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Louvered fences: now you see them, now you don't.

VENETIAN BLINDS, with their angled louvers, block out views but let in sunlight. That's the principle behind the louvered fences Stefanie and Rich Feldman built around their front garden in Sunnyvale, California. The fences rely on fixed, extra-wide louvers to screen views in from the street but still allow views out and let sunlight into their garden.

Facing the street is a fence made of 6-foot-tall panels with louvers at a 30|degrees~ angle. Each panel is made of two redwood 1-by-12s butted together. Panels rest on 2-by-4 bottom rails screwed to 4-by-4 posts set into the ground. Parallelogram-shaped blocks cut from 1-by-8s were nailed between the louvers to space them on 17-inch centers and orient them at 30|degrees~. Identical spacer blocks were screwed to the bottom of a 1-by-6 cap board. Each board of the louver panels was secured by a single screw through the cap board from above.

Along the side of the yard, another 6-foot-tall fence uses freestanding louvers spaced 30 inches apart and set at a 30|degrees~ angle to the property line. Each louver panel has a center made of 2- by 4-inch wire screen stapled to a frame of pressure-treated wood. The frame's 2-by-4 sides were sunk 1 1/2 to 2 feet into the ground. The crosspieces are 2-by-2s.
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Author:Whiteley, Peter O.
Date:May 1, 1993
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