Home Projects Home Improvement Two panel 2×4 Deck Gate

Two panel 2×4 Deck Gate

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We needed to build and install a gate on the deck to complete the building part of the deck, still need to seal it (eke). Wanted a gate in place to keep the kids on and animals off.

This was one of the few times that I did not draw up the work piece in sketchup before starting to build, had an idea in my head and did not want to spend my quality Saturday the time drawing it up. Ran into a few issues because of not having a plan but it worked out okay.

The plan was to have a two panels that swung away from each other, one side smaller then the other so we would have a adequate opening when we opened the up-pinned side. Check out the build video to see all the action.

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The gate is built out of four 8′ pressure treated 2x4s and a few scraps from the decking for the pickets.

Before starting the gate I needed to put a spacer board between the top and bottom railing of the staircase. Had a goofy angle on the top so it took a few tries.


To begin the gate I used the miter saw to cut all the pieces for the top rails and sides to length. I then measured out the locations for the dados that will hold the pickets in place.

Used the cross-cut sled on the table saw, running thought several times, to cut the dados for the pickets. Set a stop block on the sled and used the table saw fence so that I could repeat dado int the same location each time.

Oh-No! Got all excited how it was working and messed up my first piece. Cut another piece and made the dados correct….happens!

It was at this time that the wife made a visit to the shop and suggested that the gate looked too bulky, I agreed but thought that we needed to keep it the way it was because of the way the hinges mounted. Looked at the hinges and decided that we could mount them so that I think they are backwards but it works out for several reasons; we can cut the gate profile down some, hinges don’t solely hang on the spacer boards that I just put up, more weight on the railing pole.

So I cut the dadoed boards in half and cut all the frame boards to the new proper width. Also put a round-over on the frame so it would match the rest of the 2x4s.


Then cut the pickets to the proper dimensions on the table saw and rounded them over with the router.

I then assembled using 2 1/2″ spax deck screws. Made sure I kept things square as I went along.

After bringing the gate up to the deck and test fitting it I realized that I needed to shave the outside edges down some as the fit was to tight. I used the power hand planner for this taking two strokes on each outer edge resulting in 1/2″ of clearance. Worked like a charm. Made sure to drive my screws in further so I would not hit them with the planner.

I then installed on the deck and was very pleased with the results.

In the end I definitely reaffirmed to myself that I need to make sketchup drawings before I undertake  a build, just how my process works and the end result is always better if I do! Hope you enjoyed folks and we will see you next time.

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