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Gate Sizes

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Gate Sizes

Postby kelderic » Wed Dec 23, 2009 7:01 am

I'm having problems with the size of the main gate of my Castle. The problem is, what seems like a large gate for the size of the castle, doesn't fit a knight on horseback. And I don't think I'm alone. I've noticed that many castles that are shared, the gates are actually really small, compared to a minifig. Is this accurate? I don't really have much knowledge about historical sizes, maybe the inner castle's gates really were smaller, and outer gates large enough for horses? But in movies, it's common to see a gate large enough for 5 men on horses to ride beside each other. Maybe our castles are just tiny compared to real ones, judged on a minifig scale?

Are there any LEGO castles out there built to plans of real ones, and built to real minifig scale?

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Re: Gate Sizes

Postby outcast » Wed Dec 23, 2009 7:18 am

I reckon the problem is because lego castles are usually too small compared to minifigs.
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Re: Gate Sizes

Postby Heir of Black Falcon » Wed Dec 23, 2009 3:23 pm

It actually depends. Many castle and town gates were too small for a man on horseback, with lance etc. to pass raised. If you think about the purpose of a fortification this should make sense. Smaller space = less people able to enter if it is taken. Many castles and towns have secondary gates that usually are smaller. These postern gates often would not even let a mounted man through them.

That said the larger gates where a man, horse and raised lance are not all that uncommon. I have done both in my MOC's so it really depends what you are going for.

I am fairly familiar with at least British Castles so I can get some real numbers if you like and that'd help but it might take a while as my books and notes are mostly in storage.

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Re: Gate Sizes

Postby quaraga » Sun Jan 03, 2010 11:08 pm

I get that problem in a lot of MOCs.
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Re: Gate Sizes

Postby sir aleks the bold » Sun May 06, 2012 12:36 pm

ive always faced this problem i found that the best are either the iron gate pieces or one of the bigest door pieces but usually building your own is best just make sure you dont over do it, on my last moc i had doors that where about 8x35 each and i dont think i need to tell you how much of a nightmare that was while building a gate house arond them
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Re: Gate Sizes

Postby Bishons » Wed Feb 03, 2021 9:10 pm

It really depends on how big the castle is. The ones I build build aren't enormous so the gate is usually 8 x 16 or so. For a large castle it would need to be much higher and wider. This is one of my castles

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Re: Gate Sizes

Postby Bruce N H » Wed Feb 24, 2021 8:31 pm


This is a totally unsystematic look, but I just did a search on "castle gate" on Flickr and there are a ton of really beautiful examples that would be great inspirations for builds. Anyway, here are some of the ones with people or cars so you can get a sense of scale:

Warwick Castle, England, rebuilt in the 12th century. It looks like you would have to get off a horse to go through this one. A look at the satellite view on Google maps shows that there are multiple gates, though, so this might not be the main one.

Rhodes Greece, city walls built in the 14th century. You could stay on your horse, but probably would duck your head, especially if you had a tall crest on your helm.
Here's another one from Rhodes. You could definitely ride through this one:

Stirling Castle, Scotland, built and rebuilt from the 14th to the 18th century, though Wikipedia says the current outer defenses date to the 18th century. Big gate, you could ride through with head held high.

Saint Laurence's Gate - originally part of the city walls of Drogheda Ireland. You could literally drive a truck through this one.

All photo credits go to the Flickr users whose accounts I linked.

Anyway, I think the take-home is that it varies widely. Probably most castles would have at least one big gate to facilitate bringing wagons with supplies in and out, but other gates would probably be smaller so they'd be more easily defended.

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Re: Gate Sizes

Postby Crazylegoman » Mon Mar 08, 2021 4:15 am

I've always been a fan of making huge double door gates as the main entrance/exit of my castles. For example, I made this one that an elephant with one of those shed-on-its-back things can walk through.

While this one is not quite as tall, the double doors make it pretty wide. It's definitely tall enough for mounted knights to go through.

Then I made this monstrosity that's big enough for just about anything to pass through.

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