Close board fence is splitting along the feather edges


Postby nowthendiy » Mon Apr 14, 2008 6:31 pm

I built a closeboard fence and followed the instructions on this page
http://www.diydoctor.org.uk/projects/closeboard.htm
I spent a lot of time and money on the fence and it looked great. We have now experienced autumn and winter and the fence has not survived. It has cracked where the nails have gone through the featheredges. This has happened with approximately one third of the nails. This was clearly a mistake. I have taken advice from a different forum and they said that when you nail through the fat edge of the timber that it should trap the featheredge of the board beneath but that it SHOULD NOT GO THROUGH THE FEATHEREDGE. If it does then, as the board shrinks it cracks where the nails are.

I just thought I would mention this problem in the project tutorial in the hope that it might be altered and save someone from making the same mistake I did.

However, I do not know how to bring this to the attention of those who run this site.
nowthendiy
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Postby thedoctor » Tue Apr 15, 2008 6:18 am

We have read the above post and have emailed the contributer. If our instructions are followed and the timber is good quality treated timber which is treated regularly this will not be a problem. We have, as stated in the email, put up miles of fence in the last 30 years and not been called back to one job. Please follow the instructions properly and you will not have a problem. If you only "trap" the thgin wedge, when the timber draws back the wedge will bow and cause all nails to pop.
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Postby nowthendiy » Tue Apr 15, 2008 9:55 am

Thank you very much for your swift reply.


I thought others had successfully explained my mistake. Now, I am unsure what to think. I have some more fencing to do and I do not know what to think. I bought green tanalised 6ft x 6inch featheredge boards from Ridgeons. Maybe I should just make sure that I do not buy their wood again. Maybe that's the real problem. How do I know if timber is not good quality?
nowthendiy
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Postby bones » Tue Apr 15, 2008 12:43 pm

Think it may be your wood.

I've put quite a few feather edge board fences up now (using the instructions off here for my first one!) and never had any problems with boards splitting.
bones
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Postby thedoctor » Wed Apr 16, 2008 7:02 am

Try a longer overlap. You will use more boards but the result will be solid. If you have 6 inch boards you can have a 50mm overlap which will give you a very solid fence indeed. We work on a 38mm overlap wherever possible and the absolute minimum should be 25. If you nail at the edge of the "fat" edge you will give plenty of room in the wedge to stop it splitting.
thedoctor
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