Monday, October 25, 2010


I have been meaning to try and get the west pasture fence done. While Tia was gone last week I put up a charger and checked it a few times, but it wasn’t holding a charge. This past weekend we decided to get a new one and then we can mess with or test the old one. I set it outside Saturday, letting it charge for a day or so, thinking I’d get it out there this week.

It’s supposed to charge for 4-5 days, but with rain coming down today, and a falling temperature, I decided to just check it. We could use the other shelter in the west, and I figured I could just screw in a few things in the rain. It read a strong charge, so I decided to go out there. I packed up a bunch of stuff: nails, screws, the new spring gate, drill, hammer, and charger and headed out. It was a lot to carry, so I borrowed the hay wheelbarrow and ran everything out.

It was fairly easy to screw the new gate into the posts. It’s two plastic holders, a handle, and a spring that stretches easily across the 12 feet. Once that was up, I set about stripping insulation from the wire I had and cutting pieces to connect the charger to the electric ribbon, the grounding rod, and the new spring. That went easily, even with a pocketknife. I’d forgotten my wire pliers and didn’t want to walk back.

Then it was time to test things. The energizer read full charge and I could hear it clicking. So I grabbed the spring and…


My boots have decent insulation, so I decided to just touch the ground with my fingers. I’ll admit that normally it doesn’t bother me to get a little chock, but I was slightly worried about the wet ground. Things were working as I got a better then expected shock. Next I decided to check the fence and again, nothing when I grabbed it. Seeing the grounding rod right there, and not really wanting to bend over, I grabbed the rod.

Mistake. That’s a very, very efficient path and I managed to shock myself enough to jump slightly. Note to self: that’s not a good way to check things.

However everything was OK, despite my 16gauge wire. I need a better contact with the grounding rod, so I’ll go get another connector as well as some 14 gauge wire as well and change the connections back out to a more secure connection.

At least we can now put horses out there and not have the fence destroyed. Next project: another shelter in the south.

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