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Discussion Starter #1
Greetings: I have a unique situation. I have 5 acres of land and we are about to fence the area. I am trying to decide which type would be best to not only keep people out but keep in too. I have a 4 year old son who has Autism and is prone to climb and run off for an adventure which is very dangerous. So I not only need to keep out but keep in and still not be too dangerous that he could seriously hurt himself if he tried to climb it.

I'm thinking the black iron no climb fence with the spike on the top but those are crazy expensive for 5 acres. Thought about building my own cinder block wall but not sure if I want to be able to see out or not or the pros and cons to that. We've thought about regular fence with a no climb netting on both sides. Trying not to spend a crazy amount but still need to protect my family in both fashions. Thoughts?
 

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In some spots, not all, consider a plant like holly bushes . To save money plant them spaced apart slightly. Planted in front of a window its as good as burglar bars. Chain link fence is generally affordable, search Craigslist in the materials section and you might get lucky. Once you get a considerable amount, Gather friends/relatives and rent a digger and sink posts. Find a stopping point and finish when you can. Once you have the post in is half the battle. You won't need an army to hang the chain link.

punch
 

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As I hear it, via your post, you have concerns about your child and outsiders. I agree chain link is the way to do but I'd strive to hide it behind shrubs, ivy, whatever you can to the outside.
 

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If it were me, . . . I'd probably do the chain link across the front, . . . where it is visible. If done correctly, chain link is an attractive addition.

To save money, . . . from the front of the house, . . . wrapping around the rear, . . . good old cattle fencing the same height as the chain link up front will work well.

One thing to remember, . . . he is young and small now, . . . but won't be for many years. The cattle fencing will stay good looking for at least 10 years, . . . which will give you time to make other decisions as to what you want to do, . . . while giving you safety and peace of mind now.

We used a 3 board wooden fence, . . . relying on teaching our son that the fence was his boundary, . . . it worked for him.

May God bless,
Dwight
 

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One option would be to use T-Posts every 10 feet with a railroad tie every 100 feet. Then add woven wire to the bottom and 3 strands of barbed wire to the top. It is your basic farm fence with will last for decades.
 

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I have a 3 (almost 4) year old with autism too,and chain link is something that he can easily scale over.2/3 of my property is wrapped with 6ft dog ear privacy fencing with the front and one side being joined with chain link.I have the saftey latches on the gates that automatically latch/lock from the outside when closed (like those used around swimming pools.)

But I know all too well the issue you have,we had to install double chains on the house doors to keep him from getting out and going for a stroll (which he has done twice and scared the living hell out of us),but he uses a broomstick to push the chain locks off,hence why I had to double them up and now I criss cross them so he can't get them with a stick.

I would consider the "no climb" fencing as unsuitable even without 5 acres,an autistic child's mind never stop working overtime and I would not want something he could hurt himself on.He is only allowed outside,even with the fencing,if one of us is out there with him,never allowing him to be unsupervised.Having an autistic child really changes up your life from alot of the ways folks would normally do things.I call our fenced in yard area "the toddler prison camp",lol,as a guard must be on duty at all times.
 

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Discussion Starter #8
Thank you Grinder37 for your post. Seriously good to hear from you knowing that you have an autistic son and understand what my situation is.

I'll share a little back story. We currently live in a subdivision where the houses are stacked on top of each other and everyone has a pool. We put up a 4ft pool fence and just a couple of weeks ago he has found a way to pull himself over it without climbing on anything. Reached his hands up and some how acrobatically flipped himself over and was into the pool. Luckily our oldest who is 8 saw him and yelled and we dove in and got him before anything bad could happen (He was playing in the shallow end) We used to always let him play out there with his brothers and sisters because we had the pool fence. Now, as you said, he scares the hell out of me. There have been a couple of times he has found away to get out. Once while we were camping at Disney we woke up, couldn't find him, he found a way to unsnap the side of the pop up camper and was sitting about 30ft away playing in the sand. There have been 4 or 5 times he has found a way that we were not expecting to get out.

We have seriously been looking at 10ft tall prison style fencing! Minus the barb wire of course. My wife and I discussed it and we don't want to use any sort of barbed wire because we know he will get hurt and as you mentioned, he will keep trying regardless of the pain or consequences until he finds a way out. Chain link won't work he will get over that in no time and teaching him not to, that won't work. So that is why we were thinking of the baseball type netting that allows you to see out and in but makes it so he can't get his fingers or toes in to climb over it.

