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Why Cedar Fencing Is Still the Northwest Favorite

Why Cedar Fencing Is Still the Northwest Favorite

In addition to the typical concerns for would-be fence builders, home owners in the Pacific Northwest must consider the region’s wet climate. The area’s lush flora is supported by rains that can fall for more than half the year. Ideally, then, a fence would be attractive, low-maintenance, and durable enough to stand up to the Northwest’s mixture of rain, sleet, hail, and hot summer sun (sometimes, all in one day!).

Despite the fact that low-maintenance vinyl fencing is available in many styles, most Northwesterners continue to choose cedar for their fence materials. Here are some of the benefits that make cedar the #1 choice for fencing material in the Pacific Northwest.

Environmentally Sound

By purchasing cedar fence material, Northwesterners are choosing to support local value and efficiency. Buying local cedar also benefits the environment: Because cedar is a native tree species, transportation and energy costs are much lower compared to many other fence materials.

Local Tradition

Many desire a look and feel for their home that fits in with the local history. This is why Northwesterners often choose to build with cedar. Indigenous tribes in the Pacific Northwest highly valued cedar; one native name for the species translates to “Tree of Life”. It was used in nearly everything from clothing to construction to cooking. Homeowners that choose to build a cedar fence are honoring the area’s history with this material.

Considering that Pacific Northwest cedar is considered some of the finest in the world, it’s easy to understand why Northwest homeowners prefer to use it when building their fences. Four major species of cedar thrive in the Pacific Northwest: Alaskan Cedar, Port Orford Cedar, Incense Cedar, and the Western Red Cedar. As far as durability and affordability are concerned, many consider Western Red the best choice for cedar fence material. Pacific Northwest homes most often use Western Red for their cedar fences.

Resistance to Damp Weather

The Northwest’s propensity for wetness requires pickiness when it comes to choosing a cedar fence material. For this reason, cedar is a good choice for its unique weather resistance, especially its ability to withstand heavy rains.

Cedar fence materials are hygroscopic, meaning they take in or release moisture along with the surrounding atmosphere. This ability to “breathe” in moisture means cedar is less likely to warp in wet climates. Cedar also contains a natural insect repellant, and is therefore naturally protected against native insect infestations and fungal rot as well.

Workability

Although it’s 80% as strong as oak, cedar is considered a soft wood. That softness, combined with cedar’s uniform fine, straight grain makes it easier to work with. Cedar is also easy to stain and seal because it has very little pitch or resin; this creates a perfect surface for bonding with stains and sealants.

While there are many great low-maintenance fencing materials on the market, such as chain-link fencing and vinyl fencing, none can beat the popularity of cedar fence material. Cedar fences are durable, gorgeous, and a natural choice for the Northwest, with its lush native cedar trees.

Ambiance

Cedar has a rich, natural color that compliments the natural scenery. For this reason, it looks at home with many different landscaping schemes and home designs. Cedar also exudes a fresh, natural scent that many associate with the Northwest’s pristine wilderness.…

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Innotek IUC – 4100

Innotek IUC – 4100

The Innotek IUC-4100 is the most reliable dog fence system. The collar is a nice size, the collar batteries are rechargeable, and it has a feature that tells you when the collar is fitted properly.

The Ultrasmart Collar

The 4100 has a streamline collar that is nicely contoured to the dog’s neck. It is one of the smaller and lighter full sized collars. There are no controls at all on the collar, so it is nicely sealed, has great waterproofing and longevity. It would be comfortable with this on any dog over 12 pounds, under 12 pounds and you would be better off with the PetSafe Little Dog. The Innotek collar is rechargeable. You set it down on this charging cradle, the light starts flashing red and in 1-2 hours the light goes green to tell you it is fully charged. The charge lasts for about a month, before you need to stick it back on the charger. This feature is incredibly convenient and means you don’t need to keep buying special batteries from the manufacturer. Batteries have a good life span, we have seen collars still going strong after 5 years

The Innotek 4100 has a collar fit feature that tells you when the collar is on correctly. An improperly fitting collar is the most common reason for a dog to not respond to the dog fence, particularly on dogs with long or thick coats. – You put the collar on collar fit mode and then you fit it onto the dog. When you have proper contact with the dog’s skin the collar makes this beeping noise to tell you that you have it on right. The prongs unscrew, and the system comes with short prongs, long prongs and no-correction training prongs. This strap gets mixed reviews, most people would rather it was cloth and had a snap-type buckle like the PetSafe. Some people prefer these polymer collars because they are more durable and are easier to keep new looking.

