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Electrobraid vs. coated wire vs. barbless wire...planning fencing

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  • Electrobraid vs. coated wire vs. barbless wire...planning fencing

    I know people have strong opinions on fencing, but what I'm pondering is how is elctrobraid less safe (or safer) than a coated wire fence? Like this http://www.kencove.com/fence/Hotcote...etail_WSWH.php

    Couldn't you deglove with both?

    Likewise if the coated wire fence is NOT hot and the electrobraid fence is...how would that affect safety? I think I would go hot top, and hot second from the bottom with five strands...

    Honestly, the standard fence used here is either barbless wire or plain wire fencing that hopefully has one or two hot strands. This is probably the most common fence seen at boarding barns, with the exception of a couple show barns. My horse is currently behind smooth wire fencing...not my first choice, but what do you do? Well besides buy your own farm!

    I also boarded somewhere with barbless wire. It did seem safer than smooth wire--more bounce and visibility if a horse collided with it. They ran a line of tape along the top for extra visibility.

    I'm leaning towards 4 board fencing around the house (so I can put up a woven wire along it to contain the dogs) and that will allow me to easily have interior gates hung and feed grain on the fence if I want. I am also thinking board along the highway. Yes, that's right, my east 500 feet are on a highway! But I want to do a perimeter fence past the west shelterbelt (so realize I won't even SEE it and it is next to a corn field--I have a super thick & wide shelter belt) in a cheaper fence--this is just a back-up fence line, for if/when a horse is gets loose.

    I'm a bit torn on the other fencelines though...electrobraid or coated wire...??

    Finally, I am leaning towards tape for pasture rotation--really wish horseguard had a black tape!

    There are quite a few T-posts on the property that I could reuse...

    Oh, and p.s., I cannot afford 4 board or board and no-climb for every fence line
    DIY Journey of Remodeling the Farmette: http://weownblackacre.blogspot.com/

  • #2
    Mine is fenced on the non-board sides wth Electrobraid, and I prefer it over coated or smooth wire. It needs to be kept tensioned, and works like the ropes on a boxing ring...bounces the horse back off it, without the cheese slicer effect of wire. And it is HOT. I have five strands, with 1,3 and 5 hot, 2 and 4 are grounded. Given the choice, I would do the same fence again.
    "Argue for your limitations and you get to keep them."
    -Richard S. Bach

    Comment

    • Original Poster

      #3
      Originally posted by Unfforgettable View Post
      Mine is fenced on the non-board sides wth Electrobraid, and I prefer it over coated or smooth wire. It needs to be kept tensioned, and works like the ropes on a boxing ring...bounces the horse back off it, without the cheese slicer effect of wire. And it is HOT. I have five strands, with 1,3 and 5 hot, 2 and 4 are grounded. Given the choice, I would do the same fence again.
      How far apart did you run posts and what did you use (i.e. size)?
      DIY Journey of Remodeling the Farmette: http://weownblackacre.blogspot.com/

      Comment


      • #4
        I've had coated tensile wire for the 8 years I've had my farm.
        One line could use some retensioning, but the others are as tight as the day they were (professionally) strung.
        4 total strands on 6" round posts set 12' apart. The top wire is a Centaur clone with 2 wires encased in 4" of plastic - I picked that for visibility.

        Top coated wire (2nd in the line) can carry a charge, but it doesn't because I've never had a horse test or go through it - all older geldings here.

        The worst thing it has done is rip out a small section of mane where my boys go through the 2nd&3rd wire to graze on the "greener" grass.
        If I put a charger on it that would stop.

        I like the look of the braided wire and would probably use that if I ever re-fence.
        For those that do have it: how often do you find yourself having to retension the lines?
        *friend of bar.ka*RIP all my lovely boys, gone too soon:
        Steppin' Out 1988-2004
        Hey Vern! 1982-2009, Cash's Bay Threat 1994-2009
        Sam(Jaybee Altair) 1994-2015

        Comment


        • #5
          I really like the Electrobraid type. I've had a paddock of it for, oh, at least five years and only needed to re-tension it once so far.
          It's a small world -- unless you gotta walk home.

          Comment

          • Original Poster

            #6
            Originally posted by 2DogsFarm View Post
            I've had coated tensile wire for the 8 years I've had my farm.
            One line could use some retensioning, but the others are as tight as the day they were (professionally) strung.
            4 total strands on 6" round posts set 12' apart. The top wire is a Centaur clone with 2 wires encased in 4" of plastic - I picked that for visibility.

