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Jim_Nutt

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Hi all,

I’ve made a gate frame that uses mortise and tenon joints on the three rails (I think they’re called rails!?) and it’s a bit under 6ft tall and a bit over 2.5ft wide. I’m a bit stuck with the diagonal rails. Please can anyone tell me:
1. the purpose of the diagonal rails
2. which way they should point (in relation to the hinges), and
3. how you would fit them (eg nails, screws, glue etc and on which points)

I’ve been struggling to find info online and would really appreciate your thoughts and advice.

Many thanks!
 

deema

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Depending on the section size you’ve used, those dimensions are similar to a door, and you probably don’t need bracing.

Bracing is added by having the foot of it on the hinge side. You place them to span between and not into the styles ie only touching the rails ( if they are connected to the styles they will push the gate apart as it shrinks)
You can nail, screw, glue or best of all notch them into the rails.
 

AndyT

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As above. Think of the diagonal strut as if it was holding up a scaffold, or a shelf if you prefer. It stops the horizontal bit from drooping down.
Now you know this, you can have fun spotting the many doors and gates which are the wrong way round. :)
 

Jim_Nutt

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Thank you both, this is really helpful info and much appreciated.

I wasn’t sure if the braces helped prevent the gate/door twisting?

Seeing as I’ve used mortise and tenons on the rails I can’t see how they could drop unless I’m missing something?

Our gate that’s being removed uses mortise and tenons on the rails but also has braces and is similar dimensions. Why do you think they would’ve done that?
 

deema

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The braces are there to stop it sagging, they don’t do anything for twist.
 

Jim_Nutt

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Cheers Deema, great stuff.

As Andy said, I’ll now be able to recognise all the gates that have them the wrong way round! :)
 

Phil Pascoe

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There was an advert many years ago by the Swedish timber association or something similar that got torn to shreds because it feature a door hung on the wrong side. :D
 

Doug71

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I sometimes fit the braces before the gate is boarded then fix them in with pocket hole screws which are then hidden by the boarding.

Jim_Nutt":16ych31w said:
As Andy said, I’ll now be able to recognise all the gates that have them the wrong way round! :)
You see gates with the 2 braces going in opposite directions, this is so they can be hung at either side and one of the braces still does it's job.
 

Jim_Nutt

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Thanks all.

Slightly silly follow up question perhaps but I’m looking for 30mm galvanised nails to fit the boards but am struggling to find some that seem ‘right’. Eg I was hoping to get lost head nails so I could tap them in and fill over them but I can’t find any. Bought some 30mm galvanised nails from Screwfix but the heads seem too big to be punched below the surface.

Any advice?
 

wsb1207

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Jim_Nutt":yap3q22n said:
Thanks all.

Slightly silly follow up question perhaps but I’m looking for 30mm galvanised nails to fit the boards but am struggling to find some that seem ‘right’. Eg I was hoping to get lost head nails so I could tap them in and fill over them but I can’t find any. Bought some 30mm galvanised nails from Screwfix but the heads seem too big to be punched below the surface.

Any advice?
Small pilot led countersink bit, just enough to get under the surface should do
 

LBCarpentry

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AndyT":2bbazah0 said:
As above. Think of the diagonal strut as if it was holding up a scaffold, or a shelf if you prefer. It stops the horizontal bit from drooping down.
Now you know this, you can have fun spotting the many doors and gates which are the wrong way round. :)
Not to mention the one where they point different ways like >
 

Jim_Nutt

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30mm masonary nails?
Phil you star, I think you may have nailed it! (pun sort of intended). I’ve been planning to use what I’ve already bought but I just looked these up and reckon they are well worth a shout. Cheers!
 

sunnybob

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No idea here, but are masonry nails too smooth to stay in the wood when its being buffeted by winds and users? Cant beat a rusty iron nail for grip :shock: :lol:

I feel I would want to smear each with a bit of epoxy, which would be an extreme waste of time and money. :roll:
 

Phil Pascoe

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That's a good point, actually. Epoxy wouldn't work anyway as it wouldn't go in with the nail. They do corrode in time, though - ever tried pulling the ******* things out? :D
I think I'd use screws anyway.
 

sunnybob

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Phil Pascoe":ucznoyd0 said:
That's a good point, actually. Epoxy wouldn't work anyway as it wouldn't go in with the nail. They do corrode in time, though - ever tried pulling the ******* things out? :D
I think I'd use screws anyway.
Yes, back when I was poor and only had a claw hammer. :roll:
Now I have more tools, AND sense, and i just put safety glasses on and with a club hammer,either drive them all the way in, or whack em sideways and then go looking for the pieces. :lol:
I'm first in line for using stuff in unconventional ways, but i think they would not stay in place on a gate that was subjected to constant sideways flexing, because they wont rust and will always stay slippy.

Depending on the desired finish, if it was waney edge rustic I'd use ordinary small iron nails, a couple at each end and wherever they crossed the frame. Rusty nail heads do have their place. =D>

If it was a substantial gate that was a show piece, I'd go the whole hog and use one of those pilot / plug countersink bits (I have two, but am never sure of the correct name) Then plug cutter and glue each plug in. A couple hours extra work, but if the grain is matched on the plugs, a very impressive finish. They dont even have to be blended. Use a different colour hard wood and make a feature of them. People will think they are dowels.
8)
 

Jim_Nutt

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owen":31pivx6b said:
https://www.ironmongerydirect.co.uk/product/timco-cladding-pins-30mm-pack-250-322468?vat=1&shopping=true&infinity=ict2~net~gaw~ar~387176555199~kw~~mt~~cmp~Smart Shopping > Top Products~ag~Ad group&gclid=Cj0KCQjwupD4BRD4ARIsABJMmZ9adhoA7FKjxT9bxucfs7DsdO2KZJQpRtapEsIljoiN3L0SzYYSYyMaAs9zEALw_wcB

Any good?
Cheers Owen, yes they look spot on to be honest based on how this thread is developing! Shame they’re sold out. I’ll see if they’re available anywhere else.
 

Jim_Nutt

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Thanks all for your comments.

I picked up the masonry ones today and they look much better size and head wise. I was happy to use them but just picked up this thread and now am now questioning their ability to stay put!

I’m going for a higher quality finish if I can achieve it and was planning to tap the nails below the surface and use filler, then paint the gate. I imagine that would help them stay put wouldn’t it??
 
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