Transmitter Box

Since there are no controls or buttons on the collar, all the controls reside here at the control box. This is both the strength and the biggest drawback for this system. Since you are adjusting all the settings here, you must have the same setting for all the dogs on the system. This is fine if all your dogs are a similar size. But if your dogs are quite different in size (more than 20-30%) this will not work well out of the box.

Inside the control box, there the following basic controls: – boundary width adjustment knob – this controls how close the dogs can get to the boundary wire – correction strength – you have three settings (high, medium, low or 1,2,3?) and the correction is progressive so the strength will increase the closer they get to the wire – field size – to adjust the system for installations up to 25 acres – battery backup – in the back of the control box, there is a spot for 8 AA batteries that give you a couple of days of power backup for the control box in case there is a power failure.

Accessories

You can use the Innotek 4100 with the indoor and outdoor pods. The indoor pod sends out a circular boundary 2-12 feet, that keeps the dogs away. So you can slip this under a sofa to stop couch surfing, or keep the dog out of a room or stop them going up stairs. The rock, is an outdoor pod, cleverly designed. This works either wirelessly to create a circular boundary, or you can run up to 100 feet of boundary wire off the Rock to keep the dogs away from a flower bed or out of the fish pond. When you use these, wait about a month after your dog has learned the outdoor fence system. That is more important, and we don’t want to confuse the dog or overwhelm them with too many new rules at the same time.

Conclusion

The Innotek 4100 is an outstanding all around system although it has a few limitations. As mentioned earlier, there are better choices for dogs under 12 lbs, or for dogs that are very different sizes. However, for most do-it-yourselfers, the collar fit feature, rechargeable collar and battery backup, indoor and outdoor pod compatibility, and proven reliability of the system makes this a great choice.…

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Choosing Fence Hardware

Choosing Fence Hardware

Your fence may be an important part of keeping your home or business secure. It is crucial that you can use your fence effectively. The right fence hardware can make your fence both secure and functional. Finding the right balance between functionality, security, and aesthetics is the biggest challenge in choosing the hardware that is right for your property.

Many people think of their fence as a security measure. If you hold this perspective, your hardware should be able to add to that security and not take away from the safety provided by your fence. By creating a perimeter around your property, you can limit the traffic in and out of your home or business. The locking system and hinge that you choose are crucial to the security of your fence. Solid, well constructed hardware can keep your fence strong and stalwart against intruders. Having a locking mechanism that is not easily opened can strengthen the security of your fence.

But fence hardware does not have to be all function and no form. These components can also add to the aesthetic of your space. Hinges and gate handles of different styles may compliment your home nicely. A well built fence can be a beautiful addition to any home. Accenting your fence with decorative hardware can further the beauty of your fence and your enjoyment of it.

These components can also be used with specific goals in mind. If you have young children and want to keep them safe from particular elements in your backyard, choosing hardware that extends above their reach may be a good decision.

Please visit the website of the Dallas fence hardware experts at Viking Fence for more information about the right fencing solution for your property.…

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Keeping Your Animals Safe – Automated Farm Gates

Keeping Your Animals Safe – Automated Farm Gates

Sturdy fences and gates are essential for securing livestock on a farm. Automatic gates are an important time saver for farmers as they can open and close the gate at the push of a button. Making the change from a regular farm gate to an automatic farm gate needn’t be a costly expedition. Any existing farm gate can be upgraded to an automatic gate. Simply purchase the desired gate installation kit from your local automatic gate company, install the kit and presto you have a set of modern automatic solar powered farm gates. The available DIY kits mean you won’t have to wait for an electrician to install it for you and you won’t have to pay installation fees, saving you both time and money.

