Gates FAQ

What types of gates are there?
There are a variety of gates that are used for different applications:

Single swing: Commonly referred to as a “walk” gate, these gates can be constructed in widths typically from three foot to twenty foot depending on the material used and purpose of the gate. With the proper design and materials, these gates can reach over one hundred feet in length. Swing gates can incorporate self-closing and latching hardware for use around swimming pools or automated electric access at the base of your driveway.

Double Swing: The double swing gate incorporates two leafs to create a larger opening. Double swing gates can be constructed for chain link, PVC vinyl, wood and ornamental steel fences. Ornamental gates at a driveway entrance, frequently referred to as Estate Gates, can be used in conjunction with a motorized gate operator to control access to a property, preventing unwanted intrusion. The motorized gates can be opened and closed by a number of means including keypads, card readers and garage door style transmitters. The gate can be configured to close automatically after a car enters the property and to open automatically when a car is leaving the property.

Cantilever Gates: This gate is commonly thought of as a “sliding” gate and is most common when a slide gate is requested. The gate itself does not touch the ground and is supported by rollers attached to large gate posts set to one side of the opening. The gate will have a tail that is used to support the gate when it is in the closed position.  The tail section is approximately half of the length of the opening. It is important to ensure that adequate storage space equal to the sum of the gate opening and tail section is available so that the gate can fully open. Cantilever gates can be constructed with all types of fencing, but will require a steel or aluminum frame.  These gates may be built to look like Estate swing gates or covered with vinyl, wood, etc.

Rolling Gates: A less common type of “sliding” gate is the rolling gate. Rolling gates require a wheel on the front of the gate and a pipe track to support wheels located on the rear of the gate. These gates do not require a “tail” like the cantilever gate so that they can be used in situations where storage space is limited. Rolling gates with a V-Groove track and wheel assembly may also incorporate automated access control.

Overhead Track Gates:  Typically used in high security or industrial applications, overhead track gates will utilize an I-beam or bar truss system that extends over the opening and runs the length of the opening on either side.  The I-beam or bar truss will typically be placed close to fourteen feet above the opening to allow semi-truck traffic to clear.  Attached to and above the gate are trollies that run along the I-beam or track.   The number of trollies will depend on the length and weight of the gate.  As these gates are fully supported from above, automated access control may be used to safely open and close these gates.  Fully supported as it travels through the opening from the track above, overhead track gates are extremely reliable.

Vertical Lift Gates:  When there is no storage space on either side of the opening and a swing gate is not practical, you may need a vertical lift gate.  Typically used in industrial applications, vertical lift gates incorporate columns on each end of the gate that are tall enough to lift the gate straight-up to clear semi-truck traffic below.  Attached to the end of the gate are rollers or trucks that run vertically in tracks attached to the columns.  Utilizing counterbalance weights or garage door like springs, these gates will easily lift up and down with the use of an electric gate operator.

Vertical Pivot Gates:  Popular for sites that do not have the storage space for a slide gate but want affordable automated access control.  These gates are also popular for use where there is considerable snow fall.  These gates use a single gate panel to fill the opening.  On one end at the base of the panel, the gate panel has a pivot point with an axle assembly that is mounted to the gate operator.  On this same end at the top of the panel is attached a very large set of springs that runs from the gate panel into the rear of the gate operator.  These springs provide the counterbalance necessary to lift and pivot the gate.  Adjoining where the springs attach to the gate panel is the gate operator mechanical arm that when activated will pull the top of the gate back and down, pivoting on the axle assembly.  This  causes the nose of the panel to rise and pivot back.  When in the full open position the panel is now rotated a full ninety degrees and standing upright out of the opening.

All of the swing gates are available with a wide variety of hinges that open one hundred and eighty degrees, self-closing, or even causing the gate to rise up as it opens.  Latches are endless from padalockable, self-latching, self-locking, keyed, push button, magnetic, etc.

  1. Adjoining elevations.  Does the ground rise or fall under the travel of the gate and will this interfere with its travel?
  2. Obstructions.  Are there any obstructions in the travel of the gate? Or, when opening the gate; will it interfere with on-coming or parked vehicles.
  3. Proximity to roadways.  Will this gate or the gate travel cause a traffic jam or accident?  Is it too close to traffic?
  4. Local codes.  Will the local building inspector allow me to install this gate?  Does it interfere with public travel?
  5. Wind load.  Is this gate subject to high winds and is it engineered to remain structurally sound?
  6. Overhead obstructions.  Will my gate allow for semi-truck traffic to travel under the track above?