Oak or white pine?
My current barn was constructed with rough cut white & red oak boards. It's 8 years old, and not a single chew mark. Almost all of the pre-constructed run-ins I'm finding are made of white pine. I'm getting ready to either purchase or build a new 12x12 and want to make sure I'm not overlooking a "just as good, but more economical" option!
Pine is probably cheaper or more available to the pre constructed folks. Oak is harder to chew up.
We built a few things out of pine and the old guy went after them like candy, he had the exposed 2x4 edges to chew up. The pony had plywood and has actually managed to peel one layer of ext veneer off in small spots, he runs his teeth across the stuff. This was in a stall situation - if they have plenty of hay and space at pasture they might leave a run in alone, but if you have a beaver horse in the herd, well . . .
Oak is DEFINITELY better than Pine, horses chew the pine like crazy. I have 6 premade run in sheds (Amish built) that are oak framing (inside, kick boards, frame) but have some pine portions (mostly in areas that the horses cannot get their teeth into. However, live and learn, 4 of the sheds have pine battens on the outside (to cover each seam/crack between the wall boards to prevent wind coming in).
Boy o boy do the horse chew the battens. We learned and since the sheds are premade to order, the last shed we requested oak battens and oak cross buck on the dutch doors -- works perfectly and not a single chew mark in 2.5 years.
Edited to add: I saw a friend of mine who had similar looking sheds to mine, but had pine framing instead of oak and no kickboards. The horses destroyed the sheds in about 8 years, with pretty much several supporting pine rails being almost chewed through. In contrast, my sheds are 11 years old and perfectly sound except for some chewing on the battens (which is totally superficial).
Last edited by Edgewood; Jan. 19, 2013 at 10:16 AM.
Ok. That pretty much confirms my thought. I like to build/buy things once, so oak it is! The local mill cut all of my previous boards, so now I just need to figure up how much board feet I need of the new stuff!