Metal fencing panels - The Horse Forum
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post #1 of 20 Old 03-29-2020, 03:32 PM Thread Starter
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Metal fencing panels

Can I get some opinions on using those metal fencing panels? I know people use them to make round pens and also to fence off small paddocks. Are they not cost-efficient for larger projects? I believe they don't need holes put in the ground, right? Are they fairly easy to install, if one had two adults of normal size and strength, or do they require like two strong men?

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post #2 of 20 Old 03-29-2020, 05:29 PM
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In my opinion it depends on what you're fencing in or out, how permanent you intend it to be and how big.
You can buy panels in varying degrees of length, height, number of rails, gauge of pipe used to build them(which determines weight and strength).

The arena at my old house was big heavy 16' panels with railroad tie posts to keep them up right and strong enough to hold cattle and horses.
Even using panels in temporary situations I use t-posts to hold them in place. (Using smooth wire to wire the panels at the panel joint to the post)
And especially if you plan to use them as a straight fence line you'll need something to hold them up. You can zig zag them or use a panel perpendicular every few panels to hold them up but then you're wasting available footage from your panels. But still an option if the ground doesn't allow you to pound a post in or dig a post hole and you have the panels to spare.
Horses and cattle like to rub on them and they do move, keep that in mind.

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post #3 of 20 Old 03-29-2020, 06:01 PM Thread Starter
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I am still trying to figure out the setup of my new barn. The barn already exists, and it's a good barn overall, but it needs some modifications, and I was thinking it would be nice to have the ability to create a run off one of the stalls in case anyone ever needed to be on stall rest. I am not sure if I would want the runs to be permanent or not. I guess even if they were permanent, or semi-permanent, this would probably be a decent solution. I could attach the panels to the barn, use the connectors at the corners, and then attach the other point to the barn. But unlike permanent (wooden) fencing, I could take it down and set it up somewhere else if I wanted. At least that's what I'm thinking.

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post #4 of 20 Old 03-29-2020, 06:06 PM
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A very expensive way to fence a area in....
.. this is 5' high and 12' long at a cost of $89.99 for the economy one at Tractor Supply


...this is livestock panels 50" high and 16' long at a cost of $39.99 each. These are the cheapest panels to purchase, horse is $54.99 for that rectangular design of 48" high and 16' long..



...this is horse fencing 48'' high and 200' long at a cost of $249.99 per roll.


Each of those products shown needs posts to secure to the ground so scratching horses don't topple it over.
Much depends upon how much money you want to invest and how long you want that investment to stay put in place...
And many use... goat/sheep fence because the openings are 4"x4" and so much harder for a hoof to go through for cost of $249.99 for 48" high by 330' long...suddenly your products needed list just decreased in amount.
And even more use field fence at the cost of $159.99 for 48" high by 330' long. The openings are larger and yes a hoof can slip through if you have a horse who likes to hang around and play on the fence line, dig or strike..

All fence though to strengthen it needs posts of some sort used.
I prefer wood not metal posts myself and spacing 8' on center cause it adds strength but if your panels are 16' then at panel end but they can and do move, wobbly would be my description if just wired together.
All in how long you want the project to last, how much $ you have to invest, how much labor/sweat equity you plan on investing.
I also have top-boarded my fence wire so my horses do not lean over, bend down and break my fence.
I do not do electric nor barb wire which many by me do as a top-strand for the exact same reason I top-board...added strength.
And lastly, fence comes in different price ranges because it is different thickness of wire used.
I used the thickest of wire available so lasts the longest and less times I need to do the job and swallow another cost outlay.
Happy research and shopping...

...
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post #5 of 20 Old 03-29-2020, 07:35 PM
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I have been buying a panel at a time so that I can do my 2 paddocks completely with the metal panels. I think they are very convenient and solid. I actually have the ones I have taken apart and pushed forward right now because we are digging out a nasty spot and laying drain tiles, gravel and rebuilding....

I had a mare that was on stall rest but going insane so I took panels and made a temporary enclosure under the overhang so she could go outside but still be in a covered space. I love the panels. You can make a round pen, a paddock, anything really... and the best part is - I can set it all up myself, break it down, move it, and set it up again all alone. I've done it multiple times...

We started off with Ramm fencing but it wasn't as grand and easy as they made it out... added pencil wire but my boys are smart and figured out how to wiggle through it, then we did wood fencing but the beavers ate it and knocked it down so then we threw up electric which always has been quite magical in my opinion...

My place is a hot mess right now because we are working on it. You can see the old board fence which we will tear down once we have all the panels and you can probably see some of the Ramm fencing laying down because we ripped it down today.... We are keeping the wood posts though. Today husband picked up the fence and moved it with the tractor so we could open up where he needed to work.

