DIY: Build A Dry Stone Fence With Tools From Your Own Backyard
Stone walls are probably the most sturdy and straightforward of most fences that homeowners put up. They're traditional and create an aesthetically worn look that makes your home look cozy and inviting, with a hint of history on the side. The second best thing about these stone fences is that you can do them completely on your own, without needing to hire a professional. Oddly enough, the best way to learn how to do this is by reading this guide and looking at the stone fencing you're using as a model for your yard.
● Stones of varying sizes
● Sharp-edge hammer
● A shovel
● Sturdy work gloves
Step 1: Find Your Stones
The biggest thing you'll need to have one hand is stones of your liking. For a stone fence, it's usually best to have long flat rocks that will sit well on top of each other, especially because it's going to be a dry stone fence (this means that you won't be needing any mortar, it's very simple). Use a wheelbarrow and decide what stones you want at the bottom (larger sturdier rocks are best), and what you want at the top.You're other option is to order some faux stone panels that will help start you off.
Step 2: Find the Right Spot
For your fence to last (and many last hundreds of years), you need to make sure you find a sturdy place. An even ground is best, and it is easiest to work if you dig a trench. It doesn't need to be deep at all, but it gets the grass out of the way and allows you to set the line where you want the fence as well as control the leveling.
Step 3: Decide Your Measurements
You have a general idea of where you want the fence to be, but it's time to decide what length you want the wall, and how wide you want it to be when you're finished. This should be marked somewhere, so you don't have to eyeball it later.
Step 4: Remember the Fundamentals
When you're looking at other stone fences, you'll notice that most of them get skinnier at the top, while they're wider at the bottom. This isn't just for decoration; the wall needs the stable support at the bottom to hold the top, and the top can't be heavy, or it will tumble down. A stone fence without that is all over the place is just a pile of rocks - keep your design in mind! For the top, it's best to have the wall lean in 1/6" of the actual height.
Step 5: Put Up Side Railing
6. Need Help?
Consider calling a professional or even asking some friends for help if you're getting tired quickly or having trouble finding and lifting the stones you like. This would also be where the faux stone panels would help, especially because finding your own stones can be tedious and exhausting.
7. The First Level
Start with flat, sturdy rocks at the bottom, and then find flat stones and rocks that will help interlock with them. This is where the sharp-edge hammer comes into play - you can cut the rocks to make them even or flat.
8. The Middle and the Finishing Touches
Once you reach the middle part, you can use some medium size stones rather than the large ones. Make sure all of the stones fit together, so you don't have any holes. This makes it so that you don't need to use any mortar to fill gaps. As you get closer to the top, keep checking to make sure that your wall is level.