Home-made Gate Closing Device.

Discussion in 'Lawn Mowing' started by MOW ED, Sep 2, 2000.

  1. MOW ED

    MOW ED LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 5,028

    I fabricated a homemade gate closing device similar to Erics and it works super but I have one question.

    I want to put a piece of aircraft cable thru the spring for a safety but I can't figure out how to do it without having 8 feet of cable hanging around when the gate is up.

    Does anyone have any suggestions?
    Does anyone use a safety cable?
    Has anyone had a problem with a spring breaking and flying?

    I used a 160# garage door spring and it is enough but I have the safety concern. Thanks.
  2. Eric ELM

    Eric ELM Husband, Father, Friend, Angel
    Messages: 4,830

    I realize this could be a concern. You can never be too safe. The springs on my garage door were very old looking when we moved here 25 years ago and those springs get stretched lots farther than this gate spring. If you built it simular to the way I did, the piece on the gate is acting like a lever to lift the gate and the spring isn't getting stretched very much. I've had this setup on my trailer now for 3 seasons and so far so good. I do inspect it regularly and always lift and lower it from the oposite side, just in case. I feel that there is a bigger risk of something shooting out of a chute opening on a mower than this spring breaking, but most of us mow all day with the chute opening not covered. The spring is a saftey issue, so anyone that has installed this, BE CAREFUL.

    The best idea I can come up with is put 2 cables on it, one on each end. If it breaks, one of them should slow it down at least. Doing it this way, you would only need short cables and use double clamps on them to help assure it is safe. I'll work on this idea and let you know Ed.
  3. bob

    bob LawnSite Platinum Member
    from DE
    Messages: 4,262

    What about housing the spring in a piece of PVC pipe. Like on the EZ-Gates. Look at theirs on www.ez-gate.com .

    BUSHMASTER LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 519

    ez gate is the one to copy but i think you wouyld want to enclose it in steel pipe.
  5. bob

    bob LawnSite Platinum Member
    from DE
    Messages: 4,262

    I have the stainless steel version. The spring is enclosed in a stainless tube.
  6. Runner

    Runner LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 13,492

    I just built the ez gate version for my trailer, except it's much better and heavier duty. The thing with Eric's type of lift is trhat you really can't wrap it in anything because the whole spring moves sort of as a pivot. I wrapped mine in 3" PVC and ran a cable from an eye-bolt in front of the spring stretched to the point of the end of the spring when it is extended. This way I don't have all that extra cable. My gate is a REALLY heavy gate, and I can now lift it with one finger too. I don't though, I just put a toe under it, give it a slight lift with my foot, and it closes by itself. Bob, how does yours close, pretty easy or a little harder than mine?
  7. bob

    bob LawnSite Platinum Member
    from DE
    Messages: 4,262

    Thats funny you tried to close it with your foot. Thats the first thing I tried! But I couldn't do it. The gate feels about %25 of the original weight. I'm told that the stainless version is %25 stronger materials.
  8. Runner

    Runner LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 13,492

    That's what I thought when I saw the pictures. It looked, by the size of the tube, that they use quite a smaller spring. I have about 20 bucks invested into it. The most expensive thing was the cable. I bought nylon coated 3/8", which I probably shouldn't have because the plastic coating is flattening out on the lower pulley wheel. Could be worse though I guess.
  9. jeffyr

    jeffyr LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 876

    I have a spring hooked on to the gate and trailer frame with u-bolts. I used eye-bolts, only to have them bend and....yes...break. While I was stepping around the spring of all times. Missed the Jewels but I can't explian how. But now the u-bolts are much heavier and I ALWAYS lift the gate on the other side.


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