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Fence post ?

Post in 'DIY and General non-hearth advice' started by Pallet Pete, Jun 20, 2013.

  1. Pallet Pete

    Pallet Pete Guest

    Will landscape timbers work for a fence post with painted or rubberized bottoms where it goes in the ground ?

    Pete

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  2. Badfish740

    Badfish740 Minister of Fire

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    I wouldn't use them. Usually when you see them in the store they're warped already. My neighbor's fence was done with landscape timbers and they're rotting/leaning/etc... I know they're double the price but you can't go wrong with pressure treated 4x4s.
    Pallet Pete likes this.
  3. Pallet Pete

    Pallet Pete Guest

    That's actually why I asked 4*4's run 11.67 landscape timbers run 1.97. The price difference made me wonder.

    Pete
  4. heat seeker

    heat seeker Minister of Fire

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    I don't see painting or rubberizing the timbers as a long term prevention for rot. If you don't mind replacing the fence posts every few years, you could buy 5 or 6 timbers for every PT 4X4...
    Pallet Pete likes this.
  5. pyroholic

    pyroholic Member

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    A 4x4 is nearly always made from Southern Yellow Pine (premium grade for dimensional lumber); a landscape timber is made from #3 grade SPF (spruce/pine/fir). The same difference as there is between a utility grade 2x4 and the wood trusses are made from. My .02 is spend the extra $ now cause digging post holes sucks.
    ScotO and Joful like this.
  6. jebatty

    jebatty Minister of Fire

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    No disagreement with the advice but here's what I've done. Our fence is only about 100 feet long, and we wanted it to be rustic. So I cut down some Jack Pine trees with about a 6" diameter trunk. Made fence posts out of these, no treatment at all, dug the holes and put them in the ground. The posts last about 5-8 years before rotted to the point when they need to be replaced. And that's what I do, make a new post and put it in the old hole and life goes on. The rails for the fence also are hand split Jack Pine and they last about 8-10 years.
    Pallet Pete likes this.
  7. Joful

    Joful Minister of Fire

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    Replacing every part of a fence every 5-8-10 years is not how I'd want to spend my time. Why not treat the jack pine? Seems like time & money well-spent.
    Pallet Pete likes this.
  8. lukem

    lukem Minister of Fire

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    They'll only be good for about 5 years untreated. Painting them might buy you an extra year or two.

    Got any locust trees available?
    Pallet Pete likes this.
  9. Joful

    Joful Minister of Fire

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    All the old farm fences around here are cedar. Cut a tree, limb it, plug it in the ground. I still have many lining the edge of my property, and I don't know how old they are, but I'm sure they're much older than me.
    Pallet Pete likes this.
  10. Backwoods Savage

    Backwoods Savage Minister of Fire

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    Pete, I've used a couple of them when we just needed some short posts. Worked well.
    Pallet Pete likes this.
  11. Pallet Pete

    Pallet Pete Guest

    Thanks for all the advice guys I went ahead and purchased 4*4 treated timbers. It's a lot more but very sturdy.

    Pete

    Attached Files:

    HDRock likes this.
  12. pyroholic

    pyroholic Member

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    Looks good Pete, you won't regret it in 5-8-10 years. Not that there's anything wrong with jebatty's system, just not my thing.
    Pallet Pete likes this.
  13. Pallet Pete

    Pallet Pete Guest

    Can the pickets touch or do they need a space in between ? I am using 72" tall by 3.5" wide by 1/4" thick pine slats off of pallets as the pickets. I will put up some more pics today.

    Thanks again
    Pete
  14. Joful

    Joful Minister of Fire

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    Assuming they're PT hem/fir: Either, or. Full privacy, but them tight, but they'll shrink a bit as the ACQ dries.

    Two warnings:

    1. Don't discount the wind load if butting tight. Figure wind load as proportional to slat width / gap width.

    2. KD (non-PT) lumber should not be butted tight, as its likely to grow. Most KD lumber is 7-8% MC, and will grow to an ambient closer to 16% outdoors. In this case, I'd gap 3.5" planks at least 1/8".

    If you want full privacy with better looks (from both sides) and reduced wind load, consider shadow box. You'll hate painting it, but it looks great.
  15. Pallet Pete

    Pallet Pete Guest

    I don't know what KD and PT lumber are could you explain please ? I am using pine, fire and a few other soft woods that came off the pallets as the slats.

    Pete
  16. Pallet Pete

    Pallet Pete Guest

    This is the progress so far as well as a slat to show you what I am doing.

    Pete

    Attached Files:

    ScotO likes this.
  17. Joful

    Joful Minister of Fire

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    PT = pressure treated

    KD = kiln dried

    I have no experience building with pallet wood, but would treat it as KD if stored indoors, or just assume its already at equilibrium if stored outdoors.
  18. Bocefus78

    Bocefus78 Minister of Fire

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    I'm gonna keep this one going. I'm having a 6' shadow box fence installed next month and was given a choice of cedar or PT posts. Ive thought and thought and still undecided. Posts will be set in concrete within 2" of grade level if that makes a difference. There is no price difference. I will not be living here forever. Maybe another 5-10 years max.

    What would you get???

    Oh, and besides hiding the piles of wood from my nice new neighbors, here is the main reason for the fence. He hauls splits for me too!

    Bentley.jpg
    ScotO likes this.
  19. Joful

    Joful Minister of Fire

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    I would use PT for the posts. They will last much longer, especially if set in concrete, and they're a small fraction of the cost of cedar. Since you're doing shadow box, it will be pretty easy to hide the post behind a picket on the pretty side of the fence.

    Also, setting posts in concrete is often not the best choice. You're much better off drilling the hole, setting the post, and then compacting modified crushed stone in around it. It will hold the post like concrete, but will keep the post dry. Even better if you drill the hole 6" deeper than necessary, and put 6" of crushed stone in the bottom of the hole before setting the post. Posts set in concrete usually rot off right at the top of the concrete. This will take close to 20 years for PT, but could happen in 5 - 10 years with cedar.
  20. Pallet Pete

    Pallet Pete Guest

    The in ground contact green pt 4*4s will out last you from what I understand. My friend built his home and the foundation is green pt and very very solid. I didn't even bother with cement after seing that.

    Pete
  21. Pallet Pete

    Pallet Pete Guest

    Oops wrong PDF ill find the correct one.

    Pete
  22. ScotO

    ScotO Guest

    Lookin' good, Pete! I'm jealous! I cant wait to build my shed, but its on hold yet another year.....too many "irons in the fire" right now!!
    Pallet Pete likes this.
  23. Pallet Pete

    Pallet Pete Guest

    I have another thread I started a while ago sorry bought that I just realized it last night. Here are some more shots for ya with my helper too!

    Pete

    Attached Files:

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  24. Augie

    Augie Feeling the Heat

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    Looking Good
    Pallet Pete likes this.
  25. Joful

    Joful Minister of Fire

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    Your helper is much cuter than mine:

    fred_tree.JPG
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