Exceptions to timber posts are permitted for horse-safe steel articles typically used on chain link fences, pipe articles from welded fences, and rigid PVC fence post. Hollow posts need top caps to cover the ragged top edge, or ought to be designed the top fence rail covers the surface of the post. Recycled plastic, 4-inch-diameter solid poles are acceptable for horse fence, but need a small-bore pilot hole prior to driving. Metal and fiberglass T-posts are somewhat cheaper but pose a severe risk of impalement and aren’t suggested. They’re also not powerful enough to withstand horse effect without bending. Using a plastic safety cap installed on the top, T-posts might be cautiously used in huge pastures where horse contact is infrequent.
How heavy to set the article for structural stability varies substantially with soil conditions. Soil characteristics play an important part in determining the longevity and maintenance demands of a fence. Some soils remain wet and can rust untreated wooden poles. Posts in sandy or wet soil will have to be set deeper and possibly supported by a collar of concrete casing. Other lands tend to heave with frost and can loosen articles which aren’t driven deep enough. Fences under pressure, such as cable strand or mesh materials, will need deeply set posts to provide long-term immunity against tension. A normal line post thickness is 36 inches. Corner and gateposts must handle larger loads and are approximately 25 percent larger in diameter and are set deeper, often to 48 inches.
Gates should have the identical strength and security as the fence. Gates can be purchased or built in as many styles as fence but don’t have to be the exact same fashion as the fence. Easy-to-assemble kits for wooden gates with all the hardware, such as attachments, hinges, braces, and latches, can be purchased from farm, timber, or hardware stores. By comparison, channelsteel or aluminum inventory livestock gates aren’t suggested for horse use on account of their less-sturdy structure and numerous sharp edges.
Though this strengthens the gate, the narrow angles can snare feet, legs, and possibly heads. If gate supports are necessary, a wooden block known as a brief post can be put beneath the free dangling end of the gate to help support its weight and expand hardware life. Using a cattle guard (rails set over a ditch) rather than a gate isn’t advisable since horses don’t consistently respect them. Horses have been known to jump them try to walk them over, which causes tangled and broken legs.
Gates should be as tall as the fence to discourage horses from hitting over or trying to jump over the gate. Gates can be up to 16-feet broad, with a minimum of 12 feet to permit easy passage of vehicles and tractors. Horse and handler gates should be no less than 4-feet broad, with 5 ft preferred. Human-only passages are helpful for job time efficiency.
Fencing near gates must withstand the pressures of horses congregating around the gate, so it has to be sturdy, highly visible, and secure from trapping horse feet and heads. Some paddock gates are positioned to swing in the pressure of the horse to stop horses from pushing the gate open and breaking latches. On the other hand, gates which are effective at moving both into and out of the enclosure are useful when moving horses. Additional latches are suggested to ensure the gate in an open place, fully swung from the fence, not projecting into the enclosure.