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How to Build the Column for a Front Gate

By Mark Keller ; Updated September 21, 2017
Many decorative front gates are supported by brick or stone columns.
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A front gate adds a ritzy touch to any yard, but hiring contractors to build and install it can be as expensive as it looks. Doing it yourself can cut the price down significantly, yet it requires no special training. Building the columns to hold your eventual gate is one of the more important parts of the installation process, as you want to form a solid support for your front gate to hang from.

Dig a hole for the column's foundation to a depth of 42 inches. Make the hole 12 inches wide and 20 inches long, running parallel to your driveway.

Mix concrete according to the directions on the packaging and pour it into the hole until it is halfway full. Submerge the horizontal portion of an L-shaped steel rod into the concrete, with the vertical portion, the height of your column, pointing straight upward. Wait 24 hours for the concrete to set.

Lay bricks in a square formation on the concrete foundation around the steel rod. Spread mortar on the sides and top of each brick as you set them in place. Lay a second row of bricks in the same way, staggered, scraping off excess mortar that squeezes between the cracks. Continue laying bricks until your column reaches its desired height.

Pour approximately 6 inches of concrete into the hollow center of your pillar, around the steel rod but inside the bricks. Wait 24 hours for it to set and repeat the process, pouring 6 inches each day until the column is full. Spread mortar on the upper surface of your column and set a concrete slab on the top to cap it.

Fill in the space around the underground base of the column with concrete until within 4 inches of the surface. Top it off with sod.


Things You Will Need

  • Shovel
  • Concrete
  • L-shaped steel rod
  • Bricks
  • Mortar
  • Bricklaying trowel
  • Concrete slab

About the Author


Mark Keller has been writing everything from short stories to political commentary over the course of the past decade. He has written professionally since 2009 with articles appearing on LibertyMaven.com, Penguinsightings.org, Pepidemic.com and various other websites. He is a theater major at Hillsdale College in Michigan.