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Building a wash stall??

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  • Building a wash stall??

    Have any of you built a wash stall/grooming stall in your barn? I'm hoping someone can share their wisdom and walk me through the process a bit.... I just brought my horses home in the late fall (LOL...seemed like a good idea at the time =) often can't remember why now....) and and trying to get some of the projects planned out that didn't make it before the girls arrived home...

  • #2
    I remember someone saying that a drain on the back wall of wash stalls is best, so horses don't have to stand on top of it, or get scared of it.

    There are plastic plywood type sheets sold today in Home Depot and Lowes you can use, that are better for wash stalls than wood would be.

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    • #3
      I just built one in my new barn. I have a drain in the middle, with the concrete sloping slightly towards it, and rubber mats on either side. A drain towards the back would be nice as an alternative. I lined the walls with puck board, which is kickproof, waterproof and easy to clean. It is a little more expensive than the sheets that Bluey mentions, but I figured it would last forever. It may be a little tough to find if you don't have a hockey supplier near you, but I think you can also get it from plastics manufacturers. I put lights up above on either side, not directly overhead because that creates shadows.

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      • Original Poster

        #4
        Originally posted by Spooks View Post
        I just built one in my new barn. I have a drain in the middle, with the concrete sloping slightly towards it, and rubber mats on either side. A drain towards the back would be nice as an alternative. I lined the walls with puck board, which is kickproof, waterproof and easy to clean. It is a little more expensive than the sheets that Bluey mentions, but I figured it would last forever. It may be a little tough to find if you don't have a hockey supplier near you, but I think you can also get it from plastics manufacturers. I put lights up above on either side, not directly overhead because that creates shadows.
        LOL...well since I'm in Canada, finding a hockey supplier is not a problem =) Thanks for the suggestions....can I ask how big you made your stall?

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        • #5
          Hi dqsid. I am also in Canada (Ontario) and we just built our wash stall two years ago. We went with a centre drain as well and installed white FRP sheets bonded to plywood around the entire interior. It is 10 feet wide and 12 feet deep. Wide enough for the larger horses to turn around in but not wide that they want to stand sideways which often happens when the width is too wide. I am very pleased with how ours turned out and can send you photos if you wish.

          We purchased our FRP sheeting from Home Depot and glued it ourselves to the 3/4 plywood before we installed it (you need special FRP glue also available at HD). That saved us a TON of money over buying the pre-glued FRP from any farm supply store. It is also availalbe in either beige or white with other colours available by custom order. Durable, srubable and totally waterproof. Looks great!

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          • #6
            Originally posted by dqsid View Post
            LOL...well since I'm in Canada, finding a hockey supplier is not a problem =) Thanks for the suggestions....can I ask how big you made your stall?
            Mine is 8x12. If I could do it over again I would make it a bit wider.

            I got a fun tour of the Zamboni service centre when I picked up my puck board . They thought it was really funny that I was using the boards for my barn!

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            • #7
              I think this little vid presents some interesting design ideas - love the pipe bumper/drying rail. I think there is another video of the same stall demonstrating how the wall adjoining the stall- raises with a pully to make it waterproof when needed.

              http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zEeTvUAcAIk

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              • #8
                Originally posted by Plainandtall View Post
                I think this little vid presents some interesting design ideas - love the pipe bumper/drying rail. I think there is another video of the same stall demonstrating how the wall adjoining the stall- raises with a pully to make it waterproof when needed.

                http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zEeTvUAcAIk
                at 24 seconds... the hex head bolts... you could use carriage bolts with rounded heads or flat headed elevator bolts to give you a flush fit rather than a bolt head protruding

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                • #9
                  A short concrete foundation wall will keep the wood walls from sitting on wet concrete and your walls last a lot longer
                  http://www.cornerstone-farm.ca/images/washrack.jpg

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    We just added one to my barn last year. It was a whole new addition to the existing barn (added wash rack and a new stall and overhang area), so not the same as putting one in an existing building, which might limit you more on drainage choices and such. But we did the drain in the back and I'm really happy to have that. Concrete slopes slightly toward it, and the drain has a plastic grill over it that is super strong as trucks can drive over it. I was going to do metal then found out the cost was $$$$ compared to $$ so went with the plastic.

                    We did tongue and groove wood on the walls and sealed it with something meant for wet areas - I can't remember what it was called, but I think it is used on boat decks too? It looks really nice and the water just beads up and runs down. One wall is a south facing exterior wall, so we put those translucent sheets of fiberglass up high to allow light to come in. I don't even have to turn the lights on in there on semi-sunny days, it is so bright. Then the lights are sealed for wet areas, and we did two placed on each side of the horse, rather than one right above (which would cast shadows). Also have electrical outlets in there at both ends, which are wet area approved and completely covered and sealed when not in use. Wash rack doubles as a grooming area and shoeing area at times, so that's why I wanted power available.

