Power-pole Breeding Phantom

By Jos Mottershead

We have built quite a few of these very simple power-pole breeding phantoms for use in semen collection. They have worked every bit as well for us as the expensive pre-fabricated phantoms, but at a fraction of the price.

We have called them "power-pole" breeding phantoms as the first ones we built were of power poles, but any suitable form of wood will suffice.

Measurements are approximate and can be varied depending upon the size of the stallion that is being collected. A 56 inch "tail height" has been found to be a common height that works best for the widest variety of stallion sizes. Note that this height is including the padding.

The legs can be of variable thickness depending upon the severity of work they face. A heavy, rambunctious stallion will demand heavier legs than a lighter weight pony. Whatever the diameter, they should be sunk into the ground for at least 24 inches. A collapsing breeding phantom can seriously deter a stallion from ever mounting again!

The tops of the legs are "V'd" from front to back and the upper pole is secured by means of extremely long spikes being driven down through into the legs from the top. Other methods used with equal success have included strapping. Whatever method is used, it is essential that it is secure and leaves no sharp edges.

The top rear portion of the "rump" is angled for 6 inches or so from the back and upper surface.

Once the superstructure is built, the entire upper pole surface must be padded. We have used old foam mattresses with great success. They are secured by means of rope and nylon straps. It is essential that all straps be as tight as possible otherwise slippage will occur while the phantom is being used. Great attention must be paid to the padding at the "tail" end over the flat section, where any pockets that may catch the stallion before he is deflected must also be avoided. A non-slip, non-abrasive, non-burning outer cover is then placed over the padding. Leather is the best, but canvas covered with a piece of deep-pile carpeting has worked well. Beware of using materials that will cause friction burns on the inside of the stallion's legs, as these will seriously deter him from remounting.

© 2000 Jos Mottershead and Equine-Reproduction.com
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