# garden fence at right-angle to house

We wish to straighten and 'position correctly' the garden fence that we share with a neighbour in an adjoining terraced house.
What is the best way to get the fence at exactly right angles to our houses? The garden is about twenty metres long. Thanks for advice.
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On Tue, 08 Jul 2008 07:41:15 +0100, john westmore wrote:

=================================Get a large sheet (6' x 2')of chipboard or an old door and lay it flat with one short edge along the wall of the house. Use this board as a 'square' and run a string line along side it to give you a straight line at 90 degrees to your houses.
Cic.
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Using Ubuntu Linux
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Apply the old 3,4,5 rule. 3 foot along wall, 4 foot along fence and 5 foot for the hypotenuse to make the right angle.

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On Tue, 08 Jul 2008 07:52:36 GMT, "Dave"

The OP is in the UK, and the EU has forced them to use metres for measurements. Of course this changes everything. If he wants to use 3 metres and 4 metres, he's going to need a trig calculator to find the length of the hypotenuse. Just wanted to warn you, OP.

Just kidding.

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Yep. I'm in Oz. Down here we use the 4 side on the wall.

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wrote:

I think I could do that one in my head, let me think now, yes I think I have got it, the hypotenuse would be 5 metres. ;-)
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Or for a more accurate measurement, use Pythagoras's theorem. Lay a 3 unit length against the wall, a 4 unit length as the boundary guide, and a 5 unit length to make up the other side of the right angled triangle.
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On Tue, 08 Jul 2008 08:52:57 +0100, Harry Stottle wrote:

---------------------------------
=================================Doesn't that just make a large set square - something like a rectangular board with squared corners?
Cic.
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It does if the original rectangular 'old door', or sheet of 6' x 2' chipboard, has perfectly squared corners, but 1/2 an inch out and it could result in land grab ;-)
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What!
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john westmore wrote:

As others have said, the 3:4:5 triangle with a bit of string will do that.
However, it doesn't mean that it is necessarily the right place for the fence.. With any luck, if you toddle up the garden you may find the (remains) of the boundary marker. Which may be just a small wooden post in the ground.
The original builders may not have been that precise with the right angle as you seem determined to be. Your neighbour may not be too happy if your efforts leaves the boundary post well and truly your side of the fence.
-- Sue
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john westmore wrote:

As others have suggested, use the 3,4,5 rule (it's what the builders of the pyramids in Egypt did).
If the houses are 20 meters apart, you can use 15, 20, 25 meter measurements.
However there's one difficulty you may encounter. The wall may be square to one house and crooked as a dog's hind leg at the other.
I recommend bushes.
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Weird.... I thought the pyramids pre-date Pythagoras by 1 or 2 millennia?
--
Martin

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wrote:

If I may, as the same thought occurred to me, I believe his point is that the 3,4,5 rule, commonly referred to as the Pythagorean theorem, is credited to Pythagoras. It's difficult to use concepts that have not yet been developed.
Obviously there is a hell of a lot we don't know about the state of technology on Earth at the time the pyramids were built.
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Smitty Two wrote: ...

Well, of course, it was them extra-terrestrials that showed them the points from their higher vantage point...
--
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They had been developed - just not fully explored and understood. And keep in mind that it's quite possible to develop and use a mathematical formula but not to have a proof or deeper understanding of it.
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The Egyptians could have got right angles without using math. Lay out a rectangle and measure that the opposite corners in each direction are the same distance.
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Let's say the corners, in order, as you traverse the perimeter of the "rectangle" are A, B, C, and D. What do you mean by "opposite corners"? At first, I'd take that to mean A and C are opposite corners, and B and D are opposite corners. But then AC and BD can be the same distance, without the thing actually being a rectangle:
A B +----------------+ / \\ / \\ / \\ +------------------------+ C D
To ensure that a four-sided convex plane figure is a rectangle, I think we need to check all of these:
AB = CD AC = BD AD = BC
Here's a simple way to get a right angle. Let's say we want a right angle to this wall:
| | +-----------------------------*-------------------------------+
We want a right angle at the point marked with the asterisk. We need two pieces of string, the same length, each marked about 1/3 of the way from one end. The marks should be in the same position on each string. The end farthest from the mark should be attached to a stake or something, so that it can be driven into the ground. I'll draw the string like this:
.....o........v
The v represents the stake, and the o is the mark 2/3 from the free end.
Lay out one of the strings against the wall, with the mark at the * point, and drive the stake into the ground:
| | +-----------------------------*-------------------------------+ .....o........v
Move that string out of the way, and then place the other string's mark at the *, but with the stake going toward the other direction, and drive its stake in:
| | +-----------------------------*-------------------------------+ v........o..... v / / .....o
At this point you have two stakes driven into the ground on opposite directions along the wall from the * point, but the same distance from it, and each stake has a string attached to it. The strings are the same length. Now just bring the ends of the two strings together and pull them both taught (these drawings are distorted due to the limitations of ASCII art and how much time I'm willing to try to make it):
| | +-----------------------------*-------------------------------+ v v \\ / \\ / \\ / o o \\/
A line from the place where the ends of the strings meet, to the *, is perpendicular to the wall.
Note that this construction is based on the classic geometry problem of constructing a perpendicular to a line.
--
--Tim Smith

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On Tue, 08 Jul 2008 09:19:23 -0700, Smitty Two

Au contraire, mon ami. At least in this case.
Most of the pyramids did not require the local use of mathematics at all. They were usually built from kits sold by Sears, and all the calculations were done by Sears technicians.
Check out www.sears.com/lib/archives/stone/2000.htm
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