Low $ Upgrading from 4 to 3 strand fences ?

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Stocker Steve
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Low $ Upgrading from 4 to 3 strand fences ?

Post by Stocker Steve » Sun Jun 10, 2018 4:50 pm

I have some 40 year old 4 strand barbed fences that have been patched too many times. One of my latest approaches is to roll up the two worst barbed strands, replace a few posts, add a smooth electric strand in the middle to keep the cattle off it, and then re stretch the top and bottom barbed wires. Have you had success with a fence like this?


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Re: Low $ Upgrading from 4 to 3 strand fences ?

Post by Aaron » Sun Jun 10, 2018 6:25 pm

As long as it never meets a deer, it will work. Otherwise you will spend countless hours unwrapping dead shorts to the barbed wire. Using offset insulators helps a bit. But in general, best not to try and mix barbed and electric.
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Re: Low $ Upgrading from 4 to 3 strand fences ?

Post by Nesikep » Sun Jun 10, 2018 6:30 pm

I found my biggest problem with it is the bracing on the anchors wants to short out to my irrigation pipe or to the other 4 strands...
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Re: Low $ Upgrading from 4 to 3 strand fences ?

Post by fence_it » Sun Jun 10, 2018 10:05 pm

My advice with fence is always to have something that's good enough for you to sleep at night. That being said there are plenty of 3 strand fences holding cattle in. I would not mixed barbed and electric. I would recommend taking all the old wire down, and assuming your posts and braces are still good, put up minimum 4 new strands of barb or HT electric. If your just looking for something temporary you could try just adding a strand or two of electric like your doing. Some of the guys who lease pastures around here with old decrepit fences will actually put out fiberglass rods with a couple strands of polywire to keep pressure off the old fence. It seems to work okay.


A couple weeks ago we "upgraded" a 5 strand barb fence that was just not working for a ladies sheep. While not that old, the principle is the same. We just stretched 949-6 fixed knot right over the top of the barb. No more sheep getting out and relatively inexpensive compared to putting in a whole new fence. Plus it is a true physical barrier, not a pain barrier like an electric smooth wire fence would be. A new fence would just not work with her budget. So this is what we came up with.
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Re: Low $ Upgrading from 4 to 3 strand fences ?

Post by jehosofat » Sun Jun 10, 2018 11:34 pm

I'm not the smartest guy in the world, and I'm not a master fence builder, I will patch on one a little here and there. But, all of a sudden I say, "what the he!! are you doing?" , and I just rip it out, and build it right.

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Re: Low $ Upgrading from 4 to 3 strand fences ?

Post by ddd75 » Mon Jun 11, 2018 5:41 am

jehosofat wrote:I'm not the smartest guy in the world, and I'm not a master fence builder, I will patch on one a little here and there. But, all of a sudden I say, "what the he!! are you doing?" , and I just rip it out, and build it right.


time to fire up the dozer and get er' done right.

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Re: Low $ Upgrading from 4 to 3 strand fences ?

Post by Farm Fence Solutions » Mon Jun 11, 2018 8:17 am

jehosofat wrote:I'm not the smartest guy in the world, and I'm not a master fence builder, I will patch on one a little here and there. But, all of a sudden I say, "what the he!! are you doing?" , and I just rip it out, and build it right.



I think we have a winner!
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Re: Low $ Upgrading from 4 to 3 strand fences ?

Post by Lucky » Tue Jun 12, 2018 3:36 pm

Fence can only be patched for so long then it’s time to replace. Very few people can afford to build all new at once so just come up with a plan to build a couple thousand feet a year. On really old fence that you just can’t fix right you can always run a roll of fixed knot over it. This will work until the fence can be replaced and you can reuse the sections on fixed knot pretty easy.

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