Sport Horse Spotlight

Total Hope-11-18-09-3662

Real Estate Spotlight

Walter Moore rear view

Sale Spotlight

COTH_without Subscribe
  • Welcome to the Chronicle Forums.
    Please complete your profile. The forums and the rest of has single sign-in, so your log in information for one will automatically work for the other. Disclaimer: The opinions expressed here are the views of the individual and do not necessarily reflect the views and opinions of The Chronicle of the Horse.



Forum rules and no-advertising policy

As a participant on this forum, it is your responsibility to know and follow our rules. Please read this message in its entirety.

Board Rules

1. You�re responsible for what you say.
As outlined in Section 230 of the Communications Decency Act, The Chronicle of the Horse and its affiliates, as well Jelsoft Enterprises Ltd., the developers of vBulletin, are not legally responsible for statements made in the Forums.

This is a public forum viewed by a wide spectrum of people, so please be mindful of what you say and who might be reading it�details of personal disputes may be better handled privately. While posters are legally responsible for their statements, the moderators may in their discretion remove or edit posts, though are not legally obligated to do so, regardless of content.

Users have the ability to modify or delete their own messages after posting. Moderators generally will not delete posts, threads or accounts unless they have been alerted and have determined that a post, thread or user has violated the Forums� policies. Moderators do not regularly independently monitor the Forums for such violations.

Profanity, outright vulgarity, blatant personal insults or otherwise inappropriate statements will not be tolerated and will be dealt with at the discretion of the moderators.

Users may provide their positive or negative experiences with or opinions of companies, products, individuals, etc.; however, accounts involving allegations of criminal behavior against named individuals or companies MUST be first-hand accounts and may NOT be made anonymously.

If a situation has been reported upon by a reputable news source or addressed by law enforcement or the legal system it is open for discussion, but if an individual wants to make their own claims of criminal behavior against a named party in the course of that discussion, they too must identify themselves by first and last name and the account must be first-person.

Criminal allegations that do not satisfy these requirements, when brought to our attention, may be removed pending satisfaction of these criteria, and we reserve the right to err on the side of caution when making these determinations.

Credible threats of suicide will be reported to the police along with identifying user information at our disposal, in addition to referring the user to suicide helpline resources such as 1-800-SUICIDE or 1-800-273-TALK.

2. Conversations in horse-related forums should be horse-related.
The forums are a wonderful source of information and support for members of the horse community. While it�s understandably tempting to share information or search for input on other topics upon which members might have a similar level of knowledge, members must maintain the focus on horses.

3. Keep conversations productive, on topic and civil.
Discussion and disagreement are inevitable and encouraged; personal insults, diatribes and sniping comments are unproductive and unacceptable. Whether a subject is light-hearted or serious, keep posts focused on the current topic and of general interest to other participants of that thread. Utilize the private message feature or personal email where appropriate to address side topics or personal issues not related to the topic at large.

4. No advertising in the discussion forums.
Posts in the discussion forums directly or indirectly advertising horses, jobs, items or services for sale or wanted will be removed at the discretion of the moderators. Use of the private messaging feature or email addresses obtained through users� profiles for unsolicited advertising is not permitted.

Company representatives may participate in discussions and answer questions about their products or services, or suggest their products on recent threads if they fulfill the criteria of a query. False "testimonials" provided by company affiliates posing as general consumers are not appropriate, and self-promotion of sales, ad campaigns, etc. through the discussion forums is not allowed.

Paid advertising is available on our classifieds site and through the purchase of banner ads. The tightly monitored Giveaways forum permits free listings of genuinely free horses and items available or wanted (on a limited basis). Items offered for trade are not allowed.

Advertising Policy Specifics
When in doubt of whether something you want to post constitutes advertising, please contact a moderator privately in advance for further clarification. Refer to the following points for general guidelines:

Horses � Only general discussion about the buying, leasing, selling and pricing of horses is permitted. If the post contains, or links to, the type of specific information typically found in a sales or wanted ad, and it�s related to a horse for sale, regardless of who�s selling it, it doesn�t belong in the discussion forums.

