Tuesday, August 31, 2010

Old/new start box

If you want to show a standing or slow moving model in an cross country set-up, your best option is probably to use a start box. This is a three sided enclosure which the horse must enter before starting the course. The front of the box is flagged (red on the right, white on the left) and there is usually a sign that says "start."

I took this picture of a fairly basic start box at the 1991 Longreen Horse Trials in Collierville, Tennessee.
Several years ago, I decided I was going to make my own model sized start box. I designed it to be freestanding and sturdy yet easily broken down for transportation and storage. I cut out and assembled the pieces and gave it a few coats of paint. Then, somehow I got distracted. Despite my good intentions, the start box ended up in the large pile of unfinished projects in my basement where it languished for the next couple years.

I dug it up yesterday after I realized it might be the perfect prop to use with White Trash Girl in the Cross Country/Steeplechase/Racing class at the Rocky Mountain Rendezvous live show next month. As you can see, the main pieces were still in good shape, but everything needed paint and detailing.
After a trip to the hobby shop and a little bit of work, my start box is finished!
Front view. Honestly, the box should be a bit bigger, and if I'd been starting from scratch, I would have built it with more generous dimensions. Still, I'm pleased with the way this turned out.
And look, it really does disassemble nicely!
It feels good to have finally finished something in the forgotten project pile. I ought to raid that more often!


  1. Heh... I was IN the Longreen hunt trials in 1991. Your box came out great!

  2. Did you win anything? I gave out some of the awards. They were wooden grooming boxes with brass nameplates that were donated by the tack shop where I worked. I also spent a large part of the day working as a jump judge. That was kind of fun, but it prevented me from taking a lot of pictures. I think I have about 6-8 total from the day.

  3. If I calculate correctly I was in... gosh, what do they call it, it's been a long time... is it training level? with a very green horse, and we were fourth, but that may well have been another year. As I recall we jumped every jump about twice the height of the actual fence, because he didn't want to get NEAR those weird things. :) However I placed I'm sure I didn't get a pretty box!

  4. The box looks real nice!!
    A few days ago you showed us your cleaned up workbench, yesterday I cleaned mine too. Than I picked up a Breyer great dane that I began customizing in 2008! It's not finished yet but thanks to you, I got started again! ;-))

  5. Just out of curiousity, have you explained where the name White Trash Girl came from????
    and it should be educated white trash girl, I can actually calculate the speed of a stock car as it goes around the track!

  6. Turnabout is fair play. Tiffany named a mule after me, so I named a horse after her... Although, officially I never *said* that's why I chose the name White Trash Girl. She just *assumed* that was the case. In fact, I think the exact comment was, "It should have been TRAILER Trash Girl"...