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At one time a farrier could kill two birds with one stone when making a shoe for the American Farrier’s Association (AFA) shoe display. A candidate was able to use a wedge pad on a shoe to raise the angle. This technique may still be popular in some circles, but I think it’s unacceptable to use just one modification to satisfy two requirements when qualifying for the AFA shoe display.
In several instances, heel calks have come under fire and have been disallowed. Heel calks sink into the ground if a horse is not on solid footing, such as concrete. On solid footing, a heel calk would raise the angle of the hoof.
A shoe that is wedged can be made by bumping each heel, welding the end of the branch to provide greater thickness or using a larger stock and drawing away. This article demonstrates how to draw out the center of a larger piece of stock. Both the upsetting and the drawing is done on handmade shoes, while the welding method is the easiest way to make this modification on a keg shoe. Besides these methods, a patten bar or a similar forging can achieve the desired angle change.
In my shoeing business, I rarely use pads. I don’t like them or what they do to the feet. I rely on shoes when it comes to artificially raising the hoof angle.
There are some good arguments for using a bar shoe every…