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I Forge Iron

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For those who make hoof picks, particularly from horse shoes, do you harden the pick end if it's mild steel, or do you let it bend? I'm at ends, they bend but it takes me more strength than any of the store bought ones but I can't stand selling things that I feel are inferior because they don't 100% hold up. I'm not wanting to do it because a bent hoof pick is less likely to do any harm/damage/horse spooking than a suddenly snapped one.

On another note, I'm under the assumption that standard shoes are mild steel from the way it moves and sparks, I'm hoping I'm right?

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I've made a lot of them, never hardened one, never had a complaint. Soft is safe as you said. Yes shoes are generally mild steel although if you're getting old used shoes some of the older stuff in particular was made from scrap and could be variable. Some, not very much, was hard to shape cold and could stress harden in use.

Haven't seen Izumi shoes in years, but they were quite soft.

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  • 1 month later...

Got the order done for the equine club volunteer gifts. Didn't harden them. These don't show it because I took the pick of these two out of the 14 before I gave them a heat to run colors. Gave them random bronze and blue colors after vinegar and wire brushing to grey. The equine club loved them. Hopefully they last as long as I'm around for the recipients to come after the maker. Gotta make more though. Who'da thunk a college of 80% women with most having horses in a a stable or acerage would want something made out of a horseshoe?

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