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I am building a wooden picket fence for my backyard, and have decided to go with a pressure-treated dog ear fence available here.

The problem is my back yard has a lot of uneven terrain, and so there are several fence sections that I will need to construct myself. Lowes sells individual pickets, but (very surprisingly) does not sell the wooden stringers that run horizontally and hold the pickets together.

As you can see in that link, the panels each have 3 rows of stringers that are 1.25" wide, 2.5" tall and 8 feet long. This dimension (1.25" x 2.5") seemed curious to me and didn't ring any bells. I thought that it might be a 1x3, but it turns out 1x3 is actually 0.75" by 2.5". So these stringers are half an inch thicker.

I tried looking up standard lumber sizes and have not found anything that is 1.25" x 2.5".

So I ask:

  • Do pressure-treated stringers like this exist somewhere? If so, where?!?
  • If not, what is the best (and hopefully, cheapest or at least cost-effective!) way to construct stringers with these dimensions? It has to be exact otherwise my wife will nag and I'll never hear the end of it...
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A few options (ordered by relative ease):

  • buy the premade section and cut to fit

  • use regular 2x4 (1.5x3.5) material and ignore the size difference

  • find a tablesaw and rip stock to the exact size you want

Alternately, you could run the panels full width and fill in any gaps at the bottom with triangular pieces.

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  • Thanks @Aloysius (+1). I think I was looking for some magical solution, but what you're saying makes perfect sense. – smeeb May 6 '15 at 13:09
  • +1 for the tablesaw, that's the proper solution. If you don't have one, you can rent it. – BMitch May 6 '15 at 13:25

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