Unfortunately it looks like the stair nose I ordered is never coming in.
Solution? Make my own!
Note: Please understand how to work with things correctly. PVC contains Chlorine which is dangerous, if you don’t know this, look up proper safety stuff.
Because my resilient flooring (LVP) is made with a PVC backing , and PVC can be thermally formed, I thought I might be able to bend it myself. I figured the wear layer is relatively thin, and if it isn’t softened by heat I should be able to compress the PVC without any change to the actual surface.
Of course, one of the biggest factors of bend radius is thickness, so I decided to start with routing off some of the backing.
1 route it.
Next, because I was working with a small test piece I decided to just use a grill lighter to heat it. I would suggest NOT doing this because PVC can burn. After I test bent it I found that it worked quite well.
2 heat it.
I set up a little bending jig thing and bent it while it was still warm.
3 bend it
Like I said, it worked pretty well and holds its shape. It is also more sturdy feeling than I expected.
4 Put it on!
The other nice thing is that, unlike most stair nose, there is no lip sticking up, you just click it in like regular flooring.
To make the edges a bit sturdier I filled them with bondo so that they weren’t floating in air. This is also a good way to stick it to the step because bondo will bond to the wood, but doesn’t bond to the that well. This means that the PVC is sort of fastened on with a T shape that you should be able to get the PVC off if you needed. Then you can just remove the bondo on the corners and not have to damage the wood. I should include an image to show it better later.
- The bends on the PVC were pretty consistent over multiple tries, but I still think that some sort of true bend guide would be a good idea. I might experiment with using one piece as a template to form the bondo edge on the stair and then bend the final piece around it.
- Everything is better with LEDs and stairs with good lighting can reduce falls. I already have some ideas on how to do this.
- If I can apply heat from the wear side, that should make bending a lot easier. I haven’t tried this yet but I hope it works.
- I haven’t actually tested the real world durability of this yet. It seems sturdy though so I am optimistic.