Stallions � Board members may ask for suggestions on breeding stallion recommendations. Stallion owners may reply to such queries by suggesting their own stallions, only if their horse fits the specific criteria of the original poster. Excessive promotion of a stallion by its owner or related parties is not permitted and will be addressed at the discretion of the moderators.

Services � Members may use the forums to ask for general recommendations of trainers, barns, shippers, farriers, etc., and other members may answer those requests by suggesting themselves or their company, if their services fulfill the specific criteria of the original post. Members may not solicit other members for business if it is not in response to a direct, genuine query.

Products � While members may ask for general opinions and suggestions on equipment, trailers, trucks, etc., they may not list the specific attributes for which they are in the market, as such posts serve as wanted ads.

Event Announcements � Members may post one notification of an upcoming event that may be of interest to fellow members, if the original poster does not benefit financially from the event. Such threads may not be �bumped� excessively. Premium members may post their own notices in the Event Announcements forum.

Charities/Rescues � Announcements for charitable or fundraising events can only be made for 501(c)(3) tax-exempt organizations. Special exceptions may be made, at the moderators� discretion and direction, for board-related events or fundraising activities in extraordinary circumstances.

Occasional posts regarding horses available for adoption through IRS-registered horse rescue or placement programs are permitted in the appropriate forums, but these threads may be limited at the discretion of the moderators. Individuals may not advertise or make announcements for horses in need of rescue, placement or adoption unless the horse is available through a recognized rescue or placement agency or government-run entity or the thread fits the criteria for and is located in the Giveaways forum.

5. Do not post copyrighted photographs unless you have purchased that photo and have permission to do so.

6. Respect other members.
As members are often passionate about their beliefs and intentions can easily be misinterpreted in this type of environment, try to explore or resolve the inevitable disagreements that arise in the course of threads calmly and rationally.

If you see a post that you feel violates the rules of the board, please click the �alert� button (exclamation point inside of a triangle) in the bottom left corner of the post, which will alert ONLY the moderators to the post in question. They will then take whatever action, or no action, as deemed appropriate for the situation at their discretion. Do not air grievances regarding other posters or the moderators in the discussion forums.

Please be advised that adding another user to your �Ignore� list via your User Control Panel can be a useful tactic, which blocks posts and private messages by members whose commentary you�d rather avoid reading.

7. We have the right to reproduce statements made in the forums.
The Chronicle of the Horse may copy, quote, link to or otherwise reproduce posts, or portions of posts, in print or online for advertising or editorial purposes, if attributed to their original authors, and by posting in this forum, you hereby grant to The Chronicle of the Horse a perpetual, non-exclusive license under copyright and other rights, to do so.

8. We reserve the right to enforce and amend the rules.
The moderators may delete, edit, move or close any post or thread at any time, or refrain from doing any of the foregoing, in their discretion, and may suspend or revoke a user�s membership privileges at any time to maintain adherence to the rules and the general spirit of the forum. These rules may be amended at any time to address the current needs of the board.

Please see our full Terms of Service and Privacy Policy for more information.

Thanks for being a part of the COTH forums!

(Revised 5/9/18)
See more
See less

3D Printer Horse Tack... Will it happen?

  • Filter
  • Time
  • Show
Clear All
new posts

  • 3D Printer Horse Tack... Will it happen?

    Would any horse tack made this way actually work?

    I think bridles, reins, stirrup leathers might work.

    Possibly tall boots , paddock boots .

    I can't see a saddle being manufactured that way lasting for very long.

    Certified Guacophobe

  • #2
    Anything made out of a 3D printer is made from whatever liquid goo the printer shoots, which is going to be some form of plastic. Anything made out of plastic like bell boots, buckets, reins if you like.

    I don't think the printer can make things out of complex components or natural materials.


    • #3
      Actually, you can 3-D print in any material that starts as a powder or a liquid and turns into a solid. So the company I worked for who invented 3-D printing 30 years ago printed in two hundred different materials. Metals plastics rubber concrete chocolate salt wood sugar - you name it.

