Friday 17 October 2014

Busy in the Orchard today

I spent most of the day in the orchard driving fence posts into the ground. I had to dig holes a metre deep for the larger posts and used a 20 kilogram post driver for the other wooden posts.  I covered 120 metres run of fencing. This will be used for the electric fence. By the end of the day the post driver was feeling very heavy. The next step is to cut back the under growth with a brush cutter before I install the insulators on the posts. I'm creating a six strand fence.

Update Sunday 20th
Yesterday I had a couple of hour's hard work to cut a swathe through the weeds and blackthorn saplings. These had sprung up on the neighbours field side of the hedge following last winter's hedging work. There's now a 120 by 2 metre strip free of weeds along the route of the electric fence. 

Today I installed the insulators on the fence posts and both the top and bottom strands of the fence. The bottom strand is high tensile galvanised steel wire it will not be electrified, but will be grounded to earth, The top strand is white polypropylene electric fence rope of approximately 7 mm diameter. It will be electrified to 8000 volts. I've chosen this to make the fence obvious to anyone passing close by to the fence. Once the Gripple fence tool arrives I'll install the other strands of the fence using 2 mm alloy wire. This wire is specially designed for the job with a very low electrical resistance to reduce voltage drop along the length of the fence. However the thin grey wire is difficult to see in poor light conditions,  hence the obvious white top strand.

I've spent a while this evening practising the knots used for fencing wire attachment of the insulators mounted on the end posts. Along the length of the fence the gap between the wooden posts is about 12 metres. I'll be placing lightweight plastic step-in posts between the wooden posts to act as wire spreaders. These will discourage sheep etc from pushing through the fence strands.

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