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TOPIC: Certification AFA CF

Certification AFA CF 18 Oct 2009 00:21 #1

Ok all,

I am looking for a place to start talking about prep for the CF, I have looked all over the forum and found some things that have helped me. I read a few of the stories of folks taking the test and such.

I would like to start a discussion on this,

What do you feel is the best way to practice for a CF?

Should I order a box of keg shoes and work mods or build hand mades and go it that way (practice)

What books, videos, and people do you find best in preparation for the test?

What is the cost to go about the exam process (per test or how does it work?)

I would also like to see some photos of others shoe boards.

And last but now least shoe mods, I would like to hear how everyone would explain why to rocker, or roll a toe, why extended heels? And suck to cover all the shoe mods this way I can hear a personal variation in the explain of said mods.


Thanks in advance for any help!

Hope other people benefit and join in on this!


Take Care,
Jarred
Jarred Oates
Oates Equine Service's
Farrier-Massage-Aromathearpy-Training

Hocking College Equine Science
(farrier, equine health, and wilderness horsemanship)
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RE:Certification AFA CF 18 Oct 2009 01:34 #2

  • T. Wm. HALL
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Jared,

I recently passed 2 of the 3 portions of the AFA Certified Farrier Testing. I missed two too many on my written exam. :confused:

I was fortunate to have help in part from Dusty Franklin (5-Star Horseshoeing School) who pretty much pointed me along the path. I also received a great deal of help from Bill Searle CJF who lives just a few miles from me. Bill is one of the regional directors as well as being an examiner. Bill critiqued my shoe board and offered me some good advice along the way.

Dusty and his wife Staci offer a wonderful study guide called "Let's Get Practical." It breaks down the AFA study guide into more Laymans Terms and offers tips and hints for several learning styles, and is just chock full of good, useful information. It also comes with an interactive CD Rom which is flash cards, and helps ease in learning terminology. I believe the book was $80, but worth every penny. http://www.futurefarrier.com/-Let_s_Get_Practical_.html Bob Marshall's 'Keg Shoe Modification' video was a big help for my Shoe Board as well. I also purchased 'The Glass Horse', which is a very good anatomy CD Rom.

I went through several boxes ($200+) worth of shoes working towards my shoe board. When I thought I had my shoes close, I would take them to Bill, and he would critique them, and I would spend the next several days out in the shop re-doing the whole group. He walked me through a practice scenario on shoeing my own horse to AFA standards which I admit, I failed miserably. But as was described in following Mr. Armitage's progress through his CF testing, the learning experience from just testing, pass or fail, was beneficial towards my future business and bettered my abilities. I used all keg shoes except that I built my bar-shoe from stock. I built my bar shoe first, used it as my pattern. I built my following shoes to fit my bar-shoe, and combined modifications appropriately on several shoes.

I combined my modifications but had to remember to keep the modifications 'practical'. I had my toe clip, and side slips on separate fronts. I combined a wedge pad and screw in studs to satisfy Elevated Heels, Pad Fit, and Traction Device. I combined a rocker toe front with borium. On my hinds, I rolled the toe, and extended the heels. I also made a squared toe and trailered hind. My Bar Shoe satisfied my Bar Shoe requirement obviously, along with punched nail holes. It sounds easy, but it was a true challenge. I'm a picky SOB too.....:p

When I tested back in June, I had to pay a $45 testing fee, along with $150 AFA Membership dues. I also had to pay the hosting organization (Walla Walla Community College) $100 as well. This last fee may vary or be non-existent depending on the host of the AFA test that you take. Along with these fees, I had travel, meal and lodging expenses as well. So with study materials, shoes and supplies, and dues/fees, I already spent well over $800. All a business deduction, and money well spent in my opinion.

I still have the Written Exam to pass, and I must admit as well, the site that you are on here has been a HUGE help in my business. I have been on here for many years and it has been one of the most invaluable resources I could ever imagine.

