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How to Make an Electrified Gate

When designing an electric fence, remember to include plans to electrify the gate as well, or it might turn into the weak link in the chain. Though perhaps dim by human standards, even the dullest confined animal won't take long to figure out that the gate doesn't deliver the same shock as the rest of the enclosure and will focus his escape efforts accordingly. Luckily, for the entrepreneurial electric fence and gate builder, the mechanics of creating a shocking experience for fences and gates is not complicated.

Materials

Converting a metal strand fence to an electric fence presents few problems.

The first step in building an electrified gate is to select material that conducts electricity well. The exact design of the gate depends upon what type of animal will be confined in the pen. Metal tubing or angle iron works well either as a frame or as the whole thing. If needed, you can also add some sort of wire mesh stretched over the frame to keep the animal occupants from exploring between the metal frame pieces. Don't forget to include an area on the gate that is insulated so you can easily open and close it without getting shocked.

Electronics

Three types of charging systems provide the electrical current from which the fence and gate system gets it's name. The first and most powerful is a 110 volt system you plug in. This is your most reliable choice, according to the website DareProducts. Another option is a 12-volt battery system, though you should keep in mind the battery needs to be checked periodically. A final alternative is a solar-powered system which, though energy efficient, might not always provide enough of a jolt to get an animal's attention.

Grounding

It's the nature of electricity that a grounding system must be installed for the electric fence to work. Without proper grounding -- three 6-feet long ground rods spaced ten feet apart -- animals could touch the fence all they want and never feel even the slightest shock. The big idea here is to make the gate an extension of the entire system, with the primary goal being to provide easy entrance and access for you while carrying the electrified current from one side of the gate to the other.

Considerations

There are various types of electric fence gate design. In addition to the standard one we mentioned, there are also steel tube, bungee, and singe-wire gates, any of which might suit your purposes and craftsmanship skills. Keep in mind that, no matter how many hot wires you decide to run on the gate, you still need a grounding wire to make the system work correctly. As long as the electrical current stays consistent and your building materials are conducive, feel free to experiment with different designs.

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