Shoeing today

If you work on Sundays, try to make the work more fun as usual :) Today I had to take one extra job. Veterinarian asked to shoe a horse with lateral extension hind shoes and a rolled toe. In the Nordic Championships in March one of the shoes is a lateral extension hind shoe, and this particular horse has exactly the same hoof size as the competition shoe. So I went to the forge.

Sometimes (or usually almost all the time) while practicing into competitions you come to think what point it is to make huge piles of strange looking shoes. You use lots of time, effort and money in shoes that end up into the metal recycling, because you are never able to shoe any horse with those thingies. But this time I tried to make my practicing more meaningful.

In competition it is only to be made the left hind, but this time the shoes are going to be nailed on and I needed a pair, so I made a pair.


There it is. The right place for a horseshoe, nailed on the hoof benefiting the horse. Some adjustment had to be made. Shape a bit, roll the toe and drill the studholes. There are only two studs to make the roll over easier, but if it is too slippery for the horse, then the owner can screw small studs on the toe.

Winter is here!

I have started practising to the Nordic Championships in Herning, Denmark with great enthusiasm. The competition takes place in March, so there is still plenty of time left. But as usual, probably in February I start to wonder where did all that time disappear?

Last weekend I made a trip to Norway and got again advices how to progress in my training and forging from Aksel Vibe. In Herning the time per class is only 45 minutes and that gives no time to any extra hassle. I have now a better idea to really make plans of on which heat should I do what etc. Now I need only to practice according to my plans and then I’ll know in March I can do the required tasks in time. No need to be unsure before the class if I can manage it or not.

We also gone through fullering, making nailholes and shaping the toe. All that makes my shoes a bit better again. And then I got a great lesson of jumping up. After that I have had to to be even careful not to jump the steel too much! :D Katinka Ødegaard instructed me in making heels to concave shoes. That’s something I hadn’t any idea of, since I have worked with concave iron very little and almost with no assistance at all.

I’m again totally astonished of the great hospitality of Norwegians and besides the advices and instruction from Aksel and Katinka I had a great time in every way. Thank you for that!

The autumn has been very rainy and dark in South Finland so far, but on Thursday evening it finally started. The Snowstorm. Timing was very good, since on Friday I didn’t need to battle with my car into the stableyards full of snow being afraid it would stuck there. I only needed to drive main roads that are ploughed and in ok condition to Equine College Ypäjä where Magne Delebekk and Mia Almroth from Mustad were on a visit. One day forging and sweating inside while the snowstorm was roaming outside. Not bad.


Magne giving a lecture



Firemen on a visit. The firealarm was forgotten to turn off and so we got some surprise guests into our forging party!


On Saturday I had to go to work, but the snowing was already slowing down and I had a nice working day on two Icelandic horse stables. In Finland riding horses that are ridden outside are mostly equipped with this kind of wintershoeing. Four studs and snow rim pads. With this equipment horse has enough grip everywhere.



In Hestbakki Stable in Lohja the horses also enjoy winter. There is extra cheerfulness in the air and after riding it’s so nice to roll on the ground when the fur is sweaty and tickling.


On the next stable I drove to, this resident was not so assured of the joys of winter. She wasn’t delighted of the idea to go outside into cold but soon when she found carrot pieces from the snow she didn’t want to come inside anymore :)



I used to like winter before I started shoeing horses. Nowadays I can’t stand the cold, screwing the studs, shoeing with snowpads and struggling with my car in the snowy stableyards. But today I had a day off and I went to see the snowy forest. Winter is very, very beautiful and the atmosphere is so calming when all the sounds are softened and snow brings so much more light when the time of daylight is so short. If I’m gonna live here up north, I try to see the good sides in winter even though I don’t like working in cold :)