Onion Creek Ranch, Lohn, Texas
Suzanne W. Gasparotto, Onion Creek Ranch, Lohn, TX
Lohn, Texas
Onion Creek Ranch "Chevon, cabrito, goat... No matter what you call it, it is the HEALTHY red meat™
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Durable, lightweight, easy to clean, and quick to build, feed troughs made of 10-inch diameter Schedule 40 PVC pipe and flat sheet PVC are the best that this writer has ever used.

Supplies needed to make eight troughs: one 20-foot piece of 10-inch diameter Schedule 40 PVC; one sheet of 3/8 inch or 1/2 inch flat PVC cut into two-foot by one foot pieces; eighty (80) 1-1/2 inch long stainless steel screws; electric skill saw; electric hand-held grinder; measuring tape and marking pen; screwdrivers.

Most hardware and building supply stores do not carry 10-inch diameter Schedule 40 PVC; contact a plumbing supply business and special order it. Flat PVC in sheet form is even harder to find, but a plumbing supply company will be able to locate it. Although expensive, flat-sheet PVC serves as both end cap and legs and is worth the cost.

The first step is to cut the *bell* end (about six inches) off the PVC pipe and discard it. Mark the pipe for cutting into four equal pieces and for splitting lengthwise, resulting in eight troughs. Grind off the rough edges where the pipe was split lengthwise and cut crosswise. Cut the 3/8 inch flat sheet PVC into two foot by one foot pieces, grinding off the rough edges. Some suppliers will pre-cut the flat sheet PVC at no extra charge for ease of shipment to the customer. Mark the flat sheets to the trough height that is desired and screw them to the ends of the cut PVC pipe, using fivestainless-steel screws per end piece. Insert the screws from the outside of the flat PVC, through it, and into the exposed edges of the pipe. The Schedule 40 PVC pipe wall is thick enough that the 1-1/2 inch stainless-steel screws make a perfect fit.

Some people drill small drain holes in their troughs, but this writer has found that debris (fecal material, dirt, feed *fines*) clog the openings. In extremely wet climates, however, there may be some value in drilling small drain holes. Troughs can be sealed with weather-proof caulk where the end pieces meet the pipe but it is not necessary.

As of March 2006, materials cost per trough was $75.00. Labor to build them was less than a day. Onion Creek Ranch has been using troughs made as described for almost ten years and has yet to have to repair one of them. If goats can't destroy them, they've got to be good.

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All information provided in these articles is based either on personal experience or information provided by others whose treatments and practices have been discussed fully with a vet for accuracy and effectiveness before passing them on to readers.

In all cases, it is your responsibility to obtain veterinary services and advice before using any of the information provided in these articles. Suzanne Gasparotto is not a veterinarian.Neither tennesseemeatgoats.com nor any of the contributors to this website will be held responsible for the use of any information contained herein.

The author, Suzanne Gasparotto, hereby grants to local goat publications and club newsletters, permission to reprint articles published on the Onion Creek Ranch website under these conditions: THE ARTICLE MUST BE REPRODUCED IN ITS ENTIRETY AND THE AUTHOR'S NAME, ADDRESS, AND CONTACT INFORMATION MUST BE INCLUDED AT THE BEGINNING OF THE REPRINT. We would appreciate notification from any clubs or publications when the articles are used. (A copy of the newsletter or publication would also be a welcome addition to our growing library of goat related information!)

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