Does anybody else have rasping trouble?
So, I bought me some trimming materials a while back not only to start learning but to keep up on the horse's hooves between trims. I bought a rasp first, thinking I'd get proficient with it and go from there. And I find that when I try to use it, it just... Doesn't work! I watched videos on how to do it, tried that, tried my own method, and the rasp is just so long and unwieldy for me along with the foot giving to the rasp pressure (and therefore not getting a lot of pressure to rasp) and I just cannot get a mustang roll on a hoof to save my life. The last time I was rasping I ended up catching one of the blades on my hand and bleeding all over the place. (gloves, I know, haha)
I was looking at a Rider's Rasp, but those are more for putting a roll on a hoof after it's all said and done. I found something like this instead:
One handed, with a handle. I could hold the hoof and rasp at the same time. Does this look like it'd work? Does anybody else use something like that? Because I am apparently incompetent when it comes to real rasps. I feel like I could use this to rasp and then smooth it with something like a rider's rasp? Does it just take time to get used to a normal rasp? I feel like such an idiot when I try to use them. Trying to hold a hoof in my legs, rasp with two hands, the foot is moving around, the rasp isn't moving like I want it to around the hoof edge. I dunno, maybe I'm just rasp impaired!
And secret rasping tips that all of you 'in the know' people can share? The videos make it look so easy!
Your need to learn to hold the foot securely in your legs just above your knees so you can use both hands on the rasp. this takes a lot of practice to keep the foot steady and in a position under the horse so he is comfortable(not pulled out to the side) It requires a lot of bending and twisting of your knees at the same time. Then the hand on the front end of the rasp (the non handle end) should actually be the one guiding the rasp and (most important) controlling the pressure. The sharper the rap, the LESS pressure you want to use. So with a new, sharp rasp VERY LITTLE pressure is needed to rasp off a lot of material in a short time. If you push too hard it only digs the teeth in too much and the rasp can't move forward easily and just jams up.
The next important thing: the rasp ONLY WORKS going forward, NOT EVER when moving backward toward the handle. If you have pressure on it as you pull it back toward the handle you immediately dull it and it gets no work done that direction anyway. So on the back stroke let it "float" with no pressure at all. Just like a saw, if you have ever used a hand saw.
Also when you rasp the heels, to prevent the foot from "chattering" due to the rasp catching on the edges of the heel, turn the rasp around backward and PULL it toward you, from the non handle end. That part you can do one handed.
Hope this helps.
Above is good advice. It IS work and does take some strength. If you don't mind sinking additional $$s into your efforts, consider a HoofJack Hoofjack The cradle will solve a lot of your problem of trying to hold the hoof and rasp at the same time. My old back thanks my wife for this gift every time I use it.
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Thanks for the tips! I do use the 'handsaw' method, the blades only point one way.
And oooh, what I wouldn't do for that hoof jack... It's out of my price range by quite a bit, unfortunately. I ended up kneeling and resting my filly's hoof on my leg this last time and holding it with my left hand, which is how I caught my hand with the rasp. (OUCH!) - I'll have to start saving up for one!
What patty said it takes alot of practice iv been doing my horses now since spring. Twelve hoofs to practice on now it easy as can be.
I rasped a few fingers in the begining but now i dont do that any more.
Shoebox, when I do the roll, I usually am holding the hoof in my hand actually and manipulating the rasp with only one hand. Practice and strength...
If you don't have the strength, a hoof stand is the way to go. I am trying to learn how to use a hoof stand now since I hurt my back over the summer. It seems so much less secure than my legs, I am having difficulty. But I am sure that with PRACTICE, it will come.
A hoof stand doesn't have to be purchases. Mine is made from a pedestal table base and an insert in it that MDH made for me. Do you know any handy-dandy welders/fabricators?
that radius rasp looks to make a lot of sense. Has anybody tried it?
If you really want to save yourself arm effort, have well behaved horses, and feel comfortable with power tools, try an angle grinder. I use one of these (another present from my wife) Ryobi 4-1/2 in.Barrel Grip Angle Grinder-AG403 at The Home Depot with 40 grit paper on 3 of our mares (the bottom mare, who is perfect when using a rasp, wants nothing to do with the grinder). You can trim a hoof in no time at all with no pressure other than the weight of the grinder itself.
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