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Discussion Starter #1
Determined to pull off the dino theme this year and working on an idea for an electric fence to cordon off areas where I will be using AtmosFear's Dino Experience projections for "live" dinosaurs. I'm trying to keep the cost down, easy construction (limited tools), materials need to fit in my car for transport, and hopefully a convincing fence look in the end. Here's my rough drawing of what I have in mind.



Here's some of the materials:
1) concrete 8x8x8 in. block, interior hole dimension 5x5 in., 17 lbs. each.
2) 6 or 8ft long wood boards, 4-1/2 in. wide, to form each post's two side sections, connected by wooden spacers for structural stability and topped by a piece with a center hole drilled to hold a LED flashing cone light
3) foamboard for the front post panel
4) "bolts" (push-in plastic rivets with curved heads to push through the foamboard to give similar effect)
5) clothes line (seems cheapest route) colorized gray/silver somehow for a metal look
6) LED flashing cone lights for use as indication of energized fence (steady red light) or trouble in a section (bright rapidly red flashing light).
7) gray paint for wood and foamboard sections.
8) drill for making vertically spaced holes in height of side wood panels to run "wiring" through each post connecting them.
9) signage - Warning 10,000 Volts, Warning Do Not Touch Fence! Electrified Fence throughout the Park

Feel free to add any comments or suggestions here.

I'm sure I can carry home in my car 6ft long wood pieces but was considering 8ft if I can. Any thoughts on which length you think would look better? Most of the kids will be 5ft or under I think. I like the idea of a towering fence but if I go with 8ft posts do you think the flashing post lights on top of the fence will be less noticeable? Do want them seen. So far I'm planning on 7 posts to the electrified fence as a minimum to "protect" the "live" dinosaur specimens--a T-rex and a pack of velociraptors.

I set up a HalloweenForum "2019 Dino theme" album for my projects and plan to add photos as things progress. Photo of some of the project parts are in my album.
 

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Discussion Starter #2
I could go with a 8x8x16 inch concrete block for a wider post base and the resulting foam panel would be wider than the 5 inches with the half blocks and it would look more sturdy. From HomeDepot the cost would be 1.60 (8x8x8) or 1.90 (8x8x16) so not a huge cost difference. The longer length block is 31 lbs however and not sure if I want to be lugging those blocks around. If you were doing this project what way would you lean for planning the base?

Plan to start with one test post next week and see how it goes.
 

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If anyone purchases the LED flashing cone lights for their projects and is having an issue with it not seeming to work, might be that the batteries are not properly installed. There are indications on the battery holder and the top of the light but not obvious as the indicators are the same color as the lamp. I took a black Sharpie to my light to make it easier to see and get set up quickly. No instructions in the box they come in. I bought my lights off an ebay seller in Chino, CA as I got a discount for ordering several at a time. Here's my video if it helps anyone.

 

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I could go with a 8x8x16 inch concrete block for a wider post base and the resulting foam panel would be wider than the 5 inches with the half blocks and it would look more sturdy. From HomeDepot the cost would be 1.60 (8x8x8) or 1.90 (8x8x16) so not a huge cost difference. The longer length block is 31 lbs however and not sure if I want to be lugging those blocks around. If you were doing this project what way would you lean for planning the base?

Plan to start with one test post next week and see how it goes.
If you go with the 8' boards, you may wanna use the 16" blocks. 8' tall boards will catch more wind than you think.
 

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Discussion Starter #6
Great ideas, Spookie! It all sounds good on paper.
I hope it all comes together the way you want it to.

Just wondered----why does it need to be transportable?

Thanks Dave. The transportable need is so I can fit the boards in the car to get them home from HD. We have 2 new sedans with liftback/passthru trunk area that I can put longer things in through but the exact length could be an issue. 6 feet shouldn't be an issue. 8 not so sure. In fact I'm thinking of using some of the folded insulation sheathing I have at home for the front of the posts. The insulation is 4' x 50' (like these) and I can cut into 6 or 8ft sections.
 

