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New 60' single-wire muscadine trellis...post tops?

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Intheswamp

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I just got through setting some 6" posts for a 60' single-wire trellis for three muscadine vines...two Isons and one Noble. I plan on running the wire across the tops of the posts. What I've curious about is how best to protect the end of the posts from water sitting on them and promoting rot. Cans? Paint? Metal flashing? I'm leaning towards using cans (large coffee cans).

So far I've got H-brace posts at each end and a center post. Two more 4-5" posts will be added on either side of the center post making the longest spans roughly 12'. Post are 3' deep. I'm still figuring out the brace-wire tensioning and trellis-wire tensioning.

Thanks for your feedback!

Ed
 

Intheswamp

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I measured from end-post to end-post and, well, the distance is 59 feet and 9 inches...I simply eyeballed the additional length, missed by 3 inches.<grin>

I'm still trying to determine what to do about protecting the tops of the posts. As mentioned above, I've thought about using coffee cans for the 6" posts but once you drive a staple through them to hold the wire in place the water shedding ability of the can will be compromised and could possibly leak and hold moisture between the can and the top of the post...not a good thing. I could put some silicone caulking around the staples/holes to seal things but it'll be hard to see what is beneath the can to be sure no moisture is lingering there. Maybe just some type of thick wood sealer/paint on the top of the post? Or maybe just a small piece of flashing over the top of the post/wire and tacked down into the sides of the post...I'd be a little concerned about this damaging vines running close to it, though. I'm probably over-thinking this....:e

Also, as for as the wire laying across the post tops...should I be concerned with the wires cutting into the post tops? These are CCA posts rated to 30 years so I figure they're pretty durable. In 30 years, well, I'll probably be gone on from here but I'd like to leave the trellis and vines in decent condition, hopefully for others to enjoy.

In regards to the H-brace crosspiece... I'm planning on using the ~6-foot length of the H-braces as part of my wire. Being as the posts' height is 5' above ground if I drop down one foot from the top of the posts to install the crosspiece should that be enough room for the vine to travel above it on the wire? I'm sure the vine will get against the crosspiece but hope not to have it pressing right up against it.

Also, the 9-gauge galvanized wire is some tough stuff!! :eek: Any tips on bending/looping/stretching/tensioning it?

Thanks,
Ed
 

Johnd

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I measured from end-post to end-post and, well, the distance is 59 feet and 9 inches...I simply eyeballed the additional length, missed by 3 inches.<grin>

I'm still trying to determine what to do about protecting the tops of the posts. As mentioned above, I've thought about using coffee cans for the 6" posts but once you drive a staple through them to hold the wire in place the water shedding ability of the can will be compromised and could possibly leak and hold moisture between the can and the top of the post...not a good thing. I could put some silicone caulking around the staples/holes to seal things but it'll be hard to see what is beneath the can to be sure no moisture is lingering there. Maybe just some type of thick wood sealer/paint on the top of the post? Or maybe just a small piece of flashing over the top of the post/wire and tacked down into the sides of the post...I'd be a little concerned about this damaging vines running close to it, though. I'm probably over-thinking this....:e

Thanks,
Ed
What about something like this........
https://squarefittings.com/store/6-square-pressed-steel-dome-cap-galvanized-steel.html?gclid=EAIaIQobChMImcz9_d_B5QIVmoVaBR22JwP4EAkYCyABEgKucPD_BwE
 

Intheswamp

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That would work. Edges are turned down for good rain shedding and also wouldn't be sharp edges presented to the vines as strongly as a simple sheet of flashing bent over the top. I'll definitely keep that in mind! I probably need to browse Lowes or Homedepot and see what they have...the time is getting closer for the vines to arrive. They ship when they're dormant and it's been warm in our area. Ison states that they ship in mid/late November...maybe even into December/January, when the bare-root vines are dormant. Newnan, Georgia is a northwest of us but has similar weather. We've got a ways to go before good dormancy happens here.
 

Intheswamp

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Yep, been looking at the tensioners and wrench. That is probably what I will go with. I thought about using a twitch stick to tighten the brace-wire but from what I'm reading 9# wire isn't overly friendly to that. 12.5# does work ok with a twitch stick but I have none on hand but plenty of the #9. Thanks for the link! Ed
 

BigH

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I thought about using a twitch stick to tighten the brace-wire but from what I'm reading 9# wire isn't overly friendly to that. 12.5# does work ok with a twitch stick but I have none on hand but plenty of the #9.
High tensile wire should not be twisted. If you use high tensile wire to build your H brace, then crimp it to an inline wire strainer and use the strainer to tighten. I used barbless double stranded wire and twisted with broken hockey sticks when I built my H braces. Barbed wire without the barbs. There is a better name for it, but I don't remember what it is.

Tip: keep the angle of the wire low (more acute). The lower the angle, the less lifting force on the end post. A long brace post helps.

H
 

Intheswamp

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Thanks a million for that info, @BigH. I just don't know what I'll use yet, though. I've got plenty of old barbed wire I could use but had rather not use that for obvious reasons. I'm not against using the inline strainer but the ones that I've seen don't see robust enough for 9-gauge wire. Maybe I'm underestimating them?
 

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