How heights and weights of railings affect section sizes

How heights and weights of railings affect section sizes

Things to consider when specifying and purchasing railings

The relevant British Standard governing the specifying and manufacture of vertical bar steel railings is BS1722-9:2006 (Fences, specification or mild steel (low carbon steel) fences with round or square verticals and flat horizontals). This contains information which should be taken into account when specifiers are looking to include railings within new projects. It stipulates the minimum member (component) sizes of posts, rails, and vertical infill bars which should be used dependent upon the height of the railings that are being specified.

Clay Cross ALDI Flat top metal railings

Why does the height of railings affect member (component) sizes?

By increasing the height of fencing, this in turn would increase the section sizes of the components themselves. The main effect of all this is an increase in the weight of the fence panel. A typical example would be comparing a 1000mm high x 2000mm wide vertical bar fence panel against an 1800mm high x 2000mm wide vertical bar fence panel:

1000mm high x 2000mm wide vertical bar railing panel (typical components) 1800mm high x 2000mm wide vertical bar railing panel (typical components)
40×10 RSF horizontal rails 50×10 RSF horizontal rails
Ø12mm infill bars Ø20mm infill bars
Panel weight: 26.5 KG Panel weight: 83.5 KG

As you can see from the table above, by increasing the height to 1800mm, this has a staggering effect on the weight of a panel, which is over three times heavier than the 1000mm panel! Therefore, serious thought needs to be given when specifying not only a suitable size of support post but also foundation size.

The weight of panels and posts will also have effects on site installation labour and its costs. This is to take into consideration the legal obligations of The Manual Handling Operations Regulations 2002.

With over 30 years’ experience with the manufacture and installation of metal railings, Alpha Rail can offer expert advice and assistance in this field. Previous examples can be viewed on our website, and our Sales Team can be reached at 01623 750 214, or

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