How Do You Build a Chain-Link Fence?

To build a chain-link fence, install terminal posts and line posts, and then secure chain-link fabric between the posts with top rails, tension bands, rail ends and fence ties. The tools you need are a posthole digger, equipment for cement application and pliers.

  1. Outline the fence

    Tighten string around stakes to outline your fence plans, and ensure the outline does not interfere with utility or property lines.

  2. Dig holes for posts

    Dig holes into the ground for the posts, and ensure that each hole is between 18 and 24 inches deep and 8 inches wide.

  3. Install posts

    Pour enough gravel into each hole to ensure that 45 inches of each post is above ground, and then secure the posts into the holes.

  4. Apply cement

    Mix the cement according to the instructions of the manufacturer, and then spread the cement around each post. Create a downward slope with the cement to protect the holes from floods.

  5. Allow the cement to cure

    Give the cement at least 48 hours to dry.

  6. Add tension bands

    Add three tension bands to each terminal post so that each band is pointed in the direction the fence travels. Slide one down to the bottom, one to the middle and one to the top.

  7. Add post caps

    Install dome caps to the tops of the terminal posts and loop caps to the line posts.

  8. Insert a top rail into the rail end

    Install a rail end into the top tension band of the terminal post, and then insert the end of a top rail into the rail end.

  9. Insert the opposite side into the loop cap

    Insert the opposite side of the top rail into a loop cap, and then tighten the bolt on the rail end loosely.

  10. Install the remaining top rails

    Use the same technique to install the remaining top rails, and join the ends of two top rails together with a top rail sleeve when needed.

  11. Install tension wire

    Wrap tension wire around the bottom of each terminal post once. Twist it tight with pliers, and then stretch the wire around the fence.

  12. Install the tension bar

    Thread a tension bar through the first column of chain-link diamonds on the chain-link fabric, and then loosely secure the bar to the tension bands on the terminal posts with carriage bolts.

  13. Roll out the chain-link fabric

    Roll out the chain-link fabric along the entire span of the fence, and connect it to the top rail with fence ties.

  14. Secure the fabric

    Space out fence ties in 24-inch increments on the top rail and tension wire and 12-inch increments on the line posts.

  15. Tighten the carriage bolts

    Eliminate slack and excess fabric, and then tighten each carriage bolt to finish. Install a gate to complete the fence.