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StallSkins or other alternatives for aisle flooring?

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  • StallSkins or other alternatives for aisle flooring?

    I'm brainstorming for my barn and I'm not for sure that I want to do a concrete center aisle but currently leaning this direction. Based on past experiences with dirt aisles, I don't want to go this route. I'm afraid pavers would be too pricey for me.

    Current BO actually has upside down carpet as her aisle flooring and it works amazingly well. It's quiet and gives good traction. She just blows it off with a leaf blower and it's not as difficult to keep clean as I might have expected. It takes forever to dry though if it should happen to get wet and of course stains fairly easily.

    I had ordered a sample of Stall Skins and I'm curious whether something like this could be used in the aisle?? It would be water permeable but I'm not sure if would hold up to a lot of traffic unless it were covered with something else. This would be a private barn with 2-4 horses max.

    Anyone tried something like this or have another alternative for your aisles that you really like? Help with my brainstorming is welcome
    Last edited by SkipHiLad4me; Oct. 7, 2012, 06:06 PM.
    "Farming looks mighty easy when your plow is a pencil, and you're a thousand miles from the corn field." --Dwight D Eisenhower

    Boston Terrier Rescue of NC - www.btrnc.org - Adopt for Life!

  • #2
    I'd be curious to hear your thoughts after you get the Stall Skin sample- it wasn't anything like what I was expecting. I can see that stuff holding up in a well bedded stall with a non-pacing, non pawing horse... but I don't see it holding up as a top surface well... it may... but I didn't think it would. I was surprised to see it suggested as an outdoor surface for run ins and feeders.

    I worked at a farm that had a wonderful permeable material in their stalls and aisles- it was a recycled conveyor belt from Mead paper mill. (used to pour liquid paper pulp through and drain the water out) The belting surface was a woven material similar to the nylon weave of a CHEAP nylon halter. it was a beige color so looked natural like dirt, if a horse peed in the aisle the urine was gone as it hit the ground- and it was very easy to clean... but swept well lengthwise- not so much crosswise. It was 12' wide so no seams. What a dream material... they got it through a connection at the mill when the belt wore out and had to be replaced. I have been trying to find some for years... >sigh<

    Comment


    • #3
      I have stall skins in all four of my stalls, and have had them for four years. One of the stalls has been converted into a tack/storage area so the stall skin is exposed, but it's just us humans walking on it. I think if your horses are barefoot, or at least aren't walking on it with studs, that the aisle would probably hold up for a good while. Not as long as concrete, of course, but you already decided against that.
      How often are the horses really going to be walking on the aisle? Will you be cross-tieing in the aisle? If you're cross-tieing in the aisle that might be a different story, I would not expect the stall skins to hold up to that very long unless all your horses stand like statues.
      Why do you want the aisle to be water-permeable? Stall skins drain, but not as well as an actual drain.
      If you're just after the traction, have you considered rubber mats?

      Comment


      • #4
        My 4-stall barn is currently under construction. I looked at all the various alternatives for the aisle and ultimately decided to pour concrete on both sides like 4' sidewalks, then pack the center 4' strip with stone dust and then mats on top of the stone dust. In theory this will give me mats that are flush with the concrete sides for ease of cleaning, but sitting on stone dust for good drainage.

        If you really like the pavers idea, it would be worth checking around at various landscape companies this time of year to see if they have any leftovers that you could pick up cheaply. You would be surprised at the deals you can find. They don't like being stuck with an odd lot of pavers sitting around in the yard. Just figure out the total sq ft of what you need, then start calling around. Your contractor may be able to find something like that for you through his suppliers as well. It's worth a shot!

        Comment


        • #5
          Timely thread as I am in the same conundrum.

          I want to have the barn open so the horses can come in out as needed. So I don't want to use concrete in case they get bees in their bonnets and come charging into the barn, etc.

          I am leaning towards these in the aisle (stable-grid.com). They seem like they are rugged enough, and packed with limestone or stone dust would be non-slip and permeable as well.

          Comment


          • #6
            I have stallskins in my stalls. The only problem I see is anchoring it.
            I wasn't always a Smurf
            Penmerryl Sophie RIDSH
            "I ain't as good as I once was but I'm as good once as I ever was"
            The ignore list is my friend. It takes 2 to argue.

            Comment

            • Original Poster

              #7
              Both of my horses are currently barefoot and most of the traffic through the aisle would be me, muck carts, and leading horses in and out of the barn for farrier/vet or for tacking up to ride. Otherwise they will access pastures through the backs of their stalls. No trucks or tractors unless we just drove up in the aisle to park out of the rain or something.

