So I have had this stand for a while. It was from Sydell. I cannot remember when I purchased it. I think it was their fold-up fitting stand and then I bought the stanchion for the goats. I have used it for a variety of things including shearing, trimming hooves and milking. Here is the oldest photo of it I can find from 2005.
And here you can see it better with Gwynneth in 2006. You can actually see the paint color but it was obviously already well used at this point.
As time has gone on, my back would not allow me to keep shearing all the sheep and fiber goats on it. It was too much bending for my back to handle. So we started hiring shearers to come out. But we still need to do sheep maintenance ourselves like shots, worming and hoof trimming. So we started using the sheep chair for this. You can see how thrilled Reuben is.
A demonstration of how a sheep is supposed to sit in it.
The problem is getting them into it. Here is a sequence of us getting Jethro into the chair.
And sometimes the sheep would get a leg stuck in the webbing or legs of the chair in the process. We never had a serious injury, but there certainly was a risk to this. Once they were in the chair, the maintenance was easy. And several people could work at once.
But with the risks of serious injury to the animals and to us lifting them, we looked back to the stand. The issue with it was lifting the animal onto it. So Tom welded a metal ramp to attach to the back of the stand to walk the animal onto it. Here is Bob demonstrating.
But the problem with the ramp is that the sheep did not wish to walk up it. And they can be strong in resisting this. I have been wanting a winch or hydraulic stand like Sydell sells, but they are expensive. So over the last year Tom has been gathering parts to make us a winch stand. And two days ago he started assembling it. Here is the old stand about to be modified.
Here is Tom showing me the winch he is going to put on it.
Here is the new base he had welded to stabilize it.
Here is the base with new pivoting legs and winch support at the end of the first day. The legs are much longer than the previous ones so less bending for us!
He finished it yesterday. Here is the side view of our new and improving (and repainted) winching stand.
And here is the front view.
He has tested it out with heavy cement blocks, and it worked well. Now spring sheep maintenance is in 2 days. We shall see how it holds up to the sheep.
PS Tonight’s dinner will be medieval Chicken Crowned with Eggs and Cabbage Chowder to accompany of Game of Thrones rewatching. It will be posted tomorrow at my medieval cooking and GOT blog, in case you are curious how it all turns out.