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The Fence Post

Tips for Using Hardware Cloth - Video

May 13, 2021 | by Joe Morrell

More handy tips

Wait for it! Some excellent hands-on help with managing hardware cloth.

 

Hardware Cloth is great for a variety of different applications, including:

  • aviaries
  • window guards
  • screen door reinforcement
  • exclusion screens for nuisance wildlife
  • small animal cages
  • shrub and tree protection
  • sieves and strainers
  • stucco mesh
  • ferro-cement boats
  • sculptures and other structures

16 gauge hardware cloth chicken coop 3

And! These wire cloth meshes are not just available with galvanized-after finishes--hardware cloth is also available with a vinyl-coated finish

Hardware Cloth

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Topics: hardware cloth, galvanized

Avoiding Knockoffs

March 26, 2021 | by Joe Morrell

broken-fence

All Gloss, No Glory

It's often electronics, sneakers, or designer gear, such as purses and clothing, when we hear about knockoffs or counterfeit goods. If there's a product, there's a knockoff. Seeking too-cheap-to-be-true goods have the pretense of high performance or exclusivity with an inexpensive price tag. Fence wire is not immune. However, with fence materials, toughness and longevity are foremost in our minds as consumers, compared to the passing fancies of designer goods. We expect a fence to stand up to various strains, and depending on the design, to last 25 to 50 years. Deficient materials and shabby construction will simply not stand up to:

  • Corrosion
  • The elements
  • Physical abrasion

Dubious Supply Chains

Internet shopping has accentuated this phenomenon, creating the possibility of a vast marketplace of readily available second-rate goods. Low-quality merchandise may look shiny out of the box or on the shelf at the store, but hides a negligent system of manufacture. At the outset, these goods appear solid, but their quality readily reveal inferior grades of steel, subpar zinc coatings, and poor quality PVC coatings. A history of weak labor laws, using exploited laborers, and the desperation for fast cash contribute to poorly-crafted goods; and regrettably, the backdrop of these companies may he hiding their participation in the use of child labor, human trafficking, organized crime, and even sponsors of terrorism. It requires a savvy consumer to discern value and avoid being suckered into such purchases. Even realistic product reviews may not be authentic and are not necessarily to be trusted. The purveyors of cheap imitations have also cunningly copied methods of advertising to distribute this shoddy and all-too-commonplace merchandise. 

online shopping  

Protect Yourself

Tried and true companies that have stood the test of time are always the safe bet. When a company stands behind their products, has a track record for integrity and high standards right up the supply chain, you are in safe hands. You want a provider of goods that you can trust, accurately boasting well-sourced products and a history of sound business practices. 

Founded in 1893, Louis Page Inc. has stood the test of time. It 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 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.

Some Examples

Class 3 Galvanized Mesh--When it comes to coatings, you don't want to mess around with substandard issues. Class 1 wire coating uses 0.28 ounces of zinc per square foot, whereas Class 3 uses a thicker coating of 0.80 ounces per square foot. It costs slightly more than Class 1, but is much stronger and will last anywhere from 13 to 30 years before it rusts, making it well worth the investment.

galvanized_wire_roll-resized-600

Vinyl Coated - Also called PVC or UPVC coating, vinyl is the strongest wire coating of all when it comes to standing up against the elements. A thick, flexible PVC layer is added to the Class 3 galvanized wire. That way, not only is it rust resistant, it also stands up to extreme temperatures, as well as UV rays and even physical abrasions against the fence. Plus, its unique flexibility means it won’t crack when the wire is bent. The coating is so tightly bonded that it resists scraping. It cannot be easily scraped off with a fingernail and will not peel off easily. Generally available in either black or green, vinyl is the strongest, most durable, longest lasting wire coating you can buy.

