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How do I eye the posts in to place?

Someone once said that “a fence is judged by the eye so it should be installed by the eye.”  That is half true.  The intent is to make the fence line roll and flow, taking-out the spikes and pits.  This is truly an art and makes a fair fencer a great fencer.  Also, it is tough to put in writing.  Look at the three sets of post to your right.  Can you tell which fence line is set correctly?

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The fence line to the left has posts out of alignment, causing the fence line to form an “S.” 

 The fence line to the far right has posts that are set either too high or too low.  This will form a jagged look from the side. 

 The fence line in the middle is perfect for alignment in and out of the fence line; and the posts flow. 

To accomplish this visual effect, there are several steps to follow;

  1. Start at one end of the freshly stabbed fence line. 
  2. Check to make sure that the first three line posts are set to grade and plumb.  Then, using these three posts as your benchmark, place yourself slightly above the first line post (you may need a ladder or bucket to stand-on.  Be careful) to create the visual effect above.  This is like sighting a rifle. 
  3. With you on a ladder behind the first posts, another individual will stand at the fourth post with a level.  You will instruct him to first raise or lower the posts to achieve that even flow shown above.  As he does this; he should inform you how far the post is above or below the mark.  Too far above grade and the fabric will be unacceptable high off the ground.  Too far below grade and the fabric will rest on the ground and push far above the top rail.  Rule of thumb is you can raise a post 2” in either direction.  More if you are prepared to fill-in or scrap off grade, meaning you have a slight spike or pit in the fence line.
  4. If you cannot achieve a satisfactory height, you may have to go to the next posts and raise or lower it.  Or come back to the previous post and do the same in attempt to blend the fence line. 
  5. Once you have achieved the height, you will instruct your assistant to push the post in or out to achieve vertical alignment. 
  6. Once this is achieved, your assistant should re-level the post “in the fence line” and gently compact the cement around the post, providing a doomed footing that sheds water away from the post.  Then go on to the next post.
  7. You can generally sight in about five posts before having to move your ladder.  Remember to always keep at least two posts that have been eyed-in in front of you to serve as a sight for the next five posts. 

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© 2018 The American Fence Company. All rights reserved. Permission granted to reproduce for personal and educational use only. Commercial use, copying or distribution is prohibited without express written permission from The American Fence Company.

© 2018 The American Fence Company. All rights reserved. Permission granted to reproduce for personal and educational use only. Commercial use, copying or distribution is prohibited without express written permission from The American Fence Company.