Brand new barn. Advice needed on laying floor - The Horse Forum
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post #1 of 12 Old 09-13-2017, 02:16 PM Thread Starter
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Brand new barn. Advice needed on laying floor

I just bought 10 acres with four stallsz it has been left for who knows how long but much is still in good shape. The stall floors are dirt and uneven. I need advice on what material to use to level them out and then mats. Also what type and size tractor? I want to rent out the stalls and eventually get my own horse for kids to ride etc. any info would be helpful thanks

Last edited by jaydee; 09-14-2017 at 10:48 AM.
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post #2 of 12 Old 09-14-2017, 10:13 AM
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What type of dirt is there and how is the drainage as is? You may want to look at plastic grids over soil or crushed run. As to the size of the tractor you need to consider what you will be doing on a regular basis with it. Brush hogging, bucket work, box blade..... You really don't want to have more tractor than you need but you want enough power to get your tasks done in a reasonable amount of time. Determine size based on the task most often used for not for the one time (or very infrequent) task (construction or building a road) as you can outsource that by hiring someone or renting. If you are considering boarding look at cost of added fencing for separate pasture areas, some type of arena for riding and consider insurance costs that go along with boarding as you will want a policy specifically for that purpose.
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post #3 of 12 Old 09-14-2017, 01:58 PM Thread Starter
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The place is set up with sectioned fencing and gates and a small corral you could walk a horse in. Big pond. The stall floors are clay and drainage is good I just need to level them out and get new mats. Wondering what type of dirt to mix with what's there and tamp it down level and hard. Thank you for the tractor talk. Mostly mowing/brush hogging I would think. And moving bales. The roads/drives are already there. I could replace some fence posts etc to get the place up to par. Very helpful thank you.
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post #4 of 12 Old 09-14-2017, 04:11 PM
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You could either go with more clay or crushed run for the stalls. Liquid will not drain through the mats but either sit on them or drain off if the floors have a slope but then you have to have somewhere for the liquid waste to drain to. You'll also want absorbent bedding. One reason why I suggested plastic grids as the wet just works it's way down if what is there drains well. For just mowing you'd probably do well with a tractor in the 35ish HP range but you want to talk to a dealer or person familiar with what you are looking for for specific recommendations as they will change depending on size and type of mower you want. Size and type would depend on what you are mowing. Moving bales though, depending on the size bale and what you are using to move them (spike or fork and are you simply moving or lifting), you would want something larger. The tractor we use most is our Ford 3000 (47HP) it has no problem moving 1000lb bales with a set of forks. Size of your heaviest work load will determine tractor size. Are you storing rounds or purchasing as needed? We either buy 4 bales at at time and off load from the truck and trailer straight into the pasture or we off load extras near where they will be going and don't have far to move them with the tractor. There have been times where we off load outside the pasture and then fork the hay over as needed. If you have piggy horses or those that gorge themselves this saves cost. We tarp those bales to protect them from the weather. If you will be storing and stacking in a barn or shed and then hauling out to the pasture you may need something even bigger.

Last edited by QtrBel; 09-14-2017 at 04:21 PM.
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post #5 of 12 Old 09-14-2017, 05:43 PM
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I live in Middle Tennessee and have clay/dirt. My stalls have several inches of limestone crush with restaurant grid mats on top of the crush, then shavings.

If you use crush and put enough down, you can either rake it level or take a big piece of wood (two man job) and pull the wood back to level out the crush.

I have used grid mats since 2006 or 2007. The first ones were cheap and thin from Tractor Supply, they still lasted nine years, and my horses come in at night.

The replacements are thicker and bigger, thus more money. The new mats need two people to handle them unless someone is intent on getting themselves a double hernia:). They went down in 2016 and I fully expect them to take my last two horses to their end times:)

The holes in grid mats do fill with shavings but they still drain, so you don't have urine splashing up on solid mats, as long as the crush or sand underneath is deep enough.

The grid mats don't need pulled up and washed once or twice a year like solid mats do.

I did use plastic ties to tie them together, even though they have "snaps". Not a disgusting job when the mats are new:)

They are more work initially than solid mats but to me, they are less work and less stench over the long term --
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A Good Horseman Doesn't Have To Tell Anyone; The Horse Already Knows.

I CAN'T ride 'em n slide 'em. I HAVE to lead 'em n feed 'em Thnx cowchick77.
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post #6 of 12 Old 09-14-2017, 08:31 PM
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Dang, I was hoping for pictures of your new barn, yeah I am a looky loo
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post #7 of 12 Old 09-15-2017, 09:16 AM Thread Starter
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Here's a few...the grated mats it is! Crush to level then shavings. Greatly appreciated!
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post #8 of 12 Old 09-15-2017, 09:29 AM
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The pens are very nice!!! The barn is great, as the structure is metal. I would line those stall fronts with some good high tensile mesh wire, and put it on the gates (or replace the gates with mesh ones), because my horses would stick their legs in there, then get stuck.

If you have no horse experience, then please remember.....A horse wakes up in the morning wondering 2 things....WHAT am I going to eat, and HOW am I going to kill myself.

Good Luck!!

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post #9 of 12 Old 09-15-2017, 09:54 AM Thread Starter
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Great idea!
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post #10 of 12 Old 09-15-2017, 12:32 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by greentree View Post
If you have no horse experience, then please remember.....A horse wakes up in the morning wondering 2 things....WHAT am I going to eat, and HOW am I going to kill myself.

Good Luck!!
Boy is that ever the absolute gospel truth! Lollol

If you do go the grid mat route:

My new mats (new a year ago) are 3/4" thick and I THINK they are 3' X 5'

I am down to two horses, so we only re-did two stalls - they are both 12 X 14.

The total cost for both stalls was $1,200.

DH found the supplier on line but he can't remember who it was. The note in the check register only says "mats"

A Good Horseman Doesn't Have To Tell Anyone; The Horse Already Knows.

I CAN'T ride 'em n slide 'em. I HAVE to lead 'em n feed 'em Thnx cowchick77.
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