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Do It Yourself
Goat Scales

by Keith Smith

Weighing Meat Goats
The dairy breeders figured out a way to estimate the weight of their goats by measuring the heart girth. Meat goat breeders figured out a way to select an industry that has no such method.

Here is an inexpensive and easy alternative to those expensive digital livestock scales that are always breaking.

Materials:
(3) bathroom scales (about $22 ea.)
(2) 8-foot long 2x4s cut in half
(2) pieces of 2x4, each 21-1/2 inches long
(1) piece of 1/2-inch exterior plywood cut to 2' x 4'
A hand full of screws

Assemble a platform somewhat like the figure below. Cut slots in the short 2x4s. These slots will fit over the handles of the scales.
Place the scales on a reasonably flat hard surface.
Flip the platform over and set it on the scales
Fill a grain bucket about half full and set it on the platform.
Read each scale and add the values together... remember this number.
Put your goat on the platform.
Set the bucket in front of the goat and read each scale.
Add the values together. Subtract the previous weight of the bucket.
You now know how much your goat weighs.

Hints:
Remove the bucket from the platform and use it to bribe the goat onto the platform.
Load the goat onto the platform from the end with the two scales... that end is more stable.
Yes, it'll work with only two scales - but it won't be as stable. A goat on a wobbly surface might not stay there long enough.

Fig. 1 - note: platform shown upside down.


 

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