Friday, February 26, 2010

Build A Curved Top Iron Gate

A wrought iron gate pairs nicely with a wood or metal fence.

Building a wrought iron gate typically involves welding pieces of metal together. Unless you have the proper tools or experience in welding, the process is expensive and potentially dangerous. Using wood in addition to the wrought iron simplifies the project and reduces the potential for injury. Making the round top on the gate is simple as you can arrange wrought iron pieces of different heights to form a curve along the top of the gate. Does this Spark an idea?


1. Measure the diameter of your wrought iron balusters with a measuring tape. Lay a 2-by-4 wood board, cut to the length of your gate, flat. The board is the base for the new gate and the same length as the distance between the fence posts or columns at the front of the fence. Determine the placement of the balusters based on the length of this board. Evenly space the balusters across the board and mark the locations on the board with a pencil.

2. Hold a measuring tape against the fence to determine its height. The balusters at the sides of the gate should be the same height as the fence. Reduce the height by 1 to 2 inches as you move to the center of the gate.

3. Drill a hole the same diameter as the balusters through the first of the marks you made in Step 1. Make the hole 1 inch deep in the wood. Work your way across the wood board, drilling a hole in each of your marks. Fill each hole with construction adhesive.

4. Layout your wrought iron balusters. Place the base of one baluster in one of the holes in the board. Arrange the balusters with the tallest balusters on the outside edges and the shortest balusters in the center, which gives the gate an inverted curved top. Wipe the excess glue off the base of the balusters with a damp cloth.

5. Lay the gate on a flat surface and set two pieces of wrought iron tubing on top. Space the two pieces evenly across the metal gate. Place a dab of construction glue where the tubing touches the balusters. Drill a hole through the top of the tubing and through the front of the balusters, using a titanium or cobalt drill bit sized for the bolts.

6. Turn the gate over and thread a bolt through the baluster. Secure the bolt on the back of the baluster with a washer and nut. Repeat this step with each of the balusters, attaching the balusters to the tubing. This gives you a curved gate that you attach to the fence.

7. Place the gate next to the fence. Arrange the hinges from the gate kit on one end of the gate. Drill through the holes in the hinges and into the wrought iron with your titanium drill bit and into the fence. Tighten the screw from the kit through the gate and into the fence. Repeat this step with each of the hinges.

8. Pick the location of the gate latch. Attach the latch to the gate by setting it on the gate and drilling through the metal. Slip the bolts through the holes and tighten with a washer and nut. Attach the other piece of the gate to the fence post by sinking the included screws through the latch and into the fence post. Your gate kit should include the necessary hardware and components.

Tags: wrought iron, balusters with, into fence, your wrought iron, Drill hole