How to Make a Sheep Grooming Stand

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A sheep grooming stand can protect both you and your sheep from injury.
A sheep grooming stand can protect both you and your sheep from injury. (Image: Digital Vision./Digital Vision/Getty Images)

Grooming is an essential part of raising sheep, but the process can take its toll on your back. A sheep grooming stand allows you to stand in a comfortable position while grooming, and provides a safe environment for your sheep. Animals are often spooked during the grooming process with an instinct to try to flee. A DIY sheep grooming stand can protect your back and your sheep from injury.

Things You'll Need

  • One untreated 1-by-8, 10 feet in length
  • Two untreated 1-by-4s, 6 feet in length
  • Two untreated 1-by-4s, 8 feet in length
  • One untreated 2-by-2, 6 feet in length
  • One untreated 4-by-4, 6 feet in length
  • One untreated 2-by-2, 6 feet in length
  • Carpenter's crayon
  • Tape measure
  • Circular saw
  • Jig saw
  • Sandpaper, 80 grit
  • Drill
  • Drill bit 1 1/32-inch
  • Bolt, 1-inch, with two washers and nut
  • Two clamps
  • Power screwdriver
  • Wood screws - 3-inch
  • Wood screws - 1 1/2-inch
  • Three shims
  • Wood glue
  • Two L brackets
  • Hook and eye latch, 4 inches long, with extra eye
  • Hook-over feed bowl

Measure and cut your 10-foot 1-by-8 into three 36-inch pieces. Mark these as Part A with your carpenter's crayon. Sand to remove any rough edges.

Measure and cut your 6-foot 1-by-4s into four 36-inch pieces. Mark these as Part B with your carpenter's crayon. Sand to remove rough edges.

Measure and cut your two 8-foot 1-by-4s into six pieces 20 1/2 inches in length, and two pieces 18 1/2 inches in length. Mark the longer pieces as Part C with your carpenter's crayon, and the shorter pieces Part D. Sand all pieces to remove rough edges.

Measure and cut your 6-foot 4-by-4 into four pieces that are 14 inches in length. These will be the legs of your sheep stand. If you're an exceptionally tall person, you may want to increase the length of the legs a bit to make it easier on your back, but remember that your sheep will need to be able to climb onto the stand. Mark these as Part L, for legs, and sand to remove rough edges.

Lay two of your Part L legs on their sides, 20 1/2 inches apart. Join these at one end by laying a Part C across them so the Part C is flush with the edges of the Part L legs. Connect these with 3-inch wood screws and the power screwdriver. Use four screws in a square for maximum stability. Repeat this process with the two remaining Part L legs and the other Part C piece.

Stand the pieces you made in Step 6 so they're vertical. Create your rectangular base by connecting the two pieces using two Part B pieces, making these pieces flush with the tops of the legs, as your did with your Part C pieces. Attach securely with the 3-inch wood screws in the same fashion you did in Step 7.

Add your Part G pieces as braces. Slide them into the rectangular base, with the 4-inch length vertical. Space them about 12 inches apart. The top of your base will sit on these braces. The braces will allow the base to support your sheep's weight. Secure these braces with the 3-inch wood screws and the power screwdriver.

Lay three of your Part A pieces on top of your base, one next to the other, until the entire open top of your base is covered. Secure these pieces to the corners and to the Part G braces using the 3-inch wood screws and the power screwdriver.

Sand the entire completed base to remove any rough edges caused by adding the screws.

Attach one Part C piece to one end of your base using the L brackets. The piece should be flush with the end and the 4-inch length should be vertical. Secure the brackets into place, one at each end, using the 1 1/2-inch wood screws and the power screwdriver.

Lay out one of your Part D pieces. Measure in 4 inches lengthwise and make a mark with your crayon. Measure in 2 inches along the width at the end of the board and make a mark. Connect these two marks with your crayon.

Cut along the angled mark you just made using your circular saw.

