How to Design a Fence Gate

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Adding a gate to your fence can make it easier to get things done in the yard. Just as fences vary in size and style, so do fence gates. This article deals with creating a fence gate with cattle fencing.

Things You'll Need

  • Post-hole digger Shovel Four 40-pound bags of cement Two 4-by-4-by-10 treated-lumber posts (if necessary) Cattle fencing and hardware Socket set Drill with 1/2-inch bit Level

Creating a Fence Gate

  • Find a good place in your fence to put a gate. If your fence is supported by 4-by-4 posts, try to set the gate between two existing fence posts. Cattle gate comes in 10- or 12-foot sections, but posts are generally spaced 11 feet apart, so it's likely you'll have to insert at least one additional post to span the opening and give your gate plenty of support.

  • Dig the post holes so the bottom of the post is below the frost line. (Your local builders association should have this information.) Placement of the posts is based on the size of the fence: If the gate is 10 feet wide, set the posts to allow for the 10 feet plus the width of the hardware, about 2 inches. Dig the post holes with the post-hole digger.

  • Put the posts in the holes, adding some dirt to stabilize them until you can confirm with your level that the posts aren't leaning. Pack dry cement around the posts and add enough water to wet the cement but not make it soupy. As it's setting into concrete, the cement mix will also draw water from the ground.

  • Add the gate hardware and then the gate. You'll need to drill starter holes in the posts for the heavy support screws that hold the gate in place.

Tips & Warnings

  • Install the bottom of the posts below the frost line to keep your fence from heaving. Call the local power utility for the location of underground power lines before you start digging.

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