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Fencing Costs

The information provided estimates machinery and material requirements as well as time and labour needed to build one mile of fence. It's intended to be used as a guide. All costs are estimated and may vary between individuals and their conditions.

Costs are estimated for barbed wire, electric and high tensile fence. Labour costs are based on the estimation of hours needed to construct each type of fence. Time and labour requirements for fencing are highly variable due to factors such as number of persons and their abilities, equipment and environmental conditions (ie. presence of adverse weather, water bodies, hills, rocks, trees, etc.).

An average of fencing material prices from several farm supply retailers throughout Saskatchewan was taken. Taxes are not included.

Table 1: Fencing material price assumptions, November 2018

  Cost
Line post 3-4 inch tops, 6 foot treated $4.98
Line post 3-4 inch tops, 7 foot treated $5.82
Corner/gate/brace post 5-6 inch tops, 8 foot treated $13.08
T-post, 6 foot $13.23
Plastic post $4.01
Fibreglass post, 5 foot x 0.5 inch $9.76
Item - Wire  
Barbed wire, 12.5 gauge, 2 strand (1320 foot roll) $69.49
High tensile wire, 12.5 gauge, single strand (3750 foot roll) $135.22
Page wire (47 inches x 330 foot roll) $225.44
Poly wire (1300 foot roll) $102.96
Poly Tape (1300 foot roll) $72.26
Light-gauge fencing wire (1300 foot roll) $39.99
Item - Miscellaneous  
Staples, 1.5 inch (50 pounds) $114.75
Staples, 1.75 inch (50 pounds) $120.48
Nails, 2.5 inch (1 pound box) $1.07
Wire tightener, permanent in-line $6.90
Corner post insulator $0.91
Splicing sleeve $1.13
Ground rod clamps $6.18
Galvanized ground rod $20.05
Insulator (wire) $0.50
Insulator (wood) $1.62
Insulator (poly tape) $0.99
Line clamp $2.36
Offset wire hanger $3.30
Item - 2018-19 Farm Machinery Custom Rental and Rate Guide  
Tractor, 100-119 Horsepower ($/hour) $87.52
Post pounder ($/hour) $16.37
Labour ($/hour) $22.00

Barbed Wire Fence

Posts

  • Line posts with 16.5 foot (5.0 m) spacing
  • 320 posts per mile (199 posts per km)
  • 20 brace posts, 9 corner and gate posts per mile (13 brace, 6 corner and gate posts per km)

Wire - Barbed wire, 12.5 gauge, 2 strand (1320 foot roll)

  • 12 rolls for one mile of three-wire fence
  • 16 rolls for one mile of four-wire fence

Staples - 6.7 pounds (3 kg) of staples per wire for one mile of fence

  • 20 pounds (9 kg) of staples for one mile of three-wire fence
  • 27 pounds (12 kg) of staples for one mile of four-wire fence

Labour - bracing, pounding posts, stretching and stapling wire

  • 70 hours per mile (43 hours/km) for a three-wire fence
  • 75 hours per mile (47 hours/km) for a four-wire fence

Post Pounder - The cost for running a post pounder was taken from the Saskatchewan Ministry of Agriculture 2018-19 Farm Machinery Custom and Rental Rate Guide.

Table 2: Cost to build barbed wire fence ($/mile)

Materials Four-wire fence Three-wire fence
Line post 3-4 inch tops, 6 foot treated $1,593.60 $1,593.60
Corner/gate/brace post 5-6 inch tops, 8 foot treated $379.32 $379.32
Barbed wire, 12.5 gauge, 2 strand $1,111.84 $779.88
Staples, 1.5 inch $61.96 $45.90
Materials Total $3,146.72 $2,798.70
Tractor, 100-119 Horsepower $875.20 $875.20
Post pounder $163.70 $163.70
Labour $1,650.00 $1,540.00
Tractor, Post Pounder, Labour Total $2,688.90 $2,578.90
Total Estimated Costs $5,835.62 $5,377.60

Electric Fence

Posts

  • Line posts with 48 foot (14.0 m) spacing
  • 110 posts per mile (66 posts per km)
  • 20 brace posts, 9 corner and gate posts per mile (13 brace, 6 corner and gate posts per km)

Wire - High tensile wire, 12.5 gauge, single strand (3750 foot roll)

  • 4.5 rolls for one mile of three-wire fence
  • 6 rolls for one mile of four-wire fence

Nails - 3 pounds (1.4 kg) of 2.5 inch nails per wire for one mile of fence

  • 9 pounds (4 kg) of nails for one mile of three-wire fence
  • 12 pounds (5.4 kg) of staples for one mile of four-wire fence

Insulators - Low cost insulators fastened by two nails are used to secure the electric fence to the posts. Corner post insulators and insulators adjacent to in-line tighteners ensure the electric fence is not grounded at these locations.

