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08-14-2007, 01:05 PM   #1
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## Help with fence materials calculation

Hi there. We're looking to build a privacy fence, similar to this one:

Why we chose this was because most neighbours have similar fences. Ours will have the following construction:
-- 4x4x12' posts. I've calculated we need 19 posts (including those for gates)
-- 1x6x?? vertical planking (what's the correct term?) (?? = we're making the top edge of the fence 6'8" above grade - can we get away with 6' lumber (12/2)?)
-- 2x4's will be used as all structural horizontal pieces (top, middle, bottom)
-- 2x4's will also be used as the topper/cap (not 2x6)
-- 1x6's will be used as a top and bottom decorative cover to hide the 2x4's and hardware from the neighbours ("Good neighbour policy"). So 2 1x6's per section -- one at the top one at the bottom.
-- 3 gates are included in this 100' of fencing.

Can anyone give me their estimates as to how much lumber I require, and then what % I should increase this by for wasteage, etc...?

We are using 7' post spacing where possible as it divided more evenly than 8' or 6'. So 14' lumber will probably be whats ordered. Anytime we need an 8' or a 6' section, 14' can be cut into one of each as well anyhow.

Thanks!

08-14-2007, 02:48 PM   #2
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Quote:
 -- 4x4x12' posts.
Why 12' long? How much are you planning on burying into the ground?

Quote:
 we're making the top edge of the fence 6'8" above grade
Do you know if this height is less than the maximum height restriction imposed by your community?

Quote:
 1x6x?? vertical planking
I assume that you are aware that a fence of this design restricts air flow; aka "no breeze"

Quote:
 Can anyone give me their estimates as to how much lumber I require
You mentioned 19 posts, 3 gates, and a hundred feet of run. There's a lot of variables here depending on where you want to cut in a gate or where you have to turn a corner. The best thing to do is sketch this out on paper, with dimensions, determine the number of full length panels, the amount of material per panel, then multiply accordingly. Perform the same technique for the gate sections and any partial sections. You could figure 10% overage and at the end of the job return any unused material.

Quote:
 We are using 7' post spacing where possible as it divided more evenly than 8' or 6'
What is divided more evenly? I disagree... your most optimum usage of horizontal lumber and posts will be on 8' centers. You'll pay more per lineal foot for longer lumber than for standard 8' lengths. The exception is in your vertical slats if you were to have a 6' high fence then you could make 2 slats per 12' piece with no waste.

08-14-2007, 03:28 PM   #3
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Quote:
 Originally Posted by SecretSquirrel Why 12' long? How much are you planning on burying into the ground?

4' into ground. using the 2:1 rule, that means 8' above ground. We could get away with 3.5' below ground but that still means 10'6" post requirements, which is 6" too much for a 10' post.

Quote:
 Do you know if this height is less than the maximum height restriction imposed by your community?

Yes. 213cm is maximum. Our proposed height is the same as all of the neighbours' fences.

Quote:
 I assume that you are aware that a fence of this design restricts air flow; aka "no breeze"

Yes. Any breeze in the backyards have been blocked by other fences anyhow. We can always sit on the deck which is a few feet higher, to get a breeze.

Quote:
 You mentioned 19 posts, 3 gates, and a hundred feet of run. There's a lot of variables here depending on where you want to cut in a gate or where you have to turn a corner. The best thing to do is sketch this out on paper, with dimensions, determine the number of full length panels, the amount of material per panel, then multiply accordingly. Perform the same technique for the gate sections and any partial sections. You could figure 10% overage and at the end of the job return any unused material.

Good idea. I have a Google Sketchup model I will play with tonight and figure things out this way I suppose.

Quote:
 What is divided more evenly? I disagree... your most optimum usage of horizontal lumber and posts will be on 8' centers. You'll pay more per lineal foot for longer lumber than for standard 8' lengths. The exception is in your vertical slats if you were to have a 6' high fence then you could make 2 slats per 12' piece with no waste.
I realize this, but there are two reasons for the shorter centers. 1: Neighbours' fence, whose fence fences in my rear property line, uses 7' centers. I think it'd be wierd to have 2 different size sections (?). 2: smaller sections gives a slightly larger appearance to the backyard. Cost really isn't too big an object from this point of view. My parents are buyign the fence as a gift to us, and my dad is the one who proposed the 7' (or even 6') centers, knowing the cost issues.