      You can print on fabric, and you can print in space. You can print complex articulated materials, multi colored prints, and you can print a matrix which allows living cells to grow on it and create organs that can be transplanted. There a printers which will also print in multiple materials and go from one material to another or gradient between them as well.

      The technology and speed of printing is increasing rapidly, but as of right now while there are many unique applications for 3-D printing, I don’t believe that there is a material which accurately represents the function of leather.

      That’s not to say that a leather like substance could not be developed, and 3-D printed in. However it is worth noting that each 3-D print of a bridle for example would be extremely expensive compared to a leather or synthetic bridle. What’s great about 3-D printing is extremely complex, articulated prints can be made, each one unique. Perfect for rapid prototyping. It’s not so great for mass production yet though due to the cost.

      However, I’ve always thought a good application for 3-D printing would be to 3-D scan a horses back and create a unique custom plastic 3-D printed tree for the saddler to build a saddle around. I don’t know why someone hasn’t started doing that yet.


      • #4
        Even if it could happen would be be realistic? I can't see it being a better option than current industry standard.


        • #5
          I think it will have applications more along the lines of Xanthoria's saddle tree suggestion, or maybe being able to print bit mouthpieces to custom fit individual horses. There are ways that 3D printing can help move industries forward even without creating entire products that way. I don't see it replacing more traditional manufacturing for a lot of items, but maybe making some components or helping in development/customization.


          • #6
            Originally posted by Scribbler View Post
            Anything made out of a 3D printer is made from whatever liquid goo the printer shoots, which is going to be some form of plastic. Anything made out of plastic like bell boots, buckets, reins if you like.

            I don't think the printer can make things out of complex components or natural materials.
            You can print food with a 3-D printer. The U.S. Army has been doing it for years!

            "You can't fix stupid"- Ron White


            • #7
              Ok all very cool, and I learned something. I like the idea of back templates!


              • #8
                Xanthoria - love the back template idea.

                My Get Rich Quick idea is to create harness for driving horses that goes on like those slap bracelets
                Maybe 3D printing could aid with the complicated attachment pieces like holdbacks & shaft wraps.
                All in 3D biothane, of course ​​​​​​​
                *friend of bar.ka*RIP all my lovely boys, gone too soon:
                Steppin' Out 1988-2004
                Hey Vern! 1982-2009, Cash's Bay Threat 1994-2009
                Sam(Jaybee Altair) 1994-2015


                • #9
                  Excellent post snipped for brevity.

                  Originally posted by Xanthoria View Post

                  However, I’ve always thought a good application for 3-D printing would be to 3-D scan a horses back and create a unique custom plastic 3-D printed tree for the saddler to build a saddle around. I don’t know why someone hasn’t started doing that yet.
                  You could do this with an industrial router (if that would be the correct term for a machine that would shape a block of wood into a given form). If the saddle were to be a laminate or have metal components you could do each layer/part individually and then assemble them into the final form.

                  Wood rifle stocks for service weapons, such as the 1903 Springfield Rifle and M1 Garand rifle, were made this way. Here's an example of how it's done.

                  I presume other wood products can be made the same way.

                  The problem I see is that a tree that fits correctly at rest is a tree that doesn't fit correctly in motion. So the tree has to have "give" so that it responds appropriately to the rider's weight and conformation and to the conformation of the horse's back as it changes through motion. We help the tree out with padding or other systems to help distribute weight. Doing that with a single piece of material sounds difficult.

                  If you could do layers in plastic, as can be done with wood laminate, and reinforce it as appropriate with metal or appropriate plastic then maybe you're onto something.*


                  *There are, literally, dozens of tree systems that range from solid, wood blocks to complex, mobile contraptions that try to achieve effective weight distribution through "flexibility." History has shown the more part you make the tree out of the more likely one of those parts will break. The more "flexible" the tree the higher the probability of both breakage AND failure to effectively distribute weight. Sadly, this is not something that can be easily solved by "technology."

