Residential Railings in Des Moines


Here at American Fence Company, railings are customizable with design adornment options that include scepters, globes, spears, and scrolls.

Custom Made

American Fence Company’s custom metals fabrication services means the product we design for you will be truly unique, one of a kind, precisely the product you have been dreaming about.


Ornate hand railings with accents equate the perfect complement for your window frames or siding.


Railings in Des Moines Overview

A great many elements go into the design of a beautiful residential railing: globes, spears, rosettes, medallions, scepters, etc. Of course, another key element is fabrication by an experienced team of industry professionals. Here at American Fence Company of Des Moines, we employ certified experts dedicated to completing products according to customers’ specifications.

Railings FAQ

When are residential railings required? What are the requirements?

The best way to answer this question is to consult your local codes and authorities in Des Moines. However, the general rule is that decks, patios, and general surfaces with drop-offs of thirty or more inches require guard railings. Generally speaking, requirements include:

  1. 36” for residential and 42” for multi-family dwellings
  2. Maximum openings of 4.”
  3. Railings, in most cases, must not deflect more than an inch when two hundred pounds of force is applied vertically and horizontally but not consecutively.

Because of the numerous codes and potential danger associated with railings, we recommend that you select a fabricator with a long history of building railings. In light of the fact that railings are installed to prevent a fall, these products must work one hundred percent of the time.

What about stair railing requirements?

Stair railings must comply with standard guard railing requirements in addition to:

  1. The grab rail must be specific in size, profile and location. Typically, grab rails are approximately 34” above the nose of the stair tread.
  2. A grab rail should be no larger than two inches in diameter or similar shape.  It should be installed with few obstructions, allowing users to safely run their hands up and down the railing.
  3. Stairs 36” or less in width require one grab rail.  Wider stairs will require more than one.
  4. Commercial railings often require a one foot horizontal run of railing at the top and bottom of the stairs to allow the user to grab the railing before stepping up or off.
  5. Handicap railings will require a one foot horizontal and vertical return at each end with a second lower railing allowing people in wheel chairs to reach the railing.

Can American Fence Company of Des Moines custom build my railing?

Of course! As the city’s #1 railing fabricator, we have fabricated literally thousands of different designs using the following process.

  1. We have catalogs and website photos full of railings designs for you to review in designing your railing. We also recommend that you search the web as railing fabricators and home builders are promoting more and more of their products on-line.  A popular railing accessory provider, King Architectural Metals, has an excellent website with several design assistance tools and views.
  2. With three veteran computer aided design (CAD) programmers, we will provide you with a CAD drawing of your dream railing.  Always demand a CAD view of your railing before allowing any fabricator to build your unique design.  If your first glimpse of your new railing is only once it is built; you may be very disappointed.  CAD views will provide details that include material selection, all necessary dimensions and even a three dimensional view.
  3. Once you have selected a design, we will personally field review your application.  All custom railings must be field verified by a professional fabricator.  Never purchase a railing locally or online without having the fabricator review your installation site.  It is easy to overlook little site details such as base trim, carpet to tile, set-backs and reveals, etc. that only a professional fabricator will be keen to notice.
  4. With five certified welders, we will build your product to the highest standards.  All custom metals products should be fabricated in accordance with AWS D1.1.  AWS is the acronym for the American Welding Society.  This group is the governing agency that sets the standards for steel fabrications.  D1.1 is the written standard for welding steel materials.  D1.2 is the standard for welding aluminum materials.  Request that your fabricator build your railing to these standards.
  5. With hundreds of color samples and paint applications, we will work with you to select your colors.  There are as many types of paint applications as there are colors.  The most popular and widely used are the following:
    1. HVLP.  High volume low pressure paint process is the most popular application.  This process has the benefit of getting paint into tight corners and angles.  It is a wet paint application that should include a two coat application of a quality primer and top coat.
    2. Electro-Static.  A wet paint application that charges the paint particles and applies an opposite charge to the railing.  When the paint is applied it is immediately attracted to the metal surface, providing a very consistent coating with no overspray.  This process should be applied in conjunction with the HVLP system as electro-static paint is difficult to get into tight corners and angles.
    3. Powder Coating. This coating provides a plastic like candy apple coating to metal products. It is powder that is applied to the fence and then melted in an oven, creating a baked-on tough coating.
    4. Galvanizing. Leaving your fence with a shiny silver coating, galvanizing seals the fence from rust and corrosion with a zinc rich finish. Though this is a great application to prevent rust; unfortunately, most paint applications do not adhere to the shiny galvanized finish unless first brush blasted.

With over 50 years of experience, you can count on us to install your product on time and to your satisfaction.