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                    • #11
                      The way we have our two groom, saddling and wash areas designed, it is wide enough to have stocks in the middle and one grooming/wash area on each side.
                      You can have the horse in the stocks with the head toward's the aisle or the back wall.

                      You can put the horse in the stocks if it needs to be there for vet/breeding/whatever work and wash it there also, or tie it on one or the other side to groom and saddle it, so you can be saddling two horses in there.

                      We had that in one barn and it worked very well.
                      That would be overkill for a one owner, couple of horses, unless you have plenty of room.

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                      • #12
                        One thing I guess I didn't see mentioned would be to also figure out where you can have a water heater if you don't have one already. We had already put a water heater in the existing shop/tool storage room that is next to the new washrack. So it is insulated and separate from the wash rack, but others I have seen have added it in the corner of the wash rack in an insulated cabinet, or even above if you have room. Just one thing to think about.

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                        • #13
                          Our wash stall is FRP-covered as well. LOVE how bright & white it is in there! At the back, I've got a couple of those big swinging blanket hangers up high so that I can hang turnout blankets in there to dry/ be hosed off. I also have a swing-arm hose overhead and love it. We installed an on-demand hot water heater in the tack room next to the wash stall, so have as much hot water as we'd ever need. We also wired for an infra-red heater to go overhead if we ever want to put one in. The one piece of advice I'd give that I wish had been given to me is to be sure that you have enough slope to your concrete that you can easily see it. Mine isn't sloped enough so that when my drain clogs (regular occurrence), I get some water in my aisle. Also, be sure that whatever drain system you use has an easily-removed grill on it. You will be removing it regularly to dig out hay, hair, and other ick.

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                          • #14
                            Originally posted by FoxChaser View Post
                            Also, be sure that whatever drain system you use has an easily-removed grill on it. You will be removing it regularly to dig out hay, hair, and other ick.
                            Yes to this! With mine, the back channel drain is covered with several lengths of the heavy plastic grill that I mention. I leave the screws off the one 12" or so length that is above the end where it drains out into a pipe. I can pull that out whenever I need to clean out any hair and gunk that might have accumulated there. We also have a clean out thing outside --I'm sure there is some technical term for this but I don't know it -- a big 12" or so diameter pipe that intersects the pipe carrying water from wash rack. You pull the cover off and pull up this basket that collects all the hair and gunk that made it into that drain pipe and can clean that out. I only have to do that every few months as it holds a lot. Works really well to keep only water going into your septic (if that is where your wash rack drains) or wherever the final destination for the wash rack water is.

                            Comment

                            • Original Poster

                              #15
                              Thanks everyone for all the great suggestions!! I am limited on space, so I only wish I could do a few of them (esp. the stocks b/w the wash stalls...awesome!) I am hoping I can figure out a way to get hot water to the barn...or any water really at the moment, the ancient water pump froze this winter and literally cracked in half - grrrr... It's on the list of about a million things that need attention {sigh} I am hoping I can do a lot of the building myself to cut down on costs....

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                              • #16
                                Our wash stall is 12x10, hot water heater is across the aisle in the tack/feed room. The drain is in the center with the floor sloping inwards a little. Rubber mats with holes cover everything but the drain hole. The only thing I would advise is to make sure your drain pipe is large enough! When designing it we sort of left it up to our plumber and he didn't take into consideration that more than water would try to go down there.

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                                • #17
                                  NO DRAIN!!!!!
                                  After being "in the business" for thirty years: What I have experienced is that Drains ALWAYS plug. It's just a matter of time. Some plug where you can't get to the blockage, and some need to be cleaned out constantly to prevent plugging.
                                  The best wash racks I have seen are simply floored at a slight slope to the rear, where there is space between wall and floor (a small gap) for the water to flow out of the building. On the other side of the wall you can:
                                  Make an open (or French) drain leading to a drain field, sacrifice area/garden, or a sunken and rock filled perforated barrel.
                                  Drains are a pain.

                                  Comment


                                  • #18
                                    Most important thing of the whole wash stall is to buy the biggest drain you can. Mine is 12" x 12" metal that lifts up and has a filter inside it.

                                    Don't make the wash stall too wide or horse can get sideways and catty-whompus in the cross ties. I happy with mine at 9' wide.

                                    I also did one wall with hooks to designed to hang wet and muddy turnout blankets on in the winter.

                                    The other wall has a wire mesh panel that has hooks and baskets it on it:
                                    http://www.organizedbarn.com/products.html#panels

                                    Comment


                                    • #19
                                      LOL water flowing out isn't really an option in a freezing climate.

                                      Not a lot of experience in designing ones, but just thinking about one at a previous boarding barn, I would have changed that the front wasn't so enclosed. It literally was a dark little box and the horses were often anxious about stepping over the lip into it.

                                      Also, I would have a way to have an overhead boom or some way to keep the hose off the floor. The horses weren't always thrilled about being in a tight space with a hose sliding around the floor with them.

                                      But I love wash racks. Just think they are so nice to have around, especially when you have those winter injuries.
                                      Semi Feral

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