John McNerney

Proper Maintenance: Good For Your Tools And Your Career

Advice from competitor and tool craftsman John McNerney

John McNerney, a farrier from Platteville, Colo., believes that properly maintaining tools not only improves a farrier’s efficiency, it polishes his professional image.

John McNerney says when he starts thinking about tools, he always remembers a comment he heard from fellow farrier Jim Quick.

“You can’t change a tire with a screw driver.”

That’s shorthand for a point that McNerney made to an audience of shoers during the American Farrier’s Association convention in Lexington, Ky., recently.

“Tools work for the things they are designed for, not what you think they’re designed for,” says the certified journeyman farrier from Platteville, Colo.

McNerney is a former member of the American Farrier’s Team and has three top 10 finishes at the Calgary World Championship Blacksmiths’ Competition. He also was one of the founders of Yukon Tools. He believes tool maintenance is an important part of being a successful farrier.

“As farriers, we use and rely on tools,” he says. “Good tools can make a difference in being healthy or not healthy. Quality and efficiency of work are closely related to tools, and good tools make a farrier business more profitable.

McNerney also sees using quality tools and keeping them in tip-top shape as part of improving his image as a farrier.

“I want to stand out,” he says. “I’m after the clients who can afford to buy their horseshoes at the equivalent of Macy’s, not the ones who buy their shoes at Wal-Mart.”

Part of his goal is to shoe as few horses…

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Pat tearney

Pat Tearney

Pat Tearney is a long-term newspaper and magazine veteran writer and editor. Before retiring, he served for a number of years on the American Farriers Journal staff and continues to share his writing talents with our readers.

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