subdividing pastures

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smallrancher

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Have any of you that rotationally graze used the electric twine for subdividing? I currently use regular 14 ga wire, and I'm sick of the hassle. I've always thought of the twine as a horse fence. Is it conductive enough for cattle.
Thanks.
 

dun

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We use the smaller polywire, have used it for 10 years now and it works fine. We use the stuff with 9 stainless strands of conductor in it. Even the bull stays away from it
 

Jogeephus

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I asked the same question a several months ago and followed Dun's suggestion. That poly wire is easy to work with and you can divide a pasture up in no time. With the right charger not many animals will ever test it more than once.
 

hayray

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I use the Ghallager polywire. I have the reels to real it up and move it and use the fiberglass pigtail post and the fiberglass 1 inch or 5/8" rounds for corners and end post if needed. I have fenced off a few different 80 acre pieces with it. It is real cheap and fast to use.
 
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We use high-tensile and poly wire for our rotational grazing and it works great. It carries the same voltage as our high-tensile and we've never had any cattle pressure or escape the poly. We did have an ice storm pull it down to the ground once, but it had over 2 inches of ice on it.
We have been using it for about 5 years and and have found a few things that make it work really well in our opinion where we are.
1. Use good poly wire. Premier1 Supplies has the best poly wire that I've found. Cheap brands that we tried have the metal wire hanging out all over, and you would think that this would be good, but it hangs on everything when you attach it to the step in posts which then breaks all of the wire fibers eventually, and the poly breaks down too quickly from the sun on the cheap ones too. Good poly wire will last for years and is easy to handle.
2. Use good large reels. We started out with small reels cheap reels. We had good success, but the reels were a pain to handle and I did get bit by the electric a couple of times. We switched to large reels with their own stands built in and it has made a huge difference in the time it takes to reel up the line and in the time it takes to set it out.
3. Use fiberglass step-in posts with some flex in them. If you use plastic with metal tips, while they go into the ground easily, the force of trying to pull the poly tight tips the posts over rather than bending the posts. For us we like the posts especially by the reel to bend against another set at an angle. It is like putting a tensioner on the poly fence and it keeps the line up even in high winds and rain/muddy ground.
 

derekcattle

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I use the poly wire and step-in posts to divide pastures. The step-in posts are handy, quick, and fairly inexpensive.
 

SRBeef

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I've been using aluminum for the divider wires, 14 gage steel for everything else. On either one I make sure I get a "made in the USA" brand. I got some imported 14 ga steel by mistake and it was no where near as strong as the US made.

I find the aluminum obviously much lighter than the steel 14 ga, winds easier ( I second the comment above about using larger diameter reels) the Gallagher reels work well but are getting very expensive.

Only problem I have had with the aluminum is that I used it one time in a place I would usually use the 14 ga steel and pulled it as tight as I do the steel and it broke. This was not really the fault of the wire but did teach me the limitations.

Question: how does the polywire compare to aluminum for divider/cross wires. The aluminum is smooth. The polywire I took up from a neighbor was a pain as far as getting slivers in your fingers. You really needed to have good leather gloves on handling it.
 

dun

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SRBeef":1nvi61li said:
Question: how does the polywire compare to aluminum for divider/cross wires. The aluminum is smooth. The polywire I took up from a neighbor was a pain as far as getting slivers in your fingers. You really needed to have good leather gloves on handling it.

Get the good stuff and you won;t have that problem. We use nothing but Gallagher and as I said, we've been using it for 10 years with no problems.
As for the reels, get the geared kind if you're going to move much wire. It amkes it so much faster to reel the stuff up.
 

hayray

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I will third the good polywire. Getting the cheap stuff it just breaks all over the place. The Ghallager polywire will outlast the aluminum. O'brian geared reels are real nice but cost about $50.
 

hayray

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mulberrygrovefamfarm":2e1tdv3x said:
As Dun said, the good stuff is the key and it is much easier than metal wire.
Nice web site you have, cute kids and I like the picture of the goats climbing the hay wagons. How do you keep from feeding the wildlife while you pasture the chickens?
 

SRBeef

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hayray":e0il3y5q said:
I will third the good polywire. Getting the cheap stuff it just breaks all over the place. The Ghallager polywire will outlast the aluminum. O'brian geared reels are real nice but cost about $50.

One thing about the polywire that would be nice is better visibility to the deer especially. I'll try some of the good stuff on frequently moved cross wires this season. A concern I have is the amount of stretch it might have...but I'll try it.

You still can't beat a good USA made 14 ga steel for wires that are not moved very frequently, in my opinion. Working with a full reel of that however does mean you don't need to go to the gym - look at the money saved!
 
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hayray":3353xudg said:
mulberrygrovefamfarm":3353xudg said:
As Dun said, the good stuff is the key and it is much easier than metal wire.
Nice web site you have, cute kids and I like the picture of the goats climbing the hay wagons. How do you keep from feeding the wildlife while you pasture the chickens?

Thanks. So far over the past couple of years we've had only a few predators enjoy a free chicken dinner. Everything moves behind the cows in our rotational grazing pasture. Since the pastured egg chickens want to go in and roost at night, we use electrified poultry netting hooked to our high-tensile at night to keep the coyotes and other critters away while they are roosting in their mobile coop at night. For the meat chickens, they are too slow and stupid to run from trouble at anytime once they get big so they stay in a movable Salatin type hut that gets moved twice a day to green grass.
 

dun

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SRBeef":21gyybpn said:
One thing about the polywire that would be nice is better visibility to the deer especially. I'll try some of the good stuff on frequently moved cross wires this season. A concern I have is the amount of stretch it might have...but I'll try it.

We have very little if any problem with deer knocking it down. During the chase part of the rut they may, but they run into the high tensile stuff then too. The fiber glass posts have enough bend in them that they'll lay over if the wire gets hit. Rarely does it come off the insulator. Our cows are so used to the stuff that even if it's laying on the ground they won;t walk over it.
 

hayray

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SRBeef":qndfyi8v said:
hayray":qndfyi8v said:
I will third the good polywire. Getting the cheap stuff it just breaks all over the place. The Ghallager polywire will outlast the aluminum. O'brian geared reels are real nice but cost about $50.

One thing about the polywire that would be nice is better visibility to the deer especially. I'll try some of the good stuff on frequently moved cross wires this season. A concern I have is the amount of stretch it might have...but I'll try it.

You still can't beat a good USA made 14 ga steel for wires that are not moved very frequently, in my opinion. Working with a full reel of that however does mean you don't need to go to the gym - look at the money saved!
The polywire is highly visable to deer, at least the white type is. The metal wire is what I always had experience with deer hitting. I probably have deer hit the polywire fence only once or twice a year and soemtimes I have over a hunderd acres or more fenced with just polywire. Go ahead and get the good stuff, you won't regret it and it will be real hard to ever go back to the 14 ga wire.
 

Hoosier Pete

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I prefer the half inch poly tape. I think it's more visible but it is more subject to the wind. Where deer are a problem I have found that 17 gauge aluminium high tensile seems to give good visibility at night and it is real easy to mend if it does get broken. I use cheap reels. I get extension cord reels from the big box hardware and attach the reel end with a tarp strap. I seldom pull out more than 300 ft. of tape so they work good for me. When I need to let out more I use poly wire on my old premier reels.
 

hayray

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Another problem with using tape is that the metal conductors in the tape break often and cause shorts or insufficient current. The tape is better for permenant fence that will not be re-wound often. High tensile is usually 12.5 gauge, I never seen the 17 gauge, where did you get that?
 

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