Thursday, September 15, 2011

Goodbye Ugly Chain Link Fence, Hello Manual Labor (DIY Style!)

As I mentioned in a post from last week, Alex and I are taking on the removal of our damaged chain link fence AND installation of a fancy new privacy fence.  Over the weekend we finally got down to business and ripped out the old 3' chain link fence that was damaged from the May tornado.  I admit, I was REALLY dreading the removal project because I assumed it would be really difficult and time consuming.  Oddly enough, it was pretty easy and only took about 2.5 hours, really!  Keep in mind we have a very small yard within the city, but it was not as bad as I imagined.

So, here is how we took this bad boy out...

Alex went around the perimeter with bolt cutters and cut the chain link from the posts they were 'wire tied' to. The top metal poles came off first, that part was really simple...just Alex and a Sledge Hammer!
As he freed and removed the metal poles along the top of the fence, he rolled up the fence (to minimize the mess and make it easy to transport to the big red dumpster). 
I guess the part that concerned me the most was taking out the metal posts that were cemented into the ground.  As Alex continued to cut the fencing off the posts he said, "I bet if we saturate the ground with water the posts will come out a lot easier."  I thought his idea made sense too and decided that we should at least give it a try. 

I grabbed the hose and saturated the ground surrounding one of the posts with water.  Alex then started to wiggle the post back and forth...
LOL's, we know this pic looks ridiculious!

Holy buckets!  Our stupid idea really worked! 
Alex wiggled, kicked, and loosened the posts to the point where he could just pull them and the cement out of the ground.

Our guess is (even though the fence was fine for the 3 years we have been here), maybe these posts weren't installed with the right amount of cement?  Yes... No?  They were buried maybe 2' deep with cement surrounding, maybe that was fine for a 3' fence?  It was crazy though to just POP those posts out the way we did.

After that discovery, we 'watered' the posts a bit so we could wiggle them out the way we did on our trial run. Disclaimer for environmental folks: Don't worry! We didn't use TONS of water, and quite honestly, we never did water our yard this Spring/ Summer anyway since the tornado killed everything.  It was crazy how little water the ground needed to loosen these babies up!
Alex even let me give it a try.  It took some serious muscle (and un-lady like grunting, ha), but I pulled that post out AND the cement myself!  Hammers and High Fives for me :)  Really though, I remember feeling that pulling pain in my back and thought I was about to injure myself.  I left it to Alex after that (and I was sore for 3 days after).
For kicks, here is the metal pole that went across the top of the fence where the GIANT Pine Tree landed after the tornado
Beneath that top metal pole where the tree landed, was this metal post (along with a cheesy/annoyed/ sarcastic pose from a physically exhausted hubby who always seems to wear the same yard project shirt).  It was driven very far into the ground from the impact of the tree.  There was just over 1' left of the 3' post above the ground. 
This is the ONLY post that remains.  Even the water didn't help to get this guy out.  Since I was the only DIY-er with him on this project, he thought it was best to wait for one of his stronger (male) friends to help him out with this one. 

The last post we took out (aside from the difficult one) was the one connected to the gate.  Yea, it isn't pretty or anything, but this is the gate Alex and I walked into from our garage to our house everyday for 3 years.  It felt sort of sad but triumphant to take it out.  I hated it (for 3 years), but it was still weird to see it go into the dumpster.  Alas, we must move on!

Before we can begin installing the new wood privacy fence, we have A LOT MORE yard clean up to do (boo).  But I can't wait!  I will share the style we picked soon along with all those pesky city codes/ rules we had to follow.  Thankfully, our contractor from Dry Tech helped inform us of those details/ rules, so that was pretty easy).

See you tomorrow for Head Over Heels Friday!

1 comment:

  1. You two are hilarious! Love how you have fun with things like this!


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