Energizer - The cost of the energizer is not included. The energizer requirements are specific to the application and the prices are highly variable.

Labour - Bracing, pounding posts, stretching and installing insulators

  • 30 hours per mile (19 hours/km) for a one-wire fence
  • 35 hours per mile (21 hours/km) for a two-wire fence
  • 40 hours per mile (25 hours/km) for a three-wire fence
  • 45 hours per mile (28 hours/km) for a four-wire fence

Post Pounder - The cost for running a post pounder was taken from the Saskatchewan Ministry of Agriculture 2018-19 Farm Machinery Custom and Rental Rate Guide.

Table 3: Cost to build electric fence ($/mile)

Materials One-wire fence Two-wire fence Three-wire fence Four-wire fence
Line post 3-4 inch tops, 6 foot treated $547.80 $547.80 $547.80 $547.80
Corner/gate/brace post 5-6 inch tops, 8 foot treated $379.32 $379.32 $379.32 $379.32
High tensile wire, 12.5 gauge, single strand $202.83 $405.66 $608.49 $811.32
Nails, 2.5 inch $3.21 $6.43 $9.64 $12.85
Wire tightener, permanent in-line $6.90 $13.81 $20.71 $27.61
Corner post insulator $1.82 $3.63 $5.45 $7.27
Line clamp $4.72 $4.72 $4.72 $4.72
Galvanized ground rod with clamp $26.23 $26.23 $26.23 $26.23
Insulators $55.01 $110.02 $165.03 $220.05
Materials Total $1,227.85 $1,497.62 $1,767.40 $2,037.17
Tractor, 100-119 Horsepower $525.12 $525.12 $525.12 $525.12
Post pounder $90.04 $90.04 $90.04 $90.04
Labour $660.00 $770.00 $880.00 $990.00
Tractor, Post Pounder, Labour Total $1,275.16 $1,385.16 $1,495.16 $1,605.16
Total Estimated Costs $2,503.00 $2,882.78 $3,262.55 $3,642.33

Temporary Electric Fence

Temporary electric fencing refers to light electric fence meant to be rolled up and stored after use. Often these fences are portable and are used to control access to temporary pasture as well as to increase forage utilization in a paddock.

Posts - Post spacing should be close enough to keep the wire at a reasonable height. Topography also plays a role in the number of posts needed. In undulating topography, posts will be needed to keep wire off the ground on the hill-tops and closer to the ground in the low spots.

Wire - Poly wire is most common in temporary fencing application, it is very light and easy to transport. However, some prefer the strength of high tensile wire. A third option is light aluminum fencing wire.

High Tensile Fence

Posts

  • Line posts with 16.5 foot (5.0 m) spacing
  • 320 posts per mile (199 posts per km)
  • 20 brace posts, 9 corner and gate posts per mile (13 brace, 6 corner and gate posts per km)

High tensile wire, 12.5 gauge, single strand (3750 foot roll)

  • 1.4 rolls for one mile of one-wire fence
  • 5.6 rolls for one mile of four-wire fence

Staples - 6.7 pounds (3 kg) of staples per wire for one mile fence

  • 27 pounds (12 kg) of staples for one mile four-wire fence
  • 34 pounds (15.4 kg) of staples for one mile three-wire fence

Labour - bracing, pounding posts, stretching and stapling wire

  • 60 hours per mile (37 hours/km) for a one wire fence
  • 75 hours per mile (47 hours/km) for a four-wire fence

Post Pounder - The cost for running a post pounder were taken from the Saskatchewan Ministry of Agriculture 2018-19 Farm Machinery Custom and Rental Rate Guide.

Table 5: Cost to build high tensile fence ($/mile)

Materials One-wire fence Two-wire fence Three-wire fence
Line post 3-4 inch tops, 6 foot treated $1,593.60 $1,593.60 $1,593.60
Corner/gate/brace post 5-6 inch tops, 8 foot treated $379.32 $379.32 379.32
High tensile wire, 12.5 gauge, single strand (3750 foot roll) $189.31 $378.62 $567.92
Staples, 1.5 inch $15.49 $30.98 $46.47
Materials Total $2,177.72 $2,382.52 $2,587.32
Tractor, 100-119 Horsepower $525.12 $525.12 $525.12
Post pounder $90.04 $90.04 $90.04
Labour $1,320.00 $1,430.00 $1,540.00
Tractor, Post Pounder, Labour Total $1,935.16 $2,045.16 $2,155.16
Total estimated costs $4,112.87 $4,427.67 $4,742.47

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