Attach the Part D pieces in a vertical fashion to the ends of the Part C piece you attached in Step 11, using the 3-inch wood screws and power screwdriver. Sink these pieces 2 inches lower than the top of the base. Place the angled piece on the right side, if you're facing the base with the bracketed end closest to you. When you're done with this step, you will have made three sides of a rectangle.

Attach a Part C piece to the top of the three-sided rectangle you've created, to form a complete rectangle. Use the 3-inch wood screws and the power screwdriver.

Create your "head hole," which is where you'll secure your sheep's head during grooming. Your head hole will look a bit like a key hole when you're done. Lay out two of your 36-inch 1-by-4s. Measure in 3 inches lengthwise from one end of your 1-by-4 and mark this with your crayon. Measure 2 additional inches in lengthwise and mark. From this mark, measure in 1 1/2 inches widthwise and mark. From your 3-inch mark, measure in 11 1/2 inches and mark. The final mark will be 13 1/2 inches from your 3-inch mark, running lengthwise.

Using your crayon to draw the pattern, begin at the 3-inch mark and make a wide arc to connect to the 5-inch mark. Connect the 5-inch mark to the 11 1/2-inch mark by drawing a straight line, then make a wide arc back inward to your 13 1/2-inch mark. Repeat this pattern on another 1-by-4, but create a mirror image, so when the two pieces meet, they'll create a keyhole.

Cut your head hole boards using your jig saw. Cut one end of one board at an angle in the same fashion you performed in Steps 12 and 13, but make only a slight angle. If your keyhole opening is on the right, your angled edge should be on the right. Sand these pieces thoroughly to remove rough edges.

Measure in 7 inches from the bottom Part C of the rectangle you created in Steps 11-15 and mark this with your crayon. Measure in from the right end if you're facing the base with the bracketed end closest to you. Drill a hole with your 1 1/32-inch drill bit. Sand the area around the hole.

Measure up from the angled end of your angled head hole piece a distance equal to where the hole in Step 19 is placed, plus 2 inches and mark. Drill a hole at this spot and sand to remove any rough edges.

Attach the piece of the head hole without the angle to the base, 2 inches in from the outer piece of the rectangle, in the same vertical fashion. Secure with the 3-inch wood screws and power screwdriver.

Clamp a Part C piece to the bottom of the rectangle on the outer side, as if you're sandwiching in the head hole piece. Drill a hole through this piece even with the hole in the other Part C piece. Sand to remove rough edges, and remove the clamp at the end farthest from the one attached head hole piece.

Slide the remaining head hole piece with the drilled hole into place, lining up the holes. Reattach the clamp and secure the ends with the 3-inch wood screws and power screwdriver.

Insert the bolt though one washer, through the lined-up holes, and add a washer to the other end. Add the nut and tighten.

Attach your last Part C piece. Before you do this, you'll need to glue a shim to the center of the top end of the Part D pieces, and to the piece of the head hole without the angled end. This will allow this angle head hole piece to swing out so you can insert your sheep's head to hold him steady and protect him during grooming. Allow for drying time and then secure your Part C piece by securing both ends and the nonangled head hole piece with 3-inch wood screws. Add screws from both sides to secure properly.

Add your hook and eye latch to the top of your head hole piece. Space these so that your latch will close when your head hole is in the closed position. If you have sheep of various sizes, add extra eyes to loosen the head hole, in the same fashion that you'd loosen a belt.

Measure and cut your 2-by-2 in three pieces, two pieces 14 inches long and two pieces 4 inches long.

Center the 14-inch long 2-by-2 piece on the front of the base at the foot of the head hole pieces where you'll place your food bowl. Attach with the 3-inch wood screws and power screwdriver. Add the 4-inch blocks to each end and attach. Attach the final 14-inch piece. Your food bowl will attach here.

Tips & Warnings

  • Your local lumberyard may cut some of your wood to reduce measuring and cutting time.
  • Keep saw and tools away from children.
  • Do not leave sheep unattended in grooming stand.

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