DOG FENCE post accessories
- 1-5/8 Inch Corner and End Braces
- Earth Anchors and Attachment Wire
- Brace Bands, Caps, and Drive Sleeve
- Tools for Installing Posts and Sleeves
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Dog Fence Post Accessories: Introduction
The most important post accessory, if you need it, is a bracing system. We offer two kinds, earth anchor systems and post-based systems. Both systems counter sideways stress caused by the weight of the fence, snow loads, and occasionally by falling tree limbs. You are more likely to need a bracing system for a tall rather than a short fence and for a fence in a cold (snowy) climate than a warm one. Other lesser post accessories include brace bands, post sleeves, post caps, and seasonal caps for post sleeves. We also offer three basic post tools--a manual post driver, a digging bar, and a drive cap--all of which have established roles in fence post installation.
Earth anchors are the best (most effective, least costly, and least visible) way of anchoring your fence against sideways stress. Plan on using two earth anchors per corner, one per end, and two per gate. For every eight earth anchors you will need one roll of 12.5 gauge wire (02-07HT1) for attaching the installed earth anchors to the tops of their respective posts.
Earth Anchors at Corners: When using 2 earth anchors per corner, bring in your corner approach posts and install them 6 to 10 feet away from the corner post. Then screw each anchor in right along the fence line (at about a 45 degree angle) as shown in the drawing above, proceeding from the corner approach post toward the corner post, and attach the earth anchor's handle to the top of the corner approach post with 12.5-gauge high-tensile wire (product 02-07HT1).
One can use a single earth anchor per corner by attaching it to the corner post; but in that case the anchor's attachment wire goes outside the fence line, creating a possible hazard (people can run into it) and getting in the way of lawnmowers and other gear. Since earth anchors are not expensive, it makes sense to use two per corner in most cases.
However, if one or more sides of the fence are very short, then the span between the corner approach post and the corner post becomes significant, and the 2-anchor arrangement described above may wind up anchoring little or no fencing. In that case one may wish to consider using corner brace posts with angled supports (see below). Or else, in the case of short fences unlikely to be impacted by snow or falling tree limbs, one may also consider eliminating bracing altogether.
One can brace fences with corner, end, and gate braces. In general, these braces are less effective and more expensive than earth anchors. However, if your fence is short and your still need a bracing system, they make sense.
Please note that these braces are sold in pairs, so that one pair of corner braces will brace two corners, and one pair of end/gate braces will brace two ends (where the fence butts up against a building, wall, or other fence) or one gate. Those who wish to can replace the cement footings for the brace arms with "dead men," these being cement blocks positioned to prevent downward movement of the arms. Also, the brace posts that we offer come with drive sleeves, so you will need a drive cap to install them.
Corner Braces for 4, 5, and 6-foot Fences
End/Gate Braces for 4, 5, and 6-foot Fences
If you don't have a top rail, a good way to keep the fencing from sliding down round posts is to put a brace band at the top of each post and use the nut, bolt and washer that come with it to tighten it on the post. Then secure the brace band to your fencing with a zip-lock tie, passing the tie under the bolt, around the top of the fencing, and also around any top support wire.
Should you want flat vinyl caps, vinyl plug inserts to put into post sleeves in the off-season, or drive sleeves for 1-5/8 inch round posts, you can purchase them individually right here.
Vinyl cap insert for 1-5/8 inch black round fence posts (a single insert, DO NOT CONFUSE WITH VINYL SLEEVE INSERTS)
Vinyl plug insert for steel drive sleeves taking 1-5/8 inch round posts (single insert, DO NOT CONFUSE WITH VINYL POST INSERTS)
An easy way to install most metal posts is with a manual post driver. Ours costs less than most others on the market and works every bit as well.
This driver is a heavy steel tube closed at one end with long handles on the sides. It can install posts up to 2.5 inches wide. To use it, simply place the driver over one end of the post to be installed. Put the posts other end where you want the post installed. then raise the driver, drop it down on the post, and repeat the process until your post is at the desired depth. Be sure that anyone assisting you keeps their hands out of the way of the descending driver, because this tool can seriously injure hands.
Manual post driver with a 2-3/4 inch opening for driving metal posts into the ground (weight 17 pounds)
Should you have soil with lots of rocks or roots, it's a good idea to prepare the way for your posts with a digging bar. This is a heavy straight bar -- a bit like a crowbar without bends. Simply push or tap it a few inches into the ground, rotate the bar a few times, and repeat these actions until you are at the desired depth. Now, when you insert your post, you will know that its path is unobstructed. Should you need one of these tools, the four-footer sold here is probably less expensive than the five or six-footers sold in most local stores.
Use these to drive in sleeves for 1-3/8 and 1-5/8 inch diameter round posts. Put the cap atop the sleeve and hit the cap (rather than the sleeve) to keep from damaging the sleeve. Get one of these caps for every 20 sleeves to be installed.