Having a battery operated automatic gate that runs on solar energy is important in a rural area, as they can operate miles away from the nearest mains power. Solar panel technology has advanced greatly over the years and the latest mono crystalline panels ensure that solar panels get full power even during significant cloud cover.

Gates can be secured with a keypad lock and easy push button close system or they can be opened by a remote control transmitter through a mobile phone. The GSM remote control system is programmed via SMS text and can be used to open the gate, garage and any other electronic lock using a mobile phone. This means that farmers can open and close gates at the push of a button from the comfort of their vehicle or mode of transport.…

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The Electric Dog Fence – What Everyone Should Know About Electric Dog Fences

The Electric Dog Fence – What Everyone Should Know About Electric Dog Fences

You might be aware that there are several alternatives available including: electronic fences for dogs, invisible dog fencing and collars, or dog fence panels.

Electric Dog Fences

To start, you will be presented with a choice between a wireless or in-ground electric fence for your dog. We will cover the basics of the wireless option first.

Wireless Dog Fence

This is one we highly recommend simply because of the convenience provided in installing and getting setup quickly. You will be provided with a base system and a collar for your pet. The boundaries are basically set automatically based on the placement of the base unit.

The principle is quite simple. Whenever your dog gets too close, they will hear a beeping from the collar and may receive a slight shock

If they venture beyond the electronic boundary, they will receive a shock, so in a way, they will quickly train themselves. One big bonus of going with a wireless system is you will find it very convenient to take with you on your travels with your best friend.

One thing you must always keep in mind is the transmissions are limited, so if you have a large, or irregular area to cover, you will need another base so the electronic boundaries will overlap each other and provide proper safety for your pet. This situation can also be solved with the other option available.

Underground Electronic Fences for Dogs

Similar to the wireless systems, these will also use a collar programmed to emit a signal which will cause it to beep when your dog comes close to the underground wire. If they venture beyond it, they will receive a shock. Of course, this will require having the wiring put in place in basically any set up you desire.

Two of our most popular systems would include the Innotek or Petsafe brands.…

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You Can Build Your Own Electric Fencing

You Can Build Your Own Electric Fencing

Building your own electric fencing can be a simple task, only if you know what you are doing. It is crucial to appreciate that construction of this fencing can be filled with hazardous consequences, if the job is improperly done. An electric fence is not like an appliance that can be easily plugged in or switched on or off. Although the concept in operation is relatively simple, it requires some careful thought.

If you are considering electric fencing to protect your property, there may be some serious legal ramifications that should first be considered, as it may even be illegal in some regions. If your property is a farm, your fence may be designed to serve different purposes. You may wish to keep animals and livestock within the borders, or your may also wish to keep intruders out.

In addition to the design, the important considerations are the material used in construction of the fence. Smooth steel wire is most commonly used for electric fencing, because of the good conductivity and robustness offered with high-tensile wire. Woven or barbed wire may also be used judiciously, as it is more hazardous, and increases the potential for liabilities. Synthetic or composite materials that are composed of intricately woven, conducting materials are finding increased usage in the construction of fences, and may be suitable in areas where high visibility is desired.

The main concern in the construction and operation of this type of fencing is insulation. The fence must be securely insulated, and direct contact with other conductive materials must be avoided. Contact with vegetation, and direct attachment to wood or metal object should be avoided at all costs. Ideally posts that are buried into ground should be made of plastic, the fence or wire conductive material can then be connected to the posts with the use of porcelain or plastic insulators.

Other important considerations are the source of the electrical energy, and how it will be used. Most fence chargers are of low impedance, and the charge is stored and supplied by solid-state circuitry. These chargers provide controlled and consistent power output, and can be driven either by battery or by main AC power supply. Another alternative is to use solar power to generate electrical energy to charge your fence.

