Useful tools for installing chain link fence
|Step 1 - Survey Property Lines
Be sure that the fence does not exceed property lines. Most fence installers recommend that all posts be set approximately 4" inside the property line. This will help avoid encroaching on adjoining property with concrete footings. This is easily done by stretching a string along the property line and setting the posts 4" inside.
Step 2 - Locate and set Terminal Posts (corner, end, and gate posts are called terminal posts)
Distance between gate posts is determined by adding the actual width of the gate plus an allowance for hinges and latches. Usually walk gates require 3 3/4" for hinges and latches and double drive gates require 5 1/2". Next, dig the holes.
Terminal posts should be set 2" higher than the height of the fence fabric and line posts 2" lower than the height of the fence fabric (terminal posts should be 4" higher than the line posts). Set the terminal posts in concrete using a concrete mix. You can use 1 part cement, 2 parts sand, and 4 parts gravel. There is also pre-mix cement. Use a level to make sure the posts are straight. Posts should be centered in the hole. Crown posts footings so the water will drain away from the posts.
Step 3 - Locate and set Line Posts
After the concrete around the terminal posts have hardened, stretch a string tight between the terminal posts. The string should be 4" below the top of the terminal posts. Line posts should not be spaced more than 10 feet apart. For example, if the length between two terminal posts is 30 feet, then line posts would be spaced 10 feet apart (see chart below).
Line Post Spacing Chart
Dig the post holes and set the line posts. Before concrete begins to set, adjust post height by moving post up or down. Top of the line posts should be even with the string. Check with level to make sure posts are straight.
Step 4 - Apply Fittings to Terminal Posts
Step 5 - Apply Top Rail
Step 6 - Hang Chain Link Fabric
To connect two sections or rolls of fence fabric together - take a single strand of wire from one of the sections of fence (Sometimes it is necessary to remove a second wire on the one end in order for the two sections to mesh properly.). Place the two section of fence next to each other (end on end). Join the two sections by winding (corkscrew fashion) the loose strand down through the fence. Join and tighten the knuckles at bottom and top. Now you shouldn't even be able to see where the two sections were connection together.
To remove excess chain link fence fabric - untie both top and bottom ends of fence (knuckles - pliers shown below). Twist the wire in a corkscrew fashion until the fence comes apart. One picket shown in red is turned until the fence is separated.
Step 7 - Stretch Chain Link Fabric
Step 8 - Hanging Gates
Notes: Post depth can be determined by local weather and soil conditions, terminal posts are normally dug 10" wide and 18" to 30" deep. Depending on the wind and soil conditions you may want to use 8' centers or even a more narrow spacing for line posts. You may want to use longer line or terminal posts depending on the wind and soil conditions in your area. If you want to add privacy slats in the future, make sure the frame work will be strong enough for additional wind load.
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