Why build an ordinary gate, when you can build a mathematical gate? At least that was Pumpjack’s thought process. And heck our ducks and chickens deserve the best.

A little background behind the thinking. During the summer, the gate to the chicken and duck enclosure gave up its life. It collapsed in a heap of rotted wood and chicken wire.  As part of our roles as Gardiens (Caretakers) at a little Chateau here in France we fix things as and when needed.

This was a big need and great research, planning and detail went into its replacement. This could be no ordinary gate, not where Pumpjack is concerned. It had to be a mathematical gate.

He took his inspiration from the Mathematical Bridge in Cambridge. Using only straight timbers, he designed a gate that would bear its own weight. There would be no sag, and be able to pivot easily off one post.

The gate would also have no nails holding it together, using only mortice and tenon joins throughout,. Wooden dowels were used to secure.  The only metal would be old fashioned brackets, which would hold the gate to one post and fasten it closed to another.

Unlatch the gate and with quiet dignity it simply wafts its way open.

Maggie, our Queen of the Flock, pet duck was very impressed.


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