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The Fence Post

Alligator Easily Scales Fence

September 5, 2019 | by Joe Morrell

Chain-link Fail

When thinking about alligators in the U.S. one imagines first and foremost Florida, then perhaps Georgia and Louisiana. However, their presence goes much further than that--add Alabama, Mississippi, South and North Carolina, the eastern part of Texas, southeastern Oklahoma, and the bottom tip of Arkansas. 

Here is a stunner. There is a plethora of safety guidelines available online for avoiding these threats to life and limb.

 

The estimated number of alligators in just Florida is 1.25 million. By the late 80s, the American alligator was considered endangered. It has quickly recovered its population since being protected. As humans encroach upon the habitat of alligators, the incidences of interacting with these significant reptiles have increased dramatically. 

In any case, the alligator safety basics are:

  • Do not attempt to deal with alligator yourself
  • Call your local animal control or 911
  • Do not approach an alligator
  • Do not feed an alligator
  • Avoid sudden movements                                                                                                                                                                        
    gray alligator at daytime
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Topics: wire mesh, fencing materials, woven wire, welded wire

The 4 Main Types of Wire Mesh Fencing Materials

April 21, 2017 | by Debbie Page

dog behind fence

We love it when a plan comes together


When researching the type of wire fence you want to purchase, there are many things you want to consider before making a decision. Have you thought about the following?

  • Aesthetic considerations - how important is appearance?                                                                                                                                                                      
  • Function is a significant factor - what do you want to keep in or out?                                                                                                                                    
  • Cost is important - should you buy the least expensive product or invest in fencing material that will last a long time and save on the future expenses and labor of early replacement?                                                                                                                                                                                          
  • Country of origin may be something you want to take into account - is there any connection between the quality of a fence and where it is made?                                                                                                                                                                                                             
  • The topography of the site should be considered - are there irregularities on the ground's surface where the fence will be located?                                                                                                                                                                                                        
  • Manufacturing method is important - is a welded product a better choice than a woven fence mesh?                                                                          

Finishes

When making a decision about which wire fencing material to use, one of the most important aspects to take into account is the type of "finish" the wire has. There are four basic types:

  1. GBW - Galvanized Before Weld and Galvanized Before Weave                                                                                                                                                
  2. GAW - Galvanized After Weld and Galvanized After Weave                                                                                                                                                      
  3. VC - Vinyl Coated welded and woven                                                                                                                                                                                   
  4. SS - Stainless Steel and other alloys.
A professional fence installer in your area can help you make an informed decision. Now, for some explanation.

GBW

Galvanized before wire fences can be either welded or woven. Galvanized wire is used to manufacture the mesh.

Welded products - the zinc coating is burnt off during the welding process. The welded points where the horizontal and vertical wires intersect are left unprotected and exposed to rust and corrosion. In wet weather, moisture tends to collect at the joint, hastening the process. While it is true that zinc can "flow" from the areas adjacent to the burnt intersection, the weld spot never regains its full protection. These are the types you see in your local building supply store and garden center. Differences in gauge, mesh opening size and height are considerable. You can find a product that will meet your needs. It is important to keep in mind the fact that these items have a limited lifetime. Welded GBW fencing materials are relatively inexpensive and utilitarian.

Woven products - these do not have any welded areas and therefore do not have the same vulnerability. These range from lightweight hex netting up to field fence and heavy gauge woven high tensile deer and wildlife fence. The heavier fences have an extended lifetime, especially those with Class 3 galvanizing.

GAW

Galvanized after fencing materials are galvanized after the welding or weaving process. The mesh is drawn through a bath of molten zinc which thoroughly seals the wire, including the welded and woven areas. These products are heavily protected from rust and corrosion and have an extended lifetime that far exceeds the lifetime of the same products with GBW finish. You can tell if a product is galvanized after by looking at the welded and woven areas. You can actually see how the zinc seals the areas. GAW items are initially more expensive. However, when you consider the extra material and labor cost of replacement, the higher initial cost of GAW meshes are easily justified.

