Fencing can be hard work on parts of the Fleurieu Peninsula in South Australia, where the ground can be as hard as rock and sometimes rugged terrain means a tractor just isn't an option.
While timber posts have been traditional in this part of South Australia, contractor Jon Weise has been a long time user of steel and believes it makes his jobs faster and gives better results for his customers.
Jon has operated his fencing and revegetation contracting business in the region for thirty years, and has experienced more than his fair share of complicated and back breaking fencing jobs.
"We do a lot of jobs in rough, steep country, and when I want to a job done quickly and often with only one extra man, it takes some planning ahead and quality gear," said Jon.
"I think plenty of people in this area still use timber posts because they think they're stronger.
But there are so many advantages in steel these days - not only are they actually stronger and less labour intensive to use, they last longer and are fire resistant.
"I have seen so many steel posts completely rusted out by the salt air, but the hot dipped galvanized GalStar steel posts are still standing," said Jon.
Recently Jon took on a particularly challenging job in the rugged Sellicks Beach area.
"We needed to fence some particularly rugged country where there was a drop off of 20m in places and the ground was as hard as rock. I couldn't get a tractor in to drive the posts and in some places I couldn't even get a vehicle up to where we were working," said Jon.
"In this case I decided to go with an all steel fencing system to save time and expense.I used the Waratah GalStar Extreme steel posts for most of the fence, with GalStar MaxY® posts (the larger profile GalStar post) every six metres for extra strength combined with Stocklock Longlife mesh and topped with two Longlife Blue barb wires."
"Because of the terrain, this fence had to actually curve, so we used the stronger GalStar MaxY® posts every second post on the bends to act as strainers. Where we could use regular strainer posts, we used Waratah Ezyslots with Adjusta Stays," said Jon.
"I find the Stocklock Longlife mesh stays tighter than plain wire - it's more stock proof and also does a good job deterring the kangaroos.
We use it on ninety percent of our jobs," he added.
"The ground up there is like rock, so we purchased a Waratah Thumpa® pneumatic post driver for the job and haven't looked back since!" said Jon.
"It drove the posts in with ease - I was able to run the lead for the Thumpa® from the vehicle to drive the posts in the really inaccessible spots.
"Normally a job like this would be done completely by hand, take weeks and cost the customer thousands of dollars. I think I would still be there! Waratah gave us a demonstration on how to use their wide range of fencing products, but it was really simple to pick up."
"I have been really pleased with the Waratah posts and wire on this job, but we have been long time users - I just can't get the consistency or the quality anywhere else. I have been fencing for a long time and am always looking for ways to get a job done right the first time," said Jon.
For information about effective fencing design and materials, contact your local Waratah representative on 13 10 80 or go to the website www.onesteelwaratah.com.au.