8 Best Baby Gates | March 2017
- no thread adjustments necessary
- works well for pets too
- no extension accessories available
- made in the united states
- made with sustainable materials
- not as customizable as similar models
- includes mounting hardware
- safe self-locking door
- bulky but reliable design
- easy to assemble with simple tools
- large 40-inch door section
- includes two medium extensions
- compatible with unlimited extensions
- works on any flooring surface
- rotating joints for easy customization
A Gate Fit For A Baby
Baby gates come in almost as many configurations as babies themselves will once we crack the code on designer children.
Those configurations create a slew of options for the way in which you train your child for his or her place within the prison industrial complex, or at least for his or her place in the workforce (is there any difference)?
You've got your basic baby gates, the straight-across type you can install across a door frame or stair case. These are usually designed to use two panels offset by mere millimeters and married by a few simple runners. These can affix to a wall or a banister with simple anchors.
From there we get into the multiple panel units, which are tremendously versatile. Many of them can be paired down to just a few panels to work in much the same way as the simpler units we just discussed.
Most can also expand to barricade off a larger area, using one or two of your home's walls to complete the barrier, or, perhaps, closing in on itself to create a portable pen for your progeny.
All of these units can be opened with one hand, usually with the help of a simple latch or snap lock, that way you can carry your kid across the threshold without fumbling him or her and forfeiting possession to the other team.
Blocking The Path, But Of What?
Having covered the basic types of baby gate available to you and how each is designed to work, it's still imperative that we figure out which one is right for you.
Thinking about who or what you're trying to cordon off from what kind of space is vital here.
If it's an animal we're talking about, you're going to want something on the sturdier side. Pets have a tendency to live longer than most babies, and they're usually a bit stronger than your offspring.
But don't despair, your baby got a couple of those opposable thumbs in the deal, so he or she will be just fine.
For a tot, it's more important to consider where you want to place the gate than anything else. You'll want to make sure you have a gate that's designed and certified for use at the top of the stairs if that's where you want to put one.
If you've got a couple of larger spaces inside and outside your home, you might want to consider one of the larger units that can be set up anywhere as a fully functional pen for your little piggy.
Remember, it's always a good idea to go with something a little sturdier, even at the expense of your interior design.
Through The Links
When I was growing up, we had a pretty basic wooden baby gate in my house. It was one of the ones with a white chain link woven into a wooden frame, and it fascinated me.
I'd spend more time than I ought to admit just running my fingers along those links, taking in the feeling of it, or focusing and un-focusing my eyes through the links.
Later, when my family got a dog, we used a very obnoxious plastic gate that was crudely mounted to our kitchen door frame. The locking mechanism was unbelievably stiff, and the hinges were cheap and flimsy. There is no gate anywhere near our top five that resembles it, I assure you.
Yet those two gates, bought only a few years apart, illustrate much of the progress these products have seen since their inception.
Patents for barriers designed to control the movements of small children date back as far as the early 1870s, and very little has changed about them over the years.
Back then, they were referred to an nursery gates, and they simple wooded gates with bars. By the 1940s they'd taken on the appearance of an accordion or a bellows, expanding open and closed along with the material itself.
As plastics took over the world in the second half of the 20th century, they became the go-to material for most baby gates, with advances coming primarily in the locking mechanisms and the ways in which a gate and its panels could be configured.
That plastic design has become much more refined in the last decade or two, making them far more reliable and much sturdier than they used to be.