I'll do a bit of sketching tonight and break out the 'ol thinkin' cap I guess.

Thanks

 08-14-2007, 03:32 PM #4 Member   Join Date: Jul 2007 Location: Ottawa, ON Posts: 161 Rewards Points: 150 I can tell you this in terms of the layout, though! North side: 41' of run w/o gates. Then that T's 17' one way and 8' the other. One gate on each side of the "T" sharing the same post. (This is my gate and a gate for my side neighbour which she's paying for + 1/2 of her fence cost). South Side: 26' of run with a gate at the back (SW) corner opening in to our yard. This is a right-of-way for the attached townhome. From here the fence does an "L" for a 7' section which is sharing a neighbours' post. (His rear corner doesn't match up with mine, meaning I have 7' to fence off there where he didn't). That's it!
 04-01-2008, 04:51 PM #5 Newbie   Join Date: Apr 2008 Posts: 5 Rewards Points: 10 I like this fence design. I live on a corner lot and it very windy most of the time. whats the best way to install post like these. is there something i could rent to dig holes myself? would they have to be 4ft deep? in concrete or packed with dirt and gravel?
 04-01-2008, 05:36 PM #6 Member   Join Date: Jul 2007 Location: Ottawa, ON Posts: 161 Rewards Points: 150 I hired a guy who specializes in fence post hole digging. \$10/hole, takes him about 3-5 minutes per. He came in on a Kubota lawn tractor with a huge drill on the rear end and made short work of the job. You don't have to use concrete. Most of my neighbours didn't and their fences are still 100% straight. We didn't -- we just backfilled the clay-laden soil a few inches at a time. One person held the post plumb (level) (use two levels or a post level), the other kicked a bit of dirt in and then used a long 2x4 to pack the living heck out of the soil. Add a bit of water (sprinkle) if the sun is drying out the fill. We did this for all of the posts and it's survived the winter fine it seems. We couldn't even move the posts at all if we ran full steam into them, so I'd say it's stable. The post-hole digger guy said that IF you use concrete, to do about 3/4 of the hole with concrete, and the top 1/4 with just soil/backfill. This way, the frost acts as a collar that the concrete cannot break through, and prevents frost heaving. If you concrete right to the top of the hole, there is no collar - the concrete/post just slides up/down within the hole (unless of course you have a hole that is considerably wider at the bottom than at the top)
 04-01-2008, 06:13 PM #7 Newbie   Join Date: Apr 2008 Posts: 5 Rewards Points: 10 Curls00, You wouldn't happen to have any pics of the inside of your fence that you could share, would you? So I could see how this type of fence is constructed.
04-01-2008, 07:19 PM   #8
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Quote:
 Originally Posted by motorcity man Curls00, You wouldn't happen to have any pics of the inside of your fence that you could share, would you? So I could see how this type of fence is constructed.

Cheers,
Eric

 05-09-2008, 03:35 PM #9 Newbie   Join Date: Jul 2007 Posts: 16 Rewards Points: 10 That is a great looking fence. I have been looking around for design ideas for replacing our worn out fence, and think I have just found what I want! Thanks!!!! Can you tell me if all of the crossmembers were just toe-nailed in, or do they make brackets for this particular design? Thanks again for posting the pics.
05-09-2008, 08:02 PM   #10
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Quote:
 Originally Posted by werc That is a great looking fence. I have been looking around for design ideas for replacing our worn out fence, and think I have just found what I want! Thanks!!!! Can you tell me if all of the crossmembers were just toe-nailed in, or do they make brackets for this particular design? Thanks again for posting the pics.
They make little brackets - any building store will have them with all of the other decking/fencing materials. Mine are made by Simpson Strong-Tie - a very large company.

If I could do anything over again, I'd construct it so that the 1x6's would sit in just slightly from the top rail. Basically I'd shift the panel portion in about 3/4" or so, just to give the fence some "depth" from the main finished (neighbour) side... right now it's perfectly flat with no real telling where the posts are - it's more of a wall.

 05-10-2008, 11:28 AM #11 Newbie   Join Date: Jul 2007 Posts: 16 Rewards Points: 10 Thanks for the reply. I found your gallery of deck and fence, and understand what you were saying about setting the panels back a tad. Thanks again, appreciate your time!
05-10-2008, 11:14 PM   #12
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FYI, these are basically the same brackets I used.
http://www.doityourself.com/invt/u352559

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