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I need some tip on building a wrought iron fence.

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  • I need some tip on building a wrought iron fence.

    I am going to be building a fence in the next couple of months for my grandmother. Her neighbor has one that she wants to duplicate, so I can get all of my measurements from that one, except for the custom gate for the driveway. The fence run will be 200' and for the front it will be about 100' with the gate.

    Would it be best to build the fence in sections and take it out and set it, then weld it together? Or would you set the 4x4's and build it from there?

    What type of paint would you use? The color needs to be black.

    Any tools that would make the job a lot easier?

    I will be using a millermatic 200.

    Thanks in advance.

  • #2
    I would set the posts and make the sections to fit between them. Make a jig from a sheet of plywood or glue board to help in welding it up. I like the tractor enamel from the local farm store and some primer. I would paint the bottoms before installing them also...Bob


    • #3
      I painted raw metal before with zrc cold galvanized, then put on some expensive oil based black. Almost a year, and with our salt air, it still looks like new...


      • #4

        I have been wanting to find a spay type galvanize coating. How well does that stuff hold up? Is it durable by itself or does it need to be top coated?

        Thanks alot.


        • #5
          The big problem with prefab is making sure the post are all the same distance apart. A little triming is ok but 2-3" diferent could be noticable depending on the style of fence. Either set the posts as you assemble the fence or make a jig to set the posts. I have a 4'X8' metal frame that I use to set posts for wooden fences. It has no wind resistance and keeps the next post in position while I plumb and brace it if pouring concrete or back filling.

          The only other problem I see is if you have a lot of elevation change. You'll either have to be able to wrack the section or build in place. My metal frame is set up so I can wrack it if need be to account for a small hill, and wooden fences wrack no problem, iron fence, well depends on how its built.


          • #6
            zrc paint

            Sometimes I spray with the 14oz cans made by LPS that I get from the local hardware store (automotive section). I use LPS for spraying down electrical stuff, works good for me, so I figured I would try the cold galv. It has 95% zinc. If I have more time, I brush it on from a quart can from gaspro (also comes in gallon size). This stuff ain't cheap, but it works for me! The black topcoat is called "Anti Rust" made by Valspar "oil based enamel" That too is expensive, but I haven't found anything else that lasts as long...
            hope this helps...


            • #7
              Oh, btw...yes, you definately need a topcoat!!


              • #8
                Thank you Bert, good info.


                • #9
                  Lucky, if at all possible make your sections at the shop and put it all together on site. Here is a little railing job that I'm working on right now. It is 28'4" long and has a 8'6" side extension. I built the 28' section in 3 pieces and put posts on both sides of the center section and made tabs for the end sections to bolt up together, same with the side piece. Maybe you can do something similar with your rails. As far as paint goes, I am sold on Rustoleum Rusty Metal Primer and then their enamel top coats. In this case it's semi-gloss black. Dave
                  Attached Files


                  • #10

                    also check the price of powder coating vs the primer/paint. they do the sandblasting and coating and it will last a very long time. cat


                    • #11
                      You have no pics so there is no way guess what you are trying to duplicate. About 15 yrs ago I built an iron fence and sliding gate for a friend. The metal was all cold rolled steel rounds. 1" posts,3/4" stringers , and 1/2" pickets. I made a jig on a 4x8 sheet of ply and nails to space everything. It was all stick with a flip down hood. I could do it now in 1/4 the time with my HH187 and autodark hood. We had the rod cut by the supplier, much cheaper.
                      Attached Files
                      Last edited by KEENAVV; 03-29-2008, 12:53 AM.


                      • #12
                        I built this fence for my office. the jig was made from plywood, i screwed pieces of 2x4 to the table in between the pickets for spacing of my top and bottom rails, i built the fence in eight foot sections, welded clips to the 4'' posts and bolted the sections in place so i could remove the panels if ever there was a need

                        The jig in the pic is upside down there are sheet metal plates on the top to keep the pickets from digging in to the 2x4's
                        Attached Files
                        Last edited by k.a.m.; 03-29-2008, 04:23 PM. Reason: added something


                        • #13
                          Here is some better pictures i hope.
                          Attached Files


                          • #14
                            My Pool Safety Fence

                            I just recently built a safety fence to enclose my pool. All mild steel tubing - 1/2" pickets, 1" rails and 2" posts. The fence sections are 10' long and were assembled on a wooden jig. The top and bottom rails have 1/2" holes drilled 1/2" from each end to fit over 1/2" rods that are welded to brackets welded to the posts. This way there is no welding required on-site and the sections can be removed for maintenance, access, etc. The posts were installed and cemented while being held in place by the previous fence sections, this way there was no problem with the fence panels fitting properly once the concrete set up.
                            The jig was made from 2x4s and 1x4s - spacing for the proper fence height and picket gaps was built in.
                            The fence has been "aging" over the winter and I originally was only going to seal it to show the natural finish, but my wife has now decided it should be painted black, so that is the next step in the project. The fence is 130' plus a 3' and a 5' gate.

                            See the photos at

                            Hope this gives you some good ideas.


                            • #15
                              MAN you build some nice stuff!!!!
                              THANKS for sharing!!!!!!


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