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Aluminum Gate Installation

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  • Aluminum Gate Installation

    Last fall I prepared detailed drawings for the driveway gate for my friend Scott, who is an engineer that I work with. Scott had previously designed the piers and arranged their construction. The piers are actually an armature of stainless steel, which goes about five feet deep into a footing. The bricks of the pier rest on the footing and are built up around the armature. The first picture shows my SolidWorks design of the gate assembly.

    1. Gate Assembly
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    The second picture shows the gate leaf components.

    2. Gate leaf asm
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    The third picture shows the weld callouts for the gate leaf. The gate consists of 2" x 4" Aluminum tubing as well as three solid bocks that have tapped holes in them. The curved tube is bent the hard way and we couldn't find anyone willing and able to bend the tube in the Detroit area, so we had a company in
    Chicago bend it for us. I sent the design out to one of my company's local fabrication venders for welding, because I was concerned that the job was a little big for me and that my Dynasty 200 DX welder wouldn't have enough power to weld the heavy blocks, even with a Helium Argon mix.


    3. Gate leaf weld callouts
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    I chose to use spherical bearings for the hinge bearings so that the bearings wouldn't fight each other if the pintles weren't perfectly aligned. I used a thrust bearing that had a concave recess that matched the diameter of the ball, so the thrust bearing would also accommodate misalignment.

    4. Spherical bearing and thrust washer
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    The pintles are 1" stainless steel with 1"-8 UNC threads on them. My design called for the pintles to be reverse bored as shown below to add a proper finish and to make the bearings fit in the blocks that had to mount to the 4" wide tubing.

    5. Spherical and thrust bearing
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    Miller Thunderbolt
    Smith Oxyacetylene Torch
    Miller Dynasty 200DX
    Lincoln SP-250 MIG Welder
    Lincoln LE 31 MP
    Lincoln 210 MP
    Clausing/Colchester 15" Lathe
    16" DuAll Saw
    15" Drill Press
    7" x 9" Swivel Head Horizontal Band Saw
    20 Ton Arbor Press
    Bridgeport

  • #2
    The next step was to do a dry run with all of the details to insure that we had all of the proper hardware and everything fit.

    6. Checking fit and our measurements
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    The first thing that we found is that the pintles bottomed out by hitting concrete before they were in the correct position, so I brought the pintles home and cut 1" off the end.

    7. Cutting down the pintles
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    8. Pintles cut down
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    This is a welding forum, so here are three pictures that the fabrication vender sent to me.

    9. Gate leaf weld
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    10. Leaf welded
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    Miller Thunderbolt
    Smith Oxyacetylene Torch
    Miller Dynasty 200DX
    Lincoln SP-250 MIG Welder
    Lincoln LE 31 MP
    Lincoln 210 MP
    Clausing/Colchester 15" Lathe
    16" DuAll Saw
    15" Drill Press
    7" x 9" Swivel Head Horizontal Band Saw
    20 Ton Arbor Press
    Bridgeport

    Comment


    • #3
      11. Gate leaf welded
      Click image for larger version  Name:	11. Gate leaf welded.jpg Views:	0 Size:	75.9 KB ID:	610528

      I found that the pivot pin of the gate actuator wouldn't fit in the bore of the gate bracket because of the powder coat, so I brought home the gate brackets and reamed them with an adjustable reamer.

      12. Reaming off powder coat from bore
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      13. Testing pivot pin in reamed hole
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      14. Reamer has just paint on it no Aluminum
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      The pier bracket had to be welded by me in the field and there was only 8" between the bracket and the ground, so I decided to chamfer the top so that I could weld it with two passes from the top instead of all the way around as specified. I also have only limited experience welding overhead with a mirror.

      15. Chamfered pier bracket
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      Last edited by Don52; 09-08-2020, 09:41 AM.
      Miller Thunderbolt
      Smith Oxyacetylene Torch
      Miller Dynasty 200DX
      Lincoln SP-250 MIG Welder
      Lincoln LE 31 MP
      Lincoln 210 MP
      Clausing/Colchester 15" Lathe
      16" DuAll Saw
      15" Drill Press
      7" x 9" Swivel Head Horizontal Band Saw
      20 Ton Arbor Press
      Bridgeport

      Comment


      • #4
        Last Saturday we installed the gate. Here is a close up picture of the hinge block and the pintle. After some experimenting we found that it was easiest to mount the top block to the gate leaf, then hang the gate and then slide the lower bearing block onto the lower pintle and finally mount the lower bearing block to the gate.

        16. Upper bearing block mounted on pintle
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        Here is a picture of the gate bracket bolted to the gate.

        17. Gate bracket mounted
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        Here is a close up of my two pass stainless steel TIG weld, which attaches the pier bracket to the plate in the pier.

        19. Pier bracket welded to plate in pier
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        The following picture shows the linear actuator temporarily mounted to the newly welded pier bracket.

        20. Linear actuator mounted
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        Miller Thunderbolt
        Smith Oxyacetylene Torch
        Miller Dynasty 200DX
        Lincoln SP-250 MIG Welder
        Lincoln LE 31 MP
        Lincoln 210 MP
        Clausing/Colchester 15" Lathe
        16" DuAll Saw
        15" Drill Press
        7" x 9" Swivel Head Horizontal Band Saw
        20 Ton Arbor Press
        Bridgeport

        Comment


        • #5
          Here is a picture of the mounted closed gate from the street.

          21. Gate closed
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          Last but not least here is a picture of the opened gate, looking towards the street.

          22. Gate opened
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          -Don
          Miller Thunderbolt
          Smith Oxyacetylene Torch
          Miller Dynasty 200DX
          Lincoln SP-250 MIG Welder
          Lincoln LE 31 MP
          Lincoln 210 MP
          Clausing/Colchester 15" Lathe
          16" DuAll Saw
          15" Drill Press
          7" x 9" Swivel Head Horizontal Band Saw
          20 Ton Arbor Press
          Bridgeport

          Comment


          • #6
            Don, you're quite the welder/artist. I'll just call you a weldist! Beautiful gate, beautiful house! Well done.

            Comment

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