How to choose the fence option that suits your personal needs

Posted by Michelle Goodwin on Fri, Jun 20, 2014
Perhaps the best reason for putting up a fence isn't practical, it's emotional. A fence encloses your territory. Fences and walls really help make home feel special, separate and your own, like a haven and a sanctuary.

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AN OVERVIEW:

A fence is more than just a barrier. Used in imaginative ways, it can become an architectural feature that blends well with the style of your house, a landscape element that enhances the appearance of your property, or an accent piece that helps define a part of your yard or garden.In The Fence Bible hands-on home improvement expert Jeff Beneke provides an in-depth, comprehensive how-to encyclopedia that enables homeowners to choose and build the fences and gates that are best for their landscape—both for appearance and function.Beneke suggests the appropriate types of fence to keep the swimming pool secure, confine the livestock, keep deer away from the garden, or create outdoor living spaces. He then discusses the essentials of proper fence design and provides step-by-step illustrated instructions for planning, building, maintaining, and repairing any style of fence.

Here's what goes into planning, designing and buying a fence and the materials to build one.

Privacy, security, curb appeal, noise reduction: The benefits of residential fences are numerous.There also are plenty of practical reasons for a fence. "The place I always suggest starting with (is) function," says Jeff Beneke, author of "The Fence Bible." 
Here's a look at what fences can do and how you can build or select the right one for your budget. 
 AVAILABLE on AmazonEbayBarnes & Noble, and Google Books


The first step is determining what you want your fence to do. Fences serve many purposes, including:
  • Security Fence: Even a fence only 3 feet tall can help deter prowlers, says Chris McGoey, a security expert in Los Angeles. "It is psychological," he says. "A fence denotes a property.
    It says, 'This is my house, my property.' People are going to be reluctant to step over that fence. Even a small boundary fence will discourage people from cutting across your yard.

  • Privacy Fencing: Living your life shielded from the prying eyes of others is a luxury of private property. A high privacy fence, tastefully built, can give you room to let down your hair, no matter how small your deck or yard.

  • Decoration: A well-designed, professionally installed fence will frame your home and add tremendous curb appeal. It may also enhance your property value, depending on your neighborhood and the fence's design and quality.

  • Boundary: It's a good idea to define your boundaries, especially if you own a small lot. A fence prevents neighbors from encroaching on your property.

  • Safety: A fence offers peace of mind. They keep small children and pets safe from strangers, traffic and hazards such as swimming pools, high bluffs and ravines.

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    Garden protection: Just as a fence holds in your pets, it keeps stray animals and other pests from digging and defecating in your yard. Properly constructed, fencing around a vegetable or ornamental garden also can protect precious plants from foraging deer and rabbits.

     

  • Weather protection: Snow fences keep drifts from growing too large. A protective fence lets you enjoy a garden or deck in a windy area; Beneke says he likes a louvered fence for taming a windy patio.

  • Noise: A privacy fence can buffer some noise. Wood blocks noise better than most fence materials. Planting a hedge or other tall vegetation in front of the fence helps buffer noise even further. For serious noise protection, professional fence specialists offer noise-buffering blankets that can be pulled tightly over any fence. Costs for these products start at about $12 per linear foot for a 6-foot-tall fence.

    The most effective fence for dulling sound is a tall, custom-built fence of foam-filled aluminum or composite, says Chris Policastro, vice president of operations at Production Fenceworks in Atlanta. This kind of fence costs $60 to $300 per linear foot for a 6-foot fence. 

  • Cosmetics: Trash cans? Propane gas tanks? The neighbor's trampoline? A large or small fence may hide it. It's like putting makeup on a pimple, Beneke says. Planting a vine or shrub in front of it makes it even prettier.

Cost and Planning

Once you have a list of your fencing needs, take your specs to a professional fence contracting company and talk it over with experts. Even if you build your fence yourself, it helps to bounce ideas around and ensure you have the right expectations for your fence materials, design law and specifications in your individual rural, suburban or urban location.

Here's a scenario: Farmers who've built 6' high enclosures soon learn that deer can jump 8 feet. To remedy that issue take into account that an overhanging extension or one of the deer-fence ideas from Leonard Perry, extension professor at the University of Vermont, may be a viable solution.

In another scenario, Homeowners have installed chain-link and vinyl fences only to finding out that their homeowners association (HOA) bans them. So make sure you arm yourself with knowledge going into your fence project.

Fence costs can sometimes be steep. A lot of material and labor is involved. But costs always vary depending on your preffered materials and style. You can cut fence costs by and by choosing local species of wood. Get a couple estimates, look at thheir websites and credential when selecting a contractor.

