wood fence post size - bigger is better?

I asked several contractor to bid on replacing a section of wood fence. Most use the same size fence pressure treated post 4x4, which actually measured 3.5x3.5 inch.
However, one of them says they use a 4.125 x 4.125 size post. I've never seen this size before. Is it better than 3.5x3.5 or do you think the contractor just happened to have a cheaper source for this size post?
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Hi Peter, what is the length? And the cost difference? Upon inspection are you happy with one over the other? Myself I prefer 8' PT land scape timber for posts. Usually on sale at Menard's or Lowe's at $3.00 each.
(still have to paint them though...)
:-)
best.
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My PVC fence has 5X5 posts. Although its PVC, I guess it does make the fennce more sturdy. I would go with the 4.125 posts.
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2_Biz snipped-for-privacy@allthetime.grr. wrote:

Very bad idea!! They are not treated for in-ground usage and will rot out in a few years. I know from experience - had to replace all my fence posts just because I tried to save a few bucks.
Bob S.
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Bob S. wrote:

True. Landscape timbers are made from peeler cores, the center of pine/fir/spruce trees. About the poorest quality wood you could find. Not the type of wood but the fact is is taken from the center of old trees - the poorest part of the tree.
Harry K
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untreated pine landscape timbers for about 1.79 each but I decided on the pressure treated quality seal in ground rated at $3.00 each. About "save a few bucks.." yah, I guess so. My South line is some 200+ feet, the West another 185 here I spaced the 50 some 5"x6"x8' pt landscape timbers some 10-12 feet (varied) apart two feet deep (rented an auger) 3 10-12' 2x4's top, center and bottom between the timber's. Visited a local Lebeda Mattress Factory Outlet and tore down their throw away pallets for the 1"x3"x6'boards, used maybe 40-50 of these 'FREE' boards in each 10-12' section spaced about 1/2-3/4 apart using hammer and nails. Put my air compressor from garage in pick-up and spray painted both sides. Left the existing woven wire fence on the North 257 and East 348. The reason for this is lunatic neighbor to the South and West doesn't practice proper animal husbandry and her herd of 2500lbs. bull's have grown to about fifty (50)in number. Actually it's a local joke that each Heifer has it's own husband. But it's no joke when one Heifer goes into heat and the Bull gang gang's up on her. Or when a couple bulls start fighting (especially at night when you can't see where they are coming from) they tend to mow everything in their path down. At first I had to at least pull my toddler out of harms way once. The big fence went up in a weeks time. High winds, bull attacks, five years later still standing as good as the day it was finished. Low cost, no sign of rot yet. Better actually as my family, home and yard is afforded protection. I used the money saved on my child's education and recreation for him. And pretty soon him and i will either replace it or whitewash, whatever. Yah, you may be right, might not be for everybody, but it works for me. 2-bizzy (but enjoying the cool weather brought on by the Hurricane Dennis)

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Replacement sure sounds like a lot of hard work and x-tra expense. I think in my case with our 6 ft. high privacy fence I would just reinforce the existing posts with driven steel posts and save the sections. I suppose if a 'coyote' fence it would be OK though. ;-)
2_biz

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peter wrote:

Since that size is not a standard lumber size, I suspect he is using rough cut, i.e., not planed. Nothing wrong with that if he is and as long as it is pressure treated. The rough surface would be a problem with painting but might add a bit of achitectual interest. For sure look at a sample of his posts before you sign a contract.
Harry K
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scribbled this interesting note:

To my mind, the actual post used is more important than one that would be just slightly larger.
Pressure Treated posts that are not center cut tend to warp and twist. Think about it, in this application, what would be most important, a post that stays straight and true, or one that has a larger load bearing capacity? The larger wood post isn't necessary since all it really has to do is hold the fence upright. Yes, I know when the wind blows, fences sometimes blow down, but that is usually due to rotten posts or thin walled metal posts.
In short, go with the better contractor. Stress you want center cut posts so they will stay straight. That extra .625" isn't as important as workmanship.
-- John Willis snipped-for-privacy@airmail.net (Remove the Primes before e-mailing me)
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Most women would agree that bigger is always better. On the other hand. men are generally satisfied with 3.5 inches. Find out who will be using it the most.

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