My deer house is 10 feet off the ground, I want to put steps on it but not sure how long the 2x12's need to be, I have no clue how to figure the angle and length, I do have a 6 foot section from some old steps to get my pattern to cut the notches from. thanks!

See if this helps, A stair "riser" is the vertical element of a set of stairs. Typically, the riser is a 1x8 board nailed to the stringers. However, sometimes there is no board at all - the risers are "open". When you're building a set of stairs, one the the more difficult questions to answer is, "How many steps do I need and what size should the treads and risers be?" For most deck builders, this isn't as difficult of a question as it first appears. The reason for this is that most deck stairs go from the deck to the ground. Because of this, it usually doesn't matter how far the stairs extend away from the deck - the "run" of the steps can be whatever is easiest. In practice, this means that deck builders only need to focus on making sure their risers are the within an acceptable range and then letting the stairs extend out as far as needed to be at a comfortable angle. Many codes require risers to be between 5" and 7.75" in height. The UBC dictates a riser range between 4" and 7" (make sure to check what your local codes require). Using a standard 10" for the horizontal stair run distance, the task is to select a riser height that will produce steps at a comfortable angle that are also within your code range. There are rules of thumb that we can use to help us figure out a good riser height for our 10" run width. These rules help ensure that the stairs end up at a comfortable angle - not too steep and not too shallow. One rule says that two rises plus one run should be between 24” and 25”. So for our 10" run, a stair rise of between 7" and 7.5" would work great. If you don't like to use fuzzy rules of thumb, check out the stair rise/run table. To figure out what the exact riser height should be, we divide the distance from the top of the deck to the ground. Whatever number we choose for our riser must divide evenly into that total height measurement. For example, if the distance from deck to the ground was 37", we would choose a riser height of 7-3/8" because it divides evenly into 37" five times - well close enough. To figure this out, just keep dividing 37 by "whole" numbers until you get an answer that is seven and a little more (whole numbers don't have fractions - 1, 2, 3...). When dividing 37 by 5, we get an answer of 7.4. This tells us that we need 5 risers each 7-3/8" tall - you can use the Feet-Inch Calculator to convert any decimal number to an equivalent fractional length.

Cat tamer has been extremely helpful there. I wouldn't argue with him for a moment. However, you know what I would do Keith? I think I would put that damn thing on the ground, by the time you figure out how to build the stairs season will be over, and they will get you for poaching. Either that or just watch the football games and build a doghouse.

:smile2::smile2: too late John, I have already got it up.. Kirk, I guess you have answered every question I could possibly have except one.. how long of a 2x12 should I get to build the stairs? 12' 14' 16'?? thanks!!

http://www.doityourself.com/stry/h2buildoutdoorstairs its about half way down the stairs I think this is the table Cat Tamer was referring to. This is what is used locally by deck builders here in MN. But, since it is a deer hut, I am not sure you really need to build it totally by spec since it isn't part of or attached to an "inhabited" dwelling. Using the 7, 12 numbers your deck will be 120" high, 204" long, with a stringer of 236 7/8 ". (about 20')

Go with a 16 foot ladder so you can step off easy. That way when you are in the dog house, you just pull the ladder up and they cant get to ya..

Heres a pattern a drew up quick. I'm a carpenter but have only done finish work for 20 years. The light blue is 11 1/2" by 144" at a 37 1/2 degree angle. The dark blue is a 7" rise and a 9" step. Since its not all the way at the top and bottom I would say 14 steps if my memory is worth a darm. Anyone correct me if I'm wrong.

Keith, if the floor of your deer house is 10 feet off the ground you will cut your risers 7 1/2 inches, with a 10 1/2 inch tread you will need to cut the tread cut of your stringer 9 1/2, that will give you a 1 inch over hang on your tread. You will need 18 foot stringers. You will have 16 risers. The way I figure the length of your stringer is 10 feet= 120 inches. Multiply 120X120 =14400. 16 tread cuts at 9 1/2 inches will =152 inches. Multiply 152X152 =23104. Add 14400+23104=37504. Get the square root of 37504 which will equal 193.65949 inches. Divide 193.65949 by 12 =16.14 feet. 18 feet is the next length of 2X12 you can buy so you will need 18 foot 2X12s.