Building a Makeshift Gate Latch

What You'll Need
1 inch piece of 1 inch dowel
Wood glue

It is quite fast and simple to build a makeshift gate latch for your wooden fence. Here’s how.

Step 1 – Cut a 10 inch piece of a 2x2 and drill an 1/8 inch hole about 1 inch from the end. This will form the moving arm of your latch that will hang from one side of the post.

Step 2 – Screw the 1x4 to the post loosely so it hangs at the level that you want it to latch, which is generally about waist height. Adjust the tension by tightening or loosening the screw.

Step 3 – Cut a piece of 2x2 and a piece of 1x4 to the length that matches the width of the fence post. Glue the 2x2 to one long side of the 1x4 to form the latch seat. Determine its location by flipping the latch over as you would latch it and determining where it lays level on the seat, making sure that the latch arm is long enough that it sticks past the seat a few inches. Predrill holes and attach this to the other gate post.

Step 4 – Glue a 1 inch piece of dowel to the latch arm face at the point that it sticks past the seat to act as a grab knob. Now to latch the gate, spin the latch around to the seat. To unlatch, spin it until it hangs down along the post.