This section is from the book "Modern Buildings, Their Planning, Construction And Equipment Vol6", by G. A. T. Middleton. Also available from Amazon: Modern Buildings.
The usual method of fastening a horse is from the centre of manger, but it may be accomplished equally well from one side or both, it being deemed advisable in some cases to tie the horse on both sides, so keeping him straighter, with less likelihood to disarrange his grooming before going out. The old method is to merely tie the horse to a ring, but some more suitable arrangement may easily be found. Fig. 53 shows a chain or leather strap which runs through a ring and over a pulley, and is attached to a weight which slides along a guide bar. This same principle as the above, but for cheaper stables, can be applied as in Fig. 54, where the ring slides up an inclined bar. In good stable fittings the weight and leather strap are enclosed in an iron casing and work perfectly noiselessly.
A brass ring is often fitted at head of stall, and this may be combined with the ornamental name-plate which it will be necessary to provide in a stable built for a gentleman's requirements. For loose-box, rings may be provided, but the most usual thing is a ring sliding on a horizontal iron bar (see Fig. 48). This serves the purpose of preventing the horse lying down after having been groomed.
In stables for tramway, brewer's horses, etc., brackets for carrying harness are fixed on to the heel post. In other small stables the harness is hung on iron or wooden hooks (Fig. 55) fitted to a board fixed to the wall. A good and inexpensive form of bracket is a wooden peg on which two pieces of wood are placed saddle ways (Fig. 55).
Harness, to be kept clean and uninjured, should be placed in a room apart. In large stables where private carriage horses are kept the cleaning of leather, brass, and plate forms a considerable portion of a groom's day duty, and so a room of size in proportion to the size of the stable is essential. The various brackets are made of malleable iron, which is japanned, galvanised, or enamelled, or may be capped with polished wood.
A riding outfit would consist of a gentleman's or lady's saddle bracket (Fig. 56), and of stirrup bracket, girth bracket, bridle bracket (Fig. 57). The whole set may be arranged one above the other, and would thus occupy a wall space of 7 feet 3 inches from floor by 2 feet wide.
Driving harness for a single horse is composed of pad, collar, rein, bridle, and crupper brackets, which may be arranged as shown in Fig. 58, the top bracket being fixed 8 feet from floor level; and in the case of single harness 2 feet wide, and for double harness - when the above brackets are duplicated - 4 feet wide.
To better preserve harness from dust and damp, glazed cases can with advantage be used. The amount of harness to be put away will regulate their size. Bits and curbs are also placed in a glass case of their own.
Brackets or shelves should be provided for lamps, as also racks for forks and brooms carried by double hooks; and a cupboard for brushes, etc., is also necessary.
Whips may be carried on a circular wheel holder fixed to wall, or may simply be placed in a movable stand. Figs. 59 and 60 represent girth stretcher and saddle airer respectively, which are essential to a well ordered stable.
For cleaning purposes, hooks (Fig. 61) are fixed to ceiling, and are made telescopic and to revolve.
Tables fitted with cupboards or drawers for the storage of rugs, saddle-cloths, etc., form part of the establishment, and can be made with saddle-shaped tops for cleaning harness. Such tops may be formed of folding flaps, which can fall to the sides or be folded flat and used as ordinary tables.
In stables of small size the oats, wheat, etc., are kept in the stable in oak, wrought-iron, or galvanised iron bins.
Meters are useful when a check has to be kept on the supply which is fed from the loft above. A shaft for chopped hay, constructed of wood, may be also fixed in a suitable corner. Fig. 62 shows an arrangement which consists of a wooden shaft 3 by 2 feet or larger, the top of which may be level with floor of loft, or preferably be fed by a hopper. The food stuff then falls on to the planking fixed at a gentle slope, and passes to the other sloped boarding. Below this is a drawer which, when opened, has the food admitted into it by means of a vertically balanced shutter sliding up and down.
It is an advantage to place this feeding shoot in such a position that it will be possible to place the chaff cutter directly above the opening at top, so saving the intermediate handling.
Instead of having the sloped slats as in Fig. 62, the shoot may be quite open and the food be taken out by hand on the raising of the shutter. In this case a lower door should be provided to allow of cleaning. Machines are used for crushing oats and beans and for grinding corn, and these would most conveniently be fed by large hoppers, into which the grain is placed as required. After going through the machines it is received into sacks, and then transferred to bins or to the feeding shoot or metal box, if such is in use. The above process would only be possible where the building was of two storeys in height, with a loft above the stable. Each case has, however, to be met in the most suitable way, provision being made for fixed or running beams to carry any necessary tackle for hoisting purposes.
In mixed farms, where pigs and cattle are kept as well as horses, pulpers for cutting roots or green stuffs are used, and are often placed on the first floor. They should empty into a shoot, placed preferably - if situation so allows - at a gradual slope, so preventing the cut stuff, such as greens, from being unnecessarily pressed together. Trolleys are used to carry the mixed foods for pigs, etc. Outside the stable building a cattle watering trough should be built up of brickwork cemented over, to which water should be connected, and waste pipe and plug provided. In some instances, where this trough is placed in a cool and sheltered spot, as should always be the case, farmers place pails of milk in it to cool, changing the water at intervals. A wood frame with mesh wire, let down over the top and tilted at an angle, forms an effective protection.
When stock yards are in common use the method of watering is by means of wooden troughs, such as that shown in Fig. 63, carried by means of cast or wrought-iron standards.