Split rail fences add rustic charm to your home and small farm. From creating visual sections on your property to keeping large animals out of your yard, a rail fence is a staple of any country homestead.
1. Plan it Out
Split rails require specific types of posts for the sides and corners. Be sure to measure properly, as the side rails will need to slightly overlap each post. As you’re installing the cross rails, you’ll slide one end through the post and then straight back until the opposite end rests on the next support. Thus, you’ll be needing to double-check your dimensions.
2. Know Where Your Gates Will Be
One of the worst things that can happen after building a fence is not giving enough consideration to where or how large the gates should be. Ask yourself “where will my walking path likely be?” and “will I need to move any large equipment such as tractors into this area in the future?” Of course, with a split rail fence you always have the option to take the rails out if you’re desperate!
3. Set up the Outline
Before you start building, stake out rope, twine, or string to show where the outline of your fence will be. Then use spray paint to make marks along the ground so that you’ll not lose your place when you actually start the construction process.
4. Get the Right Attachment to Dig Holes
Using the best post hole digger with your small tractor is possibly the most important step of the entire fence building process. Getting the job done right the first time allows you to focus your time and energy on the fine details, rather than sweating it up because you can’t get the holes dug. Because most split rail fences are held in place with soil and gravel instead of concrete, it’s vital to ensure this step is done properly.
This hydraulic attachment can be mounted to your tractor or small dozer. You’ll want to make sure the holes are 24-36 inches deep, depending on how tall you want your fence to be.
Install the Posts and Rails
Place your posts and backfill them enough to keep them in place. Your corner posts may need to be braced during the construction process. Once your posts are set, slide each end of your rail into place. The convenience of this type of fencing makes this stage a fast one…most of your hard work is already done!
Add Extra Fencing if Necessary
Do you need to keep small animals out of your lawn or garden? You can always apply wire fencing over your side rails for added protection.