Duplo Glue-On Shoe

During the Duplo Workshop 2013, Josef Thalhammer demonstrated how to use a Duplo Horseshoe as glue-on shoe. He uses glue-on tabs made by The Happy Horse, the two-component adhesive Vettec Adhere and the instant adhesive Loctite 401.

Preparation of the Hoof

The preparation of the hoof before glueing a Duplo Horseshoe is basically the same as before nailing it. It is important that the weight-bearing surface of the wall is rasped completely plain.

Any growth rings and the stratum tectorium are removed from the hoof wall where the glue-on tabs will be placed. This way, there is a clean and even surface for the adhesive. We have applied this technique for many years but the quality of the hoof horn has not changed for the worse.

In contrast to standard shoeing, there is no bevel around the weight-bearing surface of the hoof wall. The less distance there is between hoof and glue-on tabs, the better it is! If there was a gap created by a bevel, dust and dirt would prevent the adhesive from sticking.

Preparation of the Horseshoe

Size and shape of the shoe have to match the hoof as well as possible. Mark the exact hoof shape on the horseshoe with a permanent marking pen.

Use an angle grinder to adjust the shoe exactly to the marked shape around the toe and quarters. The shoe may only overlap the hoof behind the last nail hole. You can completely remove the knobs.

Then you adjust the length of the glue-on tabs. The last tab should be positioned around the last nail hole.

Heat the outer face of the horseshoe with a hot air gun until the plastic material starts gleaming.

Then heat the border of the glue-on tabs that will be welded to the horseshoe. The tabs themselves must not be heated; otherwise, they lose their rough structure and the adhesive won’t stick to them.

Weld the horseshoe to the glue-on tabs on a cold surface. Afterwards, the horseshoe has to cool down for some minutes to tighten the connection between the two components.

Finally, remove overlaps and sharp edges with the angle grinder.


Shortly before glueing the shoe on the hoof, grind the hoof walls with coarse-grained sandpaper to roughen their surface.

We use acetone to remove dust and grease from hoof and horseshoe.

Apply a thin layer of adhesive around the contact surface and attach the horseshoe to the hoof. Then you can place the hoof on the ground.

Glue the tabs to the hoof wall with a high-quality instant adhesive. Evenly press each tab against the hoof from the bottom up and fixate it with two fingers until the adhesive has dried.

When all tabs are attached, you seal their borders. This way, there won’t be any air left between the hoof and the tabs.

You can improve the effect and the durability of the instant adhesive by using an activator.

Removing the Horseshoe

If the glue-on shoe has been correctly applied, it is as long-living as a nailed horseshoe.

We recommend detaching each tab individually with a spattle to remove the horseshoe.