You'll do well, you have a strong desire to improve, and have truly developed your skills quite impressively in the short time that I have known you here on the forums.
Trevor Wm. Hall, CF
Hall's Horseshoeing
Redmond, Oregon U.S.A.
www.Hallshorseshoeing.com


He that would perfect his work must first sharpen his tools. ~Confuscius
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RE:Certification AFA CF 18 Oct 2009 09:40 #3

  • chris bunting
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one thing i would do is to use all my old shoes to practice my shoe board . if the shoes are thin fire weld two together to make your section of steel. i found this good practice for all forging methods and at the same you are saving money on steel and also making shoes that at some point you will use.remember to practice not until you can do it right but to carry on until you do not do it wrong

chris bunting
common sense is not needed when you have rules
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RE:Certification AFA CF 18 Oct 2009 12:01 #4

  • Eric Fox
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Jared, I have been prepairing for my cert. which i will be taking in about two weeks. For the written I have mostly used Doug Butlers P2 for my primary go to for study along with Dusty Franklins study guide. For the shoe board I am trying to complete it with handmades, fullered toe to toe barshoe and plainstamps for the rest, which I have posted on this site as well as the WCB site for critique. Everyone has been a huge help. Try and go to any pre cert. clinics that you can, just went to Danvers Child clinic in N.C. which was awesome. and will be going to spend a week with Mitch Taylor in Kentucky the week before my cert. The biggest thing is know the AFA study guide like you know your name. Good luck and when i pick up anything else regarding the test ill will let you know.

Trevor, what part of the written do you think is the biggest struggle, this is the part im worried about!
Thanks, Eric
Eric Fox CJF
AFA#10832
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RE:Certification AFA CF 18 Oct 2009 13:37 #5

  • chad rice
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Trevor, I noticed you said that you made your barshoe, then shaped the rest of your shoes to it. I am currently working on my shoeboard, and didnot know if you had to order the ali. templates to shape too.

Jarred, from what I have learned so far just preping for my test, it is worth the money pass or fail.


Thanks, Chad
Chad Rice, CF
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RE:Certification AFA CF 18 Oct 2009 17:39 #6

  • T. Wm. HALL
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Eric,

I didn't know which answers that I missed on my written test. I don't feel that I struggled in any particular section, I just think that I missed all throughout the test.

Chad,

In my understanding, your pattern doesn't have to necessarily be an Aluminum Pattern, but one can use a horseshoe. I used my bar shoe, which I made close to a Basic 0F and just went from there. My hind shoe pattern was a basic keg shoe that had been slightly drawn down through the quarters and the heels slightly brought in.

Good Luck Guys!!
Trevor Wm. Hall, CF
Hall's Horseshoeing
Redmond, Oregon U.S.A.
www.Hallshorseshoeing.com


He that would perfect his work must first sharpen his tools. ~Confuscius
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RE:Certification AFA CF 19 Oct 2009 00:03 #7

  • chad rice
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Thanks Trevor, don't know how it will go, but I am going to give it a shot.
Chad Rice, CF
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RE:Certification AFA CF 19 Oct 2009 00:54 #8

Trevor

Thanks for the help and kind words, This is why I started this thread! Would you happen to have pictures of your board or some of your examples?

Chad

Per the AFA you can fit to any patter, Shoe, can, or hole in the ground you want to as long as your shoes match! Its half and half some say the patter is the best way and others fit to a shoe I know lots fit to the bar shoe and pad.

Eric

I have been fallowing your shoes on both here and WCB, your shoes are coming along nicely, I also think its sweet you want to use handmades on your board. I don't have the guts, I would fear that they would tare it apart (like your are showing off or something).



Everyone thanks for the info!

Here are some SHOES!
Jarred Oates
Oates Equine Service's
Farrier-Massage-Aromathearpy-Training

Hocking College Equine Science
(farrier, equine health, and wilderness horsemanship)
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RE:Certification AFA CF 19 Oct 2009 01:42 #9

  • T. Wm. HALL
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oatey_hocking wrote:
Trevor

Thanks for the help and kind words, This is why I started this thread! Would you happen to have pictures of your board or some of your examples?
Let me dig them out and I will get them posted soon. I have them boxed up and put away, but with a few recent remodels on the house, nothing is (was) where it was before....
Trevor Wm. Hall, CF
Hall's Horseshoeing
Redmond, Oregon U.S.A.
www.Hallshorseshoeing.com


He that would perfect his work must first sharpen his tools. ~Confuscius
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RE:Certification AFA CF 19 Oct 2009 03:08 #10

  • Box Forge
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Jared, the best way to pass the CF is to work hard and study hard and show u on the test day over-prepared. Too many people look at the certification as something that is way out there and very difficult to obtain. I contend that the CF test is something that anyone practicing farriery professionally should be able to pass with little difficulty.