            Top coated wire (2nd in the line) can carry a charge, but it doesn't because I've never had a horse test or go through it - all older geldings here.

            The worst thing it has done is rip out a small section of mane where my boys go through the 2nd&3rd wire to graze on the "greener" grass.
            If I put a charger on it that would stop.

            I like the look of the braided wire and would probably use that if I ever re-fence.
            For those that do have it: how often do you find yourself having to retension the lines?
            So I'm suprised you would fence differently! I think you have my ideal fence

            Just talking out loud, but 12' apart would save quite a bit of money vs. 8' for field fence. Also, the boards seem to rot out before the posts. However posts in concrete (like you would use for high tension) tend to rot out at the concrete line. Decisions, decisions!
            DIY Journey of Remodeling the Farmette: http://weownblackacre.blogspot.com/

            Comment


            • #7
              We have Eb and it is three years old now and needing retensioning. Part of our issues is not having other than t-posts (and some trees) so we can't really get the tension needed to start with. We've pulled out corner t-posts before after heavy rains and ended up guying them like a phone pole.

              Because it's a rope, it behaves differently than wire so if it falls to the ground it acts like a rope, limp, making one dimensional coils on the ground as opposed to a wire that might have memory and make three dimensional coils on the ground. The benefit of the Eb is that they don't tend to test it too often so you can put your posts in about 12 to 20 feet apart. We have three strands with about 12 inches between them. It's important that the horses think it is hot though. We've never experienced an accident with the stuff and part of that is that the (mature) horses tend not to want to get really close to it. They'll lean right up against barbed wire and years ago my mare slid downhill in mud parallel to a barbed wire fence and took it out, laying open some nasty cuts.

              I recall switching to 10 gauge single strand wire after that as a kid and using two strands on the fence, which meant that the horses figured out they could put one foot through, then their heads, and then sort of shimmy the rest of the way out. The neighbors used four strands with t posts every 12-16 feet and their ponies also shimmied through. Money being a huge consideration at that time baling wire (free and trash to boot) was used to create a field wire effect so every 4-6 feet a baling wire would be used as a vertical stay. Worked great and wasn't much uglier than the loose barb wire seen elsewhere. My previous owner strung two barbed wire strands from tree to tree and his horses were out a lot, two strands isn't suitable ever.

              What I see as an issue is having to maintain the Eb clear of vegetation especially in a hedgerow. The horses will probably give it the same berth they always do, but I think it's very wise to have the fence be constructed as if it weren't hot in terms of number of strands and spacing of posts - you neve know when the electric will be down for days due to some act of god - tornado, ice storm, whatever.

              I have seen some fugly fences here - folks hanging one strand of tape or even Eb on step ins and calling it good. Concertina barbed wire fences - accidents waiting to happen.

              Go with what works for you, just bear in mind that sometimes there'll be a Houdini in there. We have right now a mare from down the street who has been here 3x in the last two days. The other two horses in the pasture are still there but she is in season and wants OUT - we've had the same problem with the intact jack and pony mare from the other neighbor, when the mares next door are in season or the pony mare is in season they come a callin'. That poor neighbor down the street is beside himself trying to figure out how she's leaving (Dh's theory is that she jumps their fence).
              Courageous Weenie Eventer Wannabe
              Incredible Invisible

              Comment


              • #8
                I have boarded at barns with the coated wire (white lightning from centaur) and electrobraid type rope (some actual electrobraid, some other brands). Never had one of mine get hurt on the white lightning, and the worst accident I saw with it was a dumb stud colt basically try to run through and bounce off, uninjured. Fence had to be retightened, that was it. I have, however, had my horses get burned and cut by the braided rope, when they rolled into it or kicked through it.

                Now, the white lightning was properly installed, with 5 strands IIRC and well tensioned, and at least 2, maybe 3 hot. The rope has not been installed as you are supposed to, as it often had too much space between posts, not tensioned enough, not always hot, etc. So not a fair comparison, I suppose, but I wouldn't consider using the rope stuff here, but do plan to do my future fencing with the white lightning in brown (I have the wide Centaur HTP in brown currently, and it will stay, but I have new pasture to fence and plan to just do the coated wire for it).

