What metal pipe?


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Cyber Heretic
15 Feb 2012
Reaction score
South Devon
I am thinking of a low-tech, low investment parking deterrent for my drive. The drive gives access to my garaged car, so I do not want it blocked, but would look tempting as a parking space. My preferred solution would be a couple of posts with chain stretched between them. People could easily lift out the posts if they wanted - but the extra effort, a warning sign and the existing security camera will deter most of them.

There are already a couple of circular (cylindrical) holes into which I could fit metal posts/pipes. The holes look as if they were previously positioned to do this very job, and look to accommodate posts of about 3 [Edit: between 2.5 and 3] inches diameter. Chain I can find, but I cannot find cheap posts.

It is likely that the previous occupant just used some standard pipe - any suggestions what I could go for? I am sure that there is some obvious source that I am not tapping.

Thanks in advance for any suggestions.

Keep safe.
do the posts have to be metal or is it more for the visual detterent? would 68mm gutter downpipe do the job
I thought metal, as I was thinking about metal chain - and that would be heavy (7m gap). However, gutter pipe might work with plastic chain..... I have som gutter downpipe offcuts somewhere to try for size. Good shout.... if nothing else it will refine the measurement needed (there is some kind of sleeving further down the existing hole that makes diameter more difficult to measure).
Scaffold tube maybe? A length of that is not to expensive and easy to cut. Seems to resist the weather well also.
Your a woodworker right? (hammer) Get some solid hardwood posts and either turn them round or plane them round to fit the holes. Paint them and by the time the ends rot off you will likely have moved. If not saw off the bottom and get another 5 to 10 years out of them. To a passing driver they will look just like steel and they will move along. Remember to allow for the ends to swell a little or they could expand and lock themselves into the receiving holes. :wink:

Actually timber is not a bad idea..... It does not have to look like metal, it just has to add a step to the parking on my drive. If a driver has to get out and remove a barrier, especially one with a 'private no parking' notice on it, then they will not be able to claim 'I didn't realise'.

Add a notice pointing out the security camera and they will look for somewhere else.
Or a clear notice stating that cars will be clamped, with a £200 release fee.

Could be a nice little earner.
"Any vehicle found on my property will be regarded as a gift and removed to a place of safe keeping! If you do not agree to these terms and conditions, do not park here, otherwise a contract has been made"
2 1/2"steel pipe is 76mm OD (I'm a lagger - pipefitters always look at us weird when we talk about the outside diameter, they only talk in ID)
Thanks for all the suggestions so far - you are being as creative and helpful as I had hoped.

Scaffold bar might do, though I do not really want loads of it. I only have a small vehicle currently so moving big stuff around would be a pain. Timber is looking like a good idea, or downpipe filled with 'crete.

I looked at the folding blockers - but the space is tight, and I have to turn sharply as I leave my drive. I am not sure that I could place them to avoid driving over them as I enter/exit.

I love the warning about a gift - if only it could be enforced in law.....
AJB Temple":2jd19mgk said:
Or a clear notice stating that cars will be clamped, with a £200 release fee.

Could be a nice little earner.

That's been illegal for almost 10 years now.
Pop into a local scrap yard if there are any near you Phil, it's very likely they'll have some pipe offcuts you can get very cheaply, they usually have scaffold pipe bits as well. Scaffold pipe doesn't need to be heavy btw as there is lightweight alloy pipes available, still very strong as they are thick walled pipe.
It's a shame you're at the other end of the UK as I could easily have given you what you need, I have loads of both types left over from my business.

Also a pity the folding barriers aren't suitable, I installed one behind my motorhome and though it wouldn't stop a theft it's another obstacle and very visible. Bought mine from Aldi for £8 when they were selling off but you can get them well under £20 on ebay.


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Just be aware that a 7m long chain is not very visible.
Some chump will drive into it and claim that you as chain owner should pay for the damage!
Seen it done to often.

I am rethinking my reluctance to use folding posts. Although the gap is seven meter (goes right to edge where I own a fence post) the usable entrance space is probably less (under 6m) . With the swing-in needed I might just get away with one or at most two of these devices. I may need to drive above the posts to swing in though, but maybe I can avoid driving over them. My current car is quite small with dinky wheels (i10).

Drive is tarmac over unknown substrate.... how would I fix the posts? I can see concrete bolts and tarmac fixings on the web. Out with the SDS, drill a deep hole and hope? I am not trying to deter theft here, just inconsiderate parking. A lazy parker is not going to want to exert any effort removing a post just to park, so posts just need to be run-of-the-mill secure (ie stay put under moderate load for several years).

We do have a scrappy in town - that may be a great source of pipe. I like the aluminium scaffold pipe idea - less work to cut and to carry.
Have a weekend break in Northumberland and you can take back the pipe you need from me :)

My drive as you can see is gravel so very hard sub surface. Easy for me as I knocked in and concreted a length of steel scaffold pipe then welded a plate on top and fixed the post through that, tarmac is a bit more difficult.