Written Exam:
Get in a habit of studying daily just as if you were preparing for a college exam; I recommend mainly two books for the CF: Butler's P2 or P3 and John Hickman's book called "Hickman's Farriery" second edition. Hickman's is an easy read that easy to understand and contains a lot of valuable info. And I'm sure you probably already have Butler's book and I will add that this is probably where most of the test questions will be taken directly from. Also there are some study guides out there that will help you understand the format of how the questions are going to be asked on the tests. These are great practice tests but do not depend on them as it is not enough to study them alone. I liked to use them in the following manner: look up each answer and find the correct answer, read the whole section of the book regarding that subject matter, look up all of the incorrect answers that were given in the sample question and know what they are and what questions could be asked about them. This method proved very helpful for me on both the CF and CJF. The main thing to understand is this is not a memorization exercise, but a learning exercise.

Shoe Display:
I would discourage the use of handmades on the CF shoe display for the fact that this opens up more things to be critiqued and judged. If you turn in handmades, every nail hole, fullering and just the forging and finish of the shoe will be judged as well. If you used kegs, nail placement and fullering isn't considered so long as you don't crush or otherwise mess up a nail hole.(with the exception of your one nail hole to be stamped outside the fullering) You do not have to buy the patterns, but if you have a hard time making your fronts look like fronts and your hinds look like hinds, they can be helpful as they are shaped more like "table shoes" but don't turn them in with your display. Page 11 of the guide says "While no specific patterns are designated or specified, candidates should work from pattern plates/ hooves. Candidates may use patterns of their own design or purchase a set of pattern plates from the AFA." the main thing is that all front or hind shoes have to be made to fit the same front or hind foot. Keep in mind that if you use a wedge pad, it will need to be fit full and beveled down to the shoe so a larger shoe will be needed, etc. Also keep in mind, you will be given 30 mins. at the test to repeat a modification and fit it to a pattern that they will provide. This is the reason I would recommend a keg shoe w/ an arc welded bar. You will have a chance to prove your forging skills on handmades in the CJF test, I would only do what is asked of me on the CF. I will save the modification justifications and uses for another night.

Shoeing practical:
The best advise I can offer on the practical is don't get carried away with your trim. Be conservative, but if a little needs to come off, take it off as it will hurt your A/P balance and your nailing. You have an hour to apply two keg shoes, this is more than enough time. If you fit clips everyday and are afraid the shoe might slip back when nailing w/o them, then put clips on them an burn em on. But if you're ok w/ nailing them on unclipped, then don't use up the time drawing clips b/c as I discussed on the shoe display, this opens you up for more to be judged such as the clip itself will be judged as well as the clip fit and if you draw an ugly clip, then you have to spend time rasping it into shape. As I said above, only do what is asked of you. Save your time for using a sanding block and getting a good fit and finish. When I took my CF I did everything just as I was doing in my everyday work, I hot fit him and had him nailed up with 10 mins left to sand and when I passed my CJF I had 9 mins. to sand and that was after burning up two shoes and having to start over. I'm not bragging, I'm trying to show you that they give you plenty of time if you develop a system. Know what order you are going to do everything in, know exactly at what point you will call for a judge on your trim and fit, know exactly how long it takes you to clinch two feet an finish them, know how long it take you to nail, know how long it takes you to trim,etc. clock yourself at work and use these times to develop your system.

