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When the gate is closed, there is about a 3 inch gap from the bottom corner of the gate to the driveway. When the gate opens, it comes up against a higher part of the driveway and skids on it, getting the garage gate arm stuck.

Right now, I've propped up some bricks near the fence to stop the gate from hitting the driveway fully (it only skids when it's nearly fully open), so that the arm knows to stop before.

I have an idea of putting a caster wheel on the corner that skids with the wheel as close to the bottom of the gate as I can get, so that when it hits that part of the driveway where it skids, it instead rolls and the wheel helps lift up the gate a bit.

The complicating part is that when closed, there's that gap.

My thought is to get a wheel that has 3 inches of 'give'; when the gate is open, there is no give left and the wheel is fully supporting the weight of the gate; and as it closes, the wheel falls down its 'give' until it's fully extended at the end.

Does such a thing exist? I've seen gate casters that have springs, but I believe those springs are mainly to account for shock absorption. Alternately, should I not care about the state of it being closed and just get a static caster (which is touching the ground when open, but hanging off the corner when closed)?

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    Is the hinge post solidly anchored? Leaning it back a bit might help the bottom clear. – Aloysius Defenestrate Jan 3 '17 at 1:21
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    You need to verify that the drive is the same height level open point to closed point. Then make sure the hinge points on the post are plumb in both directions (closed and open). Last check the gate end for plumb open and just before it touches the drive. – spicetraders Jan 3 '17 at 2:08
  • Both of the above. Is the post secured? Is the grade correct? Or is the gate itself sagging? – Mazura Jan 4 '17 at 0:50
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If you angle the gate pivot slightly such that the line passing through the pivots is tilted slightly forward at the top, the gate will rise as it opens. If you accomplish this offset on the gate side rather then the post side, the gate can still be vertical when closed, but that might take a bit of fabrication. For a small rise, it probably won't be very noticeable, but that depends on the length & height of the gate.

  • This could result in the gate swinging closed in a dangerous manner due to gravity. – isherwood Jan 3 '17 at 16:38
  • I prefer to think of it as self closing! But yes, it will swing closed on its own - how quickly/dangerously depends on how much of an angle you need and how long & heavy the gate is. Some springs or a damper could help mitigate. – CoAstroGeek Jan 3 '17 at 16:45
  • Gate/fence is already constructed; I never want to speak to my contractor again (assuming he'd learn to respond to texts). This is trying to fix the 'sag' that has happened with the settling of the fence post. I don't trust myself to detatch/reattach the gate on my own :/ – Mike Manfrin Jan 3 '17 at 19:56
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I would install a caster as you planned, but mount it so that it projects just slightly below the bottom of the gate. In this way it only makes contact with the ground (and noise and vibration) when it's actually needed.

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Let it hang - I don't see it making a bit of difference if the wheel only touches down when it's needed, and hangs the rest of the time. While I can cook up 3 ways to make the wheel spring-loaded, I don't see a need to do so, so I won't bother trying to write those out or make drawings.

If feasible, CoAstroGeek's answer is another way around it with no wheels.

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