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Headgate vs. Chute

Pharmer

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I have just sold my first crop of calves and am going to use the money to build a pen and some simple working facilites. I will have around twenty cows and 1 bull to work twice a year. Would you all buy a chute or just a head gate?
 

dun

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It really depends on what you're going to be doing with it. If you have aan alleyway with a headgate that is tight enough to restrict their side to side movement enough and have one side that will open to let them out if you have to, a headgate is adequate for most things. Branding, cutting large bulls, working on the feet of grown cows, a chute has alwasy worked best for us.

dun
 

sidney411

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I agree with Dun. We have 2 sets of pens. 1 with a headgate and 1 with a squeeze chute. The cows can wiggle and jump around with just the headgate too much to give shots, brand, ect.
 

WORANCH

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A chute is the best thing i have ever bought...
 

hillbilly

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You can always buy a nice headgate off the squeeze chute you want someday, then later you can buy the chute less headgate and put them together.

Hillbilly
 

Campground Cattle

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Pharmer":21c1fcax said:
I have just sold my first crop of calves and am going to use the money to build a pen and some simple working facilites. I will have around twenty cows and 1 bull to work twice a year. Would you all buy a chute or just a head gate?

I use only a headgate alley is 24" tight for the big ones, with a locking gate behind. This set up is fine for working grown cows, we have had a few rodeos with calves before. But for the poorboy operation it works.

:cboy:
 

Hawk

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I'm right there with you Campground. I would like to have a squeeze chute but have never been able to justify the cost. Especially since I do everything I need to do with the headgate without any big problems. I am a stickler about controlling costs, maybe too much so at times, but a squeeze chute has always been a "want" and not a "need". If I ever win one of those huge lottery pots I might reconsider.
 

WORANCH

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Hawk":2bx6h6zb said:
I'm right there with you Campground. I would like to have a squeeze chute but have never been able to justify the cost. Especially since I do everything I need to do with the headgate without any big problems. I am a stickler about controlling costs, maybe too much so at times, but a squeeze chute has always been a "want" and not a "need". If I ever win one of those huge lottery pots I might reconsider.

one broken arm will pay for it ....... :lol: :lol: :cboy: :cboy:
 

Beefy

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if you can afford it i would go ahead and get the chute. you'll be glad you did.
 

CattleAnnie

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The advantage to the chute that I love is the ability to squeeze up on a fidgety animal. There's alot of times when it helps speed the job along, whether it's dehorning, doctoring or preg testing. Biggest advantages of that is less time spent in the chute means presumably less stress on the animal and speeds up the amount of time it takes to process however many you're working that day.

Personally, as a producer, I figure it's the best livestock invention after the maternity pen.

Take care.
 

jgn

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I just used a temporary setup I made out of some gates and just a head gate to run all my calves through for vaccinating. I didn't have any problems without using a chute and was able to give them their shots and change out ear tags without any problems. The one thing that I think is of importance is as mentioned before, make sure your alley leading to the gate is only as wide as needed. Mine wasn't as narrow as I would have liked and it left to much room for the calves to try and turn around in. I too am small time and can't justify the price of a chute right now. Hopefully as I expand it will become a need rather than a want.
 

Craig-TX

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Headgates on tight chutes are all we use. If you’re not going to brand or AI they will get you by just fine. Don’t get me wrong, I’m not saying it wouldn’t be nice to have squeeze chutes. It’s just that they would not pay for themselves the way we operate and I’d rather spend the money elsewhere.

Craig-TX
 

dun

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Craig-TX":1u6ap3g0 said:
Headgates on tight chutes are all we use. If you’re not going to brand or AI they will get you by just fine. Don’t get me wrong, I’m not saying it wouldn’t be nice to have squeeze chutes. It’s just that they would not pay for themselves the way we operate and I’d rather spend the money elsewhere.

Craig-TX

The only reason we went to chute was because we had to keep moving the location of the working facility. Rather then sink a bunch of heavy posts and set up the gate and alley set up that would work we just went with a chute. We didn't brand in it, but shots, AI, palp., castrate calves, etc. all with the headgate and gates. The only real problem was trying to work on a foot and not being able to squeeze the cow and nothing close by that was secure to tie the foot up in the air. Priefert has a deal that bolts to the cow side of the headgate that has a heavy mesh floor that the animal stands on and holds it in place. The only problem is if they lunge they can skoot it around. A couple of heavy T-posts driven in at the sides and chained to the headgate stops that.
We still have our portable headgate but rarely use it. The plan was to use it if we had to work something in a back pasture. The way we have organized, or what passes for organization, it's just as easy to run them up to the chute and working pens.

dun

dun
 

txshowmom

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If you can afford it buy the chute, you'll never regret it. You can do a lot more with a chute and the risk of getting yourself or an animal hurt is a lot less.
 

sidney411

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No one has mentioned this but you can pick up a decent chute at auction if you have the time to look for one. There is a big time equipment auction in my town once a month. They are all over the country though. Ask someone at the sale barn or a tracter dealership. I bet someone there would know if there was one near you. They have just about anything you could ever want at one time or another. Look in the classified, heck, I've even seen them on ebay but you would have to be near them so you could pick it up. We bought a calf table that was almost brand new, it still had the wires tying the gates and latches on it for $200.
 

txshowmom

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Good point, however when you buy something used the old saying "buyer beware" cames to mind. When someone is selling a piece of equipment there is usually a reason and they are not likely to tell you the real reason. I am not saying not to buy uses because we have bought a lot of stuff used, but you should be wary and have someone knowledgable about whatever you are buying check it out. I'd hate to see a new commer invest in a piece of used equipment and get taken advatage of because they didn't know what they were looking at.
 

certherfbeef

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I have a stronghold chute. I built a trailer so I can move it from one location to the next. I also have the posts set and the run built at each location. I then just back the chute up to the end of the run, attach it, and I am all ready.
My stronghold doesn't squeeze, but it does make things handy!
 

ChrisB

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We have a Foremost headgate with no chute. After dealing with animals that won't hold still we bought the 'nose bar' that goes with the headgate. That holds them secure for dehorning, working on eyes, eartages, shots, and also for castrating. I think it was only $50 or something. We also have 6' gates on each side of the headgate with the hinges at opposite sides; one fastened 6' back for letting them out & one hinged by the headgate for squeezing. We made a bar that locks as the gates are pushed together. But we hardly ever use the gate for squeezing. Hang some plywood on the gates so they can't see thru them, and cut out an area up front for giving shots in the neck. We usually work less than 60 head at a time, so the added time with the nose bar doesn't add up to much, it usually takes 2-3 minutes per head to castrate give 3 shots, worm, and implant.

If you have less than 100 head, I would really look into other ways to get by without spending the money on a chute. They are nice, but aren't a neccessity.
 

TheBullLady

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I can't imagine being without a chute. Primarily because of the squeeze option, and the removeable grates for giving shots. They are well worth the expense.
 

TR

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We bought a chute about 18 mos ago along with one of those sweep tubs. Have thanked our stars a hundred times over for that sweep tub, but haven't needed or even used the cute......as a matter of fact, we have it up for sale now if anyone is interested........e-mail for details - [email protected]
 

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