Factories Cutting Corners To Keep Up With Fast Fashion How to Build a Cheap Guardrail for Your Driveway

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How to Build a Cheap Guardrail for Your Driveway

Many driveways have areas that require some sort of safety guard rail to prevent cars from sliding out of the driveway in bad weather or driver error. Metal guardrails are very expensive and require pound (sterling) tracks to install guardrail posts. With some sweat and a lot of effort, you can build a guardrail for very little money. Power companies and telephone companies continue to replace utility poles on a regular basis. This could be a simple upgrade to a utility pole to carry a new transformer, or to raise a section of wire for vehicle traffic, etc.

These companies have to pay to dispose of these old utility poles and they need to get their foot in there. Contact your local power company or phone company and ask where they keep damaged or old poles and tell them you want some poles. Most of the time they are happy to kick them out. It saves them money. Of course, you can’t carry a full size pole, so you’ll need a chainsaw with an old worn chain to cut the pole into manageable 6 foot long sections. Note that I said chain. Sharpen before cutting, but be prepared to throw the pole away after you cut it. Telephone poles are usually full of hidden nails from neighbors posting garage sale signs, but they’re also littered with screws, pins, and metal items of all kinds. Deadly. Of course, you can visually scan these items before cutting them, but hidden items are a problem. Wear heavy work gloves as they tend not to cut or stab you.

Guardrails require posts every 6 or 8 feet and of course anywhere the guardrail turns a corner. A straight 24-foot guardrail with a post on a 6-foot center requires 5 posts. Also, the utility poles are coated with creosote, so wear old clothes when handling them. You will also need the longest piece you can handle for the top rail. Top rails offer better protection, but just having plain posts close enough together can also provide very good protection. Now that you have all the pole and rail pieces at home, center each post To do. Remember to measure from the starting edge of the first post, not the centerline. The intermediate post is measured to the centerline and the last post is the edge away from the first post.

Now you have to decide whether to dig the holes for the poles yourself or hire someone with an auger truck to do the work. Your labor is free but very time consuming.Auger trucks are quick and easy but cost some cash.If you don’t have time or need help, auger trucks can be a good investment Maybe. Once you’ve dug a hole, set a starting point. Once in the correct position, make sure the post is at least 2 feet up. Backfill the posts as you go by tamping the material into place.

A good trick here is to set the first and last post first if the guardrail is in a straight line. Place a nail in the middle of these two posts and string a line between them. Now that you have a quick guide to the centerlines and heights of all the intermediate stanchions, you don’t need to measure each one. Once all the struts are in place, leave them alone for a few days. Hopefully the rain will settle the soil around the posts even more. If there is a source of water nearby, soaking the backfilled soil well will help the subsidence process. Clean around the post to remove all rocks and excess rot, and perhaps throw some grass seeds to restore the area. It’s much easier to do this before placing the top rail. Raking under the rails or going back and forth over the rails wears them out quickly.

When the top rail is ready, place the top rail on the ground along the posts with one end hanging over the first post a few inches. Once marked and the rails set over the stanchions, you will need to carefully cut a 2 inch deep slot to receive the top of the stanchion. I try to keep it as clean as possible, but I cut it with a chainsaw. A 0.5 inch wider notch isn’t much of an issue. Place the cut top rail on the post. I use 60 penny galvanized landscaping spikes to secure the rails to the posts. Two spikes for each post is enough. Once all the rails are in place, you can let them weather naturally or add new dirt or sealant.

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