Galv After mesh fence on paving stones

GAW fencing is more specialized and therefore are not as easy to find at retail stores. The welded meshes are often used in making animal cages. They are ideal to use in areas where there is constant moisture or exposure to corrosion. There is an even wider range of choices in wire gauge, mesh size and widths due to the more specialized end uses of these items. The GAW hex netting meshes are often used in saltwater applications and in building game bird pens - areas where long life is sought and appreciated.

VC

Vinyl coated fencing materials are coated with either polyester or PVC after the welding or weaving process. The most common colors are black and green. The black color is the most unobtrusive. It blends with the background, becoming virtually invisible. As with GAW products, the vinyl coating thoroughly coats the entire mesh, sealing it against rust and corrosion. The additional cost is offset by longer life expectancy and more attractive appearance. Many different specifications are widely available in retail stores. The vinyl makes them aesthetically pleasing.

Vinyl Coated Wire Mesh

As with any products, there are different quality grades available. The least expensive products do not bond the vinyl securely to the wire. The vinyl is easily cut and can then be peeled off the wire with your fingers. The higher quality grades have a vinyl coating that is tightly bonded to the wire and resists scraping, even with a knife. And there are products available that have the double protection of GAW wire under the coating. These offer the longest lasting meshes available. As always, higher quality means higher cost. You get what you pay for. Higher initial cost can save you money over the life of the mesh.

In addition to the regular generic retail items, there is a wide range of gauge and mesh opening size specialty items not available in stores. There are welded meshes used in lobster traps, safety mesh in railings, animal cages and other unique applications. Woven hex meshes are used in such things as bird pens and deer fence.

SS and other alloys

Stainless steel fencing materials are perhaps the most specialized type available. They have the advantage of being resistant to rust, corrosion, and other environmental stressors. Stainless steel welded wire meshes have often been used as fences in coastal areas. They are quite expensive and can be difficult to impossible to obtain at retail stores. Their appearance is more utilitarian than attractive. These items have an extended lifetime. Other alloys such as copper are also available in a variety of gauges, mesh sizes, and weaving styles.

stainless steel mesh

 

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Topics: fencing materials, vinyl coated wire, galvanized after, GAW

Louis E. Page, Inc. - The Story of an American Company

March 7, 2014 | by Rick Hoffman

Louis E. Page

Louis E. Page

An Enterprise is Formed

The story of America is the story of millions of people who had the dream of starting their own businesses that they could pass on to their children and future generations to come. It is the story of courage, tenacity, determination and hard work. It is the story of successfully adapting to ever-changing markets, customer needs, and economic conditions. It is the story of Louis E. Page, Inc.

Louis E. Page, Inc., like millions of other small companies, may not be a household name. But it embodies the spirit of the American entrepreneur. Founded in 1893 by Louis Eugene Page, the company originally sold hay to feed the horses pulling the horse-drawn wagons. Business was good, and by 1910, Louis and two of his brothers were making their living from the hay business. Then came a major market change as gasoline-powered vehicles began to displace horse-drawn wagons. The company had to adapt to survive. 

Hay, Peat, and Adapting

As an established hay dealer, Louis E. Page, Inc. turned to its many farm and feed supply store customers. At this time, there was a growing demand for litter and bedding materials for both the dairy and horse trade. To fill the need, the company acquired exclusive rights to distribute Planter Peanut shells in New England. However, peanut shells were soon supplanted by a better product – sugarcane bagasse. Louis responds by becoming the exclusive distributor in New England for the only US sugar company producing business. This product also proved to be excellent horticulture mulch and some of the large New England nurseries bought it by the rail carload.

Louis E. Page, Inc. advertisement

In the thirties, Page added peat moss – both coarse grind designed for horse bedding and finer grind for horticultural purposes. Europe was the only source of supply at this time and Page made several trips to Europe to secure sources. 

Business was booming! And then, more changes. By the fifties, independent truckers began hauling hay and peat moss directly from the producers to the farms, thus eliminating the need for the middleman. Louis E. Page, Inc. would have to adapt again to survive.

