Should I Expect Fence Posts To Be Perfecty Plumb?

I hired an fencing contractor to install a wood gate and about a 3 foot fence section that it is attached to (redwood posts and western red cedar rails).
I've noticed the gate is slightly off level. I't barely if at all noticeable to most people. Anyway, I got out a level and checked the post next to the gate. It turns out that it is pretty plumb back and forth, but about a 1/4 to 3/8 inch off side to side (thus the gate being slightly off). The gate opens past a brick path that has a hump so that the gate on it's outward swing eventually just barely clears the brick--that's why the 1/4 inch is even relevent.
Anyway, another problem that has occurred is the latch is not aligned quite right so it is hard to open unless you first push in the gate. Also, it now has a strange "creaking" sound when opening.
I am going to have the guy come out and adjust the latch. However, I don't know if it's acceptable for a post to be slightly off plumb like that or if it is legitimate for me to expect a professional to get it absolutely perfect. Also, I don't know what could be done to fix it except to start all over.
What do you think? Is this margin of error exceptable or should it be perfectly plumb? I just don't have any experience with this so I don't know what should be expected in this type of thing.
John
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I'd definitely have the latch corrected and track down the creaking sound to get it fixed as well (might just be a hinge needs lubricating). Mention the off-plumb issue to the contractor and show him the brick section, see what he says. Over time the gate will sag a bit and you'll have issues with that brick section -- it may be worthwhile to fix the brick so the gate clears it easily (for that matter, the contractor may have intentionally put the posts slightly off to accomodate the hump). Other than that, I wouldn't be concerned with something so small as a quarter of an inch.
James
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What could cause that creaking sound? It doesn't really sound like a hinge. It almost sounded like wood rubbing against wood, but visually that doesn't appear to be happening.
I think you misunderstood the brick issue: the off plumb does not help, it makes it worse (i.e. the gate is sagging downward not upward). So if you say the gate will sag over time, then maybe it is an issue that even a 1/4 t0 3/8 inch sag to begin with is not acceptable?
John
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My guess is that the sound is the wood of the gate accepting its own weight that it wasn't bearing while in the latched position.
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On 26 Aug 2003 02:55:11 -0700, snipped-for-privacy@yahoo.com (John Ross) wrote:

    You should expect it to work. If it does not work, the contractor should fix it. If it works and is not perfect, the contractor is human.
        Peter
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(John Ross) wrote:

So are you saying that a fence or gate that looks non level is acceptable as long as it works?
John
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On 27 Aug 2003 00:55:35 -0700, snipped-for-privacy@yahoo.com (John Ross) wrote:

    If it's an eyesore, it doesn't work. It does not seem to be in this case. The owner didn't notice it.
        Peter
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John,
I had a similar issue with a fence that guards the trashcan area. It was perfect and then it was not. All after a rain period. The door sagged and the contractor cut a 1/4" so that it would rub at the bottom any more. Some variation is OK 1/4" is acceptable to me, but it is subjective. For example at home I can't see dirt until you can grow commercial produce, but my wife can spot dust a mile away.
Bottom line is that if you or any reasonable person can see the sag (I could not, but I could hear it rubbing) then you should ask the reasonable contractor to see it and fix it.
Fabio
(John Ross) wrote:

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