Beneke, a proponent of doing it yourself, nevertheless says he warns against getting into a job that's too big for your skills or your time. Building a fence is a big job, and you deserve to have a fence that fits you and your needs.

(TO BE CONTINUED NEXT WEEK'S FENCE POST: PART 2: A FENCE THAT FITS: BUILDING THE RIGHT FENCE FOR YOU AND YOUR BUDGET.


Sources: MSN.com, The Fence BibleMore on residential fences

Topics: Specifications, Specialty Fence, Residential Fence Choices, Homeowners Association, Vinyl Fence, Property Value, backyard Fence, Fence Permit, Pool Fence, Richmond Fence, fence regulations, chain link fence, fences richmond, Aluminum Fence, Pool Gates, Comparison, pickett fence, wood privacy fence, pressure treated fence

Cedar or Pressure Treated Wood. Which will work best for my fence project?

Posted by Michelle Goodwin on Mon, Apr 28, 2014

Wood fences are beautiful, no doubt, and (PVC) vinyl fences even come with simulated options making man-made materials look and feel nature based. 

But in Virginia, cedar wood and pressure-treated pine are two of our top-selling residential fence types.

Eighty percent of all wood fencing is composed of either pine or cedar wood.

Below are various residential fence solutions available throughout the United States.

6' Privacy Cedar with Clear Posts

6' Shadowbox Convex cedar

Two Cedar privacy fence options - Left: 6 ft. cedar privacy fence with clear posts / Right: 6 ft. cedar Shadowbox privacy fence

 

Red cedar trees are indigenous to the American Northwest and Canada. The red cedar wood's straight, tight grain and lack of knots make for optimal fence material. It is naturally highly resistant to decomposition, displays a beautiful red hue, and is well-known for its' aromatic woodsy smell.

Cedar does not warp or shrink and is a naturally stable material perfect for picket and privacy fences. Cedar wood fences stand the test of time, and look great decades after installation.

For fence posts, cedar can go several years without rotting; however, they tend to be less durable against soil erosion than pressure treated pine posts.

For this reason, it may be a good idea to use pressure treated pine for the posts and cedar for the rest of the fence. 

Or, the cedar fence posts can be set in concrete to prevent soil-related rotting.

Pressure treated wood (PTP) is the most popular residential fence choice in outdoor structures (decks, porches, and all types of residential fences, for example).

PTP can warp, shrink, and crack. The sun makes any outdoor damage worse especially if you don't stain it.

To avoid this, pressure treated pine (PTP) is chemically-treated in order to prevent against decay, termites, weathering, and other pine-related troubles. All PTP fences come with a warranty to protect against termites and rotting.

PTP fences need to be consistently and regularly maintained. It is recommended that all pressure treated pine fencing should be stained and sealed about 6 weeks after installation to improve and maintain a handsome appearance and prevent rot. 

https://www.hurricanefenceinc.com/wood-fences

Pressure treated: 6 ft. concave board picket fence

 

Keeping your pressure treated fence wet when it is hot or exposed to the sun can also be done to maintain your pine fence and keep the fence from cracking. Staining, sealing, moistening, stripping, and cleaning are all maintenance techniques that are commonly used and recommended for pressure treated pine fences.

Cedar is increasingly rare and thus more expensive than pine. However, cedar stands up to the test of time and it's aroma and handsome appearance coupled with the comparatively low required maintenance make it a smart investment. These incentives outweigh the cons for most people who are strongly considering cedar as a fence material. 

Knowing the pros and cons of each type of wood type will help to make an informed decision when choosing the fence and fence company that fits your needs. 


 

Topics: Fence Design, Specifications, Specialty Fence, Homeowners Association, backyard Fence, Fence Maintenance, cedar fence, codes, wooden fence, wood privacy fence, pressure treated fence, wood fence, cedar privacy fence, cedar wood fence, Pressure Treated Wood Fence, Reasons for Privacy Fence

HISTORY: THE ROLE OF THE PERIMETER FENCE IN THE MODERN ERA

Posted by Michelle Goodwin on Thu, Jan 16, 2014

Chapter 3: The Role of the Perimeter Fence in the Modern Era.

In the last few hundred years, millions of refugees from have sought out the United States in pursuit of life, liberty & happiness. Tribes of oppressed people’s from all over the world have come to stake their claim on their very own piece of land; The American Dream. In more recent times, perimeter fencing has become prevalent for setting boundaries between much smaller structured civilizations rather than larger ones colonies of the past where neighbors were few and far between.

