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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Mar 2013
    Location
    NW New Jersey
    Posts
    4

    Default Fence Post Bases

    All: I have about 140' of privacy fence which was installed using these composite post bases (tinyurl dot com slash atbffpe). A problem I have run into is that in really high winds (like during Sandy), the post bases will break, right at the point where the bottom of the 1 1/4" rebar is. I also had several break during another windstorm a few years back. Unfortunately, the fence runs pretty much due north and south, so the prevailing westerly winds (or the easterly winds from Sandy), hit it broadside and generate some pretty substantial loads which the bases and posts need to deal with.

    Question for y'all: Has anyone seen anything similar on the market? I like the idea that I have no wood in ground contact (the fence is white cedar), but having to replace 7 post bases is not my idea of a really good time.

    Thanks.
    Tom Coradeschi

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Mar 2013
    Location
    NW New Jersey
    Posts
    4

    Default Re: Fence Post Bases

    bump

    Nobody has anything to share on the topic?
    Tom Coradeschi

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jul 2010
    Location
    SoCal
    Posts
    5,073

    Default Re: Fence Post Bases

    How deep does the rebar go in the ground? It may not go down long enough.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Mar 2013
    Location
    NW New Jersey
    Posts
    4

    Default Re: Fence Post Bases

    That's pretty much the problem. The base itself is about 40" long, but the rebar only goes down maybe 18", and the failures occur right at the bottom of the rebar.

    What I am wondering about is if anyone has seen any similar (but more robust) prefab post bases, or if I need to go back to the old school methods of setting the wood in stone or concrete.
    Tom Coradeschi

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Aug 2007
    Posts
    6,480

    Default Re: Fence Post Bases

    Abandon wood and composite posts and opt for steel. They will flex with the wind, never rot, and never create termite issue. A brand name to look for is Postmaster, there are other brands too. I like the Z-posts, as the name implies, they are Z shaped to accommodate the thickness of the rails and be flush with the rails, so that you can place a picket over the post and hide it easily.

    I too like the idea of composites, however, I'm noticing that some Trex I've used to isolate stair stringers from touching the concrete and wicking moisture/critters is disintegrating after only a few years exposed to the elements. I'm not worried about it in this particular application, but it does go to the integrity of the product when exposed to the elements and stress, it's going to fail, as evidenced by your experience.
    I suffer from CDO ... Its like OCD, but in alphabetical order, LIKE IT SHOULD BE!!!

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Jul 2010
    Location
    SoCal
    Posts
    5,073

    Default Re: Fence Post Bases

    The z post system is excellent.

    I've used chain link posts (round galvanized steel) for redwood fences in the past and they work fine too.

    If you are concerned with wind damage, you can pay a more and switch to a masonry fence (block wall, slump stone, concrete prefab and others) which can resist high winds. These fences are common in CA, but not in the east coast.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Aug 2007
    Posts
    6,480

    Default Re: Fence Post Bases

    I've used chain-link posts as well, but I dislike them because they're big and ugly with ugly hardware that can't be hidden. Z-posts are cheaper and once the pickets are on, you don't even know they are there. The fence looks great from both sides, particularly important with "good neighbor" fences.
    I suffer from CDO ... Its like OCD, but in alphabetical order, LIKE IT SHOULD BE!!!

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