Fitting Your Gate: a Step by Step Guide

Fountain Timber manufacture and supply a very wide selection of timber gates. Before you can measure up, you will need to select your gate and posts.

This guide covers two of the most common types of gates, Driveway gates and Country style gates. For technical information on other types of gate, please see our “Gate Size and Information” guide.

Selecting your Driveway gate

Driveway gate

With Driveway gates we recommend the gates sit inside the posts with the hinges fixed to the back face of the timber post. The gap between the posts will need to be 30mm wider than the gates (10mm each side and 10mm in the centre). Ie. If you are ordering a pair of gates to fit between existing posts, then order so the finished size is 30mm less than the gap. For a single gate, the finished size should be 20mmm less than the gap.

Selecting your Country style gate

Country style gate

Before you order your country style gate you will need to decide the most suitable way for the gate to operate, which will usually be determined by the location. The images below demonstrate different ways to hang a gate together with the measurements for each option:

Gate A Gate B

A. Single gate hung and closing on the back of the posts.

Measure the distance between the inside faces of your posts. Your gate size will then be distance between posts, plus 76mm. So for example if your gap is 2924mm, plus 76mm you will need a 3000mm gate (3m). Your gate will open one way 180°.

B. Single gate hung and closing between posts.

Measure the distance between the inside faces of your posts, then minus 205mm from this measurement, this assumes you will be using a spring fastener with central closing catch. (Codes 80088 and 84592). Your gate will open in or out 110°.

Gate C Gate D

C. Pair of gates hung on the back of the posts.

Measure the distance between the inside faces of you posts, then add 66mm to that gap measurement. (This allows for a 10mm central closing gap). For example, if you gap is 3000mm, plus 66mm equal 3066mm, divided by two equals 1533mm for each gate. With this arrangement gates will open one way 110°.

D. Pair of gates hung between the posts.

Measure the distance between the inside faces of your posts. Then deduct 240mm from this and then divide by two for the size of each gate. For example, if the distance between posts was 3000mm, minus 240mm hinge and catch allowance equals 2760mm. This then divided by two equals 1380mm for each gate. With this arrangement, you gates will open in or out 110°.

Posts

For the Driveway gate range 1.8m high up to 3m wide we would recommend 175mm x 175mm posts (7" x 7") which are approximately 900mm (3') higher than the gate; i.e. a 1.8m high gate would require a 2.7m post.

For Country style gates, we would recommend post lengths of 2.1m allowing 760mm in the ground.

Suggested posts sizes

Gate lengthPost size
0.9 – 1.2m 125 x125mm
1.5 -2.1m 150 x 150mm
2.4 – 3.0m 175 x 175mm
3.30 – 3.6m 200 x 200mm

(Important: Never shorten a post and place the cut end in the ground. It will destroy the integrity of the treatment and cause the post to fail very quickly)

For both driveway and country style gates, the posts will need to be concreted in, a minimum of 600mm (2') in the ground. We recommend using Postfix (see hardware, product code 80019), allowing 2 bags per hole. We would suggest you tack temporary supports in before you begin to concrete. Use a spirit level to ensure the post is upright (from all sides) and a line to ensure the back of the post is correctly aligned. For the second post check the alignment and gap. Leave the posts a minimum of 24 hours before beginning to hang gates.

Hinges and gate fittings

Country style gates

  • For gates up to and including 1.8m we recommend the 460mm (460mm (18") Field Gate hinge set (code 80080).
  • For gates over 1.8m we recommend the 600mm (24") Field Gate hinge set (code 85503)
  • For country gates being hung as a pair we suggest you use the adjustable field-gate hinge sets (460mm/18" Adjustable Field Gate Hinge, code 80081; or 600mm/24" Adjustable Field Gate Hinge, code 85504)

Positioning the gates

You will need help but we suggest that you position the gates between the posts and temporarily prop them into place. You should have 10mm gaps each side. Check you have sufficient ground clearance. You will find that the adjustable hinges give you a great deal of available adjustment, which you will find useful to "fine tune" the fit during summer and winter.

Fixing the gates to the posts

When you are satisfied that the gates are in the correct position, screw the hinges to the posts using 12 gauge x 50mm (2") screws.

After-care for your gate

Wood is a natural product and although pressure-impregnated with preservative this will guard against rot and decay. The timber will pick up moisture in the winter and dry out in the summer which will cause it to expand and contract. This effect is greatly reduced by painting the gate with micro-porous water repellent paints or wood stain.

Any material that is pressure treated with Tanalith or similar, does not require maintenance with a preservative, but can be stained or painted to change the colour and reduce the amount of moisture change in the timber. We would recommend the use of a preservative stain like Liberon, or using micro-porous paints and stains that allow the timber to breathe and accept or repel moisture at a slower rate, therefore reducing cracking, twisting or swelling as the seasons change. We also recommend Blackfriars Paints and stains

Fountain Timber Products can take no responsibility for the advice offered on this page. Before starting any DIY / Gardening project be aware of the 'Health & Safety' issues - if in doubt seek professional assistance. If you need further advice with your purchase please ask our experienced staff, we will be happy to help!

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