Question about electric fence.

Discussion in 'Homesteading Questions' started by stanb999, May 17, 2006.

  1. stanb999

    stanb999 Well-Known Member

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    How do I deal with snow? We get around 2 feet of snow pack each year. The electric fence is encloseing about 3 acres. The fence charger is for 50 miles and 3.5 joels. The fence is 14 gage with 7 strand. It's 4 strand @ 6" bottom and 3 strand @ 8" for a total height of 4 foot. Every other is hot. This is to keep goats in ........ And the yoats out.

    Should I rig up a switch for the bottom wire? Can it shock threw the snow? I really don't want to shovel it out. :eek:

    Thank you all in advance.
     
  2. neolady

    neolady Well-Known Member

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    Put each row of wire so that it can be unhooked from the fence at the appropriate time of year. Example would be to put an electric gate handle on each row of wire and lift that off the circuit when you need to.
     

  3. rambler

    rambler Well-Known Member Supporter

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    Agreed. That will work for 3 acres of fence; for larger, those simple handles don't contact enough - they make special knife switches that do a much better job of supplying power to the sections of fence.

    --->Paul
     
  4. The one and only year that I raised goats through the winter they became very respectful of the electric fence. I could turn it off for several days while snow was on the ground or for a thunderstorm and they wouldn't try getting out. But if those days turned into a week or more then they would eventually figure out that it wouldn't hurt them and they would then get out. My goats were all yealings so I don't know how older goats would fare.
     
  5. bill not in oh

    bill not in oh Well-Known Member

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    If it's a low-impedence charger (weed burner) it shouldn't be a problem. Snow isn't a particularly good conductor - if you get icecicles or a really heavy, wet packed snow, that could pull the charge down. That being said, it's a very simple thing to simply put a switch in line (and yes, use a knife switch) to turn off any specific wire. I wouldn't want to take down 1700 feet of wire every year because it might snow.

    Are your 'dead' wires actually connected to your ground rods or the ground terminal on your charger? If not, they should be - preferably the rods. That way the shock from contacting any two adjascent wires is the full load and a 50 mile charger rated at 3.5 joules should be throwing 7-8000 voltsat least so it'll certainly discourage goats and 'yotes. Depending on your soil conditions, it can also help to put an additional ground rod at the furthest point from your charger and connect to the 'dead' wires. The main reason for electric fencing to be ineffective is because of poor grounding - usually because of dry topsoil. I use the same wire configuration only with five instead of seven.
     
  6. caberjim

    caberjim Stableboy III

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    Ours can be off for days and the older goats will not go near it. Even with food you can only coax them to about a foot away from the wires.

    To echo the other suggestions - the switch is a great idea. Throw a bunch in to cut individual strands and sections so you can repair or troubleshoot without having to take down the entire fence. Swithches on the lower 2 wires will make it much easier to trim the fenceline.
     
  7. stanb999

    stanb999 Well-Known Member

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    Thanks for all the replies. I'm gonna direct connect the wire for the ground and and put the switch. again thanks for the info.