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This article is about an older version of DF.
(For metal bars or other materials in bar form, see bar)

Vertical bars and floor bars consist of a lattice of strong bars that prevent the passage of everything but fired (not falling) ammunition, liquids, and light. Bars can be used vertically as transparent walls or on a flat surface as floor grates. Note that grates are functionally almost identical to bars.

Bars are most commonly used to seal open aqueducts intended for the passage of water, or magma if they are built from magma-safe materials, whether to keep dwarves from falling in or to keep fire imps from invading through them. In this role they are similar to fortifications, which can also be used for the same purpose, except that bars can be destroyed by building destroyers (fortifications cannot). It is recommended to cover any exposed waterways with bars (floor bars do not block fishing or taking water directly from a water source) to prevent melancholy dwarves from contaminating your water supply, although this might not help that much: wells, unfortunately, cannot be grated.

Bars can also be fired through like fortifications by marksdwarves and enemies alike, and provide no protection for either (unlike fortifications). Be warned that building destroyers can and will destroy any vertical bars that block their path into your fortress. The only advantage that vertical bars have over fortifications is a small one: they can be linked to a lever or pressure plate, allowing them to retract when the mechanism is activated.

Floor bars, like floor grates, will catch ammunition that is already falling. Ammunition that has missed its target will not start falling unless it strikes a wall while over empty space. In other words, bars or grates (or simply floor) can be used to catch ammunition one z-level beneath from a hole, but if a grate or bar is placed at the surface of the hole, ammunition will simply be destroyed rather than falling.


Bars can be built via the b menu by a dwarf with the furniture hauling labor, and take one bar of any type to build (including not only metal bars, but things like charcoal and soap). They can be constructed as either "Vertical Bars" (B) or horizontal "Floor Bars" (Alt + b). Floor bars are intended to be built over Open Space, though it is possible to build them directly on top of an existing floor (mainly useful for increasing room value).

See also[edit]

Animal trapAnvilArmor standBedBinBoxBucketCabinetCageCoffinRestraintSeatStatueTableWeapon rack

Machine & Trap parts
Other Buildings

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