Barb Wire Fence Strand Spacing

Asked September 20, 2013, 9:58 AM EDT

I would like to know the recommended strand spacing for wire fences for 4,5 and 6 strand fences as well as the recommended height for a wire strand above a field fence if my posts are 4'6" above grade. Also is 4'6" and good height for a low fence using a 6'6" post?


1 Response

Fences are a constructed barrier to livestock, wildlife, or people. Barbed wire fencing was introduced to the American Plains in the late nineteenth century. Without a fence, farmers risked uncompensated damage by other’s livestock. Barbed wire fences consists of two or more strands of smooth, galvanized wires twisted together with two or four sharp barbs spaced every four to five inches. Standard barbed wire fences usually have three to five strands of barbed wire stretched between posts. Typical fence height is either 51 or 54 inches. Spacing between wires depends on the number of line wires and fence height. Common wire spacing in inches from ground are: three wire 16-16-16; four wire 16-10-10-10; five wire 12-10-10-10-10; and six wire 12-8-8-8-8-8. Line posts are usually spaced 12 to 20 feet apart. Only 1 strand of barbed wire is needed if using woven wire that is 39 inches or higher. It is installed about four inches above the woven wire with a minimum of 2 inches from the top of the post. Contact your local Extension office for more information on barbed wire suitable for specific livestock species, predator exclusion, or requirements to build a legal fence. Fence laws vary by state, county or local jurisdiction.Reference:Fencing materials for Livestock Systems: Barbed Wire Fence, Fence Code: