arrange pickets in constructing a 1-1-1 and a 3-2-1 combination picket holdfast.
In constructing the 1-1-1 combination (fig. 6-46), drive three single pickets about 3 feet into the ground, 3 to 6 feet apart, and in line with the guy. For a 3-2-1 combination, drive a group of three pickets into the ground, lashing them together before you secure the guy to them. The group of two lashed pickets follows the first group, 3 to 6 feet apart, and is followed by a single picket. The 1-1-1 combination can stand a pull of about 1,800 pounds, while the 3-2-1 combination can stand as much as 4,000 pounds.
The pickets grouped and lashed together, PLUS the use of small stuff secured onto every pair of pickets, are what make the combination picket holdfasts much stronger than the single holdfasts.
The reason for grouping and lashing the first cluster of pickets together is to reinforce the point where the pull is the greatest. The way small stuff links each picket to the next is what divides the force of pull, so the first picket does not have to withstand all of the strain. Using 12- to 15-thread small stuff, clove hitch it to the top of the first picket. Then take about four to six turns around the first and second pickets, going from the bottom of the second to the top of the first picket. Repeat this with more small stuff from the second to the third picket, and so on, until the last picket has been secured. After this, pass a stake between the turns of small stuff, between EACH pair of pickets, and then make the small stuff taut by twisting it with the stake. Now, drive the stake into the ground.
If you are going to use a picket holdfast for several days, it is best to use galvanized guy wire in place of the small stuff. Rain will not affect galvanized guy wire, but it will cause small stuff to shrink. If the small stuff is already taut, it could break from overstrain.
Figure 6-46. - Preparing a 1-1-1 picket holdfast.Continue Reading