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Have you considered using something like 3” PVC pipes for the fence posts? You could use rebar pounded into the ground to provide support. Making the posts out of wood is going to make them quite heavy and if you make them out of foam board I think you will need to spend a serious amount of labor making them look real. PVC pipe just needs some paint.
 

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Have you considered using something like 3” PVC pipes for the fence posts? You could use rebar pounded into the ground to provide support. Making the posts out of wood is going to make them quite heavy and if you make them out of foam board I think you will need to spend a serious amount of labor making them look real. PVC pipe just needs some paint.
I've used PVC pipe before for some projects and will probably use some for the signage I will put up. Made some Monster movie poster displays two years ago with 2" and it worked really well. Thanks for the suggestion and I looked into it. I always come up against cost for a one night halloween display (needing at least 7 posts) and even with 3" pvc sewer pipe would still have the length restrictions for getting it home. HD has some 10ft 4" diameter pvc pipe (don't see 3") and that runs 15.56 a piece. Their ABS 3" comes in 10ft sections and runs even more. In the end I think using the concrete block and two pieces of wood will be less expensive. Everything will get a coat of gray paint so either way that would be a wash likely, with wood probably easier to paint.

Using the smaller cement block, my post width would be 5" so visually I think a nicer, sturdier look for an dino park electric fence than 3" so am inclined at this point to go with the wood and cement block approach. Do really appreciate the feedback and good to get at this planning stage before materials are bought. :)


While not an electric fence in this scene, in my mind I think I patterned my fence after the posts in this movie clip. Originally had considered using pvc pipe instead of clothes line but given several lengths of it for each section, opted for the clothes line instead :D.



Actually a bit more like this one (from a Jurassic Park video game I think): https://www.neogaf.com/threads/jurassic-world-evolution-announced-summer-2018-pc-xb1-ps4-frontier.1421562/page-4#post-246570770

and definitely not as tall as these: https://vignette.wikia.nocookie.net/jurassicpark/images/3/39/JPTRexPaddock.png/revision/latest?cb=20111103234347

Now of course I love this scene for humor (looks like the posts here are I-beams) but my Park electrician won't be as lucky as Dr. Grant!



If I do need to extend my fence length, I suppose I could use a PVC pipe in between the posts and run the clothesline through eye hooks inserted in the pipe. Kind of messes the pipe up for later use but still a possibility. Likely go with 2" pvc in that situation.
 

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Discussion Starter #9
Until I build one of the post sections I won't know how exactly I'll have the fence laid out or how many posts I'll need. The electrified fence will be used to "contain" some of the lab's "live" creatures such as this one below, our T-Rex, who'll hopefully be living in our house behind these french doors that will be turned into a containment pen for it. The other area will be the velociraptors section. I don't really want the kids to be going up to the glass doors so the fence will keep them at a distance. Pardon the very quick and messy imaging layout here, I don't bother to refine anything in the planning stage. Just for visualiztion for the most part of how the layout could work but thought it would help to see what the intent will be. The T-Rex since he's suppose to be in a container will be using the Window/Hollusion projection. The raptors that will appear in the family room large picture window I think I will be using the TV/Wall projection version and the one where you are peering through the jungle foliage so they look further off in the distance in the wild. Haven't mocked up that layout yet.

 

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@Spookie Thanks for the clips - now I understand what you are trying to do. I think I would go with the taller boards if you can fit them in your car. You are creating a "set" and the more dramatic the better! :eek:
 

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I'm sketching out ideas for our Dino Park in the Dark event which starts in June. I'm thinking to make fencing using 3 8' 2x4 per post. I'm planning to make an "I" beam by turning the middle one sideways, sandwhiching it between the other two and screwing them together. I'm going to stand them up hammering those green stakes Lowes sells in the ground and screwing them to each one, easy up/easy down. I'll paint them grey, drill holes and insert painted grey rope from the wire. Solar lights with red covers or red LEDS installed are what I'm planning for the lights.

