Building an electric fence is an essential skill that will help keep farm animals and livestock contained within a certain temporary parameter without the cost and labour of installing a permanent fence.
- Skill level:
- Moderately Challenging
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Things you need
- Roll of high-tensile wire
- Fence stretcher
- Steel hot wire rods
- Screw-on plastic insulators
- Glass doughnut insulator
- 12-volt battery
- High-voltage, low-impedance, short-pulse
- fence charger (AC plug-in type preferred, but battery operated and solar models are fine)
Unrolling Wire Around the Parameter First you must decide what area you want fenced in. Tie the end of the 10- to 14-gauge high-tensile wire to a corner-post glass doughnut insulator. (You must have solid wooden corner posts to construct an electric fence.) Do one side at a time.
Stretching the Fence Once you have unrolled the wire on one side, cut the wire a bit longer than the distance of the side you have just unrolled. Use the fence stretcher to grab the end of the wire and hook the stretcher around the corner post and begin to ratchet the stretcher and tighten the wire. Once it becomes hard to ratchet the fence stretcher, stop.
Corner Post Connection With the glass doughnut insulator, put a spare piece of wire through the hole and tie it loosely to the corner post. Then with the tightened piece of wire in the fence stretcher, wrap it tightly around the doughnut and make sure it only touches the glass insulated part. Remove the fence stretcher.
Hot Wire Rods Now that you have the wire connected and tightened, you need to get it off the ground. To do this, screw plastic insulators onto the 3- to 4-foot-long steel rods, attach them to the wire, and then proceed to hammer the rod into the ground about 6 inches and adjust the wire height in accordance to the animals you are containing. You can make a judgment on how far apart the rods should be depending on how low the wire is sagging---a good rule of thumb is usually 50 feet.
Installing the Voltage At the corner of the enclosed area that is either closest to a power outlet or is the easiest to access, install the fence charger. There are AC plug-in, battery and solar-power-operated types of fence chargers. Each has its benefits and operates equally well with proper maintenance. Make sure to attach the fence-charger ground wire to an extra rod that you will pound into the ground.