wasted horsepower

Cycling, trains, walking. This is the place to talk about how good or bad cycle routes are, mention great train journeys, talk about car sharing schemes or husky travel. Anything in fact that is about transport that is a little alternative.
Esther.R
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Post: #80096 Esther.R
Thu Jan 03, 2008 12:38 am

They are incredibly powerful animals, although the small ponies are more powerful pound for pound than bigger horses - a Shetland pony is capable of pulling approximately 4 times its own weight. Up here on Shetland the ponies used to be used for everything from ploughing to riding to church (and thats the adults riding them). There is even an old film in the Shetland museum of a Shetland pony and a Shetland cow yoked together ploughing!

If you have your own land then ponies are pretty cheap to keep, and as Simon says it is more a case of keeping the weight off than putting it on. As they get bigger, so does the cost of keeping them, it is the small native ponies that are the really hardy good doers. The estimate given out by the British Horse Society is that you need to allow an acre and a half per horse for grazing, this is less for ponies but you need enough land for them to get a reasonable amount of pottering about space and to rotate every so often. The land will also need to have the poo picked up at regular intervals unless the land is enough acreage for lost grazing area to not matter or you can harrow it and rest it for a few months.

As has been mentioned above, they are great fun and definately to be recommended but not to be entered into without knowing a little about their needs - especially if intending to train them. The usual recommended minimum length of time for a well handled pony to be broken to drive is 4 weeks, that is for basic straight along the road driving and then obviously you will need a bit longer for other jobs and to get a safe and reliable animal.

I have been driving Shetland ponies for 17 years and can heartily recommend them as great fun and good for doing jobs around the place..mine get roped into all sorts of things along the way, as well as doing the show stuff (and we aren't posh we just have an exercise cart, nothing flash). I also drive them as a pair, tandem (one in front of the other) and unicorn (two behind, one in front), they are a very cheap way to have a go at a fun sport! With my pair when they were very fit I used to be able to do 25 miles in an afternoon (about 4hrs with a 1/2hr break in the middle) with two adults up.

Here is my 22yr old proving he still has what it takes to go fast at the show this summer! :lol:

Image

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Millymollymandy
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Post: #80177 Millymollymandy
Fri Jan 04, 2008 7:05 am

That's great! :cheers:

Archie
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Post: #80181 Archie
Fri Jan 04, 2008 9:16 am

Lovely post Esther, everything so brilliant, that wall WOW.
Leave only footprints..take only photographs and wabbits.

Peggy Sue
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Post: #80187 Peggy Sue
Fri Jan 04, 2008 10:50 am

I would just LOVE to do all this with my horse, he's bred for it (Welsh Cob) but I have no practical use here, I can't keep him where I live (on a housing estate) and definitiely can't afford a house with Land (Live in the SE of England :cry: ) so I have to drive of cycle to him.

I could ride him to the local shop, but he might well be nicked or run over while I was in there, then ride home with the shopping, but I do have to cycle or drive past that shop on the way to him anyway!

His best green use is he lives next to the allotment, he eats the broccoli stalks and turns them into fertilizer to put back on the allotment!

I think when his days are done I'm going for a pony I can drive, it's limited where I can go from here without a seriously major road/dual carriageway but It would be great to collect your own hay/feed (one thing I can't do on a bike!)

Truely inspiring photos guys :cheers:
Just Do It!

Esther.R
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Post: #80234 Esther.R
Fri Jan 04, 2008 3:28 pm

I was in the same boat until we moved up here peggysue, I mean we drove them but never for anything other than pleasure, now however we are lucky enough to be able to rent grazing literally on our doorstep so they get to do jobs and earn their keep :lol:

We also have two big cobs who would be able to pull anything if they drove but money and time are too tight to break them to drive..maybe one day!

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simon saddlechariot
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Post: #82046 simon saddlechariot
Thu Jan 24, 2008 6:02 pm

It may well take 4 weeks or even longer to train a pony in a conventional vehicle, but in the saddlechariot it is much quicker (frequently under a day) because of the built in safety features and modern design. At the first sign of trouble I can remove the vehicle, and as any driver is aware, the problems come from a scared animal in a vehicle. Only with the saddlechariot can you remove the vehicle instantly even from behind the vehicle.
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http://picasaweb.google.co.uk/saddlechariots/Aliallenthreewheelrodney/photo?authkey=JZ1qqlY4umo#5158236305749614962
Horsepower measures work, ponypower measures pleasure!

julian295
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Post: #82398 julian295
Sun Jan 27, 2008 8:53 pm

Hi Simon

Do you have much experience of mules &/or donkeys with the saddlechariot?

Do you ever get down to Kent?

Many thanks
Julian

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simon saddlechariot
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Post: #89007 simon saddlechariot
Tue Mar 11, 2008 4:33 pm

Down in Kent over easter if you want a look.
Simon
Horsepower measures work, ponypower measures pleasure!


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