• Welcome to the Chronicle Forums.
    Please complete your profile. The forums and the rest of www.chronofhorse.com has single sign-in, so your log in information for one will automatically work for the other. Disclaimer: The opinions expressed here are the views of the individual and do not necessarily reflect the views and opinions of The Chronicle of the Horse.



Forum rules and no-advertising policy

As a participant on this forum, it is your responsibility to know and follow our rules. Please read this message in its entirety.

Board Rules

1. You’re responsible for what you say.
As outlined in Section 230 of the Communications Decency Act, The Chronicle of the Horse and its affiliates, as well Jelsoft Enterprises Ltd., the developers of vBulletin, are not legally responsible for statements made in the forums.

This is a public forum viewed by a wide spectrum of people, so please be mindful of what you say and who might be reading it—details of personal disputes are likely better handled privately. While posters are legally responsible for their statements, the moderators may in their discretion remove or edit posts that violate these rules. Users have the ability to modify or delete their own messages after posting, but administrators generally will not delete posts, threads or accounts upon request.

Outright inflammatory, vulgar, harassing, malicious or otherwise inappropriate statements and criminal charges unsubstantiated by a reputable news source or legal documentation will not be tolerated and will be dealt with at the discretion of the moderators.

2. Conversations in horse-related forums should be horse-related.
The forums are a wonderful source of information and support for members of the horse community. While it’s understandably tempting to share information or search for input on other topics upon which members might have a similar level of knowledge, members must maintain the focus on horses.

3. Keep conversations productive, on topic and civil.
Discussion and disagreement are inevitable and encouraged; personal insults, diatribes and sniping comments are unproductive and unacceptable. Whether a subject is light-hearted or serious, keep posts focused on the current topic and of general interest to other participants of that thread. Utilize the private message feature or personal email where appropriate to address side topics or personal issues not related to the topic at large.

4. No advertising in the discussion forums.
Posts in the discussion forums directly or indirectly advertising horses, jobs, items or services for sale or wanted will be removed at the discretion of the moderators. Use of the private messaging feature or email addresses obtained through users’ profiles for unsolicited advertising is not permitted.

Company representatives may participate in discussions and answer questions about their products or services, or suggest their products on recent threads if they fulfill the criteria of a query. False "testimonials" provided by company affiliates posing as general consumers are not appropriate, and self-promotion of sales, ad campaigns, etc. through the discussion forums is not allowed.

Paid advertising is available on our classifieds site and through the purchase of banner ads. The tightly monitored Giveaways forum permits free listings of genuinely free horses and items available or wanted (on a limited basis). Items offered for trade are not allowed.

Advertising Policy Specifics
When in doubt of whether something you want to post constitutes advertising, please contact a moderator privately in advance for further clarification. Refer to the following points for general guidelines:

Horses – Only general discussion about the buying, leasing, selling and pricing of horses is permitted. If the post contains, or links to, the type of specific information typically found in a sales or wanted ad, and it’s related to a horse for sale, regardless of who’s selling it, it doesn’t belong in the discussion forums.

Stallions – Board members may ask for suggestions on breeding stallion recommendations. Stallion owners may reply to such queries by suggesting their own stallions, only if their horse fits the specific criteria of the original poster. Excessive promotion of a stallion by its owner or related parties is not permitted and will be addressed at the discretion of the moderators.

Services – Members may use the forums to ask for general recommendations of trainers, barns, shippers, farriers, etc., and other members may answer those requests by suggesting themselves or their company, if their services fulfill the specific criteria of the original post. Members may not solicit other members for business if it is not in response to a direct, genuine query.

Products – While members may ask for general opinions and suggestions on equipment, trailers, trucks, etc., they may not list the specific attributes for which they are in the market, as such posts serve as wanted ads.

Event Announcements – Members may post one notification of an upcoming event that may be of interest to fellow members, if the original poster does not benefit financially from the event. Such threads may not be “bumped” excessively. Premium members may post their own notices in the Event Announcements forum.

Charities/Rescues – Announcements for charitable or fundraising events can only be made for 501(c)(3) tax-exempt organizations. Special exceptions may be made, at the moderators’ discretion and direction, for board-related events or fundraising activities in extraordinary circumstances.

Occasional posts regarding horses available for adoption through IRS-registered horse rescue or placement programs are permitted in the appropriate forums, but these threads may be limited at the discretion of the moderators. Individuals may not advertise or make announcements for horses in need of rescue, placement or adoption unless the horse is available through a recognized rescue or placement agency or government-run entity or the thread fits the criteria for and is located in the Giveaways forum.

