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Replacing a farrier tool often can be an expensive proposition. At times it may make more sense to have a tool rebuilt rather than replacing it. Here are some things to consider on the subject of refurbishing your riveted tools.
Lucedale, Miss., farrier Dan Bradley estimates in a 3-year period, you’ll open and close your hoof nippers 195,000 times, clinchers 120,000 times, pull-offs 75,000 times and crease nail pullers 90,000 times. That motion and the business of the tool will cause it to loosen or dull over time. It just isn’t the tool’s action that causes gradual wear.
“Now add environment and the skill of the user, and you will have tools perform well, but others not so much,” reasons Bradley, who also works with G.E. Forge and Tool.
As a farrier uses these tools, the changes over a period are subtle. “All the while wear is taking place and the handles will get closer together,” says the Mississippi shoer. He believes most farriers don’t notice this gradual process until it is too late — invariably on a cold day — and pinch a finger between the handles.
It is usually at that point that the farrier realizes it is time to do something. If you don’t want to wait until the agony of a pinched finger, Bradley says the best way to monitor the tool’s health is by gauging the looseness of its rivet.
Bradley believes most shoers wait a little long in the tools’…