Gate Design

I spent an hour or two tweaking the design for the new driveway gate.   I have more to do before I start building anything.  The next thing I need to figure out is the design for the hinge mechanisms.  I think I have an idea how that should work, and my game plan is to build the bracketry, wood spacers and hinge leafs first, then build the gates to fit that.

The main changes in this revision were the shape of the “cloud lifts” and the brackets on the block wall.  The cloud lifts looked too abrupt in the previous version.  I increased the space between the beginning of the sweep between the top and bottom, made the sweep angled and increased the radius on the curves.  I also recessed the rails 1/8″ from the outside frame, and the stiles 1/8″ from the rails.  I started modeling the steel straps that will wrap around the cinder block wall, they need a little more work on the end details.

I also removed the latch that was at the top of the gate — I decided that while it looked neat it would be awkward to operate.  So I’ll need to design a normal latching mechanism.

Once I get the hinges and latch design sorted out I’ll order the steel, hardware and bearings for the those parts and start in there.

This weekend is going to be a “wash” though as I’m taking my son to the “Maker Faire” up near San Francisco.  One of the displays I’m eager to see is the CNC Pancake Maker.  I kid you not, check out the “pancake bot“.

Detail of restyled cloud lifts

Detail of restyled cloud lifts

Updated gate design

Updated gate design

Front-on View

Front-on View


Categories: Uncategorized | Tags: , | 6 Comments

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6 thoughts on “Gate Design

  1. Robert d

    I really like your design. But how are you gonna manage the weight of these big doors on the hinge.

    • Hi Bob,

      I’ve been looking at heavy duty hinges that are commercially available, I’m going to fab something with a 1″ hinge pin and brass bushings. I think it will be plenty stout, especially with the long leaves bolted to the gate (on both sides). I hope to model those on Sunday after the Maker Faire.

  2. billprogrammer

    Have you considered adding a powered opener to your gate so you wouldn’t have to get out of your vehicle to enter/exit? Having wheels on the gate would help manage the weight.

    • I’m not worried about the weight, I did some calculations and I think each gate half will weigh in at about 120 pounds. I know I can build a hinge pivot that will easily support that weight. I’m not sure about how well the block wall I’m going to anchor this off of is anchored to the ground…this could be a problem. And the driveway is sloped there, so wheels won’t work in any case.

      I think I’m going to need to set a post to support the weight of the gate instead of hanging it off of the wall.

      An electric opener is a good idea, although it’s more money and will interfere with deliveries. I’m remembering now why I’ve been slow to start building this…

  3. billprogrammer

    Would the slope be a problem if you had a one-piece gate that opened by moving left or right sort of like a pocket door? For deliveries you could add a button to open the gate. Seems like a standard garage door opener could work if you made a waterproof enclosure for it.

  4. A gate that rolled to the side, especially if it was a one piece gate and opened only to one side, would be simpler I think. No hinges, just a track to roll on and some sort of support to keep it plumb. I don’t think I’m ready to go down that road yet.

    Maybe I need to make some more sconces and think about the gate for a while longer…

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