I only took a few pix while I was outside. Ignore the selfie one - The fence is in the background - that was what I was trying to show.... LOL....
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post #6 of 20 Old 03-29-2020, 07:54 PM Thread Starter
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@farmpony84 when you say you can set it up yourself, do you mean literally by yourself? I haven't picked up one of these panels yet, but they look pretty heavy to me.

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post #7 of 20 Old 03-29-2020, 08:00 PM
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I use light weight metal panels for my round pen and I also use them as gates into the pastures.

I waited for sales to buy them and that took me about a year and a half or so to collect the 50 10ft panels (and 4ft gate) plus 10 extras. I bought panels new, btw, as I couldnít rationalize buying the beat up junkers at an auction or private sale going for close to the price of unblemished new ones.

The light weight panels are perfect for civilized horses. I donít think they would hold up to continual bashing by horses bent on escaping or ones prone to freak outs nor would they work well for any long term cattle confinement (we did a have a Hereford bull in my round pen for a day without mishap though). On the positive side, I can move the panels around, and set them up, by myself. For gate panels, we used Eye hooks to hang them on one post and a wrap around chain on the other post for a closure - these are great for the occasional use (eg opening up a pasture for the season, etc) but not so great if youíre opening/closing daily as they are not designed to swing freely like a proper gate. The positive side here is that a corral panel on sale is half the price of a proper gate.
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post #8 of 20 Old 03-29-2020, 08:01 PM
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Originally Posted by ACinATX View Post
@farmpony84 when you say you can set it up yourself, do you mean literally by yourself? I haven't picked up one of these panels yet, but they look pretty heavy to me.
yes. I started off with the RAMM fencing around the property and had a round pen but then when my oldest horse was having issues and needed his own space we decided to set the round pen up as a third paddock.

I have a major problem area in one of my paddocks that just refuses to drain. It is a swamp and so about two weeks ago I decided to take that area away from the horses to see if it could dry so I took the third paddock down and set up a fence straight across the middle of the paddock. I do have to take each panel down and carry it to the spot to reset up but I can also take the fence when it is set up and pick up paddocks and push them into new positions. It's really not horribly heavy.

Now I have some really heavy gates that I struggle with. Those are super heavy and long. I think they are 14 or 16 feet. There are some heavy duty gates that may be a little bit heavier. The ones I have are the five feet high I think and then 12 feet long. You can get them at 10 feet as well I think.... But yes - I can do it completely by myself. Pick it up from the ground and carry it across the pasture. (one panel at a time)
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post #9 of 20 Old 03-29-2020, 08:11 PM
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Originally Posted by ACinATX View Post
@farmpony84 when you say you can set it up yourself, do you mean literally by yourself? I haven't picked up one of these panels yet, but they look pretty heavy to me.
I think it depends on what is available in your area but where I am my light weight ones are roughly half the weight of the heavy duty ones. I could move a heavy duty one around on my own but it would be a struggle and it certainly wouldnít be pretty. Iím guessing but itís something like 60lbs for the light weight ones I have. I set my entire round pen up in one day on my own - I couldnít have done that using the heavy ones though.
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post #10 of 20 Old 03-29-2020, 08:34 PM
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The light 'economy' ones are manageable for one person if you're careful. The bigger heavy duty panels will want two or you'll ruin your back, especially if it's windy. The light weight ones I have weigh about 60 - 80 lbs (the older ones are heavier than the new ones). The heavy duty ones are nearly 200 lbs apiece.

If your horses are sedate and don't mess with fences, the economy ones are fine. If you have young horses, draft horses, stallions, or horses who challenge fencing, they will crumple the light ones like tinfoil. If a horse rears against or tries to jump the cheap ones and fails, they will crush down and collapse. The stronger ones won't. It doesn't take long for horses to learn they can shove the light ones around to get to grass on the other side, so if you're using them for a run of fencing, anchor every few with a post. A curve/round pen is stronger due to the shape and it's not as big of an issue.

For safety, those with square corners are safer. The rounded ones are cheaper, but it's not rare for a horse to hang a leg up in them, and that rarely ends well. The rounded corners funnel the leg/hoof down between the panels and then the horse is wedged. If you're lucky, he'll break the panel before breaks his leg. A single leg on the bottom is also safer than the rounded 'feet' -- I had a horse slip and fall and stick both forelegs through one of those feet. If he hadn't been hobble broke and lay quietly while we got him free, that could have ended badly. Unfortunately, the safer ones cost about twice as much. I prefer the drop pin on a chain attachment style of hooking them together- it's a lot easier to get loose in a hurry if you need to than the ones with the attached fastener.
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Last edited by SilverMaple; 03-29-2020 at 08:40 PM.
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