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Poly Panels Beat Steel Guardrails
Douglas Thornburg’s new plastic fence rails won’t injure livestock or the people putting them up. Unveiled at the recent National Farm Machinery Show in Louisville, Ky., the corrugated, high density poly rails cost and weigh a fraction of recycled steel guardrails. The 16 1/2-ft. long by 14-in. wide rails are easier to put up and should last longer than their steel counterparts.

    “Steel guardrails are harder and harder to find, and when you do, hanging them is difficult and dangerous,” says Thornburg, North American Farm Supply. “You need a cutting torch or Sawzall as well as equipment to lift them into place. One man can lift our panels and attach them with lag bolts and washers.”

    Manufactured out of advanced polymers, the rails outperform steel in crush tests, bend without breaking and return to their original shape.

    “They cut like wood with no pre-drilling required,” says Thornburg. “Unlike steel guardrails, they have no sharp edges and are flexible enough for use in round corrals.”

    Thornburg got the idea for the rails when his brother-in-law was complaining about steel guardrail corrals. “He now has 3,000 ft. of our poly rail fencing,” says Thornburg.

    The plastic panels are not just for cattle. Thornburg says they work for any type of livestock from horses to buffalo.

    The poly rails will interlock to create stalls, dividers or barn walls. Unlike galvanized metal or wood, livestock won’t lick or chew on them. They are also more sanitary.

    “You can apply antibacterial spray to them and wash them off,” says Thornburg. “They aren’t porous, so bacteria can’t penetrate.”

    Currently, the panels are available only from North American Farm Supply. Thornburg is looking for distributors for the newly introduced product.

    The panels are available in bundles of 136 pieces for $5,400 and mini-bundles of 45 for $1,800. Shipping is free for bundles of 2 or more.

    For ordering purposes, divide the length of the planned fence or corral sides by 16 ft. The additional 6 in. in each panel is for overlapping ends.

    “One bundle will provide enough panels for 700 linear ft. of 3-rail fence,” explains Thornburg. “We provide all the hardware needed to install. Proper installation requires the use of lag bolts and washers to provide the pinch point needed to give the panels strength and a longer life.”

    Contact: FARM SHOW Followup, North American Farm Supply, 276 Industrial Park Rd., Mount Vernon, Ky. 40456 (ph 859 209-0821; info@nafarmsupply.com; www.nafarmsupply.com).

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2018 - Volume #42, Issue #2