Help with bits - The Horse Forum
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post #1 of 6 Old 06-13-2012, 01:44 AM Thread Starter
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Help with bits

Hello,
I have a question about bits. I've been riding my 12 year old gelding in a loose ring O snaffle bit, which he does great in. It's never pinched his mouth and he's always been fairly responsive. Lately we've been getting back into english and starting very basics of eventing (we've been riding Western for a long time), and I've been noticing a ton of Dee ring snaffles out there...is this something that I should consider changing him to? I don't want to unnecessarily ruin his mouth, as he has a very soft mouth (pretty sure I could ride him in a shoelace).
Thanks!
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post #2 of 6 Old 06-13-2012, 01:49 AM
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It's a popular bit for hunters and jumpers. I think it's because those bits cannot be pulled through the mouth, which would be a disaster if you were jumping (I don't know, just guessing)

D rings also give lateral pressure from the bit, a lot like a full or half cheek.

Up to you.

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post #3 of 6 Old 06-13-2012, 01:53 AM
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I dont' think it will make a huge difference. There is some difference in feel from a loose ring snaffle, to a D ring, eggbut or full cheek. The major diffence being that the last bits don't have a mouthpiece that is "free" of it's rein attachment point.
The loose ring mouthpiece will stay in the same orientation (wont roll) at whatever angle the hrose holds his head , up or down , becuase the ring rotates instead of the mouthpiece. With the "ring" fixed to the mouthpiece, the mouthpiece is more solidly held by the rein connecter points. So, if the horse raises his head, there might be a bit more rotation of the mouth piece in his mouth.

I have heard it said that a solid bit can give the horse more "purchase" to lean on, while a loose ring does not. I dont' understand the mechanics of how this would be so. I use a loose ring almost exclusively.


The above poster raised good points aobut the different aspects of the side pieces.
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post #4 of 6 Old 06-13-2012, 07:27 AM
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I'm going somewhat disagree with tiny here. While the main part is the mouthpiece - I completely agree, some horses are very sensitive to what kind of rings you use. My qh absolutely hates O-rings because of the movement, but happy with the stable eggbutt, on opposite my paint while doesn't mind any type of rings clearly prefers O-rings that keep her entertained (and she manages to lean and lock on D or eggbutt).

If you switch to D you won't ruin your horse, but personally if he's happy in O-rings, why to spend money on new bit? BTW, lots of eventers here go in O-rings.
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post #5 of 6 Old 06-13-2012, 08:59 AM
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If it's not broke, why fix it? If your horse is happy with the bit he's in, I'd leave it alone. Just my 2 cents!
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post #6 of 6 Old 06-13-2012, 11:49 AM Thread Starter
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Thanks everyone!
I pretty much figured the same thing - he's always gone wonderfully in the loose O ring, so I'd best not mess up a great thing!
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