Wednesday 18 July 2012

Decking on a Concrete Base or Raised on Posts?

Decking Frame
Simple Decking Frame 
This is a query that we are often asked but it’s not always a simple answer.  There are other considerations that have to be taken into account when deciding if a deck should simply be constructed using a joist or bearer frame on a concrete base or if its supported using posts that are dug and secured in the ground using concrete such as Postcrete.

When would a concrete base or existing paved area be used to create a deck?  If a simple level deck in the garden is required, then digging out an area the size of the required deck, adding hardcore and a level concrete base would be a straightforward way to go about the project.  If a level concrete area already exists or if it’s difficult to dig posts into the ground then this could be a valid reason to use a concrete or solid base.  The decking frame is then easily installed on top, best using slotted decking joists.
When would a standard raised deck be used?
A standard raised deck is normally the way most decks are created.  A raised deck on posts would normally be used if the ground is not solid, is uneven / sloped or if it needs to be raised or have elevated sections of decking in different areas. 
Remember that no matter what type of deck is created then the following should always be considered:
  • Weed suppressant fabric; This should be used to save weeds coming through the decking in future. Our decking kits come with weed suppressant supplied.
  • Try to avoid gaps that rodents or animals could use to get under the deck.
  • Planning permission; Please check with your local planning department.  We would also always recommend that plans are discussed with neighbours before going ahead also.

Thursday 21 June 2012

What do I need to install a side gate?

 Side Gate
The side gate itself is the most important component when planning a side gate project and it may have to be of a certain type, size or have a specific feature if the gate needs special requirements.

Side Gate in-between brick pillars
Side Gate in-bewteen brick pillars
Questions that have to be asked before the side gate is purchased and installed:
  • Would you prefer the side gate to be manufactured from Timber or Metal?
  • Does the gate have to give some privacy or does it need to be designed to allow light to pass?
  • Does it need to keep children or pets secure, if so what height do I need?
  • Does it need to match a run of fencing?
  • Does it need to be a double leaf or single leaf gate?
If the side gate is being installed in an area where strong gusts of wind will are common then a side gate that allows some wind to pass through may be an option.  Timber side gates that allow this could be Venetian, Paliframe, Jaktop, and palisade.   If privacy is a must then a Hit and Miss side gate would be an option as it will allow some wind to pass through the gate without the loss of privacy.
Gate Posts
If the side gate is being installed in a run of fencing at the side of the house or property then posts would normally be used.   Remember if the garden gate is in an area that is susceptible to strong winds then heavy duty posts may be required.

Gate Wall Plates
Wall plates would usually be used if the side gate is installed in the middle of a brick arch or between two brick pillars or walls. 
One wall plate and a post would be required if the gate is installed next to a wall with a run of fencing the other side of the gate.

Gate Locks and Accessories

Garden Side Gate Lock
Garden Side Gate Lock
Does a lock need to be installed so people can only open the gate from the rear of the property? 
  • Does the lock need to have key access from the front of the property via the gate? 
  • Will the gate need to be held open at times or automatically close? 
  • Will the lock need to be installed high up the gate to stop young children opening it?
These are all questions that require thought and may need an accessory to be fitted. 

Gate ring latches and gate fittings are included with all Jacksons side gates.

Gate / Wall Plate Fixings
We recommend to attach wall plated to walls, 3 x M10 fixings per wall plate (070132 – M10 x 200mm) and c-mix (070077 – 150ml tube c-mix) will be enough for two wall plates.  The applicator for the c-mix will also be required (070078 – C-mix Gun)

If you have calculated the materials you need the next step will be to measure the size of the garden side gate.

More information if you are installing the gate on a slope

Saturday 2 June 2012

Increase in steel prices will affect fencing costs

Steel prices are looking to increase even further as higher prices of raw materials such as iron ore and coking coal will force up the overall cost of steel.  The floods in Queensland in Australia are also not going to help as two thirds of the world's metallurgical coal (coking coal) is produced in these areas.

This price increase will undoubtedly increase the price of our metal / steel fencing from our security fencing and gates to our metal garden railings

Thursday 15 March 2012

Fence Panels or Traditional Fencing?

Both Fence Panels and Traditional methods of fencing have advantages and disadvantages over each other.  Below are some of the advantages of Fence Panels and then some of the advantages of traditional fencing methods.

Fence Panel with Railing on top
A Fence Panel and a Railing Topper Panel
Fence Panels
Installation of fence panels is simple and even simpler with the use of slotted fence posts.  Install the posts and then slot the panels into the posts.

After the fence has been installed, fence panels can be lifted out of the slotted posts which allows access if necessary.

When a panel fence is being installed, it’s straight forward to include another panel on top for decoration.  These panels are known as topper panels, trellis or railings topper panels are a couple of examples.

From an aesthetic point of view, some traditional fences can look better than fence panels.  An example of this is Featherboard, as the fence would not show any posts from the outside of the fence, only boards. 
Traditional Palisade Fencing
An example of traditional palisade running up a slope

Traditional fences are easier to install if the ground slopes.  A fence installed from fence panels would have to be stepped.

Assembly of the fence is performed on site.  If a person is installing the fence on their own, it can make the job easier as they would not have to struggle to lift heavy panels.

If a couple of pales in the fence get broken then it’s easy and cheaper to replace one or two pales of a traditional fence.  Small repairs are not as easy to make on a panel fence, a new replacement panel would have to be purchased.

The length of the fence run is more flexible and easier to install, cutting rails and attaching the amount of pales required is easier than cutting panels at the end of a run to size.

If you wish the fence to change angle at less than 90° then it’s easier to do this with a traditional fence rather than a panel fence.

Monday 20 February 2012

Planning for a new fence

It is always worth spending time when in the design phase of installing a new fence using Garden Fence Panels or Traditional Fencing Menthods. There are many different fencing solutions available, below are some key points to consider:

Longevity: How long do you want the fence to last? 
Fence Security
Security deterrent that's not too intimidating

Privacy: Is privacy an important aspect of your garden?

Security: Security can be a key consideration as our gardens become more of a living area they increasingly contain more valuable items.  A fence that provides good security will also lower chances of burglaries.

 Light: The flow of light into your outdoor space can be vital to the overall effect particularly in smaller town gardens.

Fence Panels allowing Wind to Pass
Hit & Miss Fence Panels allow some wind to pass

Wind: Consideration should be given to very windy locations, there are solutions that still allow for privacy but will also allow wind to readily flow through the fence.  Heavier duty fence posts would also then become a necessity.  These steps in turn could stop fencing from being blow over in future.  See the article that helps with a fence exposed to strong winds.

Noise: Noise pollution is affecting all of us, standard fencing solutions may help to screen us from heavy traffic noise or other galling noises but consideration of attractive acoustically designed noise barrier may be an option. In recent years acoustic barriers and sound fencing have become one of the latest considerations for increasing the quality of your garden experience.

Children: Making a secure and safe environment for your family

Animals: Pets and other Animals, keeping pets and animals safe, whilst also deterring unwanted animals from entering the garden.

Monday 13 February 2012

Will a new fence improve the value of my property?

Garden Fence Panels with Diamond Trellis Topper
An attractive Garden Fence with Diamond Trellis Topping
A simple question, many people ask. 

It depends on the quality, design and installation, if a good quality fence is well installed it will give many years of use and great pleasure and well as privacy to those enjoying the outdoor space, and yes it will almost certainly increase your property's value and desirability.