              I haven't decided against concrete... that's what I've planned to use all along. I just wanted to make sure I was considering all of my options. I do worry about the concrete feeling slippery if we don't get it rough enough.

              Someone else also suggested the interlocking rubber mats for the aisle but I wonder how well they lay down over time. All of my experience with interlocking mats is that they eventually curl up and create trip hazards, but those have been stalls and the conditions would be different out in an aisle.

              I got a sample of the Stall Skins and was actually surprised by the texture. It feels like a giant landscape fabric so that's what made me think that it could possibly be used in an aisle area also. The permeability factor of the flooring is nice if you spill liquids in the aisle, horse pees, etc. It would drain through, rather than puddle up and need to be swept off. It's not a requirement though.
              "Farming looks mighty easy when your plow is a pencil, and you're a thousand miles from the corn field." --Dwight D Eisenhower

              Boston Terrier Rescue of NC - www.btrnc.org - Adopt for Life!

              Comment


              • #8
                I am using straight edge mats, not interlocking, and I got the 3/4 inch thickness. I have experience with this in several boarding barns and have not encountered problems with curling edges. I am insetting mine because it makes sweeping much easier. My barn will have similar traffic to what you describe for yours, so I don't expect heavy wear.

                Comment


                • #9
                  We have interlocking mats in our aisles, over cement. They are heavy and long, not standard stall mat size. I've seen them for 3 years, but they are likely older than that. There are no issues with them not lying down. I don't know the name/brand, though.
                  Born under a rock and owned by beasts!

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Originally posted by Spooks View Post
                    I am using straight edge mats, not interlocking, and I got the 3/4 inch thickness. I have experience with this in several boarding barns and have not encountered problems with curling edges. I am insetting mine because it makes sweeping much easier. My barn will have similar traffic to what you describe for yours, so I don't expect heavy wear.
                    This is what I did......I inset mine......I did 2' wide concrete along each side of the barn alley way and did the center 6' by 16' with rubber mats........I did mine with only 1/2" which was a mistake as they have curled slightly but not enough to cause and serious problems.......I choose them because they were textured which I really like.

                    I also have an outside apron which is done with 1" rubber dog bone tiles with a concrete boarder around them to contain them.....they were laid on compacted gravel and have held up well even though 1" is not recommended to be laid on sand ....you are supposed to glue them down on concrete.

                    Dalemma

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      I had dirt floors but the water table around here was too high and my aisle to low so I had hubby call around for some dirt. Well he got red clay..so that got old really quick. So I fixed that with crushnrun on top. It packs down pretty good though there can be loose rocks every once in awhile. My horses don't spend a lot of time in the barn aisle anyways since it's only 6ft wide. It cleans pretty well with a leaf blower.

                      If I could choose I love the look of pavers.

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        We are applying a nonslip epoxy on our cement floor. This is produced by ITW American. It is used on deep sea oil rigs and aircraft carriers and so while it is pricey, it is top of the line and definitely NONslip, even when wet and it is extremely durable. Cheaper than rubber pavers.

                        http://www.astantislip.com/ast_products.html
                        Last edited by rodawn; Oct. 10, 2012, 03:12 AM.
                        Practice! Patience! Persistence!
                        http://www.mariposasporthorses.com/
                        https://www.facebook.com/MariposaSportHorses/

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          My neighbour made a floor from 4x4's cut into about 4" blocks. If the floor is uneven, you can cut the blocks to height. He then back filled it with sand and swept it into the cracks.

                          It looks lovely! It is also not slippery, and easy to clean. It has a bit of give to it.

                          If something happens, he just replaces the block.

                          Cost effective, and easy.

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Originally posted by rodawn View Post
                            We are applying a nonslip epoxy on our cement floor. This is produced by ITW American. It is used on deep sea oil rigs and aircraft carriers and so while it is pricey, it is top of the line and definitely NONslip, even when wet and it is extremely durable. Cheaper than rubber pavers.

                            http://www.astantislip.com/ast_products.html
                            Hey rodawn, will you post pictures and let us know how it's working once you've done this stuff? I'm happy with my concrete so far, but this is intriguing!
                            (And what formula/color are you going with, if you don't mind sharing?)

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              ITW American recommended AS-550 for horse barns because they were thinking about the steel horse shoes and heavy traffic of horses coming in and out all the time, i.e. a busy boarding facility or a very large home operation.

                              But as we talked to them about own specific operation - less than 15 horses, all non-shod, and the fact we only bring in mares during times when they're heavy in foal and/or suckling, they said the AS-175 formulation could work for us (the AS-250 product is no longer manufactured).