5. Do not post copyrighted photographs unless you have purchased that photo and have permission to do so.

6. Respect other members.
As members are often passionate about their beliefs and intentions can easily be misinterpreted in this type of environment, try to explore or resolve the inevitable disagreements that arise in the course of threads calmly and rationally.

If you see a post that you feel violates the rules of the board, please click the “alert” button (exclamation point inside of a triangle) in the bottom left corner of the post, which will alert ONLY the moderators to the post in question. They will then take whatever action, or no action, as deemed appropriate for the situation at their discretion. Do not air grievances regarding other posters or the moderators in the discussion forums.

Please be advised that adding another user to your “Ignore” list via your User Control Panel can be a useful tactic, which blocks posts and private messages by members whose commentary you’d rather avoid reading.

7. We have the right to reproduce statements made in the forums.
The Chronicle of the Horse may copy, quote, link to or otherwise reproduce posts, or portions of posts, in print or online for advertising or editorial purposes, if attributed to their original authors, and by posting in this forum, you hereby grant to The Chronicle of the Horse a perpetual, non-exclusive license under copyright and other rights, to do so.

8. We reserve the right to enforce and amend the rules.
The moderators may delete, edit, move or close any post or thread at any time, or refrain from doing any of the foregoing, in their discretion, and may suspend or revoke a user’s membership privileges at any time to maintain adherence to the rules and the general spirit of the forum. These rules may be amended at any time to address the current needs of the board.

Please see our full Terms of Service and Privacy Policy for more information.

Thanks for being a part of the COTH forums!

(Revised 1/26/16)
See more
See less

Don't like my new footing - now what?

  • Filter
  • Time
  • Show
Clear All
new posts

  • Don't like my new footing - now what?

    I recently had some repairs done on my arena, and the contractor who did the job suggested that I integrate some loose bluestone into my existing 1" of washed sand to provide more cushion for the base without adding depth. The job is finished and I am not happy with the footing result - way too much bluestone for my liking that seems to be sitting on top of the sand layer, even though he mixed it for hours with a big implement. It is very abrasive to the horses' feet right now and I just don't like the feel in general. I am wishing I had just added another 1/2" of sand but I was afraid of too deep footing. I am definitely calling the contractor tomorrow to discuss this, but in the mean time has anyone put footing down that didn't work out and have it partially or totally removed? For those who have dealt with bluestone/sand mix, am I just panicking prematurely...does it take a while to integrate?

  • #2
    Bluestone cannot give any "cushion" to the footing. It only adds depth, and if wet then dried, it can become concrete. It will not really incorporate, merely break down itself and the sand with time. (it is hard and coarse, rubbing together it produces dust)

    Have you thought about a little bit of rubber and/or felt with your sand?


    • Original Poster

      By cushion he meant protection for the underlying base. The sand was shearing so that sometimes a hoof would make contact with the base. I probably just should have added a little more sand, but like I say I was afraid to make it too deep. As for fiber, I have heard mixed reviews about putting it in an outdoor arena. I am also on a budget.


      • #4
        The larger granules will always come to the top, just like cereal in the box. The only way the addition of a "base" material would have been effective is to have stripped the sand and compacted the new base prior to adding the sand back.


        • Original Poster

          Originally posted by airhorse View Post
          The larger granules will always come to the top, just like cereal in the box. The only way the addition of a "base" material would have been effective is to have stripped the sand and compacted the new base prior to adding the sand back.
          I think I did not make myself clear. He did not add bluestone into the sand as some substitute for a good base. The base is 6" of compacted bluestone; he added loose bluestone into the existing top sand layer to create a footing mix of sand/bluestone. He actually did strip the sand back and repair/recompact the base in the one area I was having problems. My problem is that I am finding I do not like riding on bluestone/sand.


          • #6
            Well, the bluestone is going to continually float to the top. Not sure how much cushion that is going to add unless you work the footing frequently.


            • #7
              Add rubber



              • #8
                Ditto on add rubber.
                My arena is equal parts sand (mostly concrete sand), bluestone and rubber. Maybe I am doing something different but the bluestone (called screenings here in OK) don't come to the top. If you pick up a shovel full of the footing, it is pretty evenly mixed thru out. It isn't ridden in nearly as much as it should be (just me) and so we also don't have to work it very often. But either way, the mix is evenly mixed.

                When we put it down we started with the sand then the bluestone. DH mixed it with the frontend loader, back and forth, back and forth. It mixed well. When we added the rubber we did the same thing.

                Again, I have no idea what we did or do differently.

