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View Full Version : Alterations to pipe corrals/mare motels to improve safety



imnotclever
Mar. 24, 2011, 03:50 PM
Hello,

I'm moving to a horse property that has a great one acre turnout and arena area. There is a 2 horse mare motel/pipe corral set up already on the property. Each stall/run is 24'x24'. Footing is great and drains really well and they have nice big shelters over part of the runs.

Back to my concern....they are 5 feet, 4 rail panels. The two corrals share one panel. I'm definitely going to install a stud wire mesh panel to go between the two boys to prevent either from kicking and getting a leg looped through the pipe corral. I was looking at doing something like the panels shown here: http://www.eq-winecovers.com/id7.html Not sure if I need all the wood panels as I'm in Southern California and I think leaving as much ventilation for summer as possible would be smart.

Do you think it is necessary to install wire mesh panels or wood on all the panels to prevent getting cast or kicking through the panels? Anyone have any helpful tips or suggestions for improving a pipe corral? The boys will be able to go out in the one acre dry lot turnout for most of the day. Yay! This much turnout has been pretty darn hard to find in Southern California. I just want to make sure I make their pens as safe as possible. Thanks!

SLW
Mar. 24, 2011, 08:27 PM
That small mesh would be very nice to use for dividing the shed. If you deal with strong winds of any sort you would appreciate 3/4" thick plywood instead to keep bedding/hay from blowing through. And yes, it would reduce some of the problems from kicking or getting cast in a stall.

My stalls are pipe stalls with each stall having a full piece of plywood in one front corner. The horses corner feeders and hay racks are attached to that which gives them some privacy when they eat. They can't eyeball the horse on either side of them. After one year we added plywood to the front of each stall because strong south winds would blow bedding and hay into the aisle. For a couple of other reasons I may go ahead and add plywood all the way around each stall where there is pipe.

imnotclever
Mar. 25, 2011, 01:35 PM
Ahhh yes great suggestion. Boarding in a corner to contain bedding and hay seems to be a very good idea. Thanks for the input!

One of mine paws at feeding time. At the boarding barn it has always been at the gate at the front of his stall, but since he will now have a 24 foot front of his stall I'm wondering if that will all be pawing territory. I'm considering putting a hot wire on the front of his run. He's really obnoxious and it's quite loud when he's pawing/knocking against the gate. I guess that's a whole different topic and something I can try to deal with now. Not much I could do at the boarding barn.

mestle
Mar. 25, 2011, 02:44 PM
If you decide to go for the welded 2"x4" panels pictured I strongly suggest that you cover the tops with something that will prevent anything from getting a leg or anything else hung up on them. We (belatedly after a horrific accident) bolted 2 2x4s together over the top--one on either side and covered that with PVC drainage tile split down the middle, put over the 2x4s and screwed to them. I wish we would have done it sooner but never considered one would try to get over it but she apparently got scared and did try and she was only 14.1 so panel was taller than she was. RIP Little Joy.

Mary

Desert Topaz
Mar. 26, 2011, 07:17 PM
I'd definitely put some sort of wire mesh, or something else, to keep horse legs from going through panels. Wire mesh can suck because some horses pull their shoes off on it, but leg injuries suck more. The horse love of my life got lymphangitis in one of her legs after she got it stuck through a panel fence.

imnotclever
Mar. 27, 2011, 12:54 PM
If you decide to go for the welded 2"x4" panels pictured I strongly suggest that you cover the tops with something that will prevent anything from getting a leg or anything else hung up on them. We (belatedly after a horrific accident) bolted 2 2x4s together over the top--one on either side and covered that with PVC drainage tile split down the middle, put over the 2x4s and screwed to them. I wish we would have done it sooner but never considered one would try to get over it but she apparently got scared and did try and she was only 14.1 so panel was taller than she was. RIP Little Joy.

