Post size

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Ky cowboy
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Post size

Post by Ky cowboy » Fri Apr 17, 2020 11:39 am

Would 4x6 post work or would 6x6 be a must using 3 rails of guardrail. 10ft post 4ft in the ground.



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Re: Post size

Post by kenny thomas » Fri Apr 17, 2020 12:12 pm

I always overdo everything but if it's a lot that's going to have some pressure on them I would do 6x6.
But the guard rail will help brace the post also .
My thoughts only, don't bet the farm on them. KT

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Re: Post size

Post by SBMF 2015 » Fri Apr 17, 2020 12:32 pm

Rail road ties would be better. If you have hedge posts (Osage Orange) available that would last for ever. Every thing else rots off pretty quick.
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Re: Post size

Post by Dsth » Fri Apr 17, 2020 2:07 pm

I tend to overdo things like Kenny, so I would use SBMF's advise and use railroad ties. If you need it strong enough so use guard rails, why use only 4x6 post? I think they would be the weak link.

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Re: Post size

Post by Ky cowboy » Fri Apr 17, 2020 7:26 pm

I ended up going with 6x6. Good rail road ties are hard to find and I have heard a lot of people say they will rot off when they are stood up as post. I'm hoping to wrap this project up in the few weeks

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Re: Post size

Post by sstterry » Sat Apr 18, 2020 8:00 am

SBMF 2015 wrote:
Fri Apr 17, 2020 12:32 pm
Rail road ties would be better. If you have hedge posts (Osage Orange) available that would last for ever. Every thing else rots off pretty quick.
While I agree with you on the Osage Orange (they will last forever and the Native Americans used them for hunting bows because of their durability); I disagree on the RR ties. Railroad ties last a long time in the tracks because they are laid on a heavy gravel bed which causes water to drain away allowing the tie to dry. Ties on end in the ground soak up water and rot from the center out. RR ties and telephone poles are treated with preservatives differently.

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Re: Post size

Post by SBMF 2015 » Sat Apr 18, 2020 8:27 am

sstterry wrote:
Sat Apr 18, 2020 8:00 am
SBMF 2015 wrote:
Fri Apr 17, 2020 12:32 pm
Rail road ties would be better. If you have hedge posts (Osage Orange) available that would last for ever. Every thing else rots off pretty quick.
While I agree with you on the Osage Orange (they will last forever and the Native Americans used them for hunting bows because of their durability); I disagree on the RR ties. Railroad ties last a long time in the tracks because they are laid on a heavy gravel bed which causes water to drain away allowing the tie to dry. Ties on end in the ground soak up water and rot from the center out. RR ties and telephone poles are treated with preservatives differently.
I only mentioned RR ties because they are larger than 6x6s. The only places we have any they are set in concrete. We cut a lot of hedge posts.
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Re: Post size

Post by Dave » Sat Apr 18, 2020 8:30 am

From my experience RR Ties last longer than pressure treated lumber. Going to town from here on the old highway there is the remains of an old corral. Probably 90% of the rails have rotted and fallen off. The RR ties are all still standing. The corral is between the old highway and the Interstate. When the interstate was built it isolated that corral on a small strip of land so it was no longer used. The Interstate was built in 1962. That was 58 years ago, but the RR ties are still standing.

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Re: Post size

Post by sstterry » Sat Apr 18, 2020 9:17 am

I may need to amend my answer a bit. Crossties are made from many different species of wood. My guess is that their durability for underground use may be determined by the type of wood and your location. Here is a map showing different areas and the rate of decay. So I was wrong to make a blanket statement. But around here, they just don't last.


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Re: Post size

Post by Ky cowboy » Sat Apr 18, 2020 2:43 pm

sstterry wrote:
Sat Apr 18, 2020 9:17 am
I may need to amend my answer a bit. Crossties are made from many different species of wood. My guess is that their durability for underground use may be determined by the type of wood and your location. Here is a map showing different areas and the rate of decay. So I was wrong to make a blanket statement. But around here, they just don't last.


Image
That makes sense. I've used some around here and they only lasted 5 or 6 years. I think a lot of it has to do with soil type and annual rainfall. I'm hoping this corral will last at least 20 before I have to replace some of the post.

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Re: Post size

Post by Hippie Rancher » Sat Apr 18, 2020 9:51 pm

I have 10 miles of RR going through this place (curves) and I can tell you those old oak ties from the 1960s and before last forever, we still have old pens with uprights that are fine built in the 40's, newer ties are lightweight (pine?) and about the only thing they are good for is selling to city folk for landscaping.

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Re: Post size

Post by Bestoutwest » Tue Apr 21, 2020 3:57 pm

Ky cowboy wrote:
Fri Apr 17, 2020 7:26 pm
I ended up going with 6x6. Good rail road ties are hard to find and I have heard a lot of people say they will rot off when they are stood up as post. I'm hoping to wrap this project up in the few weeks
I use RR ties and those suckers last. The uglier they are the better. Not falling apart ugly, but I found a few weeping creosote and those were the first ones I took. I can't get that stuff off my truck, but the posts are solid.

I'd use RR ties.
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Re: Post size

Post by Bestoutwest » Tue Apr 21, 2020 3:57 pm

Hippie Rancher wrote:
Sat Apr 18, 2020 9:51 pm
I have 10 miles of RR going through this place (curves) and I can tell you those old oak ties from the 1960s and before last forever, we still have old pens with uprights that are fine built in the 40's, newer ties are lightweight (pine?) and about the only thing they are good for is selling to city folk for landscaping.
That's weird, must be a regional thing. Here they're a couple of hundred pounds. They outweigh me.
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Re: Post size

Post by Dave » Tue Apr 21, 2020 5:28 pm

I never said that RR ties last forever. I said they outlast the pressure treated lumber. Look at that map. Ky has as good or better conditions than western Washington where I lived for years. I wasn't comparing Ky to eastern Oregon.

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Re: Post size

Post by Hippie Rancher » Tue Apr 21, 2020 6:04 pm

Bestoutwest wrote:
Tue Apr 21, 2020 3:57 pm


That's weird, must be a regional thing. Here they're a couple of hundred pounds. They outweigh me.
that's the way the old ones were. two strong guys could barely move 'em, now one man can load them on a pick up (one end at a time) or tip them into a hole.

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