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The Fence Post

What about Zinc Coating?

March 26, 2019 | by Joe Morrell

  rust covered artistic reliefRusty Padlock on Metal Gate net
The Enemy: Rust


Oxygen and moisture working on iron and its common alloy, steel, result in rust. When thinking in terms of the wire used for fencing, sometimes being number one is not always tops. A Class 1 coating for your mesh or fence is anything but top rate. Now think again about that coating. It can mean: this looks fine or it'll do. In the long run (or short run), it will not stand up to the ravages of

  • air
  • moisture
  • abrasion

However, a coating of zinc reacts differently to these factors. As it corrodes. It forms a barrier or patina, running interference between it and the steel or iron that it is sheltering.

The Classes of Zinc Coating 

Class 1--lightest coating of zinc; widely available and lasts 2 to 11 years in non-coastal climates. (.28% zinc per sq. foot)

  • protection drastically reduced in humid climates. (For the record, there is no Class 2.)

Class 3--heaviest coating of zinc; lasts 13-30 years, often must be special ordered (.80% zinc per sq. foot)

  • however, in humid conditions, the coating may last at least 15 years with wider wire gauges lasting longer.

Zinc galvanization--a coating for mesh and fencing that lasts

After wires are either welded or woven into a mesh, the entire finished product is drawn through a bath of molten zinc (830°F.) This galvanization-after-weave or weld method (GAW) creates mesh that emerges with a thick coating tightly bonded to the wire. Each strand of wire is protected and more importantly, each vulnerable welded or woven area is thoroughly sealed. In some circles, this is known as "galvanic healing!" Officially, this is termed, cathode-anode protection.

Jaguar Emblem

More zinc = more protection. Delaying the time until rust sets in. So the more zinc per square foot, the longer it is until it rusts.

What is Friability

If something is friable, it is subject to the rubbing process that works on the surface of unprotected iron or steel, which offers no natural corrosion resistant patina. Friability describes the flaking and breaking apart of a solid substance.

So what are the benefits of a Class 3 zinc coating?

  • Lowest cost over the long run
  • damage resistance--the zinc patina guards the metal underneath
  • cheaper than stainless steel
  • consistent results
  • longest life

What does the ASTM standard mean?

Seeing this on a product, such as for zinc coatings, shows that a company is adhering to a certain set of criteria for the quality of a product. These are internationally accepted guidelines, based on research, for the specifications of materials, products, and services as approved by a  governing board. (ASTM International was once known as the American Society for Testing and Materials.) Buyer beware: a company's adherence to these standards is voluntary.   

Other factors for deterioration:

   airborne sand and dust                          chemicals                                    salt                                air pollution 

Wrecked Ship

Some zinc facts:

Zinc is the 27th most abundant element in the earth's crust. 70% is mined, 30% recycled. More than 50% of this is used to coat steel and keep it from disintegrating.

Zinc is found in rocks, soil, air, water, the biosphere as well as in humans, plants, and animals. (If you're an oyster lover, you're in luck: zinc is plentiful in oysters and it is essential for optimum health.)

Biology: organisms must have zinc to exist. For example, in the human body, zinc is important for cell division and is responsible for the function of red and white blood cells.

And finally, a short video:

Here's an example of zinc galvanizing in action:

 

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Topics: woven wire, welded wire, vinyl coated wire, galvanized after, galvanized, galv after

Cat-Proof Fence--Five Miles of it

July 25, 2018 | by Joe Morrell

 

cat stalking in brush 

Rescuing the Endangered Hawaiian Petrel: a three year project 

In the lava crevices on the slopes of Moana Loa, the Hawaiian petrel nests. Now a bit less nervously as a 5-mile hexagonal mesh fence protects these endangered birds from feral cats, who stalk and feast on the birds' vulnerable chicks. The curved floppy top of the fence prevents the cats from successfully scaling it. Take a look at this video which explains the massive undertaking of installing this cat-proof wire mesh fence in a remote location as well as showing the nesting habits of the 'ua'u (or Hawaiian petrel.) 

 

 

There used to be thousands of petrels and it is said that their presence would blacken the skies at particular times of the year. The population has dwindled due to increased settlements and people bringing in cats, rats, feral pigs, and barn owls. The struggle goes on as lights are very disorienting to the young birds, causing groundings, which leave them vulnerable to predators. The 'ua'u is also preyed upon by Indian mongooses and feral dogs which this fence also restrains. Two years on, there are reports that this hexagonal mesh fence is proving successful as there is an upturn in the number of nesting sites in the area.   

