By American Farriers Journal Staff
Do you manage your inventory, or does it manage you?
Some farriers are meticulously organized, while others realize that they’re short of something or other after it’s too late. For better or worse, each farrier has a system when buying supplies. The question is: Does it work?
For those just starting out, don’t be shy about approaching those who know — experienced farriers.
“Use the experience of your fellow shoers to eliminate the guesswork,” advises Martinsville, Va., farrier Danny Ward. “Locate and join a local farrier organization so you’ll have a list of members throughout your region. Ask them what shoes are most important in your area.”
You need supplies on hand, but don’t go overboard. Get to know your area, its clients and what you are working with, so it becomes easier to decide what you need for inventory. In the meantime, learn from the mistakes of Will Wilson of Mineral, Va.
Knowing your clientele’s horses, as well as their jobs, will help you understand the supplies you will need to buy and keep on hand.
“When I first started, I kind of just bought everything from 0000 shoes all the way up to size 8,” he recalls. “Of course, I’ve only got one Belgian draft in size 7s. Aside from that, I haven’t used anything size 3 and up.”
Wilson is far from alone. Collinsville, Texas, farrier Danny Anderson learned that it’s a virtue to be very selective.