                As for the sand/bluestone mix...I like it. The bluestone gives it some grip and breaks up the sand. It will turn to concrete if you have a lot of bluestone in it but the sand tends to break that up too so it isn't nearly as bad as straight bluestone.


                • #9
                  This is a great publication on arenas and footing dynamics and might help you figure out why this particular blend is not working for you. You need a mixture of particle sizes/shapes in footing for best results.

                  I wish I'd read this when I installed my own footing!



                  • #10
                    OP, are you saying that your total footing depth is 1 inch? That's not nearly enough. You need at least 2.5 inches of footing. Maybe you just need more sand to increase it to 2.5 inches. You could go slowly and add 1/2 inch at a time.
                    Laurie Higgins
                    "Expectation is premeditated disappointment."


                    • #11
                      Originally posted by Twiliath View Post
                      OP, are you saying that your total footing depth is 1 inch? That's not nearly enough. You need at least 2.5 inches of footing. Maybe you just need more sand to increase it to 2.5 inches. You could go slowly and add 1/2 inch at a time.
                      That was my thought...perhaps an inch of sand felt softer than an inch (1.5) or so of sand + bluestone, but it still doesn't seem like enough. No wonder your horses were punching through to the base.

                      I'd increase the sand by another two inches or so....agree that going slow is a good idea, but still...seems like you need lots more unless you're driving instead of riding.


                      • #12
                        Originally posted by Twiliath View Post
                        OP, are you saying that your total footing depth is 1 inch? That's not nearly enough. You need at least 2.5 inches of footing. Maybe you just need more sand to increase it to 2.5 inches. You could go slowly and add 1/2 inch at a time.
                        And when the quarry calculates how much it will take to give you 1/2 inch, order only 60-75% of that!


                        • #13
                          On one hand, the particle size and shape of loose bluestone can be very beneficial to footing. If you used a round sand (like river sand), the angular shape of the bluestone particles may be beneficial to your footing mix to decrease "rolling" of the footing particles under the horses' hooves.

                          OTOH, bluestone will break down and form dust more quickly than quartz sand, so that isn't so great. If you have a watering system, no prob.

                          As far as abrasiveness to feet, unless the particles are very large--like rocks--an angular quartz sand (not river sand) is going to be more abrasive so I wouldn't worry about that aspect.

                          Depth of footing is tricky. Calculating and purchasing the right amount is tricky. Perfectly reasonable to start with 1" and go from there, but perhaps when you added the bluestone more bluestone than you intended got mixed in. If I were in your shoes I'd give it some time and ride on your arena in different conditions to fully evaluate the situation. Then, make a decision to either pull some off and add more sand, or just add rubber, or pull some off and then add rubber.


                          • #14
                            We have a rubber/sand mix in one of our outdoor rings and it is fantastic to ride on... might be worth looking into adding some rubber to what you have.

                            Good luck. Getting footing right can be difficult.
                            We move pretty fast for some rabid garden snails.


                            • #15
                              You have ONE inch of sand? And you mixed BS into that? You need more sand than that.


                              • #16
                                Not sure I am recommending this because I just put it in, but I recently added a mixture of compost and granite sand, 50/50. It was expensive -- $400 for a 13 yard truckload, but I just added it to places where the sand was thinning. So far I love it.

                                However, it has not been rained on yet (we are in a horrible drought). But the wind here would blow rubber away, and I wanted something with some "purchase". Sand gets so slippery.

                                Has anyone tried just plain old dirt mixed with sand?
                                Rest in peace Claudius, we will miss you.


                                • #17
                                  Dirt mixed with sand and then watered and groomed carefully can make reasonably nice footing. Many old show rings used to be a mixture of sand, clay and a little bluestone that was then watered and dragged. The problem is that if it is too wet it may not drain well enough and it has to be watered enough to make it all "stick" together and not be dusty.

                                  Typically any organic material will break down and lose its original properties and cause dust, this is why organic materials are not typically first choices for arena footing.

                                  Sand type and quality are important. A round sand will be slippery as the particles "roll" underfoot. An angular sand will offer better traction and stability. Having a good moisture level helps with the quality of sand footing as well.


                                  • #18
                                    Originally posted by katarine View Post
                                    You have ONE inch of sand? And you mixed BS into that? You need more sand than that.
                                    I know what you meant, but this was still funny to read!


                                    • #19
                                      Make sure the rubber is very small crumb - as close to the sand size as possible, or it will just sift to the surface and float away in the rains. You can find the small crumb by contacting sports field contractors, who add this size rubber to grass playing fields for longevity.
                                      Comprehensive Equestrian Site Planning and Facility Design