Tell us about the job and Louis Page will supply the type of fence you need.

Browse Products Now

 

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Topics: black vinyl coated, vinyl coated, 1.5x1.5, galv after, 12.5 gauge, 1" mesh, exclusion fence

Restraining Lava Loiterers

July 12, 2018 | by Joe Morrell

lava flow in barren rock

Protecting people from lava flows and from themselves.

There are some fencing products on their way to Hawaii. It seems some physical barriers are required to offset the lava-play aficionados and looky-loos that are putting themselves at peril. For us at home, observing the mesmerizing lava flows from your screen of choice is a popular pastime, quite understandably. However, far from these screens is the tough job of predicting the actions of people who are curious or foolhardy enough to want to get close to the volcanic activity. Louis Page has been called in to assist with the fence and mesh needed to curb these adventurous and possibly harebrained scofflaws. Remember that vinyl coated high tensile wire is the fence of choice for longevity and strength.  

Over-reacting? Nope. 

The dangers are numerous:

  • Those fascinating sea water explosions of boiling water and steam require onlookers to be at least a 1/4 of a mile away for safety. That steam is not just water vapor! 
  • Methane gas is created when vegetation is inundated without oxygen, exploding up to 100 yards ahead of the lava flow.
  • The flows emit fumes that contain glass particles, sulfuric acid, and hydrochloric acid--no walking or standing in these toxic clouds.
  • And some folks are enticed onto the new land created by the lava hitting the ocean--called benches--which are very unstable and prone to collapse.

Tourists and Hawaiian residents, observing bursts of gas and flame from the streams of lava, are being arrested for walking on hardened igneous rock and trespassing citations are handed out as people avoid barricades to take pictures, being caught going through areas with toxic gases.

The Phenomenon of Pele's Hair

And if the above list wasn't enough, there are the fine flaxen tresses of Pele. Named for the Hawaiian goddess of volcanoes, droplets of cooling lava are stretched up to six feet in the wind and should not be touched as it is actually volcanic fiberglass that can be very sharp and penetrate the skin. Here is a quick video to illustrate this phenomenon:

Fines

Entering certain zones bring a $5000 penalty and a year in jail. These reflect fines and punishments increased recently by the Department of Land and Natural Resources.  

Is there a type of fence that you need to manage or direct pedestrians? Louis Page can assist you in finding just the right fence for your site.

Safety Fence

 

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Topics: wire fence, high tensile wire, vinyl coated wire, vinyl coated, galv after

The Cultivated Oyster

May 7, 2018 | by Joe Morrell

oysters on the half shell

Oyster Farmers: Man your Cages

Painstaking methods and ongoing research are required in the process of bringing this coastal crop to our tables. Oysters are luxuriant in the minerals they contain while offering us bountiful nutrition and culinary joy. Unfortunately, oysters have been under attack in the past few hundred years and the current restoration of oyster reefs all along America's coastline is providing some protection for the humble mollusk, which in turn will protect us.

Oysters: Nutritive Value

A single medium-sized raw oyster contains roughly 5 grams of high quality and complete protein, as well as these life-saving and life-enhancing vitamins and nutrients:

Zinc--the humble oyster is brimming with the stuff. Zinc is important for cell division and is responsible for the function of red and white blood cells in our bodies. It is indispensable for physical performance, energy levels, body composition and maintaining ideal hormone levels. Zinc is also an antioxidant--busy stabilizing stress levels and fighting aging. Low levels of zinc are known to cause reduced libido and infertility.

Potassium--occurs in high levels in oysters: it helps lower blood pressure, relax blood vessels, and provide good cholesterol.

Vitamin D--essential for absorbing calcium and promoting bone growth. Low vitamin D is associated with breast, colon and prostate cancers, heart disease, depression, and weight gain.

Vitamin E--aids in making cellular membranes strong and flexible.

Vitamin B12--oysters are an excellent source. B12 regulates metabolism and formation of red blood cells while maintaining the central nervous system, brain health, and development.

Iron--the main component of hemoglobin, which is a protein that carries oxygen in the blood. Iron is crucial to red blood cell production and therefore to vitality. In its fight against anemia, iron stimulates the nervous system, supporting muscles and energy levels, cognitive function, and stomach health.

