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HollyLolly 12-12-2012 10:43 AM

The best hoof rasp?
Hi guys,

I was just wondering, which is the most preferred rasp with farriers and just general people?

I know it's illegal to trim a horses feet in the UK unless you have specific training (I shan't go into that, as this is not my debate. I do it. Shh! Please don't tell on me hehe I've done it for a good few years just rasping in between trims, just makes them last that bit longer. I've often had an unprompted comment, even from the vet and physio, well in between a a trim, how nice my horses feet look, good shape Etc. And the farrier, to my knowledge, is non-the-wiser! Anyway, like I said, this is neither here nor there, this is not the debate, what I want to know, is, what is the most favourable rasp!?)

I have a very basic rasp, the same roughness on either side, I can't remember the make, nothing special. I also bought one of those "Riders Rasps". Not a fan. Not. A. Fan. Again, not my debate, but don't recommend it to me - I bought it, tried to get used to it, it got left to rust after a many tries!

I saw this morning that my farrier has a really wide looking rasp, it looks really nice and literally took a few seconds for him to do each foot (I know some of that is down to skill - doing it day in, day out, and it did look nice and sharp, which also helps)

Are the wider ones better? I was looking into this one:
The Spirit Rasp by Vallorbe
The XL version, not only is it wide, but the key features (no clogging, sharper for longer) sound good, although I don't know how true these statements are, but you know what I'm getting at, right? :-)

I'd ask my farrier, but I don't think it'd go down well! It's not really an option :-P

Anyway, if anyone can make some recommendations (make, model, width Etc.) Any information, I'd greatly appreciate it.

Trinity3205 12-12-2012 10:56 AM

Riders rasps are junk. Complete junk. I like Black masters. I predominately use the regular size and length. They used to be made my Simmonds but I thin Heller makes them now. Not sure if they are available over your way tho.

Good on you for taking note and interest in your horses hoof health! I don't think cleaning up the feet in between regular farrier trims could be illegal could it? If it were me, id just ask my farrier and depending on what he said, say nothing more. Its not like you are "trimming" if you have the farrier regularly. Its touching up and IMO it can make a big difference in a small way. I often have people that I feel are competant touch up in between to keep problems at bay.

HollyLolly 12-12-2012 11:13 AM

As far as I know, any rasping (or even trimming the bars slightly with a hoof knife) is illegal, I think it's just an old British law that nobody has changed, however, it's still the law so I don't share the fact I do it with many people I know in the UK, I don't want to get in trouble! :-p I think Heller and Simmonds are both available (not a large amount of suppliers, but enough for the amount I actually trim)

Thanks ever so much for your comment Trinity, I really appreciate it! :-)

Lunavi 12-12-2012 11:33 AM

That's unfortunate that even tidying up the feet could be "illegal" over there.

I'm in Canada, I do my own hooves ( lol well my horses' hooves ) and I use a Heller Red Tang rasp, I think it's the standard size. It has big teeth on one side and a file on the other. I've had it for 6 months now, doing 2 horses every 3-4 weeks and it's still sharp.

I also spray Fluid-Film on it to prevent it from rusting when working on wet/damp hooves. Fluid-Film is non-toxic and is "a solvent free, lanolin based rust/corrosion preventive and lubricant that provides long term protection and lubrication for all metal surfaces" ( from their website, though it is flammable ).

HollyLolly 12-12-2012 12:02 PM

Thank you too, Lunavi, I'll certainly take those recommendations in mind! Being in England, the majority of the time it is pretty damp, so that lubricant may come in handy! :)

walkinthewalk 12-12-2012 12:08 PM

I have both models of Vallorbe and like them.

I use the one that will split a dog's hair three ways to do the initial filing and then finish with the milder rasp.

The male trimmers/farriers in my area don't like Vallorbe because they are so sharp and it's easy to take too much off the hoof.

I am 5'2" and retired and lacking in cubic inches around the biceps; I need the extra umph the Vallorbe's provide:D

HollyLolly 12-12-2012 12:34 PM

Haha I'm also a bit weedy! Although I am only trimming, I don't want to take too much off. Argh, there's so much choice out there hehe :)

HollyLolly 12-12-2012 01:46 PM

Okay, I took the plunge after everyone's advice! I decided to go for the Heller Blackmaster, as it was cheaper than the Vallorbe Spirit, and even though it was a little dearer than the Heller Red Tang, it says that the Blackmaster is more suited than the Red Tang is to horses that spend a long time outdoors, which mine do, so I went for that one :-) Thank you all so much for your advice everyone, I really appreciate it :-)

If the Mods would like to close this thread, they're more than welcome to, as I have found my answer (Greatly appreciated by the way!)

Lunavi 12-12-2012 02:13 PM

Glad to hear it. Yes, after posting I looked up the Blackmaster and read it handled dirt/mud better, which would definitely make it best suited to horses kept outside. My horses are outside 24/7, but I always make sure to super clean the hooves first, so I haven't had a problem with my Red Tang, though I will definitely look into a Blackmaster for my next one!

princessfluffybritches 12-12-2012 05:37 PM

There's another one that last a very long time called "Pferd". I'm assuming you can buy from Germany? It is expensive, but it's supposed to outlast several rasps.

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