Chain Link Fences – Chainlink Fencing
Chain link fence (also known as chainlink fence) is one of the most common styles of fencing for both residential and commercial applications. It comes in a variety of sizes, strengths, and finishes, each which should be selected based on the purpose of the fence.
Identifying the purpose of your chain link fence is one of the most important steps you can take, and is unfortunately one that is frequently not taken. Not understanding all of the tasks you want your chain link fence to accomplish can quickly lead to disappointment with its performance.
For instance, will the fence enclose a larger pet? Will it be subject to children climbing on it or playing near it? Will it be near to significant vegetation? Will motor vehicle traffic or parking be nearby? Organized sports activities?
Similar questions should be asked for commercial uses as well.
Once these issues have been identified, it's time to look at the four components of a chain link fence: fabric, framework, fittings and gates.
- Fabric is the diamond-shaped steel wire that comprises the "field" of the fence
- Framework consists of the posts and supports for the fabric
- Fittings hold the fabric to the framework
- Gates are the entrance and exit portals into the space enclosed by the fence
There are three criteria you should use in choosing the fabric: how thick the wire is, the size of the openings in the wire, and how the wire is coated for protection.
The thickness of the wire in chain link fence fabric, or gauge, is important in the fence's strength. Thinner gauges are generally used for more temporary wire fencing, while thicker gauges are more often seen in commercial use. Be sure to choose a sufficient gauge of wire for the fabric, or your fence will look worn and tired well before it's time.
Left untreated, the steel of chainlink fencing would quickly rust. Therefore, it is most often coated with zinc or aluminum for protection. Zinc coating tends to be more common, and also tends to protect the fence from red rust spots longer than aluminum. The fabric wire can also be PVC-coated (poly-vinyl chloride) for color, and PVC "slats" can also be woven diagonally into the fabric for more privacy.
Choosing framework components have similar considerations we saw with the fence fabric: gauge of the support pipe, diameter of the support pipe, and coating. Diameter of the pipe should also be chosen based on how high the fence is going to be.
As you might surmise, the fittings that hold the fabric to the framework should also be of sufficient gauge, and sufficiently protected, to keep the fence looking as new as possible for as long as possible. Here is also where you consider the aesthetics you want your fence to have.
Finally, consider making sure your gate and gate hardware is sufficiently strong to accommodate the anticipated use. Fence gates generally come in three styles:
Assembled gates, where four pipes are mechanically attached to each other.
- Bent-frame gates, where the frame of the gate is one pipe that has been bent to form the gate
- Welded-frame gates, where four pipes are welded at the corners