We’re Back – With a Fencgeance (Fence/Vengeance)

The title says it all, we’re back. I’ve been neglecting posting lately. I’d like to say I’ve been more busy than usual and that’s my excuse, but in reality I just haven’t stayed on top of it. Here I am though, looking to turn that around. I do these posts almost entirely for myself, as they help me keep a good record of my projects. They also help me to practice writing, which has been pretty useful in my job as an engineer. It turns out that having a very small amount of writing skills makes you one of the best writers when you work for an engineering company. Guess that’s payback for the ‘B’ I got in English at an engineering college. 

Sidetracking over, let’s get down to what this post is about. Back in 2020 there was a huge storm that knocked down a bunch of trees and fences around our house. Between us and the neighbors behind us, there was a chain link fence that was unaffected by the storm. While the rest of our neighbors put back up their 6’ privacy fences, we worked on our retaining wall.

That retaining wall required us to take out our chain link fence, and it was time to replace it. In a wild twist though, we like our neighbors. We hop back and forth between our yards to hang out and have a drink in the afternoon, or to play with their children. Their oldest child is a huge fan of coming into our yard and helping us garden, which is great, and something we didn’t want to block with a new fence. That meant it was time to design a better fence than just the typical 6’ picket privacy fence.

In some of the wealthier parts of Denver (and the rest of the US I’m sure), cattle panel fences are fairly popular. These fences are typically made of cedar and feature cattle panels framed by wood. They are typically around 4’ tall and are a great fence for dividing yards without blocking the view. So that’s where we started.

Credit: Walcoom

The example fence above uses hog panels, which have closer spaced squares than cattle panels, but you get the idea. With a design in mind, I could head over to trusty SketchUp and figure out the spacing that we wanted to use for everything. This did two things. It helped me identify how many posts and Cedar 2×4’s I would need to buy. It also gave us the opportunity to design a gate in the fence. Like I said, we wanted to make sure the new fence didn’t block our connection with our neighbors. They were on board with a gate, so I designed it in there. Here’s the fence implemented in SketchUp below.

The original design had an uneven design around the gate, but as you’ll see in future posts, it became symmetric.

Full disclosure, the design changed slightly from this SketchUp design to what was implemented. Mainly because we went and bought the cattle panel, and some of the dimensions weren’t exactly what we were planning. But that’s for another day.

I’m happy to be back posting consistently (assuming I keep this up…). I hope you enjoy it as well.

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