Moving On to Wire Mesh and Fencing

At this time, feed and farm stores were still the most important segment of the company’s customer base. New products were needed to enable the company to continue to grow and prosper to meet the changing market needs. The first new products added were Belgian barbed wire and Mexican baler twine. Selling these new products required warehousing and the company responded by opening a warehouse and greatly expanding its product offering.  Customer response encouraged the addition of new products, establishing Louis E. Page, Inc. as the leading New England distributor of wire mesh, fencing, and related products. They sold a large variety of products from Belgian, Dutch, German, Austrian and the leading US mills. Business was booming!

And Customer Service for a New Generation

Then, dynamic changes in the market happened again with the advent of power, “big-box” retailers like Home Depot, Lowes, and Tractor Supply in the eighties and nineties. Many of the company’s oldest customers were left in the wake of these powerful companies and were forced to close their doors. Louis E. Page, Inc. was again forced to adapt and change to survive. Relying upon their years of experience and varied customer base, they focused on value-added selling by combining its hundred years of experience with the highest quality products available and outstanding customer service. Louis Page also became the go-to company for specialty and other hard-to-find products not offered by other distributors or retailers. They were also one of the first in the industry to see the potential of the internet, launching its website in 1999. Talk about a long way from selling hay for horse-drawn wagons!

Changing Times

Today, business is again booming! The company is still family owned and operated. Our dear Duncan passed away in 2015; he was the third generation to manage the company and had 42 years with the company and now his wife Debbie, who many of you have been working with for years, has taken the helm, endeavoring to bring Louis Page Inc. forward in serving the customer's interests by delivering the best of American goods with their solid construction, as well as an array of the finest international products available. And now, another milestone: Louis Page is a 100% woman-owned business and boasts a large and diverse customer base which includes all 50 states and several foreign countries. This customer base includes fence companies, contractors, government entities, construction companies, manufacturers, landscapers, nurseries, energy producers, architects, wildlife management companies, pest control companies, zoos, beagle trainers, duck farms, farms, ranches,  orchards,  homeowners, and yes, farm and feed stores, and many more. The company distributes and sells the industry’s leading brands of wire and plastic fence, mesh and netting and other related products made in the US, Belgium, Italy, Canada, China, Mexico, and other countries. 

Louis E. Page, Inc. is a perfect example of a company that has had to constantly reinvent itself to survive and prosper. From its humble beginnings of selling hay to horses to selling wire products for the most demanding applications for small fence installers to Fortune 500 companies, Page continues to evolve, adapt and grow.  We believe that “old” Louis would be proud!

Happy 125th Anniversary!!!

Rick signature  Rick VP sales Louis E. Page, Inc.Get your free catalog now!

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Topics: fencing materials, Louis E. Page Inc.

What? You need a fence? Didn't the World End on December 21st, 2012?

December 20, 2012 | by Duncan Page

Mayan temple after world ends 12.21.12

 Apocalypse, When?

According to Wikipedia, the Mayan calendar predicted that cataclysmic or transformative events were to occur on December 21, 2012. This date was regarded as the end-date of a 5,125-year-long cycle in the Mesoamerican Long Count calendar. Various astronomical alignments and numerological formulae have been proposed as pertaining to this date, though none has been accepted by mainstream scholarship.

A New Age interpretation of this transition is that the date marked the start of time in which Earth and its inhabitants may undergo a positive physical or spiritual transformation. December 21st was to mark the beginning of a new era. Others suggest that the date marked the end of the world or a similar catastrophe.

Some scenarios suggested for the end of the world:

  • the arrival of the next solar maximum
  • an interaction between Earth and the black hole at the center of the galaxy
  • Earth's collision with a planet called Nibiru.

Hold it!

Since you're reading this blog you have obviously disregarded the dire warnings and predictions about the world's demise and continue making plans for the days, weeks, months and years to come. And you have survived whatever may have happened on December 21st, realizing yet again that another predicted catastrophic ending of the world never materialized.

Elvis Presley Dancing

In either case, you are free to think about what type of fencing materials you will need.

First, what is the purpose of your fence?

