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Fence spike in clay

Hi all,

I'm erecting a close board timber fence in clay soil. Due to the clay and poor drainage I'm thinking of using fence spikes. Would clay be suitable? Would it provide enough stability for a 1.8 mt high fence? I'm considering using 15cm wide boards with a slight gap to allow for expansion and wind to pass through as opposed to feather edge boards, any one else done this?

 Thanks in advance 

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  • Trying to drive fence spikes into the ground so that they stay straight we've found to be nigh on impossible, the smallest obstacle seems to send them in all directions apart from vertical. Are you suggesting spikes as you are using timber posts and think keeping them out of the clay will help longevity?

    Two options, you can get concrete posts that are pre drilled to accept the horizontal supporting rails which you bolt fix the rails to. Or if you prefer dig holes or use a post hole borer to make holes for the spikes and postcrete them in that way you ensure the spikes are straight and vertical and also avoids any future movement in the spikes. By the way we bought a cheap petrol post hole borer for a big planting job (3000) plants and it has been so  useful for a multitude of jobs. 

  • PRO

     

    Palisade fence, single or double.

    I've used spike without concrete for panel fencing. Don't think I'd like to use them on close board without concrete because of the extra weight. 

    I figured out method for the spikes. Used a 6ft digging pushed down 2ft to clear the ground. Half dug the hole with a double spade, 6ft bar again, knocked spike in, post In, level post, backed in soil packed it in real tight. If the spikes were twisted,  i tied the metal bar to them with a strap to straighten them out. Was about ten years ago. No issues.

    There's these sleeves called post savers I wouldn't put a wooden post in the ground without one. Obviously there should be adequate rubble under and around the post before capping with concrete.

  • i am a bit out of date with prices but the cost of a spike and timber post will not that mutch differant from a concreate post and then you can have the option of using pannels 

  • PRO

    Totally agree with Peter... Clay is also quite wet so fence spikes will rust off fast. I'd find a way of digging the hole, put a postsaver sleeve around a proper 10 year (UC4) post.

  • Hi Guys, thank you for all the responses.  I'll look into the post sleeves, or alternatively go with pre drilled posts as Peter suggested.

  • PRO

    Concrete posts for me or concrete the posts in. Clay shrinks and cracks when it dries out, and is brittle so when the fence moves in the wind... 

  • PRO

    As previously mentioned, I wouldn't  use spikes and in fact won't use timber posts anymore, they just do not last. Go for concrete post with arris rails 

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