I feel like I've written a book but the main thing to remember is this is a learning journey and if you apply yourself during this process and carry the habits over into your everyday routine of practicing and studying the amount of learning will astound you. But you can't stop when you pass a test, but rather let the test help you develop good study and practice habits that you carry throughout your career. Don't give up, not everyone passes the first time. Don't get worked up on test day, talk to the testers and journeyman candidates for pointers, they aren't out to get you and if you do what the book asks you to do EXACTLY, you WILL PASS. Best of luck to you and any one else out there.

If anyone is testing in Kentucky in 2 weeks, come hollar at me, I will be there. I have a friend that will be taking his Journeyman Shoeing Practical.
Phillip Box, Jr., CJF
AFA#9007
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RE:Certification AFA CF 19 Oct 2009 04:00 #11

  • T. Wm. HALL
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Jared,

I found my shoes, and took some pictures for you. At my CF test, I had to duplicate my Square Toe, the examiner felt that my display shoe wasn't a crisp enough, and my toe was too broad. My clips were a little thin at the base, and I was critiqued some for not matching to my pattern EXACTLY. The shinier shoe on the far right is the pattern that I used for my Hinds. Make sure that not only do they match the pattern, but they also match one another EXACTLY!! Sight through your nail holes, and make sure that your shoes are FLAT FLAT FLAT!!!

There are a lot of improvements that I would like to have made and would do different if I had to. I did pass all of my modifications, but I did struggle. It was a huge challenge, and I went through a lot of propane, and sleepless nights.....



Trevor Wm. Hall, CF
Hall's Horseshoeing
Redmond, Oregon U.S.A.
www.Hallshorseshoeing.com


He that would perfect his work must first sharpen his tools. ~Confuscius
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RE:Certification AFA CF 20 Oct 2009 01:08 #12

Philip

Thank you for taking the time to reply, would you suggest that I use a plate pattern or use a shoe as a patter.


Trevor

Thanks man, I'm sure glad you took the time to put them up Are they all kerk standard size ones? or did you use different size for diff mods. I know you bar shoe is handmade. Why did you choose to add check into the heel opposite your trailer and not add checks into all the shoes?


Thanks everyone!
Jarred Oates
Oates Equine Service's
Farrier-Massage-Aromathearpy-Training

Hocking College Equine Science
(farrier, equine health, and wilderness horsemanship)
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RE:Certification AFA CF 20 Oct 2009 02:05 #13

  • T. Wm. HALL
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oatey_hocking wrote:
Trevor

Thanks man, I'm sure glad you took the time to put them up Are they all kerk standard size ones? or did you use different size for diff mods. I know you bar shoe is handmade. Why did you choose to add check into the heel opposite your trailer and not add checks into all the shoes?
Jared,

I used different sizes for my modifications. I used a size 0 pattern for both my fronts and hinds. But I had to step up to 1's for my trailer and extended heeled shoes, and scale down to a 00 for my square toe.

On my medial branch of my trailer, I actually Hardy-Cut my heel to fit, that is why it gives it the appearance of being checked.

On the fronts, I only had to step up to a 1 on my wedge-pad shoe as to allow for the bevel of the pad to appropriately fit my pattern.
Trevor Wm. Hall, CF
Hall's Horseshoeing
Redmond, Oregon U.S.A.
www.Hallshorseshoeing.com


He that would perfect his work must first sharpen his tools. ~Confuscius
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RE:Certification AFA CF 20 Oct 2009 02:33 #14

jarred ,thanks for starting such a good thread. T-Hall,between your photos and the the writings of Phil Box and the others this is very helpful and educational,i would say this is one of the best threads going on here.thanks guys.-gary
Gary W. Atchison-Mustang Farrier Service-Hillsboro Texas
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RE:Certification AFA CF 20 Oct 2009 02:49 #15

  • chad rice
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I agree with Gary this is a great thread, so thanks Jared.

I am taking my test in Florida in Nov. will anybody from the forums be there?

Thanks Trevor and Phillip for the tips. Seeing your shoe board really helps me to see what they are looking for. I know that when any body gets through there is always critiquing to do, but that looks good to me. Phillip thanks for the info. on studying for the written I am always looking for new reading material and I do not have the Hickman book.


Thanks, Chad
Chad Rice, CF
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