Talking About Fence Materials

4 Antique Hardware Components For Your Fence Project

One way to embrace unique home decor in this modern world is by using antique hardware pieces for your fence project. You can also use these pieces on the exterior of your home for a coordinated design. As visitors approach your fence line, its appearance will prepare them for the magnificence of the rest of your home. After all, adding small accents with an antique feel will make your modern home look like it stepped out of a time machine. Here are a few hardware pieces that have withstood the test of time.

Twisted Ring Latch

Cozy cottages built in the 1800s frequently featured small white washed fences adorned with a twisted ring latch on the gate. This gorgeously designed latch encapsulated the romantic era with its dainty accents.

In this design, the twisted ring sits next to the latch to give visitors an easy way to pull the gate open and closed. The latch design features a simple bar that slides into place with a gentle push toward the open loop. A plain black finish helps the twisted ring contrast the stark white fence beautifully.

Strap Hinge

Simple, but effective hinges developed in 1600 BC made it possible to use doors for homes and gates. From there, building designers started thinking about how to use hinges as a decorative device as well. In the mid-1800s, colonial designers elongated the original hinge design to create the strap hinge. The hinges added to the design of the house by making the entryways look strong, durable and stylish.  

In addition to the plain rectangular shape, strap hinge designs include:

  • Heart
  • Bean
  • Flowering Vine
  • Swirl
  • Scrolled
  • Fleur De Lis

Keyed Lock

Although inventors created the modern key design in the mid-1800s, the iconic skeleton key design stuck around until the 1940s. The addition of keyed locks on gates appeared out of the necessity to keep livestock and children inside while barring intruders out.

The keyed lock gives the gates a whimsical charm that padlocks cannot replicate. You can obtain locks that mimic the look of skeleton key designs, but use a modern key with a dedicated tumbler set. The authenticity of using an antique lockset with an actual skeleton key, however, offers charm unmatched by modern lookalike sets.

Cannonball Gate Closer

Another throwback from Colonial times is the cannonball gate closer. This closer design uses the weight of the ball to pull your gate closed behind you. Pair the closer with an automatic clicking latch to secure the gate without an extra effort on your part.

The ability to automatically close the gate and latch behind you prevents children or animals accidentally running out into the street or wandering off. In addition, this type of gate closer will impress visitors who are used to the modern piston actuated equivalents. The sheer simplicity of the design never fails to incite conversations about its origins and elegance.

Finding The Goods

Talk to your fence installer for help sourcing these unique hardware components. Fence builders can contact their colleagues in the locksmith and hardware world to source nearly any part imaginable for your fence project. If you want truly antique hardware, not modern replicas, be prepared to spend some time searching those items out.

You can assist in the search by visiting swap meets and pre-owned building material suppliers to find your favorite latches, hinges, locksets and closers. Consider looking online as well to find the perfect antique hardware designs for your home. Items from each region vary drastically in design and function.

Once you obtain the desired items, have your fence installer perform a test fit to make sure you love the look. The test fit process will also help the installer address fitment issues between the various components. Unlike modern hardware sets, antique pieces often require slight modification of the building materials for a perfect fit. Contact your fence installer to find more info.