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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jan. 10, 2006
    Location
    Clemson, SC
    Posts
    867

    Thumbs down Suncoast shavings

    My feed store just started carrying Suncoast shavings, and they're $2 more per bag than the regular shavings they have, so I bought a bag to see what justified the big price difference.

    Well, you may get more shavings, but that's only if you can break the darn bale up! I put it in the stall for my horse on stall rest, so he was in the stall when I opened the bag, and I got worried he was going to trip over his shavings if he moved! It was ridiculous! I couldn't break it up with a pitchfork, I had to use my hands to break it up, and after a while I just gave up and broke it into manageable pieces. I made a mental note that if I ever had to use these again, to make sure I had a hammer readily available and no horse in the stall. They were horrible!
    A lovely horse is always an experience.... It is an emotional experience of the kind that is spoiled by words. ~Beryl Markham



  2. #2
    Join Date
    Nov. 1, 2005
    Location
    Pendleton, SC
    Posts
    318

    Default

    I got 4 bags last weekend (at the same feed store I am sure) by accident. I asked for 4 bags of shavings and paid the same price I have been paying all along for the old shavings but they loaded up 4 bags of the Suncoast. I agree that they are kind of hard to break apart but there is a lot more in the bag and they are larger pieces. Once you get thm broken apart they are soft and fluffy. I am going to try beating then loose in the bag before opening the bag with the next couple I put in (I only used two so far). Kind of like how you have to drop a bag of ice before you open to break it up. I'll let you know if that works any better.



  3. #3
    Join Date
    Nov. 16, 2000
    Location
    Concord, NH
    Posts
    4,935

    Default

    I've found that using a hay pitchfork - with three skinny metal tines - rather than a manure fork - works best to break up packed shavings.



  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jan. 28, 2003
    Location
    Hollywood, but not the one where they have the Oscars!
    Posts
    7,218

    Default

    Yep, metal pitchfork and your golden. I love Suncoast, way more bang for the buck.
    "You can't really debate with someone who has a prescient invisible friend"
    carolprudm



  5. #5
    Join Date
    Sep. 5, 1999
    Location
    Central FL
    Posts
    4,411

    Default

    I hate the Suncoast ones...pieces too big, don't absorb, yuk.


    Several shows use them as "first bedding"...I bring my own shavings to those shows!!!



  6. #6
    Join Date
    Mar. 9, 2006
    Location
    South-Central PA
    Posts
    2,309

    Default

    The best way to break them up is to just kick them with your foot! Especially if you kick them against the wall. Way faster than trying to use a fork.
    Cindy



  7. #7
    Join Date
    Mar. 12, 2006
    Posts
    1,316

    Default

    Another vote for kicking them vigorously to break them apart in no time at all.

    I thought everyone did that!



  8. #8
    Join Date
    Jul. 15, 2003
    Location
    Tampa, FL
    Posts
    4,343

    Default

    Yes, they sell them at the FL State Fairgrounds for the shows held here, I always just kick them around and kick the chunks up against the wall. The plastic forks can break when you try to use them to break open the block.

    They are not absorbent at all so you need something underneath that is. They are nice an fluffy though.
    Every man has a right to his opinion, but no man has a right to be wrong in his facts.
    Bernard M. Baruch



  9. #9
    Join Date
    Oct. 17, 1999
    Location
    Monetta, SC (Aiken-ish)
    Posts
    3,595

    Default

    I absolutely love them and don't buy anything else. Some places just sell the large flakes, some sell the mini as well. I like the minis on the bottom if I'm starting a new stall. And then the large on the top. If you've been using them awhile, the large ones break down and then I use that on the bottom. I don't have to add as often. Listen, I find it makes a diff where I buy them. I, too, used the little pitchfork for a long time. Now when I get them, I use scissors around the top third all the way around the bag, take the top plastic off. Dump them in the corner. Break them in half. Take half and throw it against the wall. Same with other half. They break right up. They are not all hard like the first ones I got. And I've been using them for years.



