What is the best way to put in fence posts?

A place to chat about anything you like, including non-gardening related subjects. Just keep it clean, please!

Moderators: KG Steve, Chantal, Tigger, peter, Chief Spud

Barry
KG Regular
Posts: 350
Joined: Mon Dec 12, 2005 11:18 pm
Location: Central Kent
x 7

What is the best way to put in fence posts?

Postby Barry » Mon Sep 28, 2015 8:54 pm

Having successfully recovered 25m of fencing from my old allotment, I am not going to put it in place at my new allotment.

Previously, I hung it from corner compost bins with supporting canes every metre, which served me well.

This time around, I have ordered some 1.6 metre wooden posts. But what is the best way to put these into the ground? I have ask a builder friend, who says that I should not bother with cement since we are in a very heavy clay region. I just have to whack them in about 35cm (14 inches), since the fence they are having to support is 1.05 metres high.

I am going to use a caste iron potato planter that sailed with Noah in the Ark and is very heavy indeed. To knock things in, I up end it and use the tread as a hammer. It is so heavy that most things are persuaded to go into ground. However, 35cm is some distance. If you were me, would you dig a thin pilot hole about half that depth to help ease the post in or not?

I can't afford to hire one of those proper post smashers and there'll be just me doing the work. As long as the result is there or thereabouts, I won't be too precious as to what it all looks like, although do want the fence posts to be vaguely perpendicular.

How easy is it then to hammer staples into the post when it is upright? Is there enough resistance?

Any tips, comments?
0 x
Stephen
KG Regular
Posts: 1587
Joined: Thu Feb 14, 2008 4:03 pm
Location: Butts Meadow, Berkhamsted
x 642

Re: What is the best way to put in fence posts?

Postby Stephen » Mon Sep 28, 2015 9:22 pm

By yourself it is very difficult. I tried hard to put posts in straight for the raspberry support but the didn't go in straight because you can not get over them to wack hard with a sledge hammer. A proper, cylindrical post device does really need two people to operate ( assuming a local hire company has one).
If I was to rework my posts, I think I would strap some blocks to the post, and hit them, working my way around to keep it straight. I suppose this is why someone invented those metal spikes into which your fence posts can later be mounted.
0 x
Nothing is foolproof to a sufficiently talented fool.
User avatar
Pa Snip
KG Regular
Posts: 3091
Joined: Sat Dec 06, 2014 8:20 pm
Location: Near the big house on the hill Berkshire
x 795

Re: What is the best way to put in fence posts?

Postby Pa Snip » Tue Sep 29, 2015 7:29 am

Stephen wrote:If I was to rework my posts, I think I would strap some blocks to the post, and hit them, working my way around to keep it straight. I suppose this is why someone invented those metal spikes into which your fence posts can later be mounted.


My answer to Barry has to be................vertical. :) Sorry couldn't resist it.

to be honest I have always found it a nightmare job. Others make is simple.

Stephen Driving a 'metpost' spike in straight is an artform
0 x

The danger when people start to believe their own publicity is that they often fall off their own ego.

At least travelling under the guise of the Pa Snip Enterprise gives me an excuse for appearing to be on another planet
User avatar
Tony Hague
KG Regular
Posts: 671
Joined: Mon Dec 05, 2005 5:26 pm
Location: Bedfordshire
x 72
Contact:

Re: What is the best way to put in fence posts?

Postby Tony Hague » Tue Sep 29, 2015 11:41 am

I've not found an easy way - I dig a bit of a hole first; wonder if one of those augers would be useful if doing a few.

Barry wrote:How easy is it then to hammer staples into the post when it is upright? Is there enough resistance?

Any tips, comments?


It is not so hard to knock in the staples. Holding something heavy (sledgehammer head, eg) against the back of the post as you hammer can help. TIP: don't knock staples fully in, leave them proud enough to be able to pull them back out easily.
0 x
Barry
KG Regular
Posts: 350
Joined: Mon Dec 12, 2005 11:18 pm
Location: Central Kent
x 7

Re: What is the best way to put in fence posts?

Postby Barry » Tue Sep 29, 2015 11:58 am

Tony,

That thing with the staples is dead right. Last time around, I banged them in flush and when I tried to pull them out it took forever to get something to grip on them so I could lever them out! Nightmare.
0 x
Barry
KG Regular
Posts: 350
Joined: Mon Dec 12, 2005 11:18 pm
Location: Central Kent
x 7

Re: What is the best way to put in fence posts?

Postby Barry » Tue Sep 29, 2015 11:33 pm

Out of curiosity, most posts are pressure treated and come with a 10-year guarantee. But do any of you add extra protection, such as Cuprinol, to extend the life even further?

Does anybody have experience of this and is it necessary?
0 x
User avatar
Ricard with an H
KG Regular
Posts: 2145
Joined: Mon Jun 11, 2012 10:16 am
Location: North Pembrokeshire. West Wales.
x 56

Re: What is the best way to put in fence posts?

Postby Ricard with an H » Wed Sep 30, 2015 7:11 am

Hi Barry, this will be one of the few times I could share expertise.

I live amongst farming community where they are always replacing or creating fencing, posts driven into the ground to support stock fencing and barbed wire.

I had the same problem as you and even though I often see a tractor mounted post-rammer I never managed to get one when I wanted it or there wasn't room for the machine.

If you have stony ground (big stones) don't bother with an auger and use one of those things that looks like a pair of shovels held together, the lighter weight one is better unless you are a full-back in training.

Did down the depth of the tool loosening the earth each time with a crow bar then ram the post in by bashing it with a post mallet. You'll still need to stand on some steps or as I did a carpenters trestle. Wickets do a good mallet that is good value.

Back fill with earth and stones rammed in, those posts do last ten years and always rot at ground level. When they rot it's time for a new one.
0 x
How are you supposed to start and maintain a healthy lifestyle if it completely removes a wine lover’s reason to live?
Richard.

Return to “General chatter”

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: Google [Bot] and 29 guests