fence gate with different technique I learned in France.

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Project by BurlyBob posted 09-29-2013 11:02 PM 3074 views 49 times favorited 20 comments Add to Favorites Watch

So this is my first project I’ve posted. I saw this technique used on gates, window shutters and a very large set of shop doors. I found this in a small villiage in France where my mother had lived briefly after escaping from East Germany. I was struck with the simplicity and unique common sense of notching the crossbuck of a gate or shutter to keep the weight of the gate from sagging it. Thru My Aunt’s interperting I was shown this by the county foreman, who had built a very large set of shop doors. They were probably 9’+ by 6’. I also saw very tall shutters on some houses that had two diagonal crossbucks with a top, middle and bottom horizontal piece. The bottom of the crossbuck/diagonal was notched and adjacent to a hinge. The other thing I did to try and match
this to what I saw was chamfering the edges. I used a 45 degree router bit after I had it all put together. I later checked my photos and saw that some of the shutters, and gates had all the crossbuck edges chamfered,
even the notches. It gives it a unique look. I’m not trying to show off the finished project as much as the notch technique. It’s something I’ve never seen before. Hopefully, others will find it useful.

20 comments so far

View MedicineMan's profile


91 posts in 1211 days

#1 posted 09-29-2013 11:17 PM

Great idea! I have to build 4 gates in our back yard fences, which are French Gothic in style. Now maybe I can give them a French bracing like yours. Thanks for the post.

View NormG's profile


4507 posts in 1747 days

#2 posted 09-29-2013 11:18 PM

Wow, what a great technique. I can see where it takes the weight and redistributes to other areas. Great job

-- Norman

View TopamaxSurvivor's profile (online now)


15058 posts in 2419 days

#3 posted 09-29-2013 11:44 PM

Interesting idea! Should add a lot to the bracing strength and durability.

-- "some old things are lovely, warm still with life ... of the forgotten men who made them." - D.H. Lawrence

View farmerdude's profile (online now)


195 posts in 783 days

#4 posted 09-30-2013 12:40 AM

Just goes to show, you do learn something new every day. I never would have thought there was this great, and simple, an improvement that could be made to a gate/door. Thank you for posting this.

-- Jeff in central Me.

View widdle's profile


1471 posts in 1742 days

#5 posted 09-30-2013 02:45 AM

Looks good..Where are the hinges from ?

View MarkTheFiddler's profile


1907 posts in 932 days

#6 posted 09-30-2013 04:30 AM

Took me a minute to appreciate your gate. Now that I see self locking diagonal, that is exactly how I’m going to do mine. Thanks for the share!

-- Thanks for all the lessons!

View Jamie Speirs's profile

Jamie Speirs

4163 posts in 1600 days

#7 posted 09-30-2013 04:36 AM

Bob that is a great solution
Great gate and the hardware just make it stand out.


-- Who is the happiest of men? He who values the merits of others, and in their pleasure takes joy, even as though 'twere his own. --Johann Wolfgang von Goethe

View BurlyBob's profile


95 posts in 1009 days

#8 posted 09-30-2013 10:17 AM

I found the hinges on ebay. I bought 3 pair as I have to do a double gate next summer. I believe the company’s name was Merx. You should have the seen the hinges on the shop doors 1/4” iron that ran the full span of the door and vertical straps that ran 2’-3’ both sides of the hinges. That guy didn’t believe in messing around.

View Knothead62's profile


2364 posts in 1704 days

#9 posted 09-30-2013 10:25 AM

Very nice work. Shows that one can always learn something new. Thanks for sharing. Glad your mother was able to get to the free world.

View Jofa's profile


215 posts in 581 days

#10 posted 09-30-2013 02:15 PM

Brilliant. I’ll be using this technique. Thank you!

-- Thank you Lord for the passion and ability to make things from your creation.

View natenaaron's profile


377 posts in 541 days

#11 posted 09-30-2013 02:38 PM

How about that.

View BigMig's profile


278 posts in 1357 days

#12 posted 09-30-2013 03:29 PM

Another example of how LJs help one another.

Many thanks,

-- Mike from Lansdowne, PA

View HillbillyShooter's profile


4856 posts in 1036 days

#13 posted 09-30-2013 03:30 PM

Nice design detail—thanks for sharing as I don’t believe I’ve ever seen that used before.

-- John C. -- "Firearms are second only to the Constitution in importance; they are the peoples' liberty's teeth." George Washington

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5578 posts in 2329 days

#14 posted 09-30-2013 04:28 PM

Nice work interresting design works well too. Alistair

-- excuse my typing as I have a form of parkinsons disease

View WoodDweller's profile


36 posts in 475 days

#15 posted 09-30-2013 06:37 PM

Nice looking gate.

I believe that notch joint is called a truss heel or toe joint.

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