts that act as the focal point of the staircase. Box newels or mortgage posts, as they were once affectionately known, were found in craftsman and bungalow style homes. They gained the nickname as homeowners would encapsulate the deed inside of the newel upon receipt from the bank.

Common characteristics of box newel posts include square, clean lines, and a top cap detail. They can range in size from 3-inch to massive square posts of a variety of widths. They are typically adorned with decorative moldings and trim to create layered aesthetics. Like all millwork products, box newels ranged from simple to ornate and were once an expensive custom millwork item. In recent years, they have become more affordable due to the importation and the standardization of design. It is important to be aware that not all box newels are created equal. There are many things you need to consider before purchasing this style of product.

One thing to be mindful of with any wood products, but particularly one made of several pieces of wood, is that moisture is its' biggest enemy. Due to the size and nature of the product, most box newels are constructed of large pieces of glued substrate. The buyers' assumption is that all of the material has similar moisture content and will acclimate to the home at the same rate. Variances in temperature and humidity will cause wood to shrink or swell at different rates; therefore, causing the wood to crack. Fitts' plywood constructed box newels react better to these environmental fluctuations and remain far more stable. It is also very important to pay attention to construction adhesives that are used during product installation. Water-based adhesives can react with wood and cause materials to swell and shrink.

We continue to expand our box newel offering and refine designs and construction techniques to meet our customers’ needs. As an added feature Fitts box newels come with cap kits that include either a flat or pyramid design to allow the homeowner to choose their preference. Fitts box newels are sold in a plain, fluted, routed panel, or recessed flat panel configurations. We offer stock newels in; red oak, white oak, maple, cherry, poplar, alder, hemlock. We also make custom box newels and build them in a wide variety of non-stock species. Our newel designs are recognized and engineered for the modern lifestyle. Check out Fitts box newel post offering today!

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