Copper--regulates iron, ensures appropriate enzymatic reactions, enhances the health of connective tissues, hair, and eyes. It regulates heart rhythm, balances thyroid levels, enhances red blood cell production, and reduces cholesterol. Amino acids and vitamins are metabolized by copper. The body does not manufacture it and therefore must be added through diet. Consult an oyster.

Manganese--a powerful antioxidant. Creates essential enzymes for building bone, maintaining bone structure, and bone metabolism. Assists in the formation of connective tissues and absorption of calcium while regulating sex hormones, healthy blood sugar levels, and the metabolism of carbohydrates and fats.

Selenium--an antioxidant, a catalyst for active thyroid hormone production, necessary for sperm motility, may prevent miscarriage and is thought to be a mood stabilizer. Healthy levels are linked to reduced cancer and heart disease risk.

Yet as always, consume oysters in moderation as they are so vitamin rich, they can result in mineral overdose, and always buy them from reputable sources. Consume oysters as a preventative and not as a medical treatment, especially in the case of established heart disease. And the martini you might add to the mix? Well...life has its trade-offs. 

oysterfloats

Means of Cultivation

One of the most common methods of cultivation is cage-raised oysters. Many of our favorites, indeed a majority, are bred this way. Fortunately, shell-fish farms are high on the list of sustainable methods of farming--pleasing environmentalists and purveyors. Some methods of cultivation are rack and bag, tray, floating and buoy suspension. 

Cage-raised Oysters cultivated above the bottom of a bay are:

  • kept cleaner
  • protected from predators
  • thinner-shelled oysters
  • resulting in better yields
  • sometimes mixed in their cultivation--cage-raised above, then transferred to the bottom of the bay toward the end of their development--creating stronger shells   

Oysters raised on the bottom of the ocean floor are:

  • similar to how oysters grow in the wild
  • stronger shelled
  • vulnerable to mother nature
    • oysters may suffocate under the bottom of the bay
    • suffer attack by predators, such as the oyster drill or the New England dog whelk, commonly found in intertidal areas of Rhode Island
    • frozen in ice and taken out to sea

Methods used to raise oysters on the bottom of the ocean are many and may depend on geography--beach versus bay, local regulations, predators, and weather. Louis Page will stock your enterprise with a variety of necessities, be it 12.5 gauge galvanized after, 14 or 16 gauge vinyl coated wire mesh in 3/4" x 3/4', 1" x 1", 1.5" x 1.5" openings or hardware cloth which comes in 1/2" x 1/2" and 1/4" x 1/4". The wire mesh heights typically used by the oyster industry range from 12" to 48".

Learn from a farmer in action:

 

An oyster cleans and maintains its environment.

One adult oyster filters 30 to 50 gallons of water every day. Pollutants such as nitrogen, phosphorus, and carbon dioxide are filtered from coastal waters by oysters, rendering them clearer and cleaner. The presence of oysters helps to control algae as they build up ecosystems by attracting various types of sea life. A keystone species is central to keeping an ecosystem functioning and as such, oysters are relied upon by other species in maintaining biodiversity along coastlines and in estuaries.

The Humble Mollusk That Fed New York

350 square miles of Oyster Reefs. In the 1600s, that was the approximate number of oyster reefs occupying the waters around the city of New York. Oysters were plentiful and by the 1800s oyster carts were the hot dog stands of the day. At the time, half of the world's oyster population was found in that area. 85% of oyster reefs have disappeared around the world in the last 100 years, due to higher ocean acidity, over-harvesting, and disease. By the early 1900s, the oysters were gone, eaten. Wouldn't you know it, these reefs control erosion and act as buffers from high waves during storms; hence, major cities are protected by them. Oyster reefs act in a sponge-like way, drawing the energy out of passing waves and are actually more effective and inexpensive than steel walls and wooden bulkheads, which increase sand erosion ahead of these artificial structures.

Military and environmental groups are working together to plant miles of oyster reefs along the coastline of New Jersey, which has suffered much storm damage in recent years. Other reefs are being built along the East Coast as far south as Florida. Amazingly, every coastal state in the U.S. is using oyster reefs for the buffering of storms and/or water amelioration. As they struggle to survive, it is best to leave these wild oysters and their reefs to their important work, and rely on farmed oysters for consumption. 

