Chain-link fencing is durable, affordable and virtually maintenance-free. Plus it’s simple to install, You’ll need a helper and at least two days for this project: the first day to dig postholes and set the posts in concrete, and another day (about a week later) to attach the rails, mesh and hardware. Before beginning, check with local building officials about per-mit requirements and call your utility company to mark any underground lines. Post spacing is typically 10 ft. (3 m) apart with 7′ 12-in. (30-cm)-dia. footings about 3 ft. (1 m) deep for end and cor-ner posts; intermediate or line post footings are slightly smaller. End and corner posts are slightly larger in diameter, and their tops should be 2 in. (5 cm) taller than the wire fence mesh; line posts should be 2 in. lower than the mesh. The hardware includes metal bands, tension bars, wire ties and other fittings that connect the posts to the wire mesh and the horizontal top rails. Adjust the mesh length by twisting a wire strand out in a corkscrew motion to separate the mesh, as shown above.
1 Dig a hole and set a post in it. Fill hole with concrete and adjust post height, then check post for plumb. As concrete starts to set, use trowel to slope footing away from post.
2 Set end posts first, then tie a string 4 in. (10 cm) below the tops to establish the height for the line posts. Let concrete set one week before proceeding. Top rail sleeve joins two rails together
3 Slide tension bands and brace bands onto end posts, and add post caps. Add eye tops to the line posts and slip rails through them. Cut to fit using a hacksaw or reciprocating saw, add rail ends and bolt rails to brace bands.
4 Slip a tension bar (illustration bottom, far left) into the first row of wire mesh and bolt the bar to the tension bands. Stretch the mesh at the other end with a stretching bar and fence stretcher (available at rental yards) to tension it.
5 When mesh is stretched taut, remove any extra length and insert another tension bar to connect to the other end post as before. Use tie wires to secure the mesh to the top rails (every 24 in./60 cm) and line posts (every 12 in./30 cm).
6 To set gate, install bottom post hinge with pin pointing up and top post hinge with pin pointing down. Align top of gate with fence’s top rails; then tighten hinges and install gate latch.