Increasingly compact urban populations and the invention of the sub-burbs not only allow for property owners to mark territory but they now encompass a homeowner's unique vision, and trends within popular culture and security specifications. 

Fence types, styles and materials vary thanks to the industrial revolution the fence options absolutely endless in the modern era. Aluminum, Wood, Privacy gates, security fence systems are just a few.

In the past century, there have been some highly notable and peculiar fencing structures that are well worth a fence google. Especially because the history of modern civilization and fence structures of all kinds go hand-in-hand.

 

AQUA FENCE: TURKEY 

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Cesme aquarium fence8 550x412

Mehmet Ali Gökçeoğlu, a successful businessman and topographical engineer from Turkey, recently built the “world’s most fantastic” fence for his luxurious villa in Çeşme, Izmir. Eight years ago he replaced the wrought iron metal fence at the front of his property with a specialty 50-meter-long aquarium filled “fence” structure with hundreds of fish and octopuses. Above are the pictures to prove it.

Located just a few feet away from the shores of the Aegean Sea, Mehmet Ali Gökçeoğlu’s property has become one of the most popular tourist attractions in Çeşme, attracting up to a thousand visitors a day, according to its owner. The villa itself is pretty impressive, but it’s not what draws so many people to this place. They come to see the aqua-fence. Eight years ago, the Turkish businessman had the eccentric idea to replace the front fence of his home with a giant aquarium full of various marine creatures from the Aegean Sea. Building the transparent structure was actually the easy part of the project. The hard part was linking the aqua-fence to the Aegean through a 400-meter-long buried pipeline, so the water could be changed continuously to keep the aquarium looking clean and its inhabitants happy. Gökçeoğlu hired a team of private divers to perform the task, and ended up paying approximately 40,000 Turkish Lira ($21,000) to fulfill his dream. The businessman says just seeing people line up outside his house staring at his specialty fence creation makes it all worth it.

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DINGO BOUNDARY FENCE: AUSTRALIA

longest fence 02   longest fence 04

longest fence 03

The longest man-made perimeter structure is the Australian Dingo Fence. In fact it is also the world's longest fence EVER. 

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Stretching across two southeastern Australian states, Queensland and South Australia, the Dingo Fence is 5,614 kilometers long. 

Quick Facts about The World’s Longest Perimeter Fence:

5614 kilometers is the total length of the Dingo Fence.
8614 kilometers was the total length of the Dingo Fence up until 1980, where due to repair costs it was shortened to its present length.
26.5 million hectares of sheep and cattle grazing country is what the Dingo Fence protects.
5,614,000 meters of wire mesh, that stands 180 centimeters in height and is a further 30 centimeters underground, was used to build the Dingo Fence.
623,777 wooden and steel posts hold the Dingo Fence together. 

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The perimeter fence has a wide-range of cultural, psychological and historical tones. We put fences around everything. From the physical to the meta-physical. It’s in our nature. A fence evokes ownership pride of your surroundings It's the semblance just a small part of the planet we all share. Very few human characteristics can imply so much so without words. The fence concept is just another fascinating example of what it means to be a human being.

 

More noteworthy fence posts:

World’s most elaborate chicken coop

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DAahQXL-Sgk

SICK Technologies: Sensor Intelligence

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=stJf-Aw_9Rc

Topics: Perimeter Security, Specialty Fence, Residential Fence Choices, Homeowners Association, backyard Fence, Historical Fence, Terrorism, Fence Permit, Fence Maintenance, Privacy Fence, Comparison

History & Psychology CH. 2: Where did the perimeter fence come from?

Posted by Michelle Goodwin on Fri, Jan 03, 2014

History & Psychology CH. 2: Where did the perimeter fence come from?

As the great English agriculturist Arthur Young said commenting on eighteenth century French peasants’ toil on their small patrimonies, “Give a man the secure possession of a bleak rock and he will turn it into a garden. Give him a nine years' lease of a garden and he will convert it into a desert." Being instrumental in the culture of property, the fence fostered long-term thinking and constructive effort. 

Land Ownership

Land ownership demanded lasting commitment and care that were beyond the capacity of a single individual, so since very early on land was attached not to the individual but to a family. In early Hindu and Greek law, land could not be sold or transferred to another family, either by bequest or as a dower. A father who had land was compelled to leave it to his sons. If he had no sons he must pass it to the nearest relation. Since no one could take away family land upon marriage, the fence was associated with native home and was helped facilitate inferred communication in a domestic context.

