I'm finishing up my first deck, and I've installed the guard rails using Simpson FBFZ brackets, and they worked really nicely. I like the idea of metal interfaces, and the design of these connectors allow for a margin of error in the length of the railing.
I want to use the same strategy for the hand rails along the stairs, but am not sure what bracket to use. My first thought was to use the same FBFZ brackets, but I'm not sure if they're designed for angled connections.
I did find this product from deckorators, but I think they're for horizontal angles and I'm unclear whether they support vertical angles. If it comes to it, I can forgo brackets and just toenail, but would rather not if possible. I also realize that whether I toenail or use a bracket, I'll have to cut the ends of the rail at an angle so that the ends are tight to the posts.
Here is what the FBFZs on the guard railing looks like (balusters are on the inside by design):
Thanks for any suggestions!
Here is full deck picture (taken before I installed the guard rails):
I took isherwood's advice, and toenailed. Below are some photos (balusters not yet installed).
One of the challenges I had was keeping the 2x4s in position as I drove the screws in. The 2x4s would often twist as a result of the asymmetric force provided by toenailing in from the side. Had I started with a toenail in the centre of the upper (or lower) surface of the 2x4, I imagine this would have been less of an issue, but at the possible expense of aesthetics. Either way, it worked out well enough that the balusters will still have a flush enough contact with the upper and lower rails. Thanks for the help!
I cut some 2x6 caps for the rails (similar to the ones on the guard rails on the deck itself), and was in the process of installing them, but my wife made a good point that having the 2x4's alone was safer - her reasoning was that if someone slipped and made a reflexive grab for the railing, the 2x4 would be an easier and more natural gripping target. I took a photo though to show what it would have looked like: