How to remove star pickets
How to remove star pickets If you’re familiar with temporary fencing, you’ll probably know how tough it can be to remove star pickets. For the uninitiated, star pickets are the metal posts inserted into the ground that support mesh or wire fencing. These posts have stubs on them that keep the mesh or wire in place.
They’re usually inserted deep into the ground to ensure that temporary and semi-permanent fencing is stable and fit for purpose. However, this can make it a challenge to get them out again, particularly if you’re doing the job without the use of powerful machinery.
When you’re dismantling temporary fencing, removing the star pickets is a difficult but necessary task. There are a few different approaches you can take to doing this, and the most appropriate option for you will depend on your circumstances.
In this blog post, we’ll talk you through how to remove star pickets in several ways.
Try the basic approach
The least sophisticated option involves no tools, just your hands, and is a good place to start. Try wriggling the star picket until it becomes loose and can be removed with ease. Be warned – most of the time this approach won’t work simply because the post is too deep in the ground. After all, fencing needs to be secure and stable. Don’t risk injury by persevering with this method if the star picket is stuck in the ground. If it’s too difficult to remove by hand, move on to using a mechanical post puller.
Use a DIY post puller
It may not be worth your while to invest in a post puller if you’re only removing star pickets as a one-off. If this is the case, you might prefer to put together a DIY device. Making your own post puller is simple and quick to do – drill a hole through a wooden or steel bar such as a steel pipe, and use a bolt to attach a small chain to the post with a D shackle attached to the opposite end of the chain.
All you need to do to remove a star picket with a device like this is place a fulcrum underneath the bar, attach the D shackle to one of the post holes and then put pressure on the opposite end of the bar to start working the star picket out of the ground. Whilst a DIY device may be simple, it’s an effective tool if you need to remove star pickets promptly and don’t have specialist equipment at hand.
A lever-based post puller
If it’s not possible for you to build your own post puller, buying a lever-based post pulling tool might be the most effective way for you to remove star pickets. This is also a sensible approach if you frequently remove star pickets. A wide range of these tools is available on the market, and they tend to be affordable pieces of equipment.
Despite the variety, they generally all work using the same principle. The tool’s base is placed closely against the base of the post you want to remove. The puller’s shackle or claw is applied to grip the post and the lever is then used to work the post out of the ground.
This is a highly effective way of removing star pickets by hand. If you need to regularly remove star pickets or frequently find yourself fashioning DIY pullers, this small investment could really make your work more straightforward.
Post pulling plates
If you have access to a tractor or jack, another option is to use post pulling plates. These plates are specially designed for this purpose, and they work by being placed over the top of the post and then having upwards force applied to them using your machinery. This tightly grips the star picket and forces it upwards, pulling it out of the ground. Unless you have access to heavy machinery, post pulling plates are not an effective option. Using this method also means having to transport other heavy machinery to the site, unlike other approaches to removing star pickets.
Added to that, if you do have a tractor, star pickets can be removed without the need for additional pulling plates, meaning this tool may be unnecessary.
Get further advice
If you’re in need of strong and reliable temporary fencing, get in touch with Jaybro. As a leading supplier of construction consumables in Australia, our range includes high quality and stable temporary fencing solutions that are appropriate for a range of purposes, including events, festivals, and crowd control.