As you point out this is rather tricky with RailClone at the moment as it can only project the splines onto a surface along the Y Axis. The easiest solution is probably to use Forest Pack and create the stepped effect using maps to affect the transforms.
To do this you would create two Forest Objects: one for the panels and a second one for the struts. Make sure both Forest objects use UV Surfaces and share identical Distribution settings. You can then use a grayscale map to control the Z translation of the tiles and the Z Scale of the struts to get a similar effect as the one show in the RailClone tutorial but on any surface shape. I've attached a demo file to illustrate how this might be achieved.
I hope that helps, please let me know if you have further questions.