What is wrought iron, and why is it good for sliding gates?
Wrought iron gates were originally designed to keep intruders out by preventing forced entry. The only way an intruder can get through wrought iron gates is with a battering ram and significant force or by removing the gate hinges.
Wrought iron is extremely tough and resilient, so much so that wrought iron railings and gates made hundreds of years ago are still operational.
For electric sliding gates, wrought iron is ideal because it is dense and strong, providing excellent strength across the gates; most sliding gates have one panel, so they require a strong and resistant material to ramming.
What is wrought iron?
Wrought iron is a type of iron forged and rolled rather than cast. It’s made by puddling pig iron while it is molten. It is then worked with tools to create shapes such as the straight bars and ornamental details on gates.
Wrought iron is preferred for gates because working iron rather than casting produces a more consistent product. It is also more ductile than cast iron and significantly stronger, with a higher tensile strength rating than some steels.
What are the advantages of wrought iron?
When choosing electric sliding gates for your house, wrought iron electric gates are unbeatable in a few areas, including strength, longevity and pedigree.
Wrought iron has a tensile strength of 234-372 Mpa versus 90Mpa for non-heat-treated aluminium. It will never snap or split on impact like wood, and it will never crumble or crack like fibreglass or other composites.
Wrought iron sliding gates last a lifetime when coated. The only serviceable parts are the electric motor and the track (as with all gates). When exposed to water and air, the iron may see some rust, but it can be removed and the gates re-coated.
John Birkenshaw developed a way to roll wrought iron rails in 1820, and they became the standard at that point. Wrought iron is the traditional choice for house gates and rails, with iron used in rails and gates since the 16th century.
Although wrought iron sliding gates cost more than composite and aluminium gates, they last a lifetime if looked after. The total cost of ownership is lower than other gate types, so they make sense financially in the long run.
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