Growing Hope                                                                                                            

There is a project afoot to rebuild the oyster reefs around the New York Harbor in the next twenty years. The Billion Oyster Project sets its sights on building 100 acres of oyster reefs which will become home to a billion oysters by 2035. Oyster larvae, known as spat, naturally attach to oyster shells and after many generations, build up the reef. Based on the success of a scheme in the Chesapeake, restaurants are returning oyster shells so that after curing for an extended time, they are put back onto the reefs that are being rebuilt.      

Louis E.Page Inc. is committed to sourcing and delivering the finest fence and mesh supplies available to do the rugged and exacting work of cultivating oysters. You can be assured that the products we sell are the best-engineered on the market today. 

underwateroyster

 

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Topics: hardware cloth, GAW, vinyl coated, 3/4x3/4, 1x1, 16 gauge, 1.5x1.5, 1/2x1/2, 14 gauge, galv after, 12.5 gauge

Gabion Baskets: Earth Friendly Erosion Solutions & Stunning Landscape Design

September 1, 2016 | by Cheryl Vergilis


photo credit http://www.minimalisti.com/

The Gabion Way

Gabion baskets are an earth-friendly solution to erosion and create a visually appealing landscape design. Many people live in areas where gabion baskets are needed but are unfamiliar with them. Contemporary gabion baskets are welded wire mesh panels held together with wire spirals or metal fasteners to make a wire mesh basket. The baskets are placed in the desired location and filled with rocks, stones, shells, wood, or earth--just about anything that weighs them down. This fill anchors the gabions down while allowing rain to seep through. They are completely permeable.

gabion planter-1


The numerous and varied uses include commercial applications, parks, zoos, and residential landscaping:

Commercial use of gabions:

  • Bridge abutments
  • Retaining walls
  • Land management
  • Seashore protection
  • Gully control
  • Culverts
  • Erosion control

I've even seen a restaurant using gabion baskets filled with seashells as a decorative wall.      

Parks and Zoos

  • Benches
  • Pathway definition
  • Climbing structures for children
  • Partition walls
  • Landscaping walls for plantings

Gabion_Angular.jpg

Why choose gabions?

  • Durable for many decades
  • Quick and easy installation
  • Strong
  • Environmentally aesthetic
  • Use of on-site materials
  • Varied ways of using gabions

Residential applications include:

  • Retaining walls
  • Benches
  • Erosion control
  • Plantings of shrubs, vines, etc.
  • Walls or benches around trees
  • Firepits
  • Partition walls

And they're easy on the eyes

Since residential properties are usually on a smaller scale, you can choose different mesh openings and sizes. Many landscape designers plant greenery inside the baskets for a more earthy appeal. You can use baskets of many different sizes, thus creating interesting serpentine or angular pathways.

Some Gabion Details

The wire used for gabions is a zinc-coated welded wire. It is hot-dipped galvanized after the welding process which seals and protects the welds against corrosion. They also come in a black vinyl coated finish. These are ideal for erosion control or to enhance the beauty of your property.

The standard size mesh for commercial use is 11 gauge, 3” x 3” opening size, 36” wide in galvanized or black vinyl coated finish. The baskets are shipped flat but partially assembled for easy installation. They are available in 3’ wide x 3’ high. They come in 3’, 6’, and 12’ lengths.  For residential use, you can use a 12.5 gauge wire with a smaller mesh opening size of 1.5” x 1.5” in either finish. They are also offered in varied heights, depending on your specifications.

residental_gabions_flickr_www.constructioncontent.co.uk  

Fight Erosion with Gabion Baskets

As you are considering your next outdoor project, whether for a commercial establishment or a residence, gabion baskets are a great solution for stabilizing vast areas of possible erosion due to potential flooding conditions, providing definition to the landscape or just to have a sleek look on residential property.

A Quick History of Gabions

Gabions, originating from the Italian name gabbione, which means “big cage”, were used during the reign of the Egyptian Pharaohs and later in Europe during the Middle Ages. The Egyptians made them out of sedges--think bulrushes like Moses’ basket-- and filled them with sludge to stabilize the banks of the Nile River. The Europeans made gabions out of woven sticks and filled them with stones to fortify castles as well as for erosion control of river banks.

Reed and Gabion Wall

Photo credits:

Angled project: http://www.gabionbaskets.co.uk/

Serpentine project: http://www.minimalisti.com/

 

Shop Gabions

 

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Topics: gabion, galvanized, galv after

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