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What footing would you choose?

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  • doublesstable
    replied
    Just like a good paint job; prep is very important. I am building an arena too and have been researching and talking with arena companies. Below is what I have come up with that I hope to be starting grading for very soon.

    On a leveled area natural soil with at 1% slope, french drains on the parameter:
    Base - crushed asphalt road base - Class 2 base... 3 inches. On top of that is 3 inches of DG (decomposed granite) compacted.
    Then the footing - I would like to have washed concrete sand with Fibar (wood chips) helps retain the water and gives a nice cushion. Sprinkler system because I don't have the room for a water truck

    There are companies that do put drains under the footing but that is much more than I can spend. It is already very expensive. But if we are talking a dream arena - I would also like it covered too!

    My arena will be also be 100 x 200 because that is as wide as my property accommodates in the area I want to put the arena. I have ridden in different sizes and find the 100 x 200 is nice. A better size is 150 x 200 but 100 is fine if you don't have the space.

    Leave a comment:


  • StormyDay
    replied
    Originally posted by ridingschoolmrf View Post

    Hi. is your rubber crumb and sand in an outdoor arena? Where are you located? I just moved to Phil Campbell, Alabama from VA and am in the process of building a 70X200 foot arena (see my post #10 in this thread). The arena site is graded with a 1% slope, but I still need to add the base & footing. I have contemplated adding a carpet based fiber additive to the sand vs a rubber based additive to the sand, vs only using sand alone on top of the base. I have heard from a friend in Northern VA that the rubber additive is light and tends to float away in heavy rains or even blow away. I was wondering if you found that to be true with your rubber crumb additive? It probably also is dependent on your location and the general climate and amount of rain you get. Here in Phil Campbell, Alabama we get very little rain in the summer (hasn't rained for about 3 weeks, but has been hot & humid), but I'm told it rains nearly non-stop in the winter months here. So I was wondering how the rubber might last here without washing away? Anyone else reading this can feel free to comment if you have experience with rubber additive vs fiber additive. Thanks.

    Jam Lee TePoel
    We just got a crazy rain storm (7 inches in 3 hours) and while the rubber does tend to sort itself to the top when we get big rains, it doesn’t float away. Actually, even when we got big puddles the rubber still stayed on the ground, it didn’t float.
    However, there are railroad ties around the perimeter of the ring to keep any footing inside.

    It really depends on the fiber additive you are looking at. Some are very high maintenance and require daily dragging and copious water during dry spells, some are more user friendly. I’d go to local barns in the area who have used the fiber you are looking at and ask about their management practices; you probably don’t want to end up having to drag every day for a personal ring.
    The rubber footing is nice because it doesn’t wear tracks around the perimeter, like sand does. It also is very springy for their leg health. I have to drag about once a week; the arena gets about 3-5 rides a day.

    Leave a comment:


  • ridingschoolmrf
    replied
    Originally posted by StormyDay View Post
    I’ve got a 100x200 and it’s plenty long enough for a full course. I do wish it was about 25 feet wider, just so I could do some more interesting diagonal lines, but it works just fine.
    It’s rubber crumb and sand. I find it to be excellent. The sand part does harden if I haven’t dragged in a while, but as long as I drag every week or so the footing stays great.
    Hi. is your rubber crumb and sand in an outdoor arena? Where are you located? I just moved to Phil Campbell, Alabama from VA and am in the process of building a 70X200 foot arena (see my post #10 in this thread). The arena site is graded with a 1% slope, but I still need to add the base & footing. I have contemplated adding a carpet based fiber additive to the sand vs a rubber based additive to the sand, vs only using sand alone on top of the base. I have heard from a friend in Northern VA that the rubber additive is light and tends to float away in heavy rains or even blow away. I was wondering if you found that to be true with your rubber crumb additive? It probably also is dependent on your location and the general climate and amount of rain you get. Here in Phil Campbell, Alabama we get very little rain in the summer (hasn't rained for about 3 weeks, but has been hot & humid), but I'm told it rains nearly non-stop in the winter months here. So I was wondering how the rubber might last here without washing away? Anyone else reading this can feel free to comment if you have experience with rubber additive vs fiber additive. Thanks.

    Jam Lee TePoel

    Leave a comment:


  • ridingschoolmrf
    replied
    Originally posted by MintHillFarm View Post

    I would definitely suggest your entire base be uniform and the same material. You may end up with a soft spot in that area. The 3/8 minus, 6" loosely laid, and then compacted to 95% Proctor establishing a 4" pad is best. If your budget will allow, I would suggest GeoTextile underneath it. That will help with stabilizing the soil underneath and not allow weeds to grow through.
    Hi. Do you suggest the Geotextile between the Sub-base and the base layer of 3/8 inch minus or Stone dust? Or do you suggest the Geotextile layer between the base layer and the sand layer? I am thinking of eventually adding 2 inches of regular sand on top of the base. If i can't neceassarily afford to add the 2 inches of sand right away do you think it would be better to use manufacturedd sand also known as limestone sand or blue dust as the base rather than 3/8 inch minus? Since the blue stone would be smaller to ride on without sand. Or do you think that the 3/8 minus would still be best for the base layer?