Mary

Hi Mary,

Thanks for the reply - I really appreciate the warning. I'm so sorry for your loss

The mesh panel would be welded onto the pipe corral so that the pipe would be the only thing on top.

imnotclever
Mar. 27, 2011, 12:56 PM
I'd definitely put some sort of wire mesh, or something else, to keep horse legs from going through panels. Wire mesh can suck because some horses pull their shoes off on it, but leg injuries suck more. The horse love of my life got lymphangitis in one of her legs after she got it stuck through a panel fence.

Thanks for the input. Agreed that leg injuries are much worse than a pulled shoe! One of mine is barefoot and the other has front shoes. They've both been living in an in and out stall with their run composed of the welded wire pipe corrals and so far no pulled shoes. *Fingers crossed*

poltroon
Mar. 27, 2011, 04:13 PM
I have had horses kept between pipe panels with no mesh and for the most part it is fine. There are boarding barns all over southern California with the same setup, strange horses next to each other, and they cope. That said, adding mesh or plywood panels between keeps them from swiping hay, etc. From my experience with pipe, the plywood is a little more forgiving and maintenance free. It will be hard to keep the mesh from bending and pulling away as the horses abuse it. If you uninstall them and have them welded, that will work better than if you try to do an install in place.

If you have solid, square pipe panels as shown in the picture, they are very safe. (Although I don't like the mesh sticking over the top of the pipe: make the pipe the top.) I would be more concerned with the ones with the rounded loops on the bottom.

Bluey
Mar. 27, 2011, 05:36 PM
Those pipe panels look fairly safe, the pipe is tubing and will bend if a horse has a fight with one of them, rather than the horse get hurt on really stout pipe that won't give.

Horses will play thru those panels and rub their manes and that can cause injuries on close runs.

Our local riding club has such type panels but the horses are 16' apart, so they have more room to stay away from another nearby horse, there is not much fussing.

We had 14' wide runs, but that was just a little tight, one laid down and got cast under a panel (we had the six bar ones).
We pulled those up and made the pens now 20' wide and have not had any more trouble.

I think that you can add whatever you find works best for the horses you have.
Just don't go to the larger, very stiff welded wire panels.
Those can be dangerous for horses when they bend some and the ends break loose from the welds.

blue&blond
May. 27, 2011, 12:42 AM
I too am wanting to add wood to pipe panels. Does anyone have any pictures they can share?

I looked at the link in the OP but the wood is only where the pipe panel isn't.

What I'd like to know is how to add wood to pipe panels? How do you attach the wood plank (2x4?) to the pipe?

Do I do the whole panel (so each wood plank is flush with the next one) or just put the wood where the pipe isn't?

Help the construction challenged. :D

JoZ
May. 27, 2011, 12:49 AM
We just did this after my friend lost a 3-week-old filly (from her injuries we assume she got her head stuck between the panels and panicked).

We used just plywood -- the horses we built this for first are the broodmares and they are not kickers or wood eaters. We lay the plywood long side down so the wooden panel is 4 feet high. We used a 2x4 at the bottom and screwed the plywood to it from both sides -- basically built a very narrow box that enclosed the pipes. Ours happens to end right at a pipe, otherwise we were planning to cap with another 2x4. There are pieces of 2x4 lined up between the 2 pieces of plywood to secure it even more. It is working out great so far!

ReSomething
May. 27, 2011, 01:40 PM
We just did this after my friend lost a 3-week-old filly (from her injuries we assume she got her head stuck between the panels and panicked).

We used just plywood -- the horses we built this for first are the broodmares and they are not kickers or wood eaters. We lay the plywood long side down so the wooden panel is 4 feet high. We used a 2x4 at the bottom and screwed the plywood to it from both sides -- basically built a very narrow box that enclosed the pipes. Ours happens to end right at a pipe, otherwise we were planning to cap with another 2x4. There are pieces of 2x4 lined up between the 2 pieces of plywood to secure it even more. It is working out great so far!
DH did about the same thing only beefed it up with 2x6 and 3/4 plywood. It's extremely overbuilt, the only thing it's missing is a sheet metal cap to keep the beavers at bay so it doesn't look so good in spots!