Hey Starweld, I figured this one out, "have a question about the handrail. If this is pipe what causes the diameter variations? The bumps almost make it look like segments that are put together somehow".
He is asking about the balusters on the upper deck railing. I was so puzzled about that I came back 3 or 4 times to see if he'd repost and clarify his question.
Also, here in the wild wild west I have been required to follow the IBC 2009 for handrail size and grippability thing on residential too, so no 3/4" stock for me. I think each inspector has 3 or 4 little bits of code that they think they know and try to stick every contractor on those things, the rest are overlooked due to ignorance, or laziness. Now if I could just figure out those 3 or 4 things before I bid each job...