                  Mangalarga Marchador: Uma Raa, Uma Paixo


                  • #10
                    Some of the plastics used in 3-D printing have high tensile strength, and there are also elastomeric polymers which would have a useful application for some parts of a saddle build. I really think it’s possible to 3-D scan a back and then 3-D print a saddle tree with adjustments for flexibility as you say. The technology is there, now, in its current state, as opposed to some of the emerging applications for 3-D printing which aren’t quite on point yet .


                    • #11
                      Originally posted by 2DogsFarm View Post
                      Xanthoria - love the back template idea.
                      I want a device that you can put under your saddle and ride for a while, then have a 3D printer create a pad to make it a perfect fit.
                      "He's not even a good pathological liar." Mara

                      "You're just a very desperate troll, and not even a good one. You're like middle-school troll at best. Like a goblin, not even a troll." et_fig


                      • #12
                        I love my Wintec saddles and it does not seem out of the realm of future possibility to 3D print the materials to assemble one.
                        Don't fall for a girl who fell for a horse just to be number two in her world... ~EFO


                        • #13
                          Originally posted by Supakwe View Post
                          Even if it could happen would be be realistic? I can't see it being a better option than current industry standard.
                          Ummmm...are there any industry standards for saddle trees?

                          When opportunity knocks it's wearing overalls and looks like work.

                          The horse world. Two people. Three opinions.


                          • #14
                            Hopefully I can shed some light on the subject. I have a degree in Mechanical Engineering and a Qualified Saddler Fitter with the Society of Master Saddlers, so I know of little of both worlds. However I do not know anything more than the average person about 3D printing.

                            There is tree standards, however not everyone follows them. Most are just company dependent. The Society of Master Saddlers has the standards that all companies that manufacture under their label have to follow. It includes rivet strength and placement, tolerances, etc.

                            It is actually really hard to develop a tree out of different material and very costly. The tree has to be very strong but yet flexible enough. I know of one company that has spent 4 or 5 years trying to find the right material for an adjustable tree. The forces that go into the saddle are actually very high. If it is not flexible enough, it just breaks under the forces ie too ridged/stiff. However it also has to be very strong. By the way, flexible is probably not what you are thinking about it. I do not like the idea of the new saddles that are claiming to be "flexing" with the horse or adjust to individual horse. Most of the recent studies are showing horse's like stability in their saddles.

                            It would be lovely to be able to take a template of the horse's back and make a tree for it. However, there is a reason why we do both a static and a dynamic part of a saddle fitting. Too many horses do not like the saddle that looks the best when they are standing there in the cross ties.
                            Jacobson's Saddlery, LLC
                            Society of Master Saddlers Qualified Fitter


                            • #15
                              Kieffer has been making adjustable plastic trees for many years which are thermoformed. I am sure they’re not the only ones using plastic trees.

                              That said as somewhat of an expert on 3-D printing, having worked with the inventor of 3-D printing for the last 6+ years, and with access to many material scientists on my end, I can tell you that there will be a plastic which will perform exactly as needed available now. I can just about guarantee it, because we print in so many plastics, including nylon, and carbon fiber wrapped nylon. I would expect that some kind of combination of those would be be worth exploring. The required strength, flexibility, hardness and other values of each material are easy to find out and compare to extant saddle tree materials.

                              And the whole point of 3-D printing a saddle tree is that you can 3-D scan a horses back using a handheld 3-D scanner available now, generate a 3D file using that scan and if needed adjust the file so that it will fit a horse in motion. Print and install it. I mean, what do you do now with a standard saddle tree if it doesn’t fit the horse in motion? You adjust the flocking, or you start again with a new tree. Stands to reason that with 3-D printing you start with a tree that is much closer to what is needed then taking one off the rack, and if you know the horse has certain preferences for tree fit, you can adjust the digital file before you print it.

                              We already have the technology to sense high pressure areas underneath a saddle, and combining that with a 3-D printed tree that has built-in areas of softer material or higher flexibility could give a very interesting result.


                              • #16
                                Am I correct in saying that the present 3D printers work by laying down successive layers of material in the manufacture of an item? If not, now do they work?

