There is a lot of information out there about how to design a low-stress cattle handling system, but how much time do you spend thinking about the panels you build those pens with? Have you ever really thought about what makes high-quality cattle panels, and what is the best material to use when building cattle pens?
While doing such legwork may seem obvious, many cattle producers have surprisingly never taken the time to research their cattle panels or gates. When comparing it to a squeeze chute, the cattle gates and panels on your ranch may seem unimportant and miniscule. However, it can save you time and money in the long run to replace old, worn-down pens with new panels and gates that are designed to last instead of continuing to invest in fixing what you have on the farm currently.
Arrowquip recently introduced their new line of heavy-duty Arrow Cattle Panels and Gates. Like all Arrowquip products, this lineup has been engineered for endurance and designed to make handling cattle safer, easier, and more profitable for ranchers. But one question remains in the minds of many cattle producers — aren’t all steel cattle panels the same?
Let’s take a look at some of the most commonly asked questions and myths about what makes a good cattle panel.
1. Why are rectangular railings important in a cattle panel?
It is common to see round panels and oil pipe used for cattle panels, but there are a few reasons why that is a bad idea. Bruising and dark cutters, especially in operations that finish cattle or sell directly to the consumer, can result in significant profit losses. Rectangular panels minimize the likelihood and severity of bruising by providing a larger surface area for cattle to run up against to spread out the pressure of the impact.
In addition, when comparing 1” square compared to 1” round tube, the square tube is approximately 33 percent stronger due to the cross-sectional area. Making the railings rectangular greatly increases the strength and structural integrity without increasing the gauge due to the box area, and adds to the visual barrier that the panels provide for cattle. The large visual barrier makes cattle respect the panel more, and less likely to challenge a panel or gate as a result.
2. Do the number of stays on a cattle panel help its strength?
Typically, the larger your panel is, the more stays will be required. It is common to see one to two welded stays on a 10’ panel to enhance the durability, but warping still occurs due to low-quality, small rails. Arrow Cattle Panels and Gates feature 3” railings that increase the strength of the panel so that stays are not required to prevent panels from warping.
3. Does the spacing of railings on a cattle panel matter?
If you’ve ever seen a cow or calf get their head in between the railings on a panel, you know the importance of graduated rails. The railings on all Arrow Cattle Gates and Panels are graduated to prevent livestock from sticking their heads between the rails, which can cause both damage to your system and issues getting cattle out.
4. What is the best spring-loaded cattle gate latch design?
Cattle like to turn back, but handlers don’t have time for that. Arrow Cattle Gates feature a unique No Miss Latch design that ensures the gate closes securely behind you every time. The two-way striker plate is paired with the same high-quality slam latches seen on Arrowquip cattle chutes to shut properly no matter how hard you slam it. Just hear the click, and carry on.
5. Cattle panels must be rigid to be sturdy.
No matter how great your cattle yard is or how well you are managing your livestock with low-stress practices, there will always be one cow that attempts to hop the fence. Arrow Cattle Panels and Gates have been engineered with flex to absorb the stress and pressure of a cow or bull making an attempted escape, and the height of the panels prevents them from jumping out if they try.
6. Cattle yards and handling systems require a lot of maintenance.
How many times have you gone out to work cattle only to realize that you have a broken gate latch, or a weld on your oil pipe panel has let go? Maintaining your cattle yard can be a time consuming and exhausting task, and the issues never seem to arise until you’re processing livestock — the last time you want to have issues.
Arrow Cattle Panels and Gates are designed to be maintenance-free. Gate Hinges feature engineered nylon bushings that eliminate the metal-on-metal contact that can cause seizing, locks are backed by a lifetime guarantee, and all panels are backed by their exclusive No Bull Warranty that protects your equipment for a full three years after purchase.
Arrow Cattle Panels and Gates have been available exclusively in their custom handling systems for some time, but due to market demand their team has ramped up production to meet the needs of cattle producers around the country. Arrow Cattle Panels and Gates are available in 4’, 8’, and 10’ sizes, and can now be purchased in any quantity required to improve your ranch today.
Whether you are ready for a complete cattle handling system overhaul or just need to replace a single panel, Arrow Cattle Panels and Gates are designed for longevity and durability to last for years to come.
Where can I buy cattle panels near me?
Arrow Cattle Panels can be purchased from all Authorized Arrowquip Cattle Equipment Dealers located across North America. Arrowquip has an extensive network of dealers that carry their full lineup of cattle equipment and can assist you with all your cattle related needs. Find your local dealer on the Dealer Map.
How to connect cattle panels together?
Arrow Cattle Panels feature a unique, 4-way pin connection system that gives handlers the flexibility and freedom to create more panel configurations than ever before.
What is the No Miss Cattle Gate Latch?
Arrow Cattle Gates feature a patented No Miss Latch that ensures the gate will close behind you securely, every single time. No matter how hard you slam it the No Miss Latch will never swing through, allowing you to worry about what is ahead of you, rather than behind, when bringing cattle into the system.
If you have any other questions or would like to order Arrow Cattle Panels and Gate for your operation, visit arrowquip.com or contact their team at 1-866-383-7827 for details.
This article was published on behalf of Arrowquip.