How to choose a linear actuator

Thread Starter


Joined Jan 9, 2019
Hi! I want to put myself a linear actuator on the sliding gate to the cottage. I looked in the internet, there are a lot of offers and the prices are very different. Maybe there are people here who understand this and can advise me what type of actuator is better, manufacturer and where to buy? I will be very grateful.


Joined Sep 30, 2009
With the information you give about the project, which isn't much, it's hard to give real choices. But it seems like this will be outdoors, if so make sure the manufacturer agrees it is weatherproof. Many actuators aren't made to be exposed to rain, snow or other outdoors demands.


Joined Sep 17, 2013
A good starting point would be actually measuring just how much force is required to open/shut the gate under the worst weather conditions. Then factor in a healthy overhead to allow for wear and tear (corrosion, lack of lubrication) etc.
Your control system for the gate will need to allow for gate movement being blocked/restricted by some human/animal/vegetation obstruction, so that neither the drive mechanism nor the obstacle is damaged.


Joined Jun 5, 2013
I doubt that you want to buy a linear actuator off the shelf to do this.

I think some arrangement with a chain in a loop and a reversible motor would be the way to go.

Look at how garage door openers work. Something like that.



Joined Feb 20, 2016
I have seen gate openers run on mains water power and a couple of solenoid valves.
A home made double acting ram was used, and less than a liter of water is used. The exhaust goes straight onto the garden.
Have you thought of doing it with water?

EDIT: I think 4 valves connected as an H bridge will work.
like these...

I was trying to find the article but have no so far.
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Joined Sep 30, 2009
I still stuck with this problem. Can't decide which is better. Any help?
Any help for you or help for those trying to help you? You haven't even tried to explain your method of how your doing this. Without more information from you on how this is being implemented it's all a guess.


Joined Feb 20, 2016
A motor driving drum with a cable and a couple of pulleys it could work, a bit like how window blinds are connected up.
Or a rack and pinion system. My friends have this last on on their very large sliding gate.
Whatever you do, make sure the leading edge of the gate has a sensor on it so you do not cut things in half if they get in the way. Also, have a over current cutout for similar reasons.