Building a garden gate does not have to be complex. A gate of the simplest design can turn out looking great. The most common gate design is the Z-type gate. The actual design you decide upon will have a lot to do with the gate's use. If you have a picket fence, then you will want the gate to match. The easiest way to build a gate for your garden is to build it while it is flat on the ground, and hang it when you finish.
Measure the area to determine the size of the gate you need to build by placing the end of the tape measure at the fence post and stretching it across the opening to the other post on the opposite side. Measure the height the gate needs to be starting at the top of the post and stretching the tape measure to the ground. The dimensions determine how many 2-by-4 boards are needed for the project, as boards are purchased in 8-foot increments.
Purchase your materials for the job according to the measurements. Measure the 2-by-4 studs using the tape measure and pencil to mark your cuts on them. Place the 2-by-4 studs on the sawhorses and cut them to size using the circular saw. Set the builders square to cut a 45-degree angle on each board to fit together and form the gate's frame. Place the square on the end of the 2-by-4 studs and mark the cuts using a pencil. Place the 2-by-4 studs on the sawhorses and cut the 45-degree angles using a circular saw.
Set the 2-by-4 studs on the ground with the 45-degree angles together. Connect the 2-by-4 studs together using 4-inch screws, the drill and screw bit. Install the corner brackets on the inside corners of the frame that you just put together using the drill, 1-inch wood screws and a screw bit. Alternatively, you can cut another 2-by-4 stud using the circular saw and builders square to make a Z-type gate without the need for the corner brackets.
Measure the length you need for the gate pickets by placing the tape measure at the top of the fence pickets and pulling it down to the length you need. Mark your measurements using a pencil. Place the fence pickets on the sawhorses and cut the boards to length using the circular saw. Align the pickets to the gate frame and spread them out evenly. Connect the pickets to the gate frame using the drill, screw bits and 2-inch screws.
Set the hinges on the gate frame and install them using the drill, screw bits and the fasteners that came with the hinges. Attach the gate to the fence post and level it. Secure the hinges to the fence post using the drill, screw bits and the fasteners that came with the hinges. Install the gate latch using the drill, screw bits and the screws that came with the latch.
When attaching the gate to the fence post, enlist the help of a family member to hold the gate while you attach it.
Wear safety glasses when cutting lumber.
Tips and warnings
- When attaching the gate to the fence post, enlist the help of a family member to hold the gate while you attach it.
- Wear safety glasses when cutting lumber.