Hardware Cloth - known also as industrial wire cloth. This can be difficult to find and purchase. The mesh sizes available range from 1 mesh (1") down to 100 mesh (100 openings per inch). Wire diameters used in these products range from .331 inch ( gauge) down to .003 inch ( gauge). Finer meshes from 120 down to 500 openings per inch are also available. The wire diameters used are .0037 ( gauge) to .001 ( gauge). These specifications are often called filter cloth or fine mesh wire cloth. In addition to regular steel, these specialized meshes can be made with any kind of metal that can be drawn into wire, including stainless steel, brass, bronze, aluminum, and copper. Louis Page can help you track down the real McCoy for your particular needs. 

Hardware Cloth 2

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.

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panel

 

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Topics: hardware cloth, vinyl coated wire, galvanized after

Fencing Out Chipmunks with Hardware Cloth

December 18, 2020 | by Joe Morrell

chipmunk with peanut

The Cute Pest

Seriously cute and seriously annoying, chipmunks are a major discourager for the home gardener. Their diet includes much of what you plant in your garden and around your house. To survive the winter, they of course harvest nuts in autumn, but their spring and summer diet is supplemented with the berries, vegetables, and bulbs that you hold dear. 

Fencing Them Out

To ward off chipmunks from your veggie or berry patch--strong, galvanized hardware cloth is the answer--¼ inch hardware cloth buried 6 to 12 inches deep and 2½ to 3 feet above ground. This ¼ inch hardware cloth will also keep other small rodents at bay. As added insurance against these intruders, attach 12 inches of metal flashing around the top of the hardware cloth--though admittedly unattractive, its wobbling and seeming instability deter squirrels and chipmunks. 

Also, vinyl-coated hardware cloth is an excellent option, offering many advantages:

  • durable
  • longest lifetime
  • easy to work with
  • excellent for underground barriers
  • double protection of galvanizing and vinyl coating resists rust and corrosion
  • attractive - black color blends with the background, becoming virtually invisible

For sealing up openings to buildings, use ¼ inch hardware cloth to keep out rodents and chipmunks.

There are other specifications of hardware wire cloth in addition to these - different gauges, different metals, and woven meshes. Contact Louis Page for further information.

To conclude, watch a chipmunk in full harvest mode using those amazing cheek pouches:

 

Hardware Cloth

  

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Topics: hardware cloth, vinyl coated hardware cloth

Wire Mesh Art by Cédric Le Borgne

August 29, 2019 | by Joe Morrell

Cityscape Enhanced with Chicken Wire 

Cédric Le Borgne is an innovative artist from Toulouse, France and this display shows how he has taken ordinary chicken wire and made something extraordinary out of it. Here is a short video of one of his exhibitions by night:

 

To see some other innovators using chicken wire, check out this blog.

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Topics: hardware cloth, wire mesh

The Cultivated Oyster

May 7, 2018 | by Joe Morrell

 

oysterfloats

Oyster Farmers: Man your Cages

Oysters are luxuriant in the minerals and nutrition they provide while offering their distinctive brand of culinary joy to a host of fans. 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 bringing renewal and protection to this humble mollusk, which in turn protects against the erosion of our coasts. As in other types of farming, painstaking methods and ongoing research are required in the process of bringing this crop to our tables.

Cultivation

One of the most common methods of cultivation is cage-raised oysters. Many of our favorites, indeed a majority, are bred this way. Happily, 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 
  • 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, also the local regulations, predators, and weather. Louis Page will stock your enterprise with a variety of necessities, be it 12.5 gauge galvanized after mesh, 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" openings. The wire mesh heights typically used by the oyster industry range from 12" to 48".

Learn from a farmer in action:

 

An oyster is a cleaning machine

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 Mollusk That Fed New York

350 square miles of Oyster Reefs--that was the approximate number of oyster reefs occupying the waters around the city of New York in the 1600s. 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. Take a look at this article to learn about recent strides that are being made.

Rebuilding                                                                                                            

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.

shucking oyster

Oysters: Nutritional 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 the 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. 

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

underwateroyster

Oyster Wire

 

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Topics: hardware cloth, GAW, vinyl coated, 3/4x3/4, 1x1, 14 gauge, galv after, 12.5 gauge

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