Lead on Relatively Inexpensive Dressage Arena - The Horse Forum
 
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post #1 of 10 Old 10-17-2013, 07:01 PM Thread Starter
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Lead on Relatively Inexpensive Dressage Arena

Our dressage arena is getting to the point of having seen better days. While we have plenty of panels for a small arena, we are short for a large; unfortunately these particular panels cannot be ordered individually. As such, we are seeking a new arena that doesn't use stakes as the support and is railed; not chained.

We are also tossing around the idea of building our own to save cost there, which from what I could tell would really only be the cost of shipping.

Our barn coordinator (he actually oversees three different barns) is adamant that he won't pay for a $3K arena. I am guessing we might be able to talk him into maybe $1500.

Anyone have any ideas?
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post #2 of 10 Old 10-17-2013, 07:13 PM
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It depends on how good an arena you want. If we're talking a decent Dressage arena with a half decent base and surface.... then $3k will pay for maybe half of the top layer of sand.
For $1500 you'll be lucky to slap a few poles together and maybe have a grass base with a little bit of drainage.

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post #3 of 10 Old 10-17-2013, 07:24 PM Thread Starter
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We don't need the footing; only the arena outline..the rails and supports. We have the ring and we set up the arena for our shows.
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post #4 of 10 Old 10-17-2013, 07:40 PM
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I made a decent schooling ring for less than three hundred dollars. I took yellow plastic paint buckets, turned them upside down, used a hole saw and cut a hole on each side of the top (actually the bottom of the bucket), and ran heavy 2 inch PVC pipes through the holes. You can make just corners, but I made an almost fully enclosed ring. It actually looks pretty darn good. It's only weakness is if a horse steps hard on the buckets, they might break. But, hey, buying a replacement 2.00 bucket isn't too bad. I would buy enough buckets to have several extras. If they stop making the yellow ones, it would look bad to insert another color.

I had photos of the process to make it, but I can't find them anywhere. They must have been on the computer that crashed.
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post #5 of 10 Old 10-17-2013, 07:46 PM
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Sorry, I thought you wanted to do the whole thing from scratch. In that case, if you want something fairly substantial - see if you can source some post and rail fencing second hand. Not sure what it's like in the US, but in AUS they are pretty much a dime a dozen. The expense will come in digging the holes.

Allison's bucket idea is great - but how do they hold up to wind? Some of the makeshift competition arena fencing is similar to that over here, PVC tubes held up by PVC brackets. They look nice and they're quite stable, but get a good gust of wind and you've got poles scattered everywhere. Not great when they're running the Grand Prix and the poor horse cops a pole to the butt!!

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post #6 of 10 Old 10-19-2013, 01:55 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Kayty View Post
Allison's bucket idea is great - but how do they hold up to wind? Some of the makeshift competition arena fencing is similar to that over here, PVC tubes held up by PVC brackets. They look nice and they're quite stable, but get a good gust of wind and you've got poles scattered everywhere. Not great when they're running the Grand Prix and the poor horse cops a pole to the butt!!

I removed the wire bails (handles) and cut and straightened them. I made stakes that can be hammered through the holes where the handles were. With two stakes pinning them down, they hold up to any wind you will want to ride in.
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post #7 of 10 Old 10-19-2013, 02:11 AM
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Fantastic!!
I may have to give that a go at some point

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post #8 of 10 Old 10-19-2013, 03:02 AM
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I am looking at getting a round pen made and I think a decent round pen would cost me $3000.

It is amazing at how quickly the price of fencing and footing adds up! I can't imagine doing a whole arena with both fencing and footing, so you are lucky you already have the footing.

As for me, I think we are going to throw some fill dirt into an existing pen and call it good!

Last edited by trailhorserider; 10-19-2013 at 03:06 AM.
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post #9 of 10 Old 10-19-2013, 11:33 PM
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Really, a dressage fence to purchase is only around $1300-$2000 for a basic set up.

Dressage Arenas
Junior Classic Dressage Arena, Dressage Arenas, Horse Arenas by Premier Equestrian


If every boarder pitches in some money - then it becomes less expensive for the BO. Or you can also run a fundraiser - have an open house with demos, have a local clinician in and charge a little extra, ask at a local show if you can run a raffle or 50/50 draw, etc..

IMO a real dressage fence rather than a piece together one looks better and is far easier to deal with as far as set up. Once a local group had a carpenter make a fence and it is heavy, cumbersome and very difficult to set up.

They say money doesn't buy happiness -- well happiness doesn't buy horses!
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post #10 of 10 Old 10-25-2013, 03:34 PM
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Railroad ties keep in arena footing and are inexpensive. Then traffic cones with letters painted on them.

Dressage is for Trainers!
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