Hanging the New Garden Gate

My PVC gates came out really nice if not perfect. However I did forget some basic planning. How to hang them.

The PVC pipes are round and covered with wire. The gate posts are round. Two of them are metal. Most gate hinges are flat.

Chain link gate hinges are round. I went looking. These hinges must be put on before the gate is completed. My gates are completed.

Regular hinges are probably not strong enough to hold up this gate. A bit of physics shows the length of the gate increases the force on the hinges.

You can see this effect by filling a gallon or half gallon bottle with water. Lift it with your arm bent so it is close to your body. Then lift it with your arm out straight.

strap hinge

One nice thing about using a strap hinge is that the gate can open either way. Well, the hinge can work either way. I have a back post for the gate to attach to. That’s the next challenge: How to hook the gate firmly closed.

So I checked out gate hinges. These have a strap side with a ring at one end. The other piece is a bolt or screw with a peg the ring fits on. These are strong.

My PVC gates are 2 inch pipes. One gate is 1 1/2 inch pipe. Most of these strap hinges are a foot long. The set weighed more than the gate!

Finally I found some small versions. It took a month or so but I finally had the hinges.

I forgot the bolts. Another week went by and I finally had the bolts.

The strap parts went on the top and bottom rungs of the gate. This required drilling holes.

marking hinge placement

A strap hinge works best if it is put on straight. A pencil marks on PVC pipe well so the holes go in properly.

PVC pipe is round and smooth. The drill bit skittered off. The solution was to use a hand drill to make some small holes the big drill could use as a starting point.

holes in gate

PVC pipe seems hard and solid but is easy to drill a hole in if the drill bit stays in place. Doing a starting hole lets the bit have a place to start.

Next the lag bolts had to go in the gate post. This was metal, round and smooth. No hand drill was going to work.

hinge on pipe

The bolts must go all the way through the PVC pipe. The hole should be barely big enough. A hammer is useful to tap the bolt into place.

First the gate was held in position and the bottom hinge was marked on the post. The gate is set aside until the lag bolt is in place.

There is something called a tap. It looks like a long round tapered hunk of metal. The small end is put against the metal post. A hammer is used to tap it putting a small dent in the metal gate post.

Impatience would dictate using the large drill bit next. Mistake. The next step is a small drill bit making holes all the way through the post. Then the big bit is used to enlarge the holes.

Finally the bolt is in place. The gate is set on it so the placement of the top hinge can be marked. Marking both hinge placements at first leads to the top one being wrong later.

The top lag bolt holes are drilled. The bolt is put into the post. The gate is set on the hinges.

garden gate

The gate has big wire areas so the garden is easy to see something the chickens find frustrating as there must be a way inside. There better not be.

My first garden gate is now in place and in use. It is so strange to have it there.

The gate looks nice. The chickens wonder why they can see into the garden but can’t get in. I can swing the gate open easily.

One gate is up. The other two will be soon. Then I can enjoy going in and out of them. It will seem strange to get in and out of the garden so easily.