View Full Version : Ring contractors in CT

May. 27, 2011, 02:59 PM
Anyone have any names/contacts for those who build outdoor riding rings in CT? It's an almost impossible thing to search, I'm only finding companies that make indoors. A few places that supply footing but nothing else, etc.

I've tried contacting area barns and asking who they used. Folks, I'm gobsmacked over how many places can't remember the company that built their riding rings.

So far with all the searching, I've found *one* company/person who does this. DeSiato in Stafford. Nice guy on the phone, coming out here for an estimate on Wednesday. Hoping he'll also quote with materials from close by suppliers. He owns his own quarry, but it's on the complete other side of the state. Bringing multiple truckloads of material that far will jack the price *way* up, especially with the cost of fuel.

I've asked on a couple other local area BBs, but am hoping to get some names.

Thanks in advance!

May. 27, 2011, 03:53 PM
You could pay my guy to come work on it, but he is two hours away.

May. 27, 2011, 03:55 PM
Hey, if he can do it and stay within my budget, send him right over! I have a guest room and 2 tractors!

May. 27, 2011, 07:18 PM
I'm in the boondocks of eastern CT. I don't know how much of this sort of work the guy I had put my roundpen & riding ring in does these days, but if you are also in eastern CT & want his contact info, let me know & I'll PM you.

May. 27, 2011, 07:34 PM
I'm in south central CT, in Killingworth. Not far away considering how small our state is, but not exactly next door either.
PM please anyway? I can always ask if he covers this area or maybe he might know someone who does. Thanks so much Jean.

I stopped by a couple private properties today that had visible rings and round pens w/footing to ask who did theirs. Both had done their own. I've stopped by and asked others in the last couple of weeks too and all had done their own. My only worry with that is that the properties that looked more like mine (rolling and cleared heavy woods) also said they had issues with the ring getting soaked and staying wet for a long time and/or footing loss. The 2 I visited today have big puddles in them even though it hasn't rained since Tuesday. I'm leery of spending a small fortune and having very little riding time due to wet and/or frozen ice ring or having very expensive footing wash away.

May. 28, 2011, 11:42 AM
The USDF has a great booklet Underfoot for sale in their publications section: http://www.usdf.org/Publications/ for $15 With this book you can guide most any competent excavator outfit to build you a ring that will last and drain well.

May. 28, 2011, 07:29 PM
Thanks Rabtfarm!

May. 29, 2011, 11:30 AM
Dear MB: Please consider these numbers tho, before getting too excited. Every inch of fill for a standard arena(about 75 feet x 200 feet)means three 14 yard truckloads at whatever the delivered price for the material...my arena has about 110 truckloads of sand/fill subbase, with 20 truckloads of stonedust(6 inch base) and 6 truckloads of putty sand which after 3 years needs some augmentation. That space looked flat when we started... On the other hand, this arena has always been dry* and no one has ever ridden on the arena and complained about the surface. They are all buried out back;).
I am assiduous about grooming and usually drag the arena daily/after each ride.

*this includes some wintertime riding..eventually it freezes up hard.

May. 29, 2011, 11:02 PM
Well, good thing you didn't bury them in the ring. When they decompose they cause sinkholes. :winkgrin:

I've already had the painful shock of tons of yardage delivered when we filled in the huge hole we created by clearing a billion trees and then yanking up a billion stumps. And...ouch!

40 loads in 20 yard dump trucks full of sub base. *this* was kinda how the bucget started running out back then. :D But the sub base is in. It might need a few more loads...not sure. It's been in for 7 years now. The drainage on the top is awesome though. Crushed shale is just sucking away the surface water.

I'm still waffling over size/shape of th riding surface. If I had unlimited funds (and a lobotomy) I'd finish the entire cleared area as initially planned. But I was....ummm...very optimistic (and greedy) when planning ring size back then. (planned on a 125x250) At this point I'm only planning on having about half finished. So either a 125x125 square. A 100-120' round. I dunno, I have current room for different shapes and sizes, but finishing the whole thing would be mega-expensive. I know it's probably cheaper in the long run to finish it all at once, but to be financially responsible means waiting longer years. And I'd go bananas by then. :cool:

May. 30, 2011, 07:22 AM
I got lucky with the putty sand...I think some enterprising kid had stolen the gravel pit boss's truck for the weekend and hauled 3 loads over the 4th of July or something like that...so that was sweet. Sounds like you are off to a great start...and hopefully will finish strong! We do a lot of stadium in the ring, so the jumping makes the 80x200 possibly more worthwhile, altho everyone seems to be heading to dressage...so when we retire to Aiken, we'll probably end up with a dressage rider owner. :-)

May. 30, 2011, 07:49 PM
OK, I'll give my guy a call & see what he says...