                I found it telling that at the one barn with the white lightning, he also had some paddocks in the rope, but any time we had a new horse or one that was particularly fence impaired, they went in the WL paddocks. I never worried turning anyone out there, but did have to watch the ones in the rope at first as they didn't always respect it.

                Comment


                • #9
                  No experience with the coated wire, but I have/had hi tensile. One night my mare was chased through it and it was awful. She recovered fine except for some scarring on her leg but it took four months of stall rest. If you have it, take it down. It works fantastic until one of them has an accident with it, then it is bad.

                  I am refencing it all with electrobraid. Can't wait.

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    We have coated high tensile. My gelding didn't know we'd moved a fence line and galloped into it full blast- and pogo'd off of it unharmed. Embarrassed, but absolutely unhurt. A tree fell on a section last week that has been up for 5 + years- the strands didn't recoil- they are just flat on the ground.

                    Now the rough cut thick oak boards that are 15+ years old are brittle- I hate that fence. Anywhere there's a knot, it's dried up and just waiting for something to hit it so it can shatter (deep south, horrible heat, tough weather for any fence).

                    My ideal perimeter fence is White Lightning which is the electrified and coated high tensile. HOT and strong and safe.

                    the ideal cross fence is more 'solid looking', like Centaur 'boards' or other more visible fence, plus the White Lightning. To me the best fence is one a horse will not even consider touching.

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      We have a 5 acre pasture in electrobraid, 5 wire. Posts in the open areas are 40 ft apart, in the treeline its shorter since the trees are closer together.
                      It looks great. Have not had to tighten it yet. The horses don't go near it.
                      I can explain it TO you,but I can't understand it FOR you

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Originally posted by TrotTrotPumpkn View Post
                        So I'm suprised you would fence differently! I think you have my ideal fence

                        Just talking out loud, but 12' apart would save quite a bit of money vs. 8' for field fence. Also, the boards seem to rot out before the posts. However posts in concrete (like you would use for high tension) tend to rot out at the concrete line. Decisions, decisions!
                        12' spacing is what the installation pros recommended & I went with that.
                        I like the look of the electrobraid, that top "board" in my fence has some minor chipping (horse-assisted) at some corners & visually it's not as clean a look as all 4 wires.
                        My posts are not set in concrete - they are treated 8' posts sunk 4' deep.

                        Since it's just me here & I work 4DW, I went for easy maintenance.
                        So far it's been that.
                        No escapes, no damage behind minor cosmetic and still white after 8 years of Midwest seasons.
                        *friend of bar.ka*RIP all my lovely boys, gone too soon:
                        Steppin' Out 1988-2004
                        Hey Vern! 1982-2009, Cash's Bay Threat 1994-2009
                        Sam(Jaybee Altair) 1994-2015

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          ElectroBraid

                          I have used EB for years. It is just what I started with and have always had around. It is easy to move when we have to relocate and re-install at another property.

                          I have a 3 acre paddock with corner H-braces and T-posts every 75 feet. It was highly tensioned to begin with and has been the same for five years now. Looks the same as the day I installed it. I also have various other size paddocks and pastures with EB.

                          I use three stands; hot-not-hot.

                          I just LOVE, LOVE, LOVE my EB.

                          But, my horses are very easy to contain and never test gates or fences.

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Safe-Fence makes black 1.5" tape.

                            http://www.kencove.com/fence/Tape+Fe...detail_JZ3.php

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              16 years of high tensile

                              HT is less costly, longer lasting and easier to maintain & repair. With proper horse training and compatable horses, it has work well for me.

                              Any fence will hurt a horse if they don't respect it.
                              Equus makus brokus but happy

                              Comment

                              • Original Poster

                                #16
                                Originally posted by LauraKY View Post
                                Thanks LauraKY. I wonder how it compares to horseguard? I will need to get samples. I don't like all tape, because of the stretch-flap factor, but it looks like HorseGuard stays intact (i.e. doesn't stretch) as much as some of the other brands. Hopefully this stuff is similar?
                                DIY Journey of Remodeling the Farmette: http://weownblackacre.blogspot.com/

                                Comment

                                • Original Poster

                                  #17
                                  Originally posted by hosspuller View Post
                                  HT is less costly, longer lasting and easier to maintain & repair. With proper horse training and compatable horses, it has work well for me.

                                  Any fence will hurt a horse if they don't respect it.
                                  I agree.

