A while back I answered a question on Autodesk forum on what would be the best way to do hand railing in Inventor.
While I think Frame Generator is the best tool for that because you get notch, trim and other specific functions to help you out I also mentioned Tube and Pipe.
The user got really intrigued on how I would use Tube and Pipe for hand railing especially since he wanted ball connections on all joints.
The other benefit of making it in Tube and Pipe is the possibility exporting the results into bending machine format; read all about it here.
This post will explore just that, a short video on how this might be accomplished with TP. If you find the quality low on the video then you can always see the original one on screencast here.