How to install Neva posts onto a solid surface

Installing your neva on concrete or paving

If the first post is to be sited against a wall, the base of the Neva post will need to be changed to accommodate a wall starting base, which is bolted to the floor and the post is fixed to the wall. Jump to How to install a wall starting base for details on how to install this and then come back to here for how to install the posts onto a solid surface or skip to How to install Neva posts directly into concrete, in you’re installing the fence across a soft surface like soil or grass.

For this project, we will show how to install aluminium or steel posts (image 1), which are supplied with a base and fixed directly onto a solid surface. If you are fixing wooden posts onto a solid surface (shown in image 2), you will also require the Neva steel bolt down post base, which is bolted into position in exactly the same way. The wooden posts are inserted and bolted into the base, and we’ll also show you how to install these later in this project.

how to install neva posts onto a solid surface

Planning ahead

Don't forget that when planning your modular fence, you need to consider if it will turn to create an L-shaped or U-shaped fence. If you want to turn a corner, you must install an aluminium post at the corner and use the centre recess for the change in direction. This is illustrated in grey on the profile illustrations below. Steel or wooden posts cannot be used as a corner post as there is no extra recess for the change in direction. The spare recess of the aluminium post can be neatly hidden by the cover strips, which are supplied with the aluminium posts.


neva fencing installation solid surface

Safety first

  • Wear safety goggles, rather than safety glasses, and a dust mask when drilling into concrete, bricks or paving slabs to protect eyes from flying fragments and dust.
  • Wear rigger gloves to protect hands from hot drill bits and from splinters when handling timber.
  • Do not fix posts onto hollow bases, for example breeze blocks.

Tools for the job

Here’s how to install aluminium or steel posts directly onto a solid, level paved surface.

Step 1

Begin by marking out where the fence will go. Place the first post base into position and create a long straight guideline using builder’s line tied to bricks at each end. Tie the string level with the top of the brick, so it’s raised above the surface. Make this line slightly longer than the entire length of the new fence. Position the string so it’s tight and flush with the face of your first post.

how to install neva fencing solid surface

The guideline will help you build the fence perfectly straight and all the additional posts will be fitted flush with this string line. Weigh down each brick with another brick on top.

neva fencing

Step 2

Fix down one post at a time so you can check the position of the base with the width required for the slats or panels before fitting the next post.

Slide off the base cover caps to reveal the base.

fencing neva

Step 3

Check the position of the first post support against the string line and mark the four fixing holes onto the paving with a carpenter’s pencil.

installing neva fence onto solid surface

Step 4

Remove the support and drill x4 vertical holes to the depth of the bolt sleeves with a hammer drill, on hammer setting, using a 12mm diameter masonry drill bit.

Drilling tips

Some hammer drills have a depth control bar or depth guide (read the product manual on how to set this up), this clever feature lets you drill to the right depth for the fixings. Alternatively, measure and mark the required depth of the anchor on the drill bit with a piece of tape and stop drilling when you reach this mark. Turn on the hammer function on the drill and start drilling firmly, gradually increasing the drill speed until you reach the required depth.


neva install

Step 5

Still wearing safety goggles, brush away and clear out as much masonry dust as possible from the holes with a quick blow. Alternatively use a can of compressed air or an air compressor, if you have one.

Step 6

Insert four anchor bolts into the holes in the concrete. Use a claw hammer or mallet to tap in the anchor bolts so that the top of their sleeves are flush with the top of the paving and the thread sits above the surface.

neva install how to

Step 7

Place the post and it’s support back into position, making sure the recesses of the post follows the line of the intended fence. Use a spirit level or post level to check the post is perfectly plumb (shown).

install neva how

Wonky bases

If the patio or paving surface is not perfectly flat, for example the top of riven paving, add extra washers to help level under the base of the posts before you bolt them to the ground.


install neva

Step 8

Insert the washers and screw down the four anchor bolts using a spanner or an adjustable spanner and ratchet set for a quicker installation. Tightening the bolts will expand the anchor’s thread for a really strong, secure fit into the paving/concrete.

neva install how to

Step 9

Slide the base cover caps back into position to neatly hide the bolt heads.

Step 10

With the first post installed, you're now ready to measure and mark the position for your second post along the string guideline. Depending on the width of the slats or panels you are fitting next, will depend on the spacing required.

You need to measure from the centre point of one post to the centre point of the next post.

For slats or panels fitted in the landscape position, it’s 1826mm centre-to-centre.

If you are fitting half- or quarter-panels in a tall (portrait) position, the measurements will change depending on the posts you are installing. It’s therefore a good idea to put these panels in place against each fixed post to work out exactly where the centre point for the next post will be.

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Always follow the spacing guidelines required between the posts, the measurements shown includes an expansion gap for the composite and wooden slats to expand and contract naturally without buckling and damaging the fence.

Measure the required distance along the string guideline and fit the next post in exactly the same way. Continue until all the posts are in place, double-checking the alignment as you go.