2x6x8 would look better but probably too heavy. I wish I had a good source for fiberglass I beams.
 

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Discussion Starter #12
Blade, sounds a little bit similar to my set up but with key variations in structural support of it and post design (yours I-beam and mine U-shaped). Cool to have someone doing this along with me this year! Can't wait to see how yours comes out and feel free to post your progress here under this thread. Should make it easier for people interested in doing an electrified fence to find ideas on constructing one and learn from our different projects.


I looked into the cost of various width dimensions for the wood and ideally I would like to go with 1x5x8 (actual width of lumber is 4-1/2") but the extra 1" board width I'd get over the 1x4x8 lumber (actual 3-1/2") times possibly close to a dozen built posts times 2 boards for each post just doesn't monetarily make sense for me so opting for the 1x4x8 and will make that work.

I found an 8' length of lumber in our garage (not sure what I bought it for) but was able test it in my car for transporting. Had more room than I thought going through my trunk/rear seat area :D, so good to go on that length. I decided that a 7' height however was "towering" enough for my design (6' just seemed too short and for my use 8' was just too high and I thought could be a bit more unwieldy when built as a post). The 7' high lumber would reduce the weight of the post design and probably make it a bit more stable. With the 1' section I'll get off each board, I'll be able to use that for the bracing in between the 2 side boards of the post. In my design the 2 side pieces of lumber have an actual dimension of .75" each, so 1.5" total, so I need 3.5" for each bracing piece (based on my cement block's interior opening of 5")l. With two-1' boards per post, I'll get a yield of 6 pieces per post. Trying to be economical here. I'll diagram this out once I set up the first test post.
 

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I'm going to try and get on it next week or so? I have to be ready by May 29th but this HUGE haunt build is eating all my free time. Hoping to limit my projects to just one or two new things for this event. I have an Indoraptor mask I want to try to make it look like it's attacking fom inside a crate via wiper motor too..sigh. I mentioned the solar lights and using them as the beacons on top of the fence? I lucked out and found Lowes had their Stained Glass spray paint on clearance yesterday and grabbed a can. I'll try it and post a pic.

I also found that out of three Lowes in my area one had cheaper lumber than the prices it said on the website. Saved about a 1.00 per board.

There are some tricks to height, I know you can taper a board on one end to make it appear taller while standing under it. The..over fencing? I'm not sure what it's called. It's fence on "L" shaped brackets, not quite 45 degrees that mounts to the top of your fencing, prevents climbing and adds an added sense of height in real enclosures.

My one real concern is should I leave this up all June/July? It sorta would be in the way for pics of the Rex during my busiest months. But this would suck to put up/take down every evening.

Rex sans fence :

 

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Discussion Starter #14
Blade I have always loved your dinos and displays. Wish I was closer to visit. :(

Made it out to HD and picked up a cement block and a few pieces of lumber. Ended up getting 6ft pieces as the 8s they had there were warped and I just want to start next week to see if the concept works. Actually the 1x4x6 boards are heavier than I thought so the advice given here about lumber length/weight was spot on. :). I'll see how the 6ft works but almost wish I could make this out of foamboard although not sure I could display the "electrical wire" like I wanted if I do. I decided to save on paint and use the wood portion as a frame that will be kind of wrapped with 1/4 inch foamboard sheathing and that will be painted. At least that's the latest plan. Constructing these should be a learning experience and will most definitely make me appreciate those who do construction LOL. I have a pair of sawhorses arriving Monday for when I'm ready to paint. I am jealous of those of you who have a great workspace and tools. Next week is suppose to be cooler so hope to make the most of it. We actually had temps this week in the 90s already. Today was kind of muggy too. I have dino eggs, dino tracks and dino ribs on my project list too but I think the fence is the biggest one to tackle.
 
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