Does everyone use concrete for their run posts?

Discussion in 'Coop & Run - Design, Construction, & Maintenance' started by Noymira, Apr 22, 2011.

  1. Noymira

    Noymira Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Mar 9, 2011
    Chittenden County, VT
    I'm planning my run and am almost ready to start digging holes for the 4X4 support posts. Does everyone use concrete to strengthen their runs? Would gravel work ok packed around the posts? I like the idea of knowing the posts aren't going anywhere in concrete, but I also like the idea of being able to dig up the posts if we decide to change the run at some point.

    Also, what do you use to stake down the apron outside the run? I have some 2x4 green garden fencing in 24" length someone gave me which I want to use for my apron, how is the best way to stake it down?
     
  2. lorihadams

    lorihadams Chillin' With My Peeps

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    We have a very large run...100ftx 80 ft and we used concrete in the corner posts only. The thing is that if you really HAVE to take them up at some point you can attach a chain to the bucket of a tractor and loop it around the post with the concrete in it and still pull it up. Then you simply take a sledgehammer and knock the concrete off. You should be able to do the 4 corner posts with 2 bags of concrete....1/2 bag per corner post and you will be fine. It will allow you to get the fencing tighter too.
     
  3. Noymira

    Noymira Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Mar 9, 2011
    Chittenden County, VT
    Quote:Thanks, good points! I think I will just do the corner posts, we could expand our run around those easily. Our run is not going to be nearly as big as yours, only 10X18 or 12X18.
     
  4. carolinagirl58

    carolinagirl58 Chillin' With My Peeps

    Mar 30, 2011
    Lugoff, SC
    If they are that small, you don't need to concrete the posts in. Just set them at least a couple of feet down and they will be fine. Pack them really well too.
     
  5. Noymira

    Noymira Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Mar 9, 2011
    Chittenden County, VT
    Quote:That's kind of what I thought as well, but I may have a bag of concrete lying around anyway. I was just curious about what everyone else has done.
     
  6. Hegatha

    Hegatha Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Mar 13, 2011
    Washington
    I used concrete bc its a lot more stable. I wanted to make sure the post wernt gonna go anywere and yes you can just pull them out we used a truck and chain to pull out some.
     
    Last edited: Apr 22, 2011
  7. buddymc

    buddymc Out Of The Brooder

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    I don't have any experience, but I'm getting ready to add the run to my coop. I'm only going to use concrete on my corner posts, and maybe the "door frame" posts. I'm using landscape timbers instead of 4 x 4 treated.... they are SO much cheaper!
     
  8. carolinagirl58

    carolinagirl58 Chillin' With My Peeps

    Mar 30, 2011
    Lugoff, SC
    I used landscape timbers years ago to build a dog run. They rotted off at the ground within a couple of years because they are not treated for below ground use. the BEST thing to use is the salt treated posts that tractor supply sells. They are salt treated....not copper treated like the 4x4s they sell at lowes. Salt treated holds up longer.
     
  9. Noymira

    Noymira Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Mar 9, 2011
    Chittenden County, VT
    Quote:That's a good idea about the door posts, I hadn't thought about that.

    Luckily we have plenty of wood lying around, and I also got a pile of lumber from a swingset for free, so we are just using what we have on hand. But if we run out of 4X4 posts I'll keep those in mind!
     
  10. patandchickens

    patandchickens Flock Mistress

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    Ontario, Canada
    Quote:Don't bother. It does not strengthen anything that needs strengthening for a run; what it mainly does is cost you extra money and labor, make it impossible to remove the post, and to some extent encourages the post to rot off at ground level quicker than if it were properly set directly into the ground. (Yes, really).

    You are best off, for nearly all circumstances, setting the post directly into the ground, with the fill tamped real hard every 4-6" of refilling the hole, and 'crowned' a bit above ground level when you're done. Whether to use gravel is a contentious issue and depends on your soil. In you-could-make-pots-out-of-it clay subsoil, gravel is not such a great idea. In areas with significant frost-heave issues, gravel is not such a great idea (it 'grabs' the post extra badly). Elsewhere, <shrug>, it may not hurt and in some cases may be useful but I have built, repaired, removed, and lived with a lot of fenceposts over the years and not gotten the impression that it is really a big deal. And just using the dirt you took out of the hole is a lot *easier* [​IMG]

    Set the posts as deep as you can stand, 2.5' is a bare minimum for 4x4s and deeper is better.

    Also, what do you use to stake down the apron outside the run? I have some 2x4 green garden fencing in 24" length someone gave me which I want to use for my apron, how is the best way to stake it down?

    Whatever you like. You can cut back the turf, put the apron down, and replace the turf back on it (hard work but looks invisible); you can turn the outer edge of the apron down slightly so's not to catch toes or lawnmowers or the attention of predators, and use tentpegs (real or homemade) to stake it down til the turf 'consumes' it; or you can top some or all of the apron with anything you like, mulch, dirt, gravel, rocks, concrete rubble, pavers, a flowerbed, whatever.

    Good luck, have fun,

    Pat​
     

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