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Hello all,

Hoping someone out there has some advice on how to set posts in damp, red clay in the Green Bay, WI area.

The fence will be a 6 foot high cedar picket fence. From what I have read on this forum people are suggesting a 4 foot depth for the post with a bell shape towards the bottom, and 6 inches of gravel for drainage. The issue I am running into is water is filling the base of the holes. I have seen people use the concrete form tubes but wasn't really sure if this was the right approach.

Any suggestions out there? Any tips on how to create the bell shape at the bottom?

Thanks
 

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You may be a candidate for concrete posts below grade, and wood above. Treated lumber is not supposed to rot, but I would not trust it if constantly wet. The label on treated wood that I have seen says "not for below grade use", though it is commonly used for posts in soil. As for the bell shape, you can use a plastic bucket or buy the forms at lumber, concrete, etc, stores. Or, pour a flat pad and set the post on top in a Sonotube-type device. In some places, concrete around treated lumber is against code. Water gets in, can't get out quickly, and the post rots, so chipped gravel is recommended.
 
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