  • define your property or boundary line?
  • keep deer and other wildlife away from your trees?
  • keep pets from running all over the neighborhood?
  • protect children as they play securely in your yard?
  • prevent gophers from destroying your lawn and plantings?
  • prevent "critters" from entering your garden to eat your plants?
  • protect your home and property from nuisance wildlife damage?

What are your particular needs for this fence?

  • what height is required?
  • do you need a large or a smaller mesh?
  • is your land flat or does the terrain vary?
  • are you trying to keep something in or out?
  • how many feet will you need to do the job right?
  • do you want to install the fencing materials yourself?
  • would it be better to have it installed by a reputable fence company?

Make sure you are looking for the right kind of fencing to do the job correctly. Many varieties and styles of fence are available for your consideration and needs.

Finish - galvanized before, galvanized after, vinyl coated, stainless steel

Construction - woven, welded mesh

Mesh sizes - fencing materials are available in a variety of mesh opening sizes. Welded: 3" x 3", 2" x 4", 2" x 3", 2" x 2" 1.5" x 4",

1" x 2 " and 1" x 1"; Woven: 1/2", 1", 1-1/2" hex, 2" x 2", 2" x 4" and varying openings of field fence

Wire gauges - from light weight 20 gauge up to heavy weight 10.5 gauge

What has been most difficult for you when trying to decide which type of fencing material to use? Has it gotten any easier since the date of the earth's "transformation" has passed?  Are you aware that there are many types of fence available that you will never find at your local retail store?
                                                                                                                                                        

Feel free to check out our helpful Fence and Mesh Guide to help you decide.

The guide

Duncan Page signature

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Topics: fencing materials, vinyl coated wire, stainless steel, galvanized after, wire gauges

What Does Wire Fence Quality Mean to You?

December 4, 2012 | by Don Hillis

poor quality fence rusted broken 

A Lesson Learned

I had a project installing a few hundred feet of fencing and only had four days before the weather got worse. I’d done my homework and purchased quality fencing for the install. Suddenly on the last day, the rain fell in buckets. I needed to work in the rain so I went to the home improvement store and bought a rain suit that cost less than the “Made in America” brand. Happy with my purchase, I rushed home to finish my project. After changing I walked outside in my suit, bent over to retrieve a post and the bottoms came undone, literally. The seams gave way and I was exposed to the elements until I finished the remaining fence line. I learned that cheap is not always a good thing and quality has worth. Lesson learned. True story.

Varying Quality

The definition of quality is the general standard or grade of something. Excellence, class, value, and worth also refer to quality. What does quality mean to you? Quality means fulfilling the requirements and expectations one has at all times. Quality standards are set to meet minimum legal requirements. However, an individual’s requirements are usually higher than legal ones set by authorities. There is a variance in quality or the perceived quality of materials such as wire and cable.

Making the Grade

UL (Underwriters Laboratory) is a company that evaluates wire and cable products under more than 70 different product categories, using more than 30 Standards for Safety. Their Verification programs cover safety, performance, quality assurance, unannounced factory follow-up inspection and follow-up testing at UL. Their program helps consumers, distributors, and manufacturers identify wire and cabling products that meet nationally recognized safety requirements as well as industry specifications for performance and quality. Users rely on the safety of products that carry the UL Mark. 

What are the standards that I require?

Wire mesh made in China is less expensive than mesh manufactured in the United States. This can be due to fewer restrictions, regulations, and government oversight that are a reality in the U.S. However Chinese products are not necessarily inferior but are produced under different standards. Wire mesh made in China is usually less expensive and is suitable for applications where an elevated standard of quality is not essential.

The question to ask yourself before purchasing wire mesh is “What requirements do I need to be fulfilled and what are my expectations of the product?" This is a good starting point. Next, educate yourself about wire gauges because this is necessary to select the right thickness of wire. Is the thickness of wire measured by the actual gauge of the wire or including the coating as well?

Remember that all wire mesh is not the same and there are different standards of quality.

Lesson learned.

Which is more important to you - quality or price?

Bird Perched on T post

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Topics: fencing materials, woven wire, welded wire fence, wire gauges

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