For this installation we are fitting composite slats, so the posts are 1826mm from the centre of one post to the centre of the next post.

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Step 11

Continue fitting all the posts in this manner, checking the distances required for your design and the level of the posts as you work.

Once all the posts are fixed into place, you can remove the string line and bricks and move onto the section How to install Neva modular slats and panels.

Fixing wooden posts onto a solid surface

If you are fixing wooden posts onto a paved or concreted base, you need the Neva steel bolt down post base which is fixed into position in exactly the same way as the Neva post bases, however there is no base cap cover for these bases to hide the fixings.

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Fix the base onto the solid surface following the process in steps 1 to 8 from How to install Neva posts onto a solid surface, but when checking that the post is plumb level, insert the two wooden half posts into the base so that the post level can be attached to the middle of the post. When you bolt down this base, make sure the recess follows the line of the fencing so the slats or panels can sit in the recess of the post base.

Tools for the job

Once the Neva steel bolt down post base is in place, you need to bolt the post into the base, so here’s what to do:

Step 1

Clamp two wooden half posts flush together, back-to-back. This can either be done in a workbench or clamped together and placed on a flat surface.

Drill two pilot holes with a 2mm diameter drill bit, one about 20cm from the bottom of the post and the other about 5cm from the top. Go through the centre of the recess, all the way through the first post and about 1cm into the second post.

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Step 2

Using a screwdriver, screw the two posts together with two 30mm exterior wood screws. Remove the clamps.

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Step 3

Insert the assembled post into the base ensuring the recesses of the posts follows the intended line of the fence.

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Step 4

Check the posts are plumb level with a post level / spirit level and mark circles where to drill the four holes with a carpenter’s pencil onto the post. Repeat marking the other side of the post too.

Step 5

Remove the post and divide the eight circles drawn on the post with two extended lines using a ruler, so each circle is divided into four equal parts. The centre points will help you to centre the drill bit and give you a visual check on the exit holes when drilling.

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Step 6

There are a number of ways you could drill perfectly perpendicular holes through the post for the bolts. The best option would be to use a drill stand or a bench drill and drill four perfectly straight holes with a 12mm wood drill bit.

If you do not have one of these tools you can make a simple drill guide (or jig) and we’ll explain what to do next.

Either way, it will be easier to drill down vertically into the post rather than trying to line up the holes and drill through the post whilst it is still upright within the support.

Step 7

First we need to make the jig.

Nail a couple of 50mm x 25mm x 100mm timber offcuts together to form a right angle. Nail them together to create an L-shaped guide 50mm deep rather than a flat ‘L’ 25mm deep.

It’s important to make sure the inside edge is a perfect right angle. Check it is 90 degrees with a square or protractor.

Step 8

It’s a good idea to practice on an offcut of timber first to get used to the jig and get a feel for how it works. This will help eliminate any costly mistakes when drilling the posts.

Practice steps 9 to 12 first using an off-cut of timber before replacing with the actual post.

Step 9

Clamp the post in a workbench with four of the markings facing uppermost and check the post is level with a spirit level. You may need some help to support the post, as they are long.

Step 10

Fit a 12mm wood drill bit into the drill and place its tip onto the centre point of the first circle.

Still holding the drill vertically in position, position the internal corner of the jig tight to the drill bit.

Step 11

Clamp the jig into position onto the post.

Step 12

Drill the hole keeping the drill perfectly square, straight and tight within the corner of the jig. If the drill has a spirit level set within the drill, keep an eye on this too to help keep the drill bit straight.

The jig will help keep the drill bit perfectly vertical and you can safely remove the jig if the drill bit is not long enough to go all the way through the post near the end of drilling the hole.

Step 13

Drill the remaining holes in the same manner, ensuring you are going through the centre markings on the other side of the post.

Step 14

Place the posts back into the metal base and insert the four bolts, with the washers on the outside of the base, followed by the nuts.

Step 15

Tighten the two bottom bolts first with an adjustable spanner and ratchet. Keep checking the post is perfectly plumb before tightening the two remaining bolts.

Step 16

With the first post installed, you're now ready to measure and mark the position for your second post base along the string guideline. Depending on the width of the slats or panels you are fitting next, will depend on the spacing required.

You need to measure from the centre point of one post to the centre point of the next post.

If you are fitting half- or quarter-panels in a tall (portrait) position, the measurements will change depending on the posts you are installing. It’s therefore a good idea to put these panels in place against each fixed post to work out exactly where the centre point for the next post will be.

neva

Measure the required distance along the string guideline and fit the next post in exactly the same way. Continue until all the post bases are in place, double-checking the alignment as you go.

For this installation we are fitting composite slats, so the posts are 1826mm from the centre of one post to the centre of the next post.

neva

Once all the posts are fixed into place, you can remove the string line and bricks and move onto the sections How to install Neva slats and panels.