Yet another fence question

Discussion in 'Homesteading Questions' started by country_wife, Apr 5, 2006.

  1. country_wife

    country_wife Evil Poptart

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    We are fencing in our property..at least most of it. We'll be cutting our own posts. Unfortunately, we have no cedar, which I understand makes a great fence post. What can we use to keep posts from rotting? Forget buying treated posts ($13 each) or t-post ($3.18 each) when we need over 180 just for one side. :eek:
     
  2. Alice In TX/MO

    Alice In TX/MO More dharma, less drama. Supporter

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    Have any bois d'arc? Also known as horse apple? It's even better.
     

  3. Boleyz

    Boleyz Prognosticator, Artist

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    Locust posts are what the old-timers around here used. Seems to last a lifetime.
     
  4. wilderness1989

    wilderness1989 Well-Known Member

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    If you live in Ohio there should be Hedge Apple Trees, Osage Orange Trees, around. They were planted thought the Mid-West in fence rows.
    They will make great fence posts that will last as long as you live. I've used many of them to the point when I look at a hedge row I look at the posts in it.
     
  5. Micahn

    Micahn Well-Known Member

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    I remember my grand father dipping his post in I believe tar. He would cut them way before hand I mean years ahead (he had a big pile behind his one barn)so it was nice and dry. He would put the tar onto them months in advance of when he needed them so that it was nice and dry also( it was the runny kind that he used) The coating would come to just above where they come out of the ground. Then he would put a little of it on the top also he said that helped also.

    I know you can also buy the same stuff they put into treated wood. If you got some of it and treated the wood yourself it would have to help also. It would not be as good as they do as they pressure treat it but still should help some.
     
  6. fantasymaker

    fantasymaker Well-Known Member

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    rember with hedge or locust the post wont be real straight but you can deal with it.
    You can also cast them from concreate pretty cheap
     
  7. wheeezil

    wheeezil Well-Known Member

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    henrys roofing cement
     
  8. dennisjp

    dennisjp dennisjp

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    If you need 180 for just one side, it sounds like you must have 150 to 200 acres of land. Oak withstands weather very good. Not nearly as well as cedar or locust, but you could expect it to stand 10 to 15 years. If you have some large oaks on your land, look in the paper or ask around and see if there is any portable sawmillers around. One tree would be close to getting one side done if not more than that, and the sawers aren't too costly. Maybe a dollar a post and you would also have a lot of firewood to either burn or sell from the laps and the limbs. One 4' diameter oak that is 20' high to the first limb will give you 2 or 3 hundred 4"x4"x5' post. 16" in the ground and 3'8" above. Good luck
     
  9. dennisjp

    dennisjp dennisjp

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    I didn't think about that. Micahn is right. I did that for my aunt when I think I was about seven years old. Worked all day long and she paid me a nickle. We mixed kerosene in tar. Did all of the post from top to bottom. Even at that time , and my age, it wouln't have been worth a dollar just to try to get the mess off of me, LOL. Of course I was just a kid and got it every where. Aunt Dora , didn't like mama, and she thought it was funny as h@##. But over the years, I have found out it does work very well and you need not do any of the post above the ground, but a couple of inches won't hurt. Just take a gallon of petrolium based tar, (no I am not trying to help our enimies, but I would think it needs to be potrolium based to be thinned by kerosine, but I'm not sure. Any help out there?) put it in a five gallon bucket and mix kerosine with it until you can take one of those real stiff bruches on the wood and it will soak it up pretty good. Then let the mixture set until it thickens alittle for a few days and then paint it again. let them lay until it dries up good before you put them into the ground. You can pm me if you have any questions.
     
