A fence defines boundaries, creates first impressions, and provides security for children, pets and from intruders. Because of its natural properties, cedar fencing is very durable without harmful toxins. It is naturally beautiful and is fully renewable. With a little planning and design it will become a major attribute to your home. Don’t substitute key components. Using the right materials in the right place makes the difference.
Fence Building – Practical Concepts & Design Considerations
- Once you have defined an outline of the fence on your property, divide each segment into eight foot multiples. This provides good structural values and utilizes standardized cost effective fence building techniques.
- To avoid creating awkward oversized or tiny end sections, slightly reduce your average post spacing and increase your total multiples by one section. The result is structurally sound, looks great and hardly affects your material costs.
- Curbs aren`t essential; however, they make it easy to mow the grass up to your fence and contains flower beds, mulch, landscape materials or back-fill.
- Existing lot gradient will influence your design plans. Landscape designs follow the natural gradient of your lot whereas terraced designs emphasize changing elevations.
- An integrated post treatment will result in clean straight lines where the posts will blend into the design of the fence.
- A defined post design, accentuates the post, adding emphasis and definition.
- Spacing fence boards is effective as a wind break; ineffective for security purposes.
- Because of natural properties, cedar fencing offers outstanding performance wherever irrigation systems are in use nearby.
Fence building – Technical Details
- Screws are the ideal fastener to build a fence. Double hot-dipped galvanized screws can be used; however, Brown Ceramic coated zinc screws look best and work well in dry climates.
- Screws must be long enough to penetrate 1” (25mm) into support members. Penetration of minimum 1¼” (32mm) is required for structural components.
- Use metal posts whenever you are choosing to cast your posts in concrete. This will extend their service life. Reduce risk of frost heave by keeping concrete a few inches below grade.
- Metal posts can be clad (encased) in wood for appearance.
- Solid wood posts are an effective alternative when there is no curb (concrete). Avoid casting wood posts in full concrete as this shortens their service life.
- 4X4 is the minimum required post size; however, 4X6 makes a much better post for the expected duration of your cedar fence service life.
- Capping your fence boards and posts will extend the life of your fence. It minimizes migration of moisture (exertion) into and out of your building materials (end-grain is more porous by 250%).
- Using the correct species, grade and dimension of fencing materials will have a substantial impact on the service life of your fence.
- Optimal gate size ranges between three and four feet in width.
- A large RV Gate is better split into two to reduce static and service load strain.
- A removable center support posts with small “landing pads” for a double gate is an attractive alternative to a single large and unwieldy or sagging gate.
- Using a good construction adhesive during assembly also helps eliminate sagging.
- Custom gate arbours can substantially enhance the strength and appearance of your gate.
- Most custom gate designs work well in a three ply approach. To minimize excessive weight gains, sandwich the body of the gate in between one inch frame boards.