I currently have a shadow box style fence around the backyard of the new house I purchased. As there is a pool in the backyard, I prefer more privacy than the shadow box fence provides. In addition, the shadow box appears to not have been maintained well as several surfaces aren't easily accessible.

That being said, is it possible to convert it to a solid fence using the existing boards? Any information on how to do it or tips/tricks are greatly appreciated.

fence types. My fence is similar to the picture labeled as Shadow Box.

Actual Picture of Fence

  • Pictures would help immensely.
    – Ecnerwal
    Nov 16 '14 at 0:05
  • Your question mentions potential issues with the condition of the fence - as such, generic fence pictures are less helpful in assessing if there's any point in trying to re-use your fence materials than pictures of your actual fence. In many cases the additional labor to re-use partially degraded material makes it more sensible to replace the whole thing; but that's very much a generalization. If the boards are screwed and you can actually unscrew them your odds improve - if they are nailed and break when you try to pry them off, your odds plummet.
    – Ecnerwal
    Nov 16 '14 at 4:26
  • Added actual picture.
    – Nick
    Nov 30 '14 at 1:06

The feasibility depends on a couple of things:

  1. If you can remove the existing boards without breaking them. My guess is probably, but you would need to do it carefully. I would use a short 2x6 and a light sledge to tap on the board from the backside.
  2. What the spacing is on the boards. If you can just take the boards off one side and put them on the other, that makes things easier. If the spacing is wrong for that, you would need to pull the boards off both sides and then redo them.
  3. Whether you are willing to do the work yourself. If you are paying somebody, it may be cheaper to have them tear down the old ones and put up new ones than to carefully remove the old ones and reinstall them.

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