Jun. 3, 2011, 06:14 AM
Sorry, MistyBlue, but my ring guy wasn't interested -- too far away. Hope you have found someone already or soon will!

Jun. 3, 2011, 06:25 AM
We actually used our local landscaper. We are in a pretty horsey area so he had done a number before mine. You could ask around to see. Good luck - a good ring is like auto waterers. Once you've had them they are impossible to give up.

Jun. 3, 2011, 09:24 AM
I posted this exact thread a couple years ago - maybe you can find it in a search? Although not sure how helpful it would be since I recall only getting vague suggestions to search online, look in the Just Horses book, etc.

I actually spoke with Desiato a few weeks ago regarding my ring - just adding top layer on stone dust over compacted stone base - and he said it wouldn't even make sense for him financially to do my ring because of the price of gas! (I'm in SW CT.) Super nice guy though, and he told me exactly what to do myself:)

The only other contractor I know is Lawton Adams, but I think he specializes in the fancy indoor footings. And I've ridden in one of his outdoor rings quite a bit and I'm not crazy about it. If asking around at local barns doesn't yield any names I would call local excavators and see if they have any experience with arenas. Chances are someone has done them.

I second the Underfoot booklet. With that info and an amenable excavator you should be able to get a ring done. I didn't own my property when the base layers were done but they are fantastic and I think it was a local road contractor who had a horsey wife.

Another thought is to call fencing companies or barn builders to see if they know anyone since at some point they have probably crossed paths with arena builders.

Jun. 3, 2011, 10:31 AM
Ok - found the thread, and you were one of two who posted a name MB! :lol:


Jun. 3, 2011, 10:43 AM
My guy said that Underfoot recommended an asphalt contractor (which is what he is). He helped me get a start on a ring that I can continue to add stonedust to as I have $$, but that I can also ride in now on the sub-base.

Jun. 6, 2011, 03:38 PM
I have a base that is clay and was rolled with a steamroller and then 2 to 3 inches of coarse double washed sand. I like the clay base because it is a bit kinder to them than a hard stonedust base. Just make sure the ring is tipped so the water runs off of it. Be careful riding too much on your base, your horse is going to be ouchy.

Jun. 6, 2011, 04:30 PM
Lawton Adams did the new outdoor ring at New Canaan Mounted Troop and it is lovely - nothing fancy, just regular sand footing.

A friend referred me to George Stone - his family owns HH Stone in Woodbury, CT - a few years ago when I was looking to built an outdoor - he seemed knowledgable as well as reasonable

Jun. 6, 2011, 05:25 PM
Thanks everyone!
Jean, thanks for trying.
Leprechaun...don't I know it! I have the auto waterers already so am dying for the good ring. And the wait has been to make sure we can make a *good* riding surface. Which apparently costs a buttload more than an adequate one, LOL!
Best Horses...I know, I did recommend a couple guys! One of them is the guy who redid my fencing for me. That guy and Mr Blue met on the last day of work and did NOT get along. In contractors defense...Mr Blue had much higher expectations than the result. Not of the fencing, but of the drainage ditches he put in for me. Mr Blue tends to forget having it done the way he pictures it would be about 4x the cost. ;) Mr Blue had a typical mucho-macho fit and I'm just not going to tranq mr Blue to bring Jeff back out.
Thanks for the additional names. The guy in Stafford didn't work out. He came out for an estimate and just hemmed and hawed forever over it while here...stating how far it was to bring in material. He only wanted to use his own. He never called back with an estimated quote. I think the distance was too far for him.
I did find a guy though from New Haven/North Haven (forget which one now) who I'm going to go with. Got his name emailed to me from another BB...he seems awesome so far. Knew exactly what I wanted and had lots of ideas on how to get that. Will also do the extra drainage and a bunch of other things for a very reasonable estimate IMO. Painful, but reasonable, LOL!

And oddly...he's handsome, funny and single and loves horses. I may be able to make back some of the ring cost by "hosting a clinic" while he's building it and auctioning him off, LOL! :winkgrin:

Now to just get 3 last trees removed. Figures I had over 200 removed from this area and now there's 3 still in my way. I swear they moved! Stupid trees. Hoping to start on the ring in the next 2 weeks.

ETA...tree removal guy is also handsome, hilarious and single. And spent his time here last time trying to record my neighbor's donkey braying for his ring tone. Hmmm....I may just hold a big ol' auction! ;)