Having a strong visibility bias, the fence is an open declaration of intention. It says on the part of an occupant "I am here and planning to stay." This makes it an appropriate device to be associated with law.

Numa, the second king of Rome laid down in 7th century B.C. that each man should surround his land with a boundary and set up landmarks of stone or modern day bollards. He dedicated these landmarks to the god Terminus, and ordained that sacrifices should be offered up to him every year, appointing the Festival of the Terminalia. This worship of boundaries was meant to celebrate the conquest of the land of Rome from the Latinians and the Sabines originally occupying the region. Victory would not have been possible without the will of the gods and the fence being a symbol of this triumph had to be honored in appreciation. Thus the fence was invested with meaning and gained value.

roman fence

Further, in 7th century England, the King of Wessex added a new function for private peremiter boundaries: Responsibility. The business of protecting crops from cattle, was on the land-owner. The king proclaimed that a homestead must be fenced winter and summer. If it is not fenced and his neighbor's cattle get in through his own gap, he has no right to anything from that cattle or the the owner of the property it wandered onto.

Fencing America

In New America, John Winthrop, the first governor of the Massachusetts Bay Colony even passed a policy stating: "That which lies common, and hath never been replenished or subdued, is free to any that possess and improve it."

worm fence   Gettysburg resized 600

Pictured Above: A Worm Fence in Gettysburg Pennsylvania circa 1600.

Circa 1600 A.D., Jamestown Virginians were amazed to discover a fence structure that they'd not seen before. A worm fence is a pereimeter fence that lays logs atop each other at an angle eliminating the need for posts of any kind. The early settlers used their spare logs while yielded and clearing the residential land they forged.

Next Hurricane Weekly Fence Post

Chapter 3: The modern perimeter fence and how it helps shape current cultures.

Topics: Bollards, Perimeter Security, Specialty Fence, Residential Fence, Property Value, Temporary Fence, backyard Fence, fence timing, Historical Fence

History and Psychology CH. 1: Where did the perimeter fence come from?

Posted by Michelle Goodwin on Wed, Jan 01, 2014

great wall beijing

THE WALL

As one year ends and another begins, most of us are reflecting on the last year of our lives. Where we've been, how we got there, and where we're going. One can also marvel over the many ingenious inventions that have come from the human mind. We make history, we learn from it and we evolve, and move forward as a society.

I often wonder where things we interact with every day originated, who invented them and what their original intent was.

And, while we don't think about perimeters, and boundaries as structural elements on a daily basis, they are a part of all of our lives on a conscious and subconscious level. Anyone who has lived in the past several hundred years has gone through their entire lives in their presence. From the emotional tearing down of the Berlin Wall, the sheer visual impact of the Great Wall of China to the boundaries of our country's borders perimeter fences have played a major role in implicative communication throughout human history.

So where did the fence come from?

The history of civilization is closely tied with the history of the fence. Human civilization is conceptualized as emerging from agriculture, family and property. All of these evolved with the fence.

On the one hand, fences are tangible objects that have been put to use at all times for definite purposes. On the other, they are artifacts having meanings in the cultural systems they've resided in.

Fencing as a concept gives us a clue into the mentality of past societies and its symbolic usage in their societies The fence can be used to exemplify the role of technologies in culture.

While technologies enable us to act or behave in certain ways, they also make us think about what we do, and create habits of thought. Hence, our practices, built upon the media we use, shape up our conceptualization of the world. With continuous usage technologies highlight what is important to think about in our lives thus establishing cultural values. Culture then perpetuates itself by employing practices as symbols.

From this perspective studying the history of the fence is at the same time studying the culture of the fence. While no more than fragmented evidence from a small number of societies, time periods and locations, we can see how the use of fences in human societies has generated myths we live by and ideologies we now take for realities.

In the early stages of settling, human tribes tended to till the land in a group. Amongst the ancient Germans there were no separate estates or private boundaries. Germans practiced the so-called "shifting cultivation".

The appearance of the perimeter fence in human societies marked the transition from a pattern of looting nature to taking care of it. It was with devoted agriculture that fences came about. While it is impossible to name the inventor of this technology back in Ancient Mesopotamia, the first man who, having fenced in a piece of land, said "this is mine," and was able to persuade others to believe him, that man was the true founder of civil society.” The fence helped institutionalize one of the most important elements of the social contract – the collective recognition of private property.

Topics: Fence Design, Specialty Fence, Residential Fence Choices, Property Value, backyard Fence, Historical Fence, Top Three Reasons for Privacy Fence, Richmond Fence

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