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Experience adding studs to shoes?

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  • Experience adding studs to shoes?

    I am received a very nice basic stud kit for Christmas and would like input on how and when endurance riders use them. I do limited distances and hope to do a 50 this year. I only keep front shoes on my horse, and ride mostly in central/eastern KY. We have a lot of loose limestone slab around here that becomes very slippery when it rains. So far we've avoided the limestone/rain combo during competition, but I'm sure we'll meet it eventually. If I use studs, what type should I use? Also, should I put hind shoes with studs on, so he's even all around?

  • #2
    I've never used removeable studs. I've tried the "tap in" studs a couple of times that the farrier can apply to your horse's shoes, and I regularly use borium headed nails. I prefer the borium nails, four per shoe, horse shod all around. IMO, the hind feet tend to slip more often as then are the pushing end. My horses for their own reasons are best off being kept shod and personally I'm far too lazy and short of patience to deal with boots.

    The tap-in studa are tungsten tipped, very small, give a little extra grip without being too much. A foxhunting, endurance riding, equine vet suggested them. But I felt that the borium tipped nails worked a bit better and they cost me less.

    Bonnie S.


    • #3
      I like on borium shoes. I live in N Al and we have lots of rocks, pavement, etc. For endurance training and competing it is nice to have. Not sure what a trail will be until you ride it. Why not give the horse the best traction out there?

      My shoer fits the shoe to the horses foot. Then he drills a hole on each side of the shoe about near the heel. He has a drill press on his truck. Then he taps in a stud. Easy. I have reused these shoes alot. There is no damage to any ligaments due to the studs. None. Yes, they do still slip, nothing is that grippy, but the slipping is much less. I have had my gelding in competition where the start of the ride we had to go on slick black top, and the road curved and sloped inward to a ditch. One guy was walking on that and his horse totally slipped and fell and of course ran off. He had shoes with no studs or easy boots. I was following behind him, most of the group was to the far side. My horse never slipped. Some others thought oh less traffic over there, and they came to ride behind me. Their horses slipped. Mine never did. No, my horse was not in danger of getting hurt. The incline was not bad.

      If you are gonna have shoes on might as well as to have all four on. They can slip on the hind end too. When I do hills, that back end needs traction back there too.

      The ones you put in and take out like the eventers, those are a huge hassle. Keeping the tap hole clean, screwing them in and out each time. Huge hassle.

      Also my farrier uses ONLY two nails on each side of my horses feet. His feet are good enough to has less nails. I HATE seeing so many nails on a horses feet. They do not need that many. He does the same on my rocky filly front feet. However, she has three on each side on the back feet due to the way she moves. She slides her back feet, which is what a rocky/gaited horse will do. She has no studs on her shoes. She wears her hind shoes faster. No my QH had terrible feet, and we started with no shoes, 2 nails, 3 nails, and then clips and 3 nails. My farrier didn't want to load his feet up with so many nails, because his feet were not that good.

      OBTW I have lost a shoe on my arab with the 2 nails on each side on all four feet, maybe 2 times. NEVER on a trail. Usually it would happen a couple days after the farrier had been here, and from the pasture. If his shoes get loose, they still do not come off. Why not go barefoot? Because it is TOO rocky here.

      I have pictures of his feet, pm me and I can send you a picture or two. Not sure how to post a picture on this site.

      Stay warm.


      • #4
        You do not want to use studs for any extended period of time. They put an enormous amount of torque on the foot as well as increasing the chance of the horse catching and injuring itself. That is why in eventing we only put them on RIGHT before a course and take them off RIGHT after. I would never use studs for any extended work like an endurance race. You will create more problems than you solve.
        Life doesn't have perfect footing.

        Bloggily entertain yourself with our adventures (and disasters):
        We Are Flying Solo


        • #5
          My horse has been perfectly sound with studs on his entire life. It isn't like he is going to be on pavement all the time. It is not like he has on these huge high heel shoes either. He is now a coming 13 yr old. He has had studs on and off the course of his riding life. Starting maybe around him being a 6-7 yr old. I have had him since he was a 3.5 month old weanling so I think I know quite a bit about him, also he has lived on my property the entire time too.

          The eventing/hunting studs can really cut into the sod, dirt etc some are huge and giant. They are a different purpose than the studs for trail horses. These studs are not the same at all as those are.

          I don't recall one person who has had studs on their horse having lameness issues. Neither has my farrier. I KNOW he would never put anything on my horse(s) that was going to cause them lameness problems. I have been using him for 12 years. He is a hunter, dressage, eventing, polo type farrier. Doesn't do lots of gaited horses, but does do my rocky filly. Rockies do not require any special shoeing or trimming to gait. I broke, trained, and certified her myself. And let me tell ya, there are alot of rules about shoeing and having a rocky certified. We passed with flying colors.

          Where is the data about the torque?

          Like I say, I have pictures if you wanna see.

          Oh my arab and prime endurance horse has white feet too. OH MY.


          • #6
            There's a whole culture? mythology? (I'm searching for the right word...) of using studs for eventing. You can walk up to a total stranger at an event and ask "what studs are you using?" and by the end of the conversation you've made a new friend, even if you politely disagree with their plan. You'll find eventers who wouldn't dream of doing their conditioning rides, or XC schools, without studs, and you'll find some who say if the ground is so bad you need studs, stay home. The one thing they'll probably agree on is that you should have 4 shoes, because the hind studs are the ones you'll need most, if you need them at all.

            Once you get used to putting them in and out, they're a pain but it's not that big of a deal. The smallest road studs are still quite a bit bigger than a glob of borium or those little tap in points someone else mentioned. I guess I'd think hard about why you think you need them - are you doing a lot of work on soft, grassy surfaces? that's when I want studs. Thinking about it, I did appreciate them when we would jump on baked-hard, summer fields when the ground was so hard it was slippery on the turns at speed. But most of the time, if I really NEEDED the studs, I was wishing I wasn't riding at all because the footing was so awful.


            • Original Poster

              My main concern is rocky ground in the rain. Not really something eventers travel over.(no offense) Do studs help that much on such terrain? Or are they primarily for "soft" footing? I've been over some wet rock that was dangerously slick even at a walk, and you had no choice but to cross it, so that's my main worry. I want to have a "back-up plan", should we get to a ride and find it to be wet/slick. As long as there's no lightning, we'll ride, but I'd like to give my horse every advantage I can. Even if they are difficult, I like the fact that I can easily remove the studs in this kit after the ride. I guess my question now is, what size stud should I use? I'm assuming the smallest possible?


              • #8
                Originally posted by chicamuxen1 View Post
                I've never used removeable studs. I've tried the "tap in" studs a couple of times that the farrier can apply to your horse's shoes, and I regularly use borium headed nails. I prefer the borium nails, four per shoe, horse shod all around. IMO, the hind feet tend to slip more often as then are the pushing end. My horses for their own reasons are best off being kept shod and personally I'm far too lazy and short of patience to deal with boots.

                The tap-in studa are tungsten tipped, very small, give a little extra grip without being too much. A foxhunting, endurance riding, equine vet suggested them. But I felt that the borium tipped nails worked a bit better and they cost me less.

                Bonnie S.
                The bold are the type of "studs" (we call them corks here) I use with my endurance horse. I am not sure if they are good for rocky ground though, I only use mine in winter because I train outside and the footing is very icey. They are great for that!

                I keep my horse's on all winter (4 or 5 months/year) with snow ball pads, and none of my horses have ever had any soundness issues because of them.

                In the summer I just use regular shoes, and we do quite a bit of mountain riding and our horses are fine on the rocky terrain.