I am looking to purchase a round pen and wanted a little advice on brands. I am looking at either 40 ft or 60 ft. I am just wanting on for light exercising of my mare. I do know I want to be able to move it if need be.
I bought my panels at tractor supply. They are light enough for me to pick up and move on my own. I am constantly breaking mine down and using a panel for a quick fix to a down fence or setting up a temp stall or making a small paddock. I rarely use it as a round pen! It is very very convenient and the great thing is, you can always by more panels...
Personally, I can't stand the tubing panels that you find at most farm and ranch stores. Maybe it's because I've spent much of my time dealing with rather unruly horses that sometimes bang into the fence or try to jump over it. And, I have a couple of horses that can demolish those panels in just a few days.....
LOL, this is what they normally look like after a few weeks at my house :?
Anyway, when I decided I wanted to build a roundpen, I started looking around for heavier duty panels that would withstand just about anything but still be light enough that I could move them by myself. I stumbled across a friend who deals for D & D Gates and Panels out of Merkel TX and got some of those panels. Their lightweight panels are actual steel piping and 6' tall. They are a bit heavy, but I am still able to move them by myself...it just takes a fair amount of time and strength (I'd say that the 10' panels I have probably weight 75-80 pounds each). The gate panels do weigh more but they are movable with another person to help (probably weigh around 150).
Because they are square instead of rounded at the corners, it's impossible for a horse to get a foot hung at the joints. I likely will never buy another tubing panel. When I was preparing to build all this, the 5'5 tall x 12' long tubing panels at the local feed store were $114. I got these panels for around $85 each (about 4 years ago, but some of that cost was shipping to get them up here to the boonies LOL) and I haven't had to replace one yet in spite of dealing with some pretty nasty horses that tried to tear them up.
Don't mind the junky old panel in the foreground here LOL
And, don't mind the horse, he belonged to a customer (he was one that bucked into the panels a couple of times :?). He stood about 15hh so that should give you an idea of how tall the panels are.
The one here is about 45ft. It's the perfect size for groundwork. I wouldn't want it much bigger for that because then I couldn't "reach" the horse, cut in front of it, chase it on etc without a lot of effort. I've had green horses in there and it's great.
However, it's too small to ride in really. You can walk and do a little trot but really not much.
I guess my advice is to work out what you want to do with the roundyard then get the size that suits.
This one was just bought from the local metal place down the road. You can specify what you want. Sometimes it's best not to get brands, and just get a local business that is willing to address your needs.
Speaking from experience. I had a 40ft round pen and it was to small, once I started riding the horses in it. I built it out to 60ft and that is perfect. You could split the difference and go 50ft but any smaller then that is to small IMO.