    Leave a comment:


  • enjoytheride
    replied
    My trainer competes grand prix and his ring is 100 X 200.

    I was not a fan of GGT, it requires a sprinkler system, frequent watering, and a special drag.

    Leave a comment:


  • MintHillFarm
    replied
    Originally posted by ridingschoolmrf View Post
    We are building a 20 X 60 meter outdoor arena in Phil Campbell, Alabama. The arena site has been cleared with a bull-dozer and graded with a 1% slope. In some areas it is all the way down to what is called "white horse clay" here, and in other locations there is still some topsoil- particularly where I think he may have back-filled in some areas. I was wondering if this is acceptable as an arena sub-base? I was thinking (after researching after the fact- that maybe it should be down to the clay all the way across. Would that be better? Or will this still work? My next question is what should we put down as a base layer on top of this? I am debating between putting down what they call manufactured sand here (looks like it would be called limestone sand or blue-stone or rock-dust in VA where I am originally from). Or alternatively we might put down something slightly larger called 810, which is 3/8 minus to dust. Which of those do you think would be better? We were thinking of putting 3 inches of whatever we use as a base. Do you think that will be enough? Or does it need to be more like 4 inches? I'm not sure if we can get a roller truck to roll it, or if alternatively as one trainer suggested, I could ride on the blue dust for several months to a year to compact it before adding about 2 inches of sand on top of that. Any suggestions or advice is appreciated. Thanks. I am new to the Chronical of the Horse Forums.
    I would definitely suggest your entire base be uniform and the same material. You may end up with a soft spot in that area. The 3/8 minus, 6" loosely laid, and then compacted to 95% Proctor establishing a 4" pad is best. If your budget will allow, I would suggest GeoTextile underneath it. That will help with stabilizing the soil underneath and not allow weeds to grow through.

    Leave a comment:


  • StormyDay
    replied
    I’ve got a 100x200 and it’s plenty long enough for a full course. I do wish it was about 25 feet wider, just so I could do some more interesting diagonal lines, but it works just fine.
    It’s rubber crumb and sand. I find it to be excellent. The sand part does harden if I haven’t dragged in a while, but as long as I drag every week or so the footing stays great.

    Leave a comment:


  • ridingschoolmrf
    replied
    Can someone please tell me how to start a new thread/topic on a separate post? I am new to this site today. Thanks.

    Leave a comment:


  • Lucassb
    replied
    My farm is in GA and my arena is a bit smaller than yours at 100 x 150'. I put in a mix of sand and fiber for a number of reasons, one of which was needing to manage water. We have periods during the year when we will get some serious downpours, and other periods where we could go for long periods without rain. I want to be able to ride on my footing and get good performance under both conditions. The fiber component of my footing absorbs water and will take a big downpour without becoming slick; it holds that moisture so I get a nice, dust free surface even if the arena hasn't seen water for days. I very rarely have to put the sprinklers on and I have never had a situation where I couldn't use the arena because it was too sloppy. The surface is really nice for the horses, firm but with the appropriate amount of cushion to it. I chose it after visiting a number of other local facilities and getting to ride on a number of different surfaces. It was a bit pricey and it does take maintenance, but it was worth it and I am very happy with my choice.

    Best of luck with your project!

    Leave a comment:


  • ridingschoolmrf
    replied
    We are building a 20 X 60 meter outdoor arena in Phil Campbell, Alabama. The arena site has been cleared with a bull-dozer and graded with a 1% slope. In some areas it is all the way down to what is called "white horse clay" here, and in other locations there is still some topsoil- particularly where I think he may have back-filled in some areas. I was wondering if this is acceptable as an arena sub-base? I was thinking (after researching after the fact- that maybe it should be down to the clay all the way across. Would that be better? Or will this still work? My next question is what should we put down as a base layer on top of this? I am debating between putting down what they call manufactured sand here (looks like it would be called limestone sand or blue-stone or rock-dust in VA where I am originally from). Or alternatively we might put down something slightly larger called 810, which is 3/8 minus to dust. Which of those do you think would be better? We were thinking of putting 3 inches of whatever we use as a base. Do you think that will be enough? Or does it need to be more like 4 inches? I'm not sure if we can get a roller truck to roll it, or if alternatively as one trainer suggested, I could ride on the blue dust for several months to a year to compact it before adding about 2 inches of sand on top of that. Any suggestions or advice is appreciated. Thanks. I am new to the Chronical of the Horse Forums.

    Leave a comment:


  • ThoroughbredLuver
    replied
    Originally posted by Elouise View Post
    Go talk to (a lot of) people with farms in your area and see what works footing wise for them and what drainage concerns you should focus on. Florida can have deluge like downpours, days of rain and screaming heat in the summer. Getting your hopes set on one type of footing may prove to be not Florida friendly.

    I know a Barn that installed a ring in Florida with some type of footing, but it had super drainage yet the darn stuff that was installed got super soft during the summer heat and ended up getting balled up in the horses hoofs. Talking to other horsemen will avoid those types of mistakes.

