Learn how to build a fence for your hobby farm with this step by step blog series. First step: plan the fence line. Second step: how to build an h-brace. Third step: In-Line Posts & Stringing Wire. Fourth & final step: Hanging Gates.
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Welcome to the final step of the how to build a farm fence series! If you have not already read Step 1: Plan the Fence Line, Step 2: How to Build an H-brace, Step 3: In-Line Posts & Stringing Wire go back and read those first. Your fence is just about done! This will be a short one and the easiest step. Just hang gates and move-in your livestock. 🖤
STEP 1: DETERMINE ORIENTATION OF GATE & WHERE HOLES SHOULD BE DRILLED
You will attach your gate to one of your H-brace posts with the hardware provided with the gate. But first, you need to determine which side the gate latch will be and how the gate will swing open. Pay attention to elevation to make sure your gates can swing all the way open in at least one direction. If your gate is long and on a hill, you may have to hang the gate a bit higher on one side so that the other end does not get caught on the hillside trying to open it. Make sure the height has the gate clearing the ground by at least an inch or two (the gate may sag down a bit once hung).
STEP 2: MARK & DRILL HOLES
Once you have chosen the height of your gate and which H-brace post you will attach it to, mark where to drill the holes for the gate hanging hardware. Next, drill the holes using a bit slightly smaller than the hardware so that the screw grooves catch tightly.
Screw the hardware in at the bottom first. Screw it in however far you want it so that the gap between the gate and the H-brace post is the width that you want. Next screw the top hardware in far enough to bring the gate up to level with the ground while also providing some stability so that it doesn't sag. This means the top screw should be in further than the bottom screw. Remember, the L for the bottom screw should face up so that you can set the gate down on top of it, and the screw for the top should face down so that anyone can't walk by and lift the gate up off the screws.
STEP 3: HANG GATE & ADJUST
Now it is time to hang the gate. Set the bottom of the gate on the bottom screw. To attach it to the top screw, loosen the top cylinder on the gate so that it slides down, lift the gate so it is even with the top screw, then slip the cylinder up and onto the screw. Don't forget to tighten the bolts on the cylinder of the gate again once you have it at the correct height to attach to the top screw hardware.
Once you have hung the gate, you may realize you want to screw in either the top or bottom (or both) further, or unscrew them a bit. Adjusting is easy and common, simply pull the gate off and screw in or out and re-hang it.
STEP 4: ATTACH LATCHES
Most gates come with chains, but you will most likely want to purchase a gate latch for ease of moving through the gate. There are a lot of latch options -- choose whichever you prefer. I have linked the latches we used below. We love them! They are super easy to open, the animals don't bother them and they have a built in support to keep the gate from sagging down. We decided on them originally because we wanted to be able to open the gates with one hand, from horseback and didn't want the goats and horses able to learn how to open it.
Remember to think about what animals will be behind the gates when choosing a latch. For example, goats and horses will learn to open the traditional chain link fence latch very quickly. Here are some questions to think about:
Will I want to be able to open and close the gate one-handed?
Will I need to be able to lock the gate with a padlock?
What animals will be on either side of the gate, and will they be able to open certain latches?
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Woohoo you have a completed fence!