Are These Retractable Fence Gates Better?

Are these retractable barricade gates a winner? Watch the Fancy Fence demo:

Right away, I can see some potential problems:

  1. Maintenance Nightmare: If normal motorized gates/operators are a maintenance hog, I can only imagine this would be even worse. If a motorized opener doesn't work, you can slide the gate manually open/closed. What happens with a fancy fence?
  2. Expensive: $400 per foot? Yikes. A 20' driveway fence costs $8000? Not even in the same ballpark as a traditional swing arm gate costing a few hundred dollars.
  3. Potentially Dangerous: It is unclear what safeguards there are against driving fence posts up into parked cars or rolling over partially retracted posts.

From a security standpoint, there are no claims about ballistic or impact ratings on the staves, and it likely depends on the style/type of the material chosen based on architectural appeal rather than security.

What do you think? Could you see yourself using/buying a Fancy Fence?


This seems like it would not take too much for the bars to eventually get bent, causing them to get stuck up or down. I like the general idea, but excavating down for the installation and maintenance seem like it would make it very limiting.

This seems to be a take on the retractable bollards that are popular at high value targets. I have seen them at the White House and other locations around DC.

Only if you have deep pockets and your mail man is Indiana Jones!

We are well versed with installations of new and tried and tested swing, sliding gates and rising bollards of all sizes to European (EN/EC) and UK safety regs.

So checked these out on the manufacturers website and promo clips with an open mind.

1st obstacle -They are housed in a pre-fab concrete tomb buried I presume a little deeper than the gate post extension hieght. Thus rules out a fair few installations due to sub terrain obstacles known and the survey needed to expose the unknown.

2nd - the mechanism is described a cable and pulley system drawing the whole sub frame post section up in one piece between buried side guides. I would love to see the longevity of this system if used more than twice a day.

3rd - "Safety" is provided by retro (tx&rx) photo cells. No impact protection, no mention of force limitation or torque monitoring. The rising bollards we install (same physical rising principle and risks) have photocells, ground loops for vehicle detection around the risk area plus torque monitoring, emergency stop and return and bollard head inductive sensors to further limit rising impact...Oh and triffic lights and warning signage...suddenly your pretty fence looks like Fort Knox!!

Interestingly one of the vids show a small child operating a unit from a keyswitch in a floor housing. Does this infer child safety!? A better advert would be the little brother playing with the remote all sorts of carnage follows.

It seems these are something different that may appeal to those in the market for just that. They in principle will be mechanically unforgiving medium/long term and in the short term they look in my personal view dangerous from the information has been put up online.

Would love to be set straight for safety's sake especially if these are on the market already.

Check out these (fitted at World Trade centre estate New York). My postman would love them but he drives a tank so has no chance!!

http://www.heald.uk.com/raptor-overview/