    Good luck.
    Super good to know! Thanks for all the info!

    I am hoping to walk/see a bunch of footings in the area to also help make my decision Or even better be able to ride in it! I know a few people in the area already and they all have different footings. From what I have heard, most of the big companies push for GGT. We have the balling in the horses feet with the wax coating GGT up north. I am preferably wanting to stay away from GGT if possible.

    I have quite a few contacts for footing...more than I can keep up with LOL! I’ll definitely use the professional advice, but seems like there are a lot options!

    would love to be able to narrow some down/look into more based off what people have and really like!
    Last edited by ThoroughbredLuver; Aug. 11, 2020, 04:38 PM.

    Leave a comment:


  • mroades
    replied
    We used crushed shell and it was great especially after downpours

    Leave a comment:


  • Elouise
    replied
    Go talk to (a lot of) people with farms in your area and see what works footing wise for them and what drainage concerns you should focus on. Florida can have deluge like downpours, days of rain and screaming heat in the summer. Getting your hopes set on one type of footing may prove to be not Florida friendly.

    I know a Barn that installed a ring in Florida with some type of footing, but it had super drainage yet the darn stuff that was installed got super soft during the summer heat and ended up getting balled up in the horses hoofs. Talking to other horsemen will avoid those types of mistakes.

    Good luck.

    Leave a comment:


  • Elouise
    replied
    Go talk to (a lot of) people with farms in your area and see what works footing wise for them and what drainage concerns you should focus on. Florida can have deluge like downpours, days of rain and screaming heat in the summer. Getting your hopes set on one type of footing may prove to be not Florida friendly.

    I know a Barn that installed a ring in Florida with some type of footing, but it had super drainage yet the darn stuff that was installed got super soft during the summer heat and ended up getting balled up in the horses hoofs. Talking to other horsemen will avoid those types of mistakes.

    Good luck.

    Leave a comment:


  • mbhorse
    replied
    I used a combination of sand and crusher fines/run, and I loved it. It was much more sand, probably two thirds to three quarters. It drained well and you could ride on it when wet without destroying it.

    However, we did groom it fairly often. Our trick for grooming was buying a used bunker groomer (Sand Scorpion) from a golf course. It was the perfect size for our 110'x230' ring, and since it only had 3 wheels (think trike) we could get very close to the jumps. It had a handy box blade on the front, belly harrows, and a drag behind that could be raised or lowered. When we used it to drag the ring between groups during clinic days, people would refer to it as our ring Zamboni 😄

    Leave a comment:


  • ghst13
    replied
    Originally posted by Lord Helpus View Post
    I hate to be a Negative Nancy, but the size of the ring for a H/J worries me. Give a min. of 30' on each end for turns, that leaves 60' down each side. 60' = 4 strides max. That's a real minimum for spending money on great footing, etc. Is there a reason the ring is so small?
    I'm not following your math. The ring is 200' long, how are you getting to only 60' for a line?

    Leave a comment:


  • ThoroughbredLuver
    replied
    Originally posted by Lord Helpus View Post
    I hate to be a Negative Nancy, but the size of the ring for a H/J worries me. Give a min. of 30' on each end for turns, that leaves 60' down each side. 60' = 4 strides max. That's a real minimum for spending money on great footing, etc. Is there a reason the ring is so small?
    Re: footing. I cannot help you there. I have a good tractor and a wonderful drag/harrow. My footing is twice washed river sand. It is a tried and true footing, not the latest fashionable man made-footing
    I actually am not sure I want to go down the synthetic footing route anyways, I like good old sand, but worried about drainage and being able to ride after the rain. I have been hearing good things about rubber crumb though. I will be working with a professional on what is best for drainage and what will hold up for the area, so really just curious what people like and why!

    The barn I am at now is a 100x200 and we can set full jump courses jumping large 3 foot plus jumps...easily accommodates 5 stride lines and never have an issue. This is a ring for my own personal use, not shows. I have access to bigger rings to trailer out to, but this size is really fine for me for daily use.
    Last edited by ThoroughbredLuver; Aug. 9, 2020, 06:01 PM.

    Leave a comment:


  • Lord Helpus
    replied
    I hate to be a Negative Nancy, but the size of the ring for a H/J worries me. Give a min. of 30' on each end for turns, that leaves 60' down each side. 60' = 4 strides max. That's a real minimum for spending money on great footing, etc. Is there a reason the ring is so small?
    Re: footing. I cannot help you there. I have a good tractor and a wonderful drag/harrow. My footing is twice washed river sand. It is a tried and true footing, not the latest fashionable man made-footing

    Leave a comment:


  • ThoroughbredLuver
    started a topic What footing would you choose?

    What footing would you choose?

    If you were building your dream arena, what footing would you choose to put in it?

    We are building an 100x200 outdoor arena in Florida. I have an idea of what I want to put in, but curious what people love to ride on!
    This outdoor arena will be used for jumping hunter/jumpers anywhere from cross rails up to 4” plus. Year round use as well so drainage is a big factor here!
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