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Old 05-21-2012, 12:09 PM
Rick Rick is offline
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Default Farm Gate tradeoffs?

I'm putting in fence and was thinking about farm gates. What are the tradeoffs between cost, size, and ability to hang without gravitating down.

The main gate going into the property will be 16 feet, but I was considering making the field gates 12 footers. My main use for the field gates will be driving a tractor through, small haybalers and other equipment; also moving cattle from one field to the next on a fairly regular schedule.

My tractor is a 40 HP Deutz D4006; it fits through an 8 foot opening pretty handily.

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Old 05-21-2012, 02:08 PM
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krapgame krapgame is offline
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If your gate is mid-fence where you've got ample room to maneuver through it, 12' should be fine. I have a 9' haybine and it takes 14' to get it through, but everything else goes fine through 12'.

I assume you're looking at tube gates. IMO, the heavier the better. As for sagging, either tie the end to the post or set the end on a rock or something to take the load off the hinges. The weight of the gate can actually help counter the pull of the wire against your corner post and keep it straight longer, especially with a longer gate. Also, IMO, get hinges that go through the post instead of hinges that only thread into the post. That's personal preference, but in time your post will deteriorate and the screw in hinges are a little more likely to pull out. As for cost, the old saying is that poor quality will be remembered long after the low price is forgotten. A gate is a 20+ year investment. Get the best quality that you can afford.

The final consideration is location. Gates located in corners are easier to herd animals into and through, but can be more difficult to maneuver equipment through especially if the gate is undersized. Mid-fence gates are easier to get equipment through but it can be a pain getting livestock herded through them. A decent trade off can be to set an extra brace and put your gate ~10' out from a corner. The other option is to hang the gate in the corner and make it the next size bigger than you think you'll actually need.

Hope that helps. I've been building fence and hanging gates myself this spring.
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Old 05-21-2012, 07:49 PM
Plowpoint Male Plowpoint is offline
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In my opinion, 12 foot gates are too narrow.

Yes I can slide my Kubota through a 12 foot gate easily, and an 8 foot gate as well, BUT what about other equipment?

I have a field that is getting overhauled next week. When I put the gates up on my fence I used (2) 12 foot gates swinging in together to make for a 23 foot gate. It seems like overkill but it is really not.

Friday a John Deere 850 Dozer will be here which has a 12 foot wide would have never fit through a 12 foot gate. I need that to move some rocks and stumps, after that equipment, a tractor pulling a 45 foot disc harrow will have to fit through the gate. Folded up that piece of equipment is 17 feet wide.

The point is, if the gate will permit equipment through it, you are better off to hang (2) 12 foot gates (or better yet (2) 16 foot gates if you can afford them, and have plenty of room. You just never know what is going to be entering your field; your own equipment, rental equipment, contracted equipment, etc.
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Old 05-21-2012, 07:57 PM
grumble Male grumble is offline
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That's an option, putting in enough gate for the worst case. Hereabouts, most ranchers just put in a gate for the most common use, usually 10 or 12 footers. Then they make the fence next to the gate easy to take down for another 20 feet or so. For occasional use, they just take the fence down and wire it back up when finished.

I guess a lot would depend on what type fence you're talking about?
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Old 05-22-2012, 12:17 AM
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offgridbob Male offgridbob is offline
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Sounds like you have it figured out pretty good. On thing I would recommend though is don't put a 16 footer in, put two 8 foot gates side by side. Less weight hanging on your posts and easier to open and you can park closer to open it.
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Old 05-22-2012, 02:23 PM
Rick Rick is offline
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There is some great advise here. Thanks you one and all; this gives me more stuff to chew on.

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