How to Build a Steel Post Driver

Written by wade shaddy
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Steel post drivers are used to build fences. They consist of a steel pipe that is sealed and weighted at one end. The pipe fits over the wooden post. You lift and slam the pipe down on top of the post, driving it into the ground. They are simple to make with a few pieces of pipe that you can find at a plumbing shop or salvage yard.

Skill level:
Moderately Easy

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Things you need

  • Steel pipe, 3 1/2-by-36 inches
  • Steel plug, 3-by-6 inches
  • Arc welder
  • Hand grinder

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  1. 1

    Clamp the pipe horizontally to a worktable with the plug extending out the end about 1/2 inch.

  2. 2

    Turn on the welder and run a small bead along the edge of the plug, just enough to secure it to the pipe.

  3. 3

    Stand the pipe up vertically. Begin welding around the perimeter of the plug. Go around several times until the weld bead has built up. Continue welding around the top of the plug, blending the molten metal until the top of the pipe is smooth with no rough edges.

  4. 4

    Chip away any of the slag with a small hammer. Slag is the built-up crispy residue from cooling metal.

  5. 5

    Grind the top of the weld smooth with a hand grinder. Grind the outside perimeter of the pipe round and smooth like the end of a bullet.

Tips and warnings

  • If you can't find a steel plug, get any piece of heavy metal that will fit inside the pipe. Have the salvage yard cut it with their hydraulic shear, or cut it yourself with a hacksaw.
  • Paint the pipe with spray-on enamel paint.
  • Don't use galvanised pipe. It gives off toxic fumes when welded.
  • Don't weld handles on your post driver. They only get in the way and are dangerous.

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