Electric Flexinet

The place to discuss chicken coops and runs.

Moderators: Marigold, victorias poultry

Post Reply
Bramax
Forum Contributor / Grower
Posts: 20
Joined: Tue Jun 21, 2011 2:38 pm

Electric Flexinet

Post by Bramax » Thu Jul 28, 2011 8:39 pm

This is probably a very silly question, but how much kick should an electric flexinet have? And is there anyway of telling wheher it is giving as much kick as it should?

We are trying it out before the chickens arrive and my other half has had to touch it twice (even though you can here it clicking) to make sure it is working! He says he is suprised that the kick is so small. We are powering it off of an old 12v leisure battery we got off Freecycle. I have tried pointing out that chickens are very small compared to him and that I wouldn't expect it to give a massive electric shock when it is designed for poultry! So how on earth do we tell if it is giving the right amount of kick? We haven't charged the battery so would a fully charged battery give more kick? Also the light on the hotline energiser flashes red and green alternately. Is that what's supposed to happen?
User avatar
foxy
Part of the Flock
Posts: 2367
Joined: Wed Apr 07, 2010 11:33 am
Location: South West

Re: Electric Flexinet

Post by foxy » Thu Jul 28, 2011 9:03 pm

Firstly that is not a silly question, and it is a very good idea to test a fence before the new occupants arrive.
To give you an idea, a voltage above 3,000 volts is reccomended for electrified fencing in order to be an effective deterrant against predators, namely the fox.
You can buy testers which you place on the fence and will measure the actual output (voltage) from the energiser, these are really useful, specially in detirmining the load on the fence ie: anything draining the power from the energiser like tall wet grass earthing and therefore shorting your fence to a degree which renders the fence ineffective.

see here for some examples:

http://www.molevalleyfarmers.com/mvf/st ... 377CA887E4

It might be worth testing how much stored voltage is in the battery, if it is low on juice or an old battery it might be worth considering investing in a new battery, which should last around 6 weeks in between charges, more in the winter as the cold will drain the battery. Which energiser are you using? How powerful is it? finally how long is your netting?
A gentle word of warning here, it is key when using electrified netting/fencing to ensure that in intial set up the fence is working effectively, so the fox is "trained" against the fence, therefore will avoid in future. If the fox gets a slight shock which doesn't deter it is more of a challenge to retrain a fox to avoid the fence in future.
Good luck and please feel free to ask any question re: electrified fencing, we have been using for a number of years, both mains and battery and so far not had a fox penetrate through.
Bramax
Forum Contributor / Grower
Posts: 20
Joined: Tue Jun 21, 2011 2:38 pm

Re: Electric Flexinet

Post by Bramax » Thu Jul 28, 2011 9:37 pm

Hi Foxy,

Thank you for your reply. The energizer is a hotline Gemini 40, 0.8J. (came as part of the package with the netting. The netting is 25m, and it is currently in a straight line but when we are using it for the hens in will be set out in a more square shape. Would this make any difference?

Many thanks
User avatar
darkbrowneggs
Regular Forum Contributor / Laying Well
Posts: 210
Joined: Thu Jun 24, 2010 11:14 pm
Location: Worcestershire
Contact:

Re: Electric Flexinet

Post by darkbrowneggs » Fri Jul 29, 2011 6:49 pm

Don't get the impression I am an electric fencing expert, but this is what I have found out.

You definitely need to charge up your old battery fully before you start, and make sure it is topped up with Distilled Water if it needs it.

Red flashing is a bad sign it needs to be green on everything as far as I know

You must have a good earth stake, especially if the land is dry. I didn't realise that it is the animal touching the wire and the charge going out through their feet to complete the circuit with the energizer/earth spike which gives the shock. I somehow thought it was just earthing in some sort of way, but in fact the charge needs to return through the damp ground back to the earth spike, so it is essential to have a rust free long spike to make the thing work.

You shouldnt have the energizer near steel framed buildings.

If it is clicking it must be shorting out somewhere, find where it is clicking and rearrange the fence

Kill or constantly remove any vegetation near the fence which could short it out

The feathers on chickens give pretty well complete insulation against electric shock, they need to get it on their face/beak/feet to feel it. Generally the netting just keeps the chucks in and the charge keeps the predators out.

Is your energizer strong enough to run the netting? The first one I was sold wasn't, but if you get online the manufacturers generally say how much netting/wire it will run

I am pretty certain my electric netting never functions fully, but so far (Thank you God) it seems to have kept the predators away. I often wonder if animals are more sensitive to electric, but they definitely need a zap before they know what it what.

Mole Valley Farmers are excellent suppliers, and really seem to know what they are talking about when it comes to electric fencing.

All the best
Sue
If you want to follow my travel journal see
www.theworldismylobster.org.uk
User avatar
Tim
Site Admin
Posts: 2363
Joined: Wed May 06, 2009 9:20 am
Location: Herefordshire, UK.
Contact:

Re: Electric Flexinet

Post by Tim » Fri Jul 29, 2011 9:14 pm

The energiser is measured in Joules - 0.8 should be good for 25M of netting but you have to make sure the earth is good (earth rod or copper pipe 1M long rather than the little tent peg sized thing you get with some kits) and the connections are good and as already said, battery voltage is good.

You can also buy a flashing stobe that runs off the fence, useful to check the fence with a glance at night.

Have a look at electric fencing chickens here that explains why you need a high voltage for it to be effective and hopefully explains it fairly well :?
Bramax
Forum Contributor / Grower
Posts: 20
Joined: Tue Jun 21, 2011 2:38 pm

Re: Electric Flexinet

Post by Bramax » Mon Aug 01, 2011 10:04 am

Thank you for your replies.

We are still struggling with our flexinet. I bought a fence tester and when the fence was set up in a straight line we were getting 2000v. We tried a different battery and then got 4000v. Thought we had the problem sorted. Then we moved the fence and set it up in an rectangular shape around the hen house, with the good battery, and now we are back down to 2000v. We've even tried using one of our car batteries and still only get 2000v. We've tried a different earthing spike and this makes no difference. There is no overhanging vegetation touching the fence. My personal theory now is that its something to do with the grass underneath the fence. I know the bottom wire is not electrified so that it can touch the grass, but the vertical wires are not very far from the grass so I think it's quite possible that somewhere along the line a blade of grass could be touching on of the vertical wires and we can't see it? We only mowed the grass 4 days ago, but obviously it's grown since then. I was wondering what the best way of keeping the grass on the fence line short is? I think I read on one website that you have the bottom wire a couple of inches from the ground but surely then the hens could get their heads underneath and risk decapitation by the fox! Any advice would be appreciated.
Post Reply

Return to “Chicken Houses, Runs & Equipment”