Building a Custom Wood White Picket Fence Building a Custom Wood White Picket Fence

What You'll Need
Tape measure
Garden stakes
Post hole digger
Old sheets
Table saw
White paint

A custom wood white picket fence can add character to your home. It can also provide a boundary for your yard. You can build and install your own picket fence with the right tools and materials.

Step 1 – Determining the Height of Your Fence

Use a tape measure to determine the height you want for the new fence. You will need this measurement when determining how much lumber you will need for the entire fence. Take your calculations with you when you go to the local lumber yard to purchase wood.

Step 2 – Cutting the Lumber

Based on your measurements, cut the lumber to the height you want for your fence. Use a table saw to cut the lumber. Always be careful when working with power tools.

Step 3 – Marking the Corner Post Location

Use a garden stake to mark the location of one of your corner posts. Attach a piece of string to the stake. Run the stake to the location of the next corner post. Insert another garden stake at that location and tie off the string to it. Continue marking the location of the posts until you have returned to the first stake you installed. Go back and install more stakes at six foot intervals between all of the posts.

Step 4 – Digging the Post Holes

Dig the hole for your first post with your post hole digger. Once that hole is complete, continue digging where you have installed the garden stakes. The depth of your post holes should be a third of the height of the posts.

Step 5 – Installing the Posts

Pour some gravel into all of the post holes for drainage. Position a post into one of the holes. Use a level to be sure the post is positioned properly. Fill the base in with dirt. Continue doing this with all of the other posts.

Step 6 – Cutting the Rails

Use a tape measure to mark the center of the width of each post. Measure the distance between two of the fence posts. The rail will need to connect the two posts. Cut the rail pieces with a table saw.

Step 7 – Installing the Rails

Use a pencil to mark four inches from the top of the posts. Use a hammer and nail to secure the first rail to the inside of a post at the marked location. Secure the other end of the rail to the next post. Continue the process until all of the rails have been secured to all of the posts. Then, mark six inches from the bottom of the posts. Secure the bottom rails the same way.

Step 8 – Installing the Pickets

Secure one of the pickets with a hammer and nails to the top and the bottom rail. Be sure it is positioned properly. Place a picket next to the first one as a spacer. Secure the second picket beside the spacer picket. Continue until you have secured all of the pickets.

Step 9 – Painting the Picket Fence

Lay old sheets under the fence. Use paintbrush to apply white paint to the fence. Start painting at the top, and work downward. Continue until the entire fence is white. Allow the fence to dry completely. If necessary, apply a second coat and allow it to dry.

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