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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Do you think it’s possible to build the pictured fence from wood and for it to be durable? I assume the pictured fence is iron but from the picture I can’t be 100% sure. I would want to keep the light open look so I wouldn’t want to use 2x4’s for stringers. In the picture, the stringers appear to be about the same dimensions as the vertical pickets. If the pickets were glued to the stringers would each section be ridged enough to keep it from sagging over time? I would appreciate any insight, comments or recommendations.
 

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jschaben
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Hi Mike - pretty long span but I think it would be doable. I said doable, not easily doable. Looks to me like the pickets and stringers are 2x2's. Probably a 14 or 15 foot span. If I were gonna do it they would all be half-laps.:eek:
 

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Old School
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Yeah, half-laps. But that would be a lot of work, and the probability is that you would still have terrible sagging.
 

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Tileguy
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Divide the span by three and install two more legs in the ground on each span. They would only show below the bottom rail.:)
 

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Military Mom of 4
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There's no sense of depth - I can't guess the length of spans. could be 8', could be 12' . . . and those are obviously pre-fab seeing as how they run into the ground for lack of slope.

but make it yourself? Sure - anything's possible - might not be traditional construction methods but the choice of wood and other materials would be key to pulling it off.
 

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You can actually make all of it but the bottom rail out of wood and make the bottom rail of square tubular aluminum. That would prevent the sag and still be lightweight. This idea would work especially well if you had a wide gate. The aluminum is easily available and not terribly expensive.
 

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Sagging would be my concern, also. I would consider cables between the top of each post and the center bottom of each span (like a suspension bridge). It would be my hope that the cables could be small enough that they would be unobtusive.
 

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Span seems to be about 12 feet, but you can make it any distance you want. You just need to drop supports every 4 feet or so.
If you have a mortiser tool or a drill press with a mortise attachment you could drill out a 2x4 for the spindles.
A lot of work and a lot of places for water to get in and rot the wood.
 

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Military Mom of 4
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So - OP - did you finish the project yet :D
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
So - OP - did you finish the project yet :D
Not done yet:no: Thanks for all the suggestions and input. My guess is a 12 foot span also, based on a 1 1/2 inch square picket but who knows for sure. I really like the fence but at this point you all have about convinced me it's going to be too problematic to attempt. The picture is from a video capture of a tv program called Wind at My Back and is show occasionally during the closing credits but have never seen any closeups. Oh well, a standard picket fence may be my best option.
 

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Pro Flooring Installer
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2x2s tend to warp so bad, don't think this would work.
 

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If you like the general concept there is a lot you could do to make it both easy to build as well as less susceptible to sagging. Make the spans eight feet, use 2x3s for the top and bottom rails, etc. If you have a router you could do the half laps pretty easily; clamp slats of the same length together and create a jig and just batch them. You could assembly line fence sections pretty efficiently.

I think it's a question of how wedded you are to that exact design.

Of course, the real problem with that fence is you have to paint it. Yuck!
 

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Super Moderator
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As mentioned a couple of short post supporting the bottom rail along with the half lap would take care of the sag.

I agree with using 2x3 instead of 2x2. I’d also stay away from treated yellow pine. Cedar or even treated fir are more stable and would have less of a chance of twisting and checking.
 

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Military Mom of 4
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Yeah - the default standards for a sidewalk unit is, what, 4 or 5 foot?
 

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the Musigician
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Yeah, that's why I said maybe..... it does look to be more like 10 or 12 ft. between.

DM
 

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A Little Of Everything
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Divide the span by three and install two more legs in the ground on each span. They would only show below the bottom rail.:)
Right.

The only way this has any hope of working is if at least 2 of the vertical slats, per span, is buried like a post.

Even then, it's a long-shot. There are just too many ways for a fence like this to warp and twist.
 
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