Once you invest your time and money into constructing a field fence for your animals, you need to consider the entrance into the fenced area. Building a field fence gate provides an easy, low-cost gate option that also looks attractive because it matches the rest of your fence. Just as important, a field fence gate provides much more security for your animals because it does not have the large openings that many smaller animals can slip through in a tube gate.
Measure the opening to determine materials. Depending upon the access that you require, your gate could be a small 1.2 m (4 foot) gate for people traffic, or it might be a 3 m (10 foot) gate for pickup or tractor access. Either way, you need to measure the width and height of your gate opening, as well as the diagonal measurements. Your fence frame will be constructed of 3 horizontal boards (rails) attached to 2 vertical boards (uprights) on each end. Diagonal boards (supports) will run from each bottom corner to the opposite upper corner, forming an "X" shape for support, and the entire structure is covered with field fence.
Determine the board size that you need for your fence. Base your board size on the type of animal that your fence contains. For instance, a stallion will require a much thicker, stronger fence than a pygmy goat. Unless you're containing a very large, strong animal, 5 cm x 15 cm (2 x 6 inch) lumber provides sturdy gate material for most livestock species.
Construct the wooden frame. Lay your uprights and two of the rails flat on the ground to form a rectangular frame. Lay the uprights over the ends of the rails to provide extra support for the nail locations. Measure the diagonals to ensure that the frame is square. If the diagonal measurements do not match up, adjust and measure again until they have the same measurements. Nail the frame parts together, then attach the middle rail to the centre of the fence horizontally in the same manner.
Bolt the diagonal braces one at a time to the gate structure. Drill the holes in the frame and in the diagonal braces, then attach them together using bolts for extra strength. Use small 5 cm (2 inch) blocks of wood under the ends of the top brace to make it flush with the frame.
Staple the woven wire field fence to the wooden gate. Prepare the field fence by rolling it out and cutting it to the approximate size of the gate. Remove the first set of vertical stays on one end of the field fence and wrap the horizontal stays around one end of the wooden gate, splicing the stays back on themselves. Pull the field fence taut against the gate, affixing it in the same way on the other end of the gate. Use galvanised staples to attach the field fence along the top, bottom and centre rails of the gate.
Install hinges. Attach three hinges along one side of your gate, one on each horizontal rail. Affix the gate to the gate post. Don't forget to provide a chain or latch to secure your gate.
Have another person help you when you stretch the field fence in order to ensure that it is tightly stretched.
Tips and warnings
- Have another person help you when you stretch the field fence in order to ensure that it is tightly stretched.