Securing the Perimeter – Day 1

Two dogs in a townhouse with not much room to run around often left us with two wound up pups each day.

Solution? Buy a house!

No, that’s crazy!

Buy a house and build a fence…that sounds about right! Obviously, that’s not why we bought a house but having a fenced in yard was important to us and we knew it was going to be one of the first projects we wanted to tackle, and quickly.

Luckily, I have an exceptionally handy and talented brother (B) who wouldn’t refuse to help if I asked for it as my birthday gift! So what did I get? One weekend of free labor-woo hoo!

Shortly after his agreement, we had this to show for it:

Fence panels
A fence doesn’t arrive looking like a fence!

In addition to ordering the parts for the fence, we needed cement. Lots of it. We estimated 2-3 80# bags per post with 16 posts, plus what was required to fill the 4 gate posts (2 gates). That meant heading to Lowe’s for a pallet of cement to be delivered. Absolutely worth the $60.

Lowe's cement delivery
Our little pallet of cement at the end

To start, B installed the posts for the gate because they needed to be level and they would be the starting point of keeping all of the other posts aligned. Then we proceeded to dig with a post hole digger every 6 feet (the length of our panels). Luckily, we didn’t encounter too much trouble with rocks or granite which can really delay the speed you dig. We had to dig about 3 feet down for each post (that’s a total of around 48 feet if you’re counting!)

post hole digging
Drop the digger in the ground
post hole digger
Squeeze and lift, empty. Rinse, repeat.

For each post we had to mix cement and pour, constantly checking to make sure the post was still level and properly aligned to be straight down the line of site. You can use a string tied to the first and last post to keep them straight (you can somewhat see the string below).

Level the fence
Guest appearance! Hey B!                      Keeping the post level while pouring

Mixing cement is pretty easy but you have to be very careful to get the proportions right. Just kidding! It’s very forgiving. Throw in some cement, spray some water, mix. Too runny? Add more cement. Too dry? Add more water.

Mix cement
Mix for the perfect consistency


Mixing the cement
Like a gigantic wheel barrow of cake batter. Only heavier. And not as tasty.

Once we set the post, we’d start digging the next one and followed the same process. As the cement set, we placed the top and bottom brackets into the post and slid each panel to complete one whole fence panel.

Installing panels
Placing the final panel before connecting to the post.        Make sure you keep it level!

After the first day, we had two gates set and one half of the fence at the driveway complete. Doesn’t sound like much when you have a whole yard to finish, but we were confident we’d get it done on time.

Stay tuned for Day 2 later this week to see how it all came together!




    This website is fantastic. I like how you explain the processes and steps in what you do so if anyone has a similar project they can follow along. Also you are good at keeping it interesting with photo captions and how its written. Keep up the great work. Dan

    Dan | 4 years ago Reply

      Thanks for the kind words Dan! Glad you are enjoying our blog :)

      Love This Nest | 4 years ago Reply

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