Electrical fences, consume relatively very little power, when they are properly maintained. A fully charged lead-acid battery may be capable of energizing a few hundred meters of this fencing for several weeks. You can also use dry cell batteries if a shorter period is desired. There are regulations that should be followed in the construction and installation of electric fences. Specifications can include the number of posts and the distances between them, and how and where the wires may be tied.

Undertaking the construction, and or installation of this fence can be challenging, and depending on the nature and scope of the job, it can turn into an expensive proposition, if is not handled properly. It is likely not an area where you should expect to gain expertise from practise.…

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Installing Your Own Vinyl Fence

Installing Your Own Vinyl Fence

When your budget prevents you from hiring a contractor or landscaper to put up your vinyl fence then you can rest assured that it’s not going to be a difficult thing for you to do.

Even if you don’t have experience with building fences (or building anything for that matter) you shouldn’t worry. It really is not difficult (as you will see) to erect your own vinyl fence.

What You Need

There are some basic tools that you’ll need to put the fence up:

-a level

-a measuring tape

-a shovel or post hole digger

-concrete

-concrete mixer

The first thing you need is to figure out exactly where you want your fence to be. Then once you have the exact location you should measure out where you are going to put the fence posts.

Now it is time to dig the post holes. Using your post hole digger or shovel dig holes deep enough to accommodate the posts. Make sure that the holes are the same width apart. Also make sure that the holes are all the same depth (if not then your fence posts are not going to be even and it won’t sit right).

Once you have the holes measured and dug then it’s time to mix the concrete. Follow the directions on the bag of concrete to the letter. Once you’re sure that where you have your fence set is exactly where you want it then it’s time to pour the concrete.

Let the concrete set overnight and then you’re done!…

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Choosing an Energizer for Your Electric Fence

Choosing an Energizer for Your Electric Fence

Comparing Energizers

We hate to keep mentioning the local farm stores in a bad way, (and if you have a good one, by all means patronize them) but most of the farm store counter guys you talk to will probably not know the difference between a hog jowl and a fence joule. Before you buy, you should probably understand something about a joule. A joule is a hard thing to understand, but basically it is an electronic measurement of 1 watt for 1 second. That probably tells you nothing – we don’t know either. But, you need joules to push the pulse down the fence wire. The more joules, the more power. The shape or length of pulse time also has a bearing and a high powered, low impedance, short pulse will travel through much more resistance (vegetation & fence load). Anyway, the point here: some energizer packaging will state the amount of wire or acreage their unit will power. Don’t believe it! Others will only state the output joules or only the stored joules. Make sure you are comparing apples to apples and not one’s stored joules against another’s output. At the very least, drop their claim in half. We feel that the best way to size an energizer is to find out the output joules and figure that 1 joule will power between 3 to 5 miles of wire. If they can’t give you the output joule rating, then don’t buy it.

Choosing an Energizer

New Zealanders have said that we Americans usually overbuild the fence, then under power it! That’s probably true. The worst thing you can do if you are just beginning with electric fencing is to build a beautiful fence then not have enough power on it. Normally, in round numbers, we would say that 3500 volts will keep cattle in or 6000 volts will keep goats in. However, you have to compensate for the May-June fence load and the August drought. When vegetation and wet lush grass invade your fence wire, you need enough power to compensate and keep it browned down. If you have a system that puts out 9,000 volts and it drops down to 6000 in June, you are in good shape. However, if you drop from 5000 to 2000, you have a problem.

We look at the output joule rating on an energizer and estimate that 1 output joule will power about 3 to 5 miles of wire. For example, if you have 15 miles of fence (15 divided by 3 = 5), you will need an energizer with a minimum of 5 output joules. If you will be expecting heavy vegetation loads or plan to add more fence later, we would suggest that you buy in the 8-12 output joule range. Surplus Power is comforting. Just make sure when you are shopping that you compare apples to apples and not output joules to stored joules. We have high confidence in the New Zealand brands of energizers. They are proven to be good performers and usually last a long time.…