There are plenty of ‘run of the mill’ gate manufacturers making pretty average looking wooden driveway gates, for pretty average looking drives.
But what if you’re looking for quality and style?
Bespoke designed gates offer the perfect solution.These range from high end Oak to Redwoods-with a number of options in between.
First things first, choosing the wood.
Types of Wood for Wooden Driveway Gates – Hardwoods
Oak and Chestnut – English oak (or European Oak) is strong and durable and has that eternal rich and deeply magical look and feel. Can you think of a nicer wood that has the same look?
Combining with Chestnut posts can provide the strength to ensure the majestic Oak wooden gates hang as they should year after year, whatever the weather. Both woods have a very high tannin content which provides natural resistance to decay.Therefore artificial preservatives will not be needed to maintain their appearance just a little oil for longevity.
Ranch style or farm gates (like below) are traditionally made using Oak.
Iroko – This is an African hardwood that has gained in popularity due to its lower cost than Oak. If Oak wooden gates are out of reach then kiln dried Iroko is a worthy substitute.This light brown wood has an oily surface that is naturally resistant to decay and insect infestation.
Idigbo – This is another African hardwood and even lighter lighter brown than Iroko. Due to its lower density and weight this type of wood is more suitable for smaller wooden gates.
In terms of cost expect to pay double or more for English/European Oak compared to African hardwood alternatives.
Wooden Driveway Gates – Types of wood – the rest
Softwoods such as Redwood (or Scot’s Pine) are comparatively cheaper than hardwood options. These can be stained to provide deep and rich tones as shown in the picture below.
Gates like the redwood above will usually have frames using fixing mortice and tenon joints. Importantly the cladding board (the wood that sits inside a gate frame) should fit snugly within groves. This provides extra secure fixing and protection of the board grain ends. In order to keep moisture out gates need to be sealed. It also helps if the tops are rounded off as this promotes the flow of water away.
Wooden Driveway Gates – Considerations
The list below shows the main points to consider beforehand:
- Timber density
- Knots (some people like and some don’t)
- Ease of staining or painting
Wooden Driveway Gates – Popular Design Styles
Swan Design – This is the most popular wooden gate design type. Just look at the elegant curves below.
Bow Top Wooden Driveway gates – These are in the shape of a bow which can either be imposingly steep or gradual like those below which pick up well with the resin bound driveway.
Peak Wooden Driveway gates – can either fall from the centre or from the edges like the uniquely designed gates below.
Gunstock wooden driveway gates – ideal for maximum privacy as unlike swan designed gates there are no low points. This style of gate is given its name from the shape of the top of the gate that looks like the stock of a large gun (the part that rests against your shoulder.)
Gate automation is increasingly popular but only the best quality motors should be selected. It’s also imperative to have any automation work completed by qualified gate installer.
We hope you enjoyed this article on wooden driveway gates and hope you’ll be able to see quality and elegance when it’s in front of you.
If you make quality wooden gates contact us with some examples of your designs.