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Spinoff from Gate thread--What kind of auto gates do you have?

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  • Spinoff from Gate thread--What kind of auto gates do you have?

    We are planning on having automatic gates on the farm, mostly because of the chance of loose horses. I know that lots of places sell the Mighty Mules, but the reviews are just terrible on them.
    Would love recommendations for solar-compatible system that is reliable and capable of swinging 2 12' gates.

  • #2
    Instead of the swinging ones, I really like the sliding ones. Don't have one myself but have been to barns and cross-country courses that do. It seems like they would be sturdier and more reliable?
    The ones I've seen you just pull up and they open. Not sure how much they cost?
    "When life gives you scurvy, make lemonade."


    • Original Poster

      (un)fortunately, we already have the gates in place, so need to stick with that style, but the sliders are BADASS!


      • #4
        Everyone and their dog with automatic gates on farms have swinging ones, because that Mighty Mule is what Home Depot sells, relatively cheap.

        All I know quit functioning after a few weeks, none I know is still working.

        There are some that have the sliding ones and those are working great after years of use.

        The problem, when I got a quote on those, it was $8000 for a 16', installed.

        No, we don't have an automatic gate, still get out and open it, but it is over a cattleguard, so no critters get out anyway if we leave it open for deliveries, workers or guests.


        • #5
          As I mentioned in the other thread, some automatic gates (ours is solar-powered) can be opened by anyone with a GPS dog collar; I'm no electronixpert, but apparently transmissions on the right radio frequency are like a key.

          Our opener also has a metal detector buried a few yards inside the driveway, set to open the gate for exiting vehicles when it senses a hunk of steel in its proximity. This feature can be exploited by anyone who cares to hop the fence and wave a shovel around.

          Furthermore, there have been times when the opener has been confused by 2 or more cars that come and go within 60 seconds of each other, such that the gate will think it's closed when it's actually open. Sometimes it stays open all night, whereupon the neighbor's poor half-starved cattle do not fail to stroll in, eat my grass, and terrify my loony Arabians.

          All of which renders our gate just this side of "better than nothing" when it comes to peace of mind and livestock containment.
          Dreadful Acres: the chronicle of my extraordinary unsuitability to country life


          • #6
            Originally posted by BEARCAT View Post
            Instead of the swinging ones, I really like the sliding ones. Don't have one myself but have been to barns and cross-country courses that do. It seems like they would be sturdier and more reliable?
            The ones I've seen you just pull up and they open. Not sure how much they cost?
            Yes a slide gate system are more reliable, longer lasting and can easily be made to be crash resistant .... the number of variables is great but a properly designed and installed system should provide years if not decades of reliable service.

            I have been in this industry for many years having worked for several of the largest manufacturers and as a consultant to Corps of Engineers for embassy designs (I told them the Moscow embassy was flawed LOL). Also many prisons and airport projects.


            • #7
              What gives out on the swinging gates? The piston assembly? If the swingers have trouble, I assume the same goes for gates that lift up out of the way?

              I'm reading this thread with a great deal of interest. DH desperately wants an automatic gate (16' opening), but the terrain (high on one side, low on the other, fence not the least perpendicular to driveway) is not well-suited to a sliding gate.

              ETA: I've dealt with the commercial-type of large, sliding chainlink gate pulled by what jerked like a bike chain and sprocket assembly. Holy cow were they slooooow and rough. Seemed odd for secure military installations. How does the residential version differ?


              • #8
                One neighbor has a 12' GTO Pro sliding gate over his cattleguard, works off a battery charged by a solar panel.
                He has had it now many years completely trouble free.
                I think that brand is the same as Mighty Mule but for commercial use.

                In our windy country, sooner or later the arm will be pulled off line or broken, there is just too much stress on those, or the control panel quits in our heat and dust.

                Here is our neighbor's set-up:
                Attached Files