  10. rambler

    rambler Well-Known Member Supporter

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    Locally only white oak lasts a long time in the elements, red oak rots away. You can sell the white oak log for a lot, & buy fence posts with the money, if that's what you got. :)

    Any good self-applied anti-rot is going to cost as much as the purchased posts, really. Something like used motor oil or any other 'cheap' treatment only buys you a few years. These treatments should be done to dried wood, not fresh-cut. Soaking takes weeks per post, not just a paint-on. And then, the soak-on is not nearly as good a treatment as pressure-treated, where it pushes in deep. It would take a long long time to harvest, dry, & home-treat 700+ posts....... Years, really. Not worth the time to have to redo this in 10 years or so by being cheap now.... If you want to use homemade posts this year, you _really_ need the right types of wood as mentioned, home-treatments will be about worthless on fresh woods.

    Used to be you could buy good used T posts for $.95 at farm auctions. Now it's $1.50, but that is still not a bad price???

    I'd be real careful of using poor wood or cheap, not-very-effective treatments. This is a lot of work, & you don't want to repeat the job in a short time. Be careful on what you decide.

    --->Paul
     
  11. agmantoo

    agmantoo agmantoo Supporter

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    I buy used guard rail posts that politics will not permit being reused once removed from the roadside. These posts are 5 ft long and work fine for line posts and will last a lifetime. Thye weigh 69 lbs each and I get them for a few dollars each. I drill the posts and mount porcelin insulators using a small U bolt.
     
  12. fordy

    fordy Well-Known Member

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    ..............The one sure and fast rule of fence building to ensure strength and longivity is to build your CORNERS out of the Best material(steel pipe) if possible . Then , you can use hand-me-downs for the line posts . Also , there's NO law that says you have to buy New Tposts , people around my area are using old tposts regardless of the color . So , if you build your corners and Hbraces with any old thing available you'll waste alot of TIME in the future continually repairing a poorly constructed fence . Some folks just never seem to learn but each too his own I suppose . good luck with your project . fordy... :clap:
     
  13. thedonkeyman

    thedonkeyman Well-Known Member

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    Corners is where the Rocks go and a triangle space for a few trees. Field fencing and alot of rocks will hold the line fences.
     
  14. Celticlady

    Celticlady New Member

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    I plan on making cement post. Fantacy69maker have you done this before?

    I want to make the kind that will work like a slpit rail to slip the boards through.
     
  15. big rockpile

    big rockpile If I need a Shelter

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    Rock corner Post and T Post for line.The Fence will last forever.

    big rockpile
     
  16. Boleyz

    Boleyz Prognosticator, Artist

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    Locust trees and locust thickets are plentiful in most places. If you need evidence of their longevity, try this on...

    Locust support posts are the ONLY kind of wood permitted in coal-mine roof support plans. All Cribbing and All Supports underground in a coal mine MUST be locust.

    They're strong, rigid, and straight. They also don't rot easily. As I said the other day, the old timers around here ALWAYS used locust for fencing, and it seemed to last a lifetime or more.
     
  17. mowrey1999

    mowrey1999 Well-Known Member

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    As far as a usable material, I used old railroad ties for my fence posts,Don,t get new ties since there full of creasote and it seeps and smells bad as well as stains your hands and clothes, We have a lot of used railroad ties just laying along the railroad tracks, I contacted the railroad that owned the tracks and property and asked if the ties were for sale, they told me to take all I wanted ,They had a lot of the rail road ties in piles of 300-400 and I just took a tractor and picked thru them for the best ones,I used around 250 ties the older ones in good shape will last probably another 20years or more, I just dig about a 4 foot deep hole 12 inches around and stand the ties on end and lower them in the ground till they hit the bottom, the ties are about 8 feet 6 inches long which leaves a little over 4 feet above ground Fill in around them with dirt and thats it , For the corners, I put 3 together in a L shape and dig the same depth fill the hole with about 1/2 yard of concrete and they will be there for years, then stretch your wire and I dont think you will find a better sturdier fence, other than just steel posts and rails,
     
  18. bill not in oh

    bill not in oh Well-Known Member

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    Utility poles. Find road reconstruction, talk to the linemen and ask for the poles - often they will deliver them to you if you're close. Plant them deep (32-36 inches in Ohio) and you can string any fence wire you want on them. The utility companies sell them for pretty cheap if they make it back to their storage yard, but try to get them off the road if you can. At the very least they make great corners.