We also thought of just doing 6ft wood fence but we would have to face the boards towards us and then anyone could technically jump over if they wanted which kind of defeats part of protecting our property from outsiders. (Unless what you mean by double wrapping is that you added boards to the other side as well. Which that is a brilliant idea I haven't thought of.) So we are racking our brains trying to find a way to keep people out, and our son in. The other issue is that while we are OK financially, to fence 5 acres (Not sure if I mentioned we just bought this land for our family) is going to costs thousands and thousands of dollars especially if we go with a higher grade tall aluminum no climb fence. Just to do the front of our property if we do it ourselves would still be like 6000.00 and that isn't counting the back and sides. The back of our property is wet lands and they only allow cattle barbed wire fencing without us having to pay a pretty steep amount to build a better fence on the wetlands portion so we are thinking of just fencing the dry lands portion and do the cattle fence on the rest of the wet lands.

So this brings me back to trying to figure out what to do. I agree that he has to be supervised at all times. One thing I mentioned is that we have 5 kids. 3 boys 2 girls from 8 years old to 2. My 4 year old is the only one with Autism. So there are times we are outside that we have to take our eyes off of him briefly or if I am at work and my wife is by herself and I am constantly nervous and feel like we are on borrowed time. Soon as I can figure out this fence I'll be better. We will never let him run around just to do it with nobody watching, but if he finds a way out, or takes off before one of us or the older kids sees him, we want to make sure he can't get out.
 

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No problem,but I wish I had a solid answer for you,however,we have the same issue you face.My fencing is only for helping contain our son,it is not intended to keep intruders out.We have other methods for that.

But what about vinyl privacy fencing?Your child would not be able to scale it,or I like the idea of "double wrapping" the wooden privacy fence (putting the nice looking side on both the front and back side of the post).Would still make a smooth wall that your child couldn't climb.

The "double wrapping I was speaking of is for our house front and back door inside chain locks.One time he got out around 4:30 in the morning.The only reason we knew was because my wife got up to go to the bathroom and seen the front door wide open.We both went running into the dark,her in her night clothes and me barefoot and in my boxers (we live in the country with no street lights) and found him setting in my neighbors yard (120 yds away) picking dandelions,lol,I thought I was gonna have a heart attack.
 

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Discussion Starter #10
Ahhh, Oh I know that feeling all too well! I just told my wife about the double chain idea. We are going to do that one too. The Vinyl Panel idea sounds good too but I have always been worried that they wouldn't do well in a storm and always thought they were a lot more expensive. We are in central Florida and hurricanes and power outages are what we focus our prepping on. We know it isn't an if but when. So I'm worried they may not stand up to the strong winds. But not sure if the wood will for that matter. I do love the going on both sides with the fence "double wrapping" idea haha. Hey wasn't what you are saying but it gave me that idea. I think that might be our answer! Are you able to link what you are talking about with your gate? I'm going to send you a message with my Email as I can tell you will probably be a great resource and maybe us as well.
 

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Are there any GPS tracking devices you can get for your son? I know they have them for pets. If he gets out of a range, maybe it would beep, or locate him if he gets lost? We raised 8 kids, 4 birth kids and 4 adopteds and 2 of our adopted girls were eventually diagnosed with autism. I feel for you. I hope you can find a fencing solution. In terms of fencing 5 acres with childproof fencing.....ouch. That would be expensive. I think you may have to limit his range on that property to just a half acre fenced?

My 3 year old grandson lives with me, and we are rural, not far from a river, with a 55mph road out front too. I panic every time I can't see him. I filled in my pond with sandbags for fear of him drowning. We also didn't put up our pool the last 2 years. Fortunately he seems to know his boundaries, and I admit to scaring him with stories of child stealing coyotes, so, he stays close to home.

Also, I suggest a pool alarm if you don't have one. These are activated when the surface of the water is broken. They float on top, and if a child falls in they sound. Your neighbors with pools should get one as well. It's a small price to pay to keep a child safe, any one's child.
 

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Discussion Starter #13
We haven't had the money yet to buy fencing so we still are going back and forth. For the past week or so it seems like we decided on doing the 6foot by 8foot wood fence and then panel both sides. However, my wife now wants to do a 10ft chain link fence with no climb netting instead of the wood fence so it will last longer without rotting or so forth. I still don't know. What I do know is that we are planning on fencing in about an acre or two of land with the higher level of security fencing and then do standard no climb horse fence around the rest of the property say 5ft with T-Bars. We stayed out at our new property for the first time over memorial day weekend and with no fence I was on superman alert. He did very well though and stayed within the yard where we could see him at all times. He only bolted once but that was to see what his brothers and sisters were doing down the road that he saw. So it was good first experiment but I still woke up every hour checking on him to make sure he didn't find some way out of the pop up camper without me knowing while everyone was asleep. I'll keep everyone posted on what we decide.
 
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