1600 Firestone Parkway, Akron, OH 44301
TF (800) 624-5520
Besides spreading viruses, the Chinese say, “May you live in interesting times”. I think it is important to point out that the Chinese saying was intended to be a curse, not a blessing. (Sorry if I sound like a Mike Baxter vlog.)
Here at Richard’s Fence we are experiencing “interesting times” but in a good way. We are celebrating our 52nd year in business, we have three generations involved in leading the company, and our brand-new strand galvanizing line is operational and producing wire.
Business is strong which has pushed out some of our lead times. Stand wire is running 2-weeks, fence fabric that is not in stock is running 3-weeks, and coated pipe is also 3-weeks. Please give yourself plenty of time to place your orders. Most contractors are also busy, and their lead times are building. A mild winter and moderate precipitation in the North have let them keep working through the first quarter.
Pricing on steel products have been steady since the beginning of this year and I expect them to hold through most of the second quarter. Rod mills and wire mills are busy but are currently holding prices.
At this time, we have suspended quoting any 3/8”, ½”, or 5/8” mini-mesh chain link fence jobs. A combination of a couple of very large jobs and concentrating our labor on other projects have pushed the mini-mesh back to the middle of this year or later. I will keep you update on the availability of the material. Our 1” mesh has not been affected.
I am not going to give you any advice on the Covid-19 virus because if you are like me you are receiving an email every 15 minutes on how to keep yourself healthy. (I didn’t know Tractor Supply was so knowledgeable.) As I write this, the State of Ohio has just closed down all restaurants and bars and they are restricting gatherings of 50 persons or more. Already schools and universities have closed, and they are not sure when they will be able to open.
Richards Fence will remain open unless we are told otherwise. We are taking steps to keep our employees virus free, but can only do so much. If some of our people become infected, they are instructed to stay home. This could suddenly push lead times out weeks or even months depending on the severity of this pandemic. I recommend that you plan accordingly.