Latest Projects at the Flying T


We took advantage of the long, though very cold, weekend to get a passel of projects done.  The biggest job was digging out the goat’s stable – like many goat folks, we let it build up relatively thick during the winter, allowing the hay to compost and produce warmth.  The disadvantage is that when the cleanup happens, it’s a lot of work.  If we could redesign the barn, we’d make it so we could push the tractor’s bucket right into the stalls!

I actually got a reprieve from that big job, and instead was busy with some construction projects and maintenance around the farm.  Yesterday I did some light jobs – fixing the chicken coop doors, rearranging the feed room to make room for the brooders, modifying the new duck house.  Today, I did a couple more projects while the rest of the family worked their butts off on the goat stall.  To keep the goats busy, we gave them the rest of our Christmas Tree – we’ve been handing them sprigs every day, but they made pretty short work of the tree today.

Oh, Christmas Tree, Oh Christmas Tree! How tasty are your branches…

The first project today was to build the kidding stalls, as our two older goats, Gracie and Jessie, are due in March.  Our plan is to open up the wall between their stall and the adjacent one (formerly the duck stall) and let the momma’s use the extra space.   That wall is easy to remove – it’s dimensional lumber that slides in/out of brackets.

Instead of buying plywood and 2x4s (have you seen lumber prices recently?) to make a wall sturdy enough for goats, I salvaged some heavy-duty plastic pallets and put them to work.  The resulting stalls are about 5′ x 5′, taking up about half of the 10’x10′ stall and giving us room to make 3rd or even 4th kidding stalls in the future.

Voila! Kidding stalls! I cut a couple rectangular holes in the pallets to let the girls see each other.

I wanted to make walls that would be sturdy, but still could be removed relatively easily, and came up with the idea of hinged walls that folded against the side of the stable.

Jasper watches the walls unfold.

Wall stowed

All that’s left is to make the doors themselves, for which I plan to use some scrap lumber, or maybe wooden pallets.  We’ll also make some lamb warming huts with some surplus 55-gallon poly drums I’ve salvaged.

The next project was simple – a tray to catch the hay from the feeder.  Goats are notorious hay wasters – once hay hits the floor, they’re not interested anymore, and it becomes bedding.  My hope is that this tray will reduce that a little bit.

Stand by for the next Flying T contest – guess the birthdate, #, and genders of each doe’s offspring!

The girls don’t care, as long as the hay tastes the same

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6 responses to this post.

  1. Posted by Papa on January 21, 2013 at 4:55 pm

    Do you want our Cmas tree? It is on our front porch. I was planning to pull base when I get back from NJ.

    Cheers!

    Dave Testerman

    Reply

  2. Jasper is clearly impressed, and rightly so! — And now, A NOTE: A while back, I received the Very Inspiring Blogger Award. While I acknowledged the award, I failed to notify the bloggers I selected to be the next recipients. Please accept my apology and the overdue award. You can find acceptance rules (if you choose to participate) at the bottom of the February 16 special edition of my Weekend Highlights (at Granny’s Parlour), which will feature the 15 award recipients I have selected. Thank you for being part of this blogosphere!

    Reply

  3. […] travel back in time, slightly, to catch The Flying T Ranch in the midst of Latest Projects. There is much to do and creative thinking gets the job done. — “The first project […]

    Reply

  4. […] travel back in time, slightly, to catch The Flying T Ranch in the midst of Latest Projects. There is much to do and creative thinking gets the job done. — “The first project […]

    Reply

  5. […] As I wrote earlier, we made the stalls primarily out of recycled hard plastic pallets.  However, I got preoccupied with other chores and projects once I got the walls up, so it wasn’t until this week I was able to get the doors completed.  I made those doors out of new lumber, mostly because I wanted them to be relatively clean and nail free. […]

    Reply

Please feel free to comment or respond - we may take a bit to get back to you (between feeding animals, mucking stalls, mending fences, and chasing the goats out of the chicken coop again!)

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