  10. #10
    Join Date
    Mar. 9, 2006
    Location
    South-Central PA
    Posts
    2,309

    Default

    I believe the reason they may be easier to break apart now (vs. older bales) is because Suncoast switched from 12 cu feet (large flake only) to 10 cu feet per bale. I now think they're easier to break apart. I haven't asked them, but I was wondering if they were receiving complaints similar to those expressed previously in this thread.
    Cindy



  11. #11
    Join Date
    Feb. 14, 2001
    Location
    Lexington, KY--GO BIG BLUE!!
    Posts
    3,255

    Default

    Hate them. Hate kicking them apart (shavings in the socks!! no!! ), hate poking/stabbing/spearing the blocky mass, eventually only to separate by individual handfuls. Hate cleaning the big oversized flakes that don't sift easily. Hate how poop gets squashed to exactly the same size and thickness as the big flakes. Hate how they don't absorb urine very well. Hate how they are at least $2/bag more for all the hassle.

    My favorite bedding is fine, dustless shavings: curls with lots of loft and absorbancy. Spread out of the bag with a gentle kick, nice fluff. About $4.50/bag at the local feed store. Guardian easy-pick shavings are nice, too... but super expensive and not much expansion.
    “A clever person solves a problem. A wise person avoids it.”
    ? Albert Einstein

    ~AJ~



  12. #12
    Join Date
    Oct. 17, 1999
    Location
    Monetta, SC (Aiken-ish)
    Posts
    3,595

    Default

    Well, thank you, Mali. I was telling someone that they had 12 cu. ft. and she said, nope, 10 and I saw that on the plastic. They do seem to not need "stabbing" or separating any more. Good observation. I still think they're a good deal and the big flakes over the smaller or guardians make a really nice bed. And 10 cu. ft. is a good buy at $6+ over a bag of 5 cu. ft. at $5. Each to his own.



  13. #13
    Join Date
    Apr. 1, 2005
    Location
    Georgetown, KY
    Posts
    2,591

    Default

    I love them too- especially the big flake variety. You do have to use an honest-to-God pitchfork to break them up (a muck fork simply won't do), but for a pig in a stall like one of my horses, there is nothing better. He stomps and grinds everything else to oblivion!
    Proud supporter of SprotHorseRiders.com



  14. #14
    Join Date
    Oct. 20, 1999
    Location
    Virginia
    Posts
    14,656

    Default Loved the stuff

    $1 bale more than regular shavings at our feed store. I bought them to try in our pony's stall (he has heaves) and they worked very well. I had no problem venting my frustrations on the bale to get it fluffed.

    My beasts aren't in much in the summer, just to eat, so I haven't kept up the bedding as I would in the winter. I suppose it is time to stock up on shavings again.

    At a dollar a bale more, the Suncoast is definitely worth the extra cost to me as you get a good bit more in the bale and it's virtually dust free.
    "If you would have only one day to live, you should spend at least half of it in the saddle."



  15. #15
    Join Date
    Jun. 22, 2008
    Location
    Outside Ocala FL - Horse Capital of the World
    Posts
    6,190

    Default

    I hated them - my feed store only carries the large flake variety, it darn near broke my foot trying to kick it, finally had to attack it with a metal garden rake! And forget trying to sift the manure out of them! I only bought them once when the were out of the other brand.

    They now carry a new brand - Triple Crown by Callaway Farms, lovely shavings, easy to sift, easy to break apart and spread.



  16. #16
    Join Date
    Aug. 1, 2003
    Location
    Georgia.
    Posts
    2,364

    Default

    I had to buy some until I can have a load of shaving delivered and I don't like them either. Way too hard to break apart even with a metal pitchfork and cleaning the stall was a P.I.T.A.

    I sure hope I can get my shavings load delivered next week...please no rain for a few days in Georgia!!!



  17. #17
    Join Date
    Sep. 27, 2001
    Posts
    425

    Default

    They are a pain to break up , but my gosh there is not one speck of dust in them - That is worth the extra $$. I mix a bag or two in with my bulk pallet mill shavings that do get dusty and it fluffs the stall up and keeps me from having to bed for several days.I have no mats and bed mine very deep - a good 8 - 10" in the middle and then banked on the sides.
    I don' t think I' like them as 100% bedding - too hard to pick thru - lots of waste with the big flakes, but mix in well with the bulk stuff.



  18. #18
    Join Date
    Oct. 17, 1999
    Location
    Monetta, SC (Aiken-ish)
    Posts
    3,595



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