                                Mangalarga Marchador: Uma Raa, Uma Paixo


                                • #17
                                  There are multiple different technologies in 3-D printing. Some of them spit out layer after layer of melted plastic (chocolate, concrete etc) and build it up, like a hot glue gun. This is known as fused deposition modeling. Some of them take a vat of liquid resin and use a laser within the vats to cure out the 3-D file which is then removed from the resin as a solid: this is called stereolithography. And some of them use laser sintering to create the design out of layers of powdered plastics or metals. This is called selective laser sintering.

                                  In the past, the rule of thumb was that for each vertical inch you should allow an hour of build time. However, the new stereolithography techniques are able to build height in 15 minutes or less, and use a robotic arm to speed turnover, no matter what the digital file is. This opens the door for 3-D printing as a real production tool, instead of just a prototyping tool.

                                  It’s a very volatile industry, it’s been around a surprisingly long time, and these technologies can do things that cannot be done in any other way. It’s just *how* these technologies will disrupt industries that need to be imagined, quite often... But the current applications in aerospace and healthcare are really remarkable.


                                  • Original Poster

                                    Thank you so much for your insights Xanthoria,
                                    and others.

                                    I was thinking of custom tall boots as being a great candidate for this technology.
                                    So many people try to get custom boots and yet have difficulties with the fit.

                                    Certified Guacophobe


                                    • #19
                                      Thank you for the explanation of the various types.

                                      If you are making a "low stress" tack items, like a crop or set of coat straps, you have one class of item. But if you're talking about girths, billets, reins, etc. then you another very different class of item. What current method, if any, would work with materials that will experience significant stress as a matter of routine? Can they be produced more efficiently by machine than by just tanning hides?

                                      As to saddle fit, that's an art. Sometimes even using the word "fit" can lead folks astray into thinking of "fit" as in the fitting of shoes or pants or other normal items of clothing. In reality the saddle "accommodates" the back and is designed such that it does not unreasonably interfere with movement, and maybe even helps make it more efficient. Our resident Saddle Fitter probably has better information than I do on the subject!!!

                                      At the end of the day I don't see substituting 3D printing technology as being more than an incremental change to presently available strategies re fit. I do see it has having some capacity for improving manufacture of some tack items, particularly saddle parts like trees. But, again, just how much this will advance true utility over present methods is probably an item for discussion.

                                      Mangalarga Marchador: Uma Raa, Uma Paixo


                                      • #20
                                        I don’t believe there is currently a 3D printed material that replicates leather sufficiently to make custom tall boots, which are a luxury item of specific quality, in sufficient quality. However, custom fit items are a great application for 3-D printing. Mass produced items are not due to the cost. Currently. A better application for tall boots would be 3-D scanning of the leg and foot, and then 3-D printing a last specific to the user so that the cobbler can create a boot perfect for the user, without all of those impossible to get correct measurements. 3-D printing is often used to create dies and molds just like that very effectively.

                                        There are, however, custom 3-D printed shoes which take a scan of your foot and print a shoe bed or even orthotic just for you. Those have no prior expectations as to material quality/look attached to them within their tradition of use, therefore they are not compared against for example a tall leather boot that has been in use for hundreds of years within a specific sport.

                                        There are also materials that have significant tensile strength, for items such as reins etc., but probably lack “hand” and again, to produce a flat strap of material using 3-D printing is not cost-effective with the current cost of machines, compared to producing leather strap. That’s not to say that you couldn’t develop a material that has the correct qualities, but there needs to be demand in order for that to happen. I don’t think I can see you demand happening with the reins for example because they are a straight strap of material, and customization of rains is not a demand.
                                        What you have to understand about 3-D printing is that “complexity is free with 3-D printing”, as we say . It costs the same to produce an item of great simplicity as it does to produce something of great complexity, articulation etc. The latter items are extremely expensive to produce or impossible to produce by traditional means, and therefore 3-D printing is the fastest and cheapest way to create them.

                                        So, when thinking about items that could be 3-D printed, the most cost-effective ones to produce are ones that are highly complex or unique and custom fit and need to be produced quickly.