                              If we had chosen the AS-550 product, we would have gone with either light gray or tile red which is a terracotta actually. But since we got AS-175, we chose beige.

                              It's labor-intensive to prepare for - - You have to be sure the cement is clean of grease, gas/diesel or oil, all grime, everything, and all cracks and holes must be filled in with cement filler. We used TSP in very strong concentration (runny-paste) and a stiff wire brush to scrub. However, the better your prep, the better your application will adhere.

                              The nice thing about both AS-175 and AS-550 is they have low VOC - so you don't have to worry about fumes. They also clean up with water, so easier on the environment.

                              We spent a while researching. We had a problem with horses going splat on our cement floor. Sooner or later our luck was going to run out and someone was going to break a leg so we wanted to treat our cement with some product to make it nonslip, not to mention how dangerous it is for a person to be around a scrambling horse. Some contractors (who know nothing about horses) would suggest those applications that add sand or grit or even light gravel as a top coat. But we talked to 3 cement contractors and ALL of them said never use any of those products and never paint the cement either, because those formulations will chip off and in the process make the floor extremely slippery, worse than if you had just left the cement bare.

                              When we found ITW's product we just knew this was The Product to solve our problem. If you've ever had the privilege to stand on an aircraft carrier in open water you quickly realize just how much the deck actually moves with the sea action even though the ship is enormous and practically a floating city, so one can appreciate how important it would be to not actually slip and slide off in front of moving aircraft or over some ledge!! The product would be tested to the limit in those conditions so we made the leap and purchased it and shipped up here.

                              We're still in the process of cleaning our cement. We've had a bout of cold weather and snow is expected today and tomorrow, so we're waiting for warmer temperatures to apply, or we might rent one of those construction heaters.
                              Practice! Patience! Persistence!
                              http://www.mariposasporthorses.com/
                              https://www.facebook.com/MariposaSportHorses/

                              Comment


                              • #16
                                Wow, thanks for all the info, rodawn!
                                That's really useful, and I'm definitely going to file it away for future reference.

                                Thanks again!

                                Comment

                                • Original Poster

                                  #17
                                  Yes, thanks rodawn! That's a very interesting product and I can't wait to hear how you like it. Do you know ballpark how much the cost will be to apply it?
                                  "Farming looks mighty easy when your plow is a pencil, and you're a thousand miles from the corn field." --Dwight D Eisenhower

                                  Boston Terrier Rescue of NC - www.btrnc.org - Adopt for Life!

                                  Comment


                                  • #18
                                    It cost us $1300 for the primer and product, including shipping, border levies and taxes. Our barn is small, so the aisle we are doing is only 12 x 60 feet and this is more than enough to cover. You can use a contractor to apply, but my husband is doing the work himself.
                                    Practice! Patience! Persistence!
                                    http://www.mariposasporthorses.com/
                                    https://www.facebook.com/MariposaSportHorses/

                                    Comment


                                    • #19
                                      Originally posted by fatappy View Post
                                      Timely thread as I am in the same conundrum.

                                      I want to have the barn open so the horses can come in out as needed. So I don't want to use concrete in case they get bees in their bonnets and come charging into the barn, etc.

                                      I am leaning towards these in the aisle (stable-grid.com). They seem like they are rugged enough, and packed with limestone or stone dust would be non-slip and permeable as well.
                                      I have a love/hate relationship with the grid flooring (Stable Pro's S&S Grid, in my case) in stalls; IMO, it would be a nightmare in the aisle. I like a clean, swept aisle and the grid floor systems do not sweep up well. They're also not proof against damage; pawing or repeated tight turns will disrupt/pull up pieces of the grid, and it's a royal pain to put in new pieces without tearing up the whole damn floor. I'm partial to livestock grade asphalt for aisle flooring. It sweeps better than brick but not as well as brushed concrete and is fairly non-slip.

                                      Comment


                                      • #20
                                        Originally posted by Dad Said Not To View Post
                                        I have a love/hate relationship with the grid flooring (Stable Pro's S&S Grid, in my case) in stalls; IMO, it would be a nightmare in the aisle. I like a clean, swept aisle and the grid floor systems do not sweep up well. They're also not proof against damage; pawing or repeated tight turns will disrupt/pull up pieces of the grid, and it's a royal pain to put in new pieces without tearing up the whole damn floor. I'm partial to livestock grade asphalt for aisle flooring. It sweeps better than brick but not as well as brushed concrete and is fairly non-slip.
                                        Thank you for this info. That has been my quandry as I like to have the clean appearance, but I am concerned about slipping. Only one of mine is shod. So I may just go with concrete and at some point do the epoxy.

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