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how to convert an easy entry cart from single to pairs

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  • how to convert an easy entry cart from single to pairs

    How do you convert a metal easy entry cart (for minis) from a single horse to pairs? And is that change permanant? or can it be interchangable?


  • #2
    I would urge you to get a small 4 wheel vehicle. The metal easy entry carts are not meant to be pulled by a pair. I have seen it done but the whole set up for pairs is different for a single. It just doesn't make sense to have a pole on a cart. The weight of the cart seems to me would be on that pole and further more on the ponies' back.


    • #3

      You would be basically creating a chariot. Like anything it could be done and has been done but i wouldn't recommend it. Even for mini's, a pipe cart is not meant to take the strain of two horses pulling it.

      In the interest of safety get a vehicle designed for a pair.



      • #4
        Although I agree with the others about using a cart for a pair, there is a place on line, Star Lake, I'm thinking, that sells a conversion for a cart from a single to a pair. I was thinking about it for some of my mini donks but never got around to it. Actually, I never got around to getting the second one driving. I would certainly never consider it for anything larger than a mini and never for a real use vehicle.


        • Original Poster

          Thanks for all the advice, I really appreciate it.

          What sites do you recomend for "affordable" 4 wheel vehicles?

          Also, for those experienced in driving pairs, any opinions why someone would choose to drive tandem (is that what it's called with one in front of the other?) combared to pairs (side by side)? If you did the tandem would you use the 2 or 4 wheeled vehicle?

          thanks again


          • #6
            Tandem takes a very experienced driver. You basically have two sets of reins--one for each horse. The front horse is not in draft and the back horse does all the work of the cart or carriage. Most tandems I have seen use a cart but I have seen them in marathon carriages. You are driving two horses horses individually. More like driving a four in hand than a pair.

            Driving a pair is not all that different from a single in the fact you have one set of reins that split with the left rein going to the left side of each horse;s mouth and the right does the same for the right side. I have driven a pair a couple of times. One for an extended time this summer on a wagon train. Not a big step from single horse to a pair. Harness is a little different but not much.

            Hope this helps.

            Look around your area to see if you can find a carriage maker. I don;t know where you are. But if you google vse or mini 4 wheel carriages I am sure you can find all kinds of things.


            • #7
              Tandem makes your heart race!! So many things that can go wrong, and SO FAST!! Nothing else like it. Takes a special horse to be a Tandem Leader with a slightly crazy driver behind, grinning ear to ear!!

              Would not advise a pole cart, they tip easily wooden or metal, lots of pole weight on the animals necks since there is only one axle. You see a number of pole carts for sale, "Because it sounded like a good idea!" yet didn't work well in real life.


              • #8
                Originally posted by BackyardDressageMom View Post
                How do you convert a metal easy entry cart (for minis) from a single horse to pairs? And is that change permanant? or can it be interchangable?

                DON'T DO IT!

                It's a good way to have a serious accident (you or your horses)


                • #9
                  Frontier makes a pole for a team on their cart.


                  • #10
                    You can hitch a pair to a cart BUT it requires a very special cart that is well balanced and a harness that is matched to the cart.

                    Trying with an easy entry and regular harness is not recommended.
                    Richard Holyoak
                    Diamond H Carriages


                    • #11
                      Originally posted by R Holyoak View Post
                      You can hitch a pair to a cart BUT it requires a very special cart that is well balanced and a harness that is matched to the cart.

                      Trying with an easy entry and regular harness is not recommended.
                      Richard, you neglected to tell her how LONG it took Kathleen to get those mules WELL BROKE and the fact that the cart she drives is one-of-a-kind. It does have a pole, but not set up on the front like any other pole cart around. Kathleen had vehicle custom designed and made to use with her mules. Mules which took literally YEARS to get trained to the high standard they have reached.

                      Things that look easy with equines, usually happen because of MANY HOURS of work with them at home.

                      Affordable is relative to quality and use expected from equipment. Mini folks tend to to with the cheapest price for equipment when buying, which then is easily broken in use or hard on the animals. The bargin price hunt seems to be a mindset very common with mini folks. Sorry about stereotyping, but when the first thing all the mini folks I meet say is "how much", there is a common denominator. Maybe it is just the area I am in.

                      Glinkowski makes a very nice 4-wheel carriage in a mini size. Well crafted, rolls easily. Other makers like Ite-Bte (not sure of spelling) were working on developing some quality 4-wheelers for minis. Haven't checked their site for a while. You pay for quality, but get your money back on resale of vehicles. They hold their value.

                      Tandem is fun, but the horse in shafts is doing all the real work. Leader is out to be decorative 90% of the time. Wheeler pulls the load, manages to get everything where it needs to go. This can work with a larger animal, but is sure a load on a mini.

                      Pairs will give you more horsepower to manage the slightly bigger drag of 4-wheels, yet has no shaft load like a cart does with adult passengers. A Pair will let you use both animals' strength at the same time, to move loads with a 4-wheeler. Don't wear minis out with shaft or pole weight on a 2-wheel cart, go to the 4-wheel vehicle.


                      • Original Poster

                        R Holyoak- beautiful turnout with the mules!

                        The purpose of asking the original question regarding converting an easy entry cart from single to pairs was never to be "cheap". My goal is to drive in CDE's so being unsafe isn't an option.

                        I have two mini's working well individually but have never been tried as a pair and I don't know of any other pairs of mini's in my area (even thru my driving club). I have an extra cart I was only going to use to try them as a pair and if successful would immediatly be looking for a 4 wheel cart suitable for CDE's
                        (like the ones mentioned GLinkowksi or IteBte)

                        Can you tell well enough just ground driving them as pairs, if they would be suitable? Then go for the 4 wheeler. Seems like a gamble to purchase the 4 wheeler if they haven't been hitched together.

                        thanks for all the info


                        • #13

                          Just my opinion but................ In my experience EVERYTHING changes with multiples. You just cannot tell until you hitch it up. The dynamics of the two or more animals are pretty unpredictable.

                          I paired two this week who have been driven single a lot and as a pair a few times but have been apart for a couple of years. all was well until we reached a puddle in the road which they crossed OK but then they leaned on each other for the next 1/2 mile.

                          Until you try it you really don't know how they will react when one pushes the pole into the other.

                          The best you could do is build a false pole of PVC and groung drive with that between them to simulate the pole pressure but there are still no guarantees because the load and effort factors are missing. It's one thing to drag a piece of pipe but another to pull a carriage and driver.

                          Can you find a trainer with an appropriate vehicle?