Building Your Own Cart...
Ok, Im just seeing who has done this and were you successful? Was it super difficult? I really want to give it a shot but cannot weld, my neighbor volunteered her hubby to me lol, poor man. I know you have to get measurements off of your horse, what else is there to consider?
As of right now Nova pulls me all over in a sled but I can't afford to outright just buy a cart otherwise I'd do that instead.
You can buy a cart for less than you could ever make one. At my local draft horse auction, you can usually pick up a safe not too pretty work cart for about $75. Usually the only thing wrong with them is flat tires.
If there are any Amish communities within driving distance you could look for a used cart at auction, or talk to them and find a carriage maker to help you find what you can afford. I bought a used wooden breaking cart at auction many years ago. Just like above I had to have some work done on the wheels.
We made our first cart. It is very versatile, and is made how we wanted it, which is a big plus. If we hadn't had all of the materials in the first place, it likely wouldn't have happened. As well as my father's skill as a welder really helped the cause. For that cart make sure to have it properly balanced. When you pick the cart up by the shafts, you should only feel about thirty pounds in your hands. It should almost 'float' when you sit in it. The horse should not be carrying a lot of weight, but will pull it. With our first cart we had a bit of balancing issues that we finally got corrected, then made the cart so it now has a team pole. With the team pole we had to actually put weight in the pole as if you would sit in it it would lift up.
If you have the materials and a skilled welder, building a cart isn't that difficult. You just have to do your research to make sure it is properly fitted to the horse, and properly balanced. I do not currently have pictures of our cart, but I can upload some later.
Butt, I'd love to see some pics. I'm thinking of having a cart built.
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I am seriously considering this since I have a medium pony (welsh sec A x arab) that I want to start this summer. I have been browsing around but it's somewhat difficult to find that size. There are plenty of nice, fair priced horse size or mini/small pony sized carts, but hard to come by in the mid sizes. Hubby has the skill to weld, just need ideas, what has worked and what hasn't.
My DH would NEVER build anything for his wife to ride on because:
We were at a show, and a pony came running towards the barn with a part of it's cart still attached, having had the driver's part break off while trotting across the course. Yes, her DH built it.
We were at a show, and my friend found herself and her cart seat suddenly on the ground. It just broke off. No, it was not home built.
DH spent 1/2 of his time at a show helping the very generous barn owner try to weld a competitor's cart back together where it broke. It was brand new.
I was riding at a pleasure drive in a cart when there was a loud CLUNK, and the seat dropped about 4 inches. Luckily the horse just stopped, we unhitched out there in the field, and a truck carried the cart back to the barn. It was a very respected company's product, but it had happened before.
My DH says there is NO WAY he is building something for his wife to get killed in!! And I would not hitch it to my horse if he did, LOL!!
I don't mean to be a downer, but I thought you might like to have some real life experiences...sorry if you did not want to know!
Ill have to take new pictures of our cart as I cannot find any decent ones aside from when it is hitched. Our cart was not built sparingly, it is very solid.
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If you are going to try and build a cart yourself or have one built, I would defiantly not build the wheels. Buy the wheels and axle from someone, (Whittmer's Coach Shop is who I would recommend) Buy everything you can from Whittmer's, He might even have plans for carts. Balance and weight are very important in building a cart. Strength is also very important, you wouldn't believe the stress a cart is under going cross country.
I have plans and a parts list for the cart I built.
It has been 20 years and I am almost finished. Still no seat backs and no step. I would like a fancier dash board too.
I can see saddlebag building a cart because of location, but for The OP you are close to the driving mecca of the Midwest,,,go buy one!
have you tried looking at some of these?
Kingston Saddlery Supply CART
I've only looked at the mini ones but I thought there were some pony & horse size ones in there
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