Wednesday, December 19, 2012

Weld An Ornate Fence Gate

One style of an ornate wrought iron gate.

Most ornate fence gates are welded of wrought iron, an old and very traditional metal. Wrought iron has a very low carbon content -- it is nearly pure iron -- and contains elements called slag which give it texture. It is easy to weld, can be bent into a variety of shapes or can be cast into ornamental designs. It is not brittle so it is durable and it resists corrosion. Wrought iron can be bought in solid or hollow round or rectangular tubes or in sheets that can be cut and formed into circles and other designs. Does this Spark an idea?


1. Design an ornate wrought iron gate to fit a special opening, into a yard, courtyard, driveway or other access point. Measure the opening and make sure there are sturdy posts on either side; they can be wood, metal, even masonry. Lay out the gate pattern on paper, showing the basic frame or outline and internal elements such as circles, arches and upright or diagonal bars.

2. Buy the materials, including any special decorations like spear points or scroll work. If you have metalworking expertise, you can make these yourself, cutting sheets of metal into strips and bending them or forming them into circles, triangles or other designs. Lay out the gate on a work surface. All gates have some rectangular framework; some have arched tops, but they fit on a basic rectangle.

3. Weld the frame first. Use a metal saw to cut corners at a 45-degree angle and make sure the mitered corner is square before welding. Weld together any special components, like circles or scroll work, that go in the interior of the gate or in an arched or peaked top.

4. Add internal cross bars or braces and weld to the decorative panel. Use a wire brush to clean and smooth all welds. Put on hinges and latches; some gates hinge on only one side, others have two sections with hinges on both sides and a latch in the center. Ornate gates also can be installed with electric openers so the gates open and closed across the opening.

Tags: into circles, iron gate, iron very, make sure, ornate wrought, ornate wrought iron, other designs