                                  I think I'm leaning towards high tensile barbless (i.e. thicker) on the far west side of the 100' wide shelter belt--so it is the west perimeter fence no one is actually normally on. I can set it up so I could make it hot at some point, but won't normally have it hot. 5 strands with a tape across the top for visibility. Then I can go wood post, t-post, t-post wood post and use some of those t-posts up that I already have.

                                  I'm not sure what to do with the giant pine trees that are growing into the fenceline. Maybe trim them up the first 5 feet? There are rows of overgrown deciduous trees behind them...

                                  Cleaning up the shelter belt is going to be a bear!

                                  I think I will do 5 strands of hotcote (or whatever brand) for the actual horse fences, with the exception of the interior fence line by the house where I want to do board fencing so it is a horse/dog fence (once I add something similar to no-climb).

                                  I'm still not 100% sure what to do along the highway (east perimeter fence line).

                                  I want to curve my corners, but I'm pretty sure I am supposed to concrete brace the posts?? Not loving that.

                                  Is 6" posts over kill for a hotcote fence, or can I get away with 5" rounds? 8' long either way is my plan (sunk 3 feet).
                                  DIY Journey of Remodeling the Farmette: http://weownblackacre.blogspot.com/

                                  Comment


                                  • #18
                                    I personally lost a horse to an electrobraid fence but it was really a freak accident. I can only assume that he rolled next to the fence and got it wound around his leg when his got up (it was tensioned correctly and HOT). Then instead of pulling away that would have broken the plastic insulators and maybe given him enough slack to get free, he bolted parallel to the fence and the rope cut through him, all the way down to the bone, all the way around his hind leg. There was nothing the vet could do but put him down where he stood. I have also seen them charge the fence so hard during a storm that it broke off a 4x4 corner post! Not a scratch on any of the horses.... It does tend to have some give like a boxer's ring.

                                    My next fence will depend on the geography of the farm. Board around the barn and then maybe something like brown "ponyrail" a 1-2" version of high tension tape like the Centaur brand. I boarded at a barn that had several paddocks of the stuff. It was easy on the eyes and the horses. Though I like the look of this White Lightning stuff as a possibility.
                                    Doubled Expectations (Roxy, 2001 APHA)
                                    Al Amir (Al, 2005 OTTB)
                                    Ten Purposes (Rosie, 2009 OTTB)

                                    Comment

                                    • Original Poster

                                      #19
                                      You are not the only freak accident I have heard of. At some point it starts to get worrysome--although it is all anecdotal. Ugh. Particuarly as my mare has now rolled into the fence or the feeder twice in her short life and gotten hung up. Luckily someone saw her as a weanling and freed her. Second time she wasn't quite so lucky, but it was rough pipe fence, so while it banged her up pretty bad it didn't sever anything.

                                      If I was in the middle of nowhere I would do more of the tape (I will use it to divide pastures), but I need something for containment by the highway, even if it means the horse loses vs. the fence. Never fun to think about.
                                      DIY Journey of Remodeling the Farmette: http://weownblackacre.blogspot.com/

                                      Comment


                                      • #20
                                        I've had good experience with Electrobraid on T-posts, as well as regular electric tape on T-posts. But like several people said, you have to keep it HOT and you have to weed eat or spray weed killer along the fence lines to keep it from grounding out. Our horses are all TBs, very active, and all ages from foal up to 23, and all live together. Not a one of them has ever challenged electric fence. Spacing for the posts with Electrobraid, depends on the terrain--very flat, I've seen it 40+feet about, hilly goes well with about 8-16'. For electric tape, I don't think I would do more than 10' because you just can't get it as tight as the Electrobraid.

                                        You couldn't pay me to put a horse in high tensile wire again, wether it was electrofied or not. We had a foal try to climb thru it rather than go thru the gate that was 5 feet away. She's a yearling now and still healing, but she is going to make it, and she is going to be sound enough to ride, but the scarring sure is ugly (and has been EXPENSIVE). Maybe she wouldn't have tried it if the fence was hot like the BO told us it was. But I'm sure, the above poster will never be comfortable putting any horse in Electrobraid again either, so it's just the sum of your own experiences.

                                        Horses can hurt themselves on just about anything if they are determined enough. If you do go with an electric fence of any kind, keep it hot ALL the time. That is how it is designed to be the safest. We hope to buy a farm in the next year or so, and if we need fencing it will be Electrobraid. We'd love to have all no climb fence with a top board, but to afford that, we'd only be able to fence in an acre or so. LOL.

                                        Sheila

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