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BrandonC_1972 05-08-2012 12:02 AM

Aluminum fence panel section temporary removal
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I have an aluminum fence surrounding a section of my back yard. I am going to be installing a paver patio and to aid in this, I will be using a skid steer (BobCat) to do so. While BobCat does make a skid steer that will fit through my 48 inch fence gate, the only place in my area (Western Pennsylvania) that rents one will cost almost as much to get to my site than a week rental of a larger size unit from a rental place closer to my home.

Therefore, I need some advice on how to remove a fence panel section during the time I am working on the area and then be able to put it back with mimimal effort and have it look and behave with similar strength than what it is now.

Since the posts are set with concrete, I would like to do anything to avoid having to reset the posts.

The fence sections fit inside the posts and do not attach with L type clips. This is great for look and strength but makes the removal of a panel less than ideal.

My only plan at the moment is to reciprocating saw one of the sections as close to the post as possible. Then disassemble (remove self tap sheet metal screws) the other side and pull it out.

After I am done with this, I can insert some mending plates on the cut end and then reattach with some more self tap screws or self locking nut/bolts.

Sample type mending plate:

Sample self tap screw

By doing it this way, I can then remove the section any time larger equipment has to come in while interfering with the fence stability and look.

Am I on the right track? Or is there something I am missing?
The only risk I view at this point is that the reciprocating saw will scratch the post if I am not careful. Also the jagged fence section will need buffed/altered to not scratch the post or worse a human. Spray painting any visible item would be done for touch up and protection.

danpik 05-08-2012 07:57 AM

Are those screws in the posts I see? did you try to remove them and see if the fence section will slide to one side to release the other side? Can you remove the cap from the post to see what is going on down inside the post? I suspect that entire section could be removed with something as simple as a screwdriver

BrandonC_1972 05-08-2012 11:37 AM

Yes, those are self tap screws like in the above link.
I gave a "college try" at removing the screws and there isn't enough play with the post being cemented for me to move things back and forth to get it out.

What makes matters more difficult is there is a lip on the horizontal rails that doesn't allow for the fence rail to go into the fence post opening.

I could cut the fence post opening, could cut the lip on the rail, or I could cut the entire rail off.

Before I do any cutting, I wanted to seek advice before I doing something drastic and regret doing so with a post from someone here that has done something like this before.

My original thought was to remove the screws on both ends, slide the rail further into the post on the left and then pop out the right. I can certainly try this again.

Evstarr 05-08-2012 10:03 PM

I'm trying to get my head around how that fence went together in the first place. Are you saying that the rails were inserted into the posts before the posts were cemented in place?

If you remove those screws how far can you slide the rails to one side or the other?

What does it look like inside the post if you remove the cap?

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