Fence panel sizes

Can anyone tell me if the standard 6' fence panels are actual size, or nominal (I.e. some allowance for post thickness)? I guess I could answer this by taking a tape measure down to B&Q, but this group has not yet let me down!
I ask as I need to replace a fence which is about to collapse due to the fence posts having rotted through. These posts are (were) located in metal pegs, which I'd hoped to re-use, leaving them in their current locations. However, measuring the existing panels reveals these to be between 179 and 180 cm, about 71". Once panel is only about 4' long, so I'd have to cut one panel, but I'd rather not have to do the lot!
The other alternative is nail feather edge boards up individually to arris (sp?) rails. Or closeboard panels - are these nailed to rails, or do these also fit inbetween posts? I'm somewhat loathe to follow these options, as they're more costly, and we don't intend to be in our current house for more than another year.
Many thanks for any response,     Mike.
--
Dr. Michael Atkinson, GeoQuest Simulation Software Development
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Mike Atkinson {reply address in .sig} wrote:

I have just measured a b and q cheapy fence panel and it is a sixteenth under 6 foot. Bearing in mind it is very hot and dry, so it is probably just over 6 foot on a damp day.
MrCheerful
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Thanks for the tip. I've no experience of this, so I had hoped to get the old wood out. If I have to get the damn things out of the ground then I might as well get new ones.

Yeah, I'm coming to this conclusion. And as these panels are only slightly shorter than the standard, it means I *will* have to get the old pegs out of the ground.

The catalogue I have also has wooden posts with V notches, presumably for these rails. (They also have the mortised version.) One possible advantage of this route is that I can space the posts slightly more than 6 ft apart, and so wouldn't have to get the old pegs out of the ground.

been completely free for a few weeks now.
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Dr. Michael Atkinson, GeoQuest Simulation Software Development
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It's not that difficult to get the old wood out.
It may take a little work with a drill and an old chisel, but how ever fiddling it is it can't be as much effort as putting in new posts.
I reckon you'll be able to get panels to fit well enough..
You can use the metal clips to hold them which gives a bit of leeway, and if you find one where the gap is a bit big I'd fit a bit of batten to the side of the post and fix the panel to that
--
Chris French, Leeds

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Panels normally are 6ft. I repaired a fence for a friend recently where they had used metal posts cemented in. It wasn't hard removing the rotten fence posts out of the old metal posts with a hammer and old screwdriver and a few minutes patience. However the posts had been placed in tight - about an inch less than 6ft. I just removed the last batten on the panel, trimmed the top and bottom battens an inch and nailed back in (screwing is even better). Used a saw to trim the overhanging feather edge panels and job done.
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I had exactly this problem a couple of years ago.
It was very easy to cut down 6' panels to fit - just move the vertical rails at one end in the required amount, and cut off the excess. Took about five minutes per panel once I got the hang of it.
--
Chris Melluish



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Thanks for all the replies. I'll mull this one over during the weekend, but then probably get the panels, accepting that I'll need to do some work on them in order to get them to fit. I do like the idea of reusing the existing metal pegs in the ground - it sounds like I'm going to have some fun extracting the rotten wood from the old posts!
--
Dr. Michael Atkinson, GeoQuest Simulation Software Development
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Hello Mike

Have a bonfire and stick the posts in. Kinda messes them up if they're galvanised, but a wire brushing and a coat of hammerite brings them up lovely.
--
Simon Avery, Dartmoor, UK
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