Measuring a bit for a welsh pony? - The Horse Forum
 
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post #1 of 8 Old 03-27-2012, 10:33 AM Thread Starter
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Measuring a bit for a welsh pony?

We need to buy a bit for our 14 hh welsh gelding. On the tack store websites it says, "All bits come in 5 inches". I think 5 inches might be too big. I've always had 15 or 16 hh horses and never have bought a bit for a pony before. So I don't know how to measure a bit size for him! How can I know what size bit he needs?
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post #2 of 8 Old 03-27-2012, 11:36 AM
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A 14hh pony's mouth isn't going to be THAT small. I had a 4.5 inch bit on my 12.1h welsh and it was a tad on the small side. I would say 5 inch might well be reasonable, but there's really no way to know for sure (what size noseband/flash strap does he take? my anglo has a cob-sized muzzle and takes a 5-5.5 inch bit). Your pony could have a large muzzle for his height, or he could have a small muzzle, and the width of the muzzle where the bit sits is what decides the size of bit the pony needs.

All you can do is try a few bits that you know the sizes of, and post pics of them in the pony's mouth on here. There is a bit size measurer available through an Australian website if you're interested, the website is called Bit Bank Australia and you'll be able to find it if you Google it.

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post #3 of 8 Old 03-27-2012, 11:39 AM
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You measure the same way you do for a larger horse.....you can use a piece of rope or hose, try different sized bits or use one of the measuring tools.
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post #4 of 8 Old 03-27-2012, 12:50 PM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by themacpack View Post
You measure the same way you do for a larger horse.....you can use a piece of rope or hose, try different sized bits or use one of the measuring tools.

Could you explain how to do that?
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post #5 of 8 Old 03-28-2012, 07:01 AM
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You put the rope or hose in the horse's mouth in the same place where you would put the bit, and then you mark where the horse's lips are. Measure the distance between your marks, add 1/4 inch for fixed or protected rings (full cheek, fulmer, d-ring, eggbutt, goldwing[I think that was the name, it has loose rings that are guarded by metal flares off the mouthpiece so it doesn't pinch] etc) and 1/2 inch for loose rings. I think those are the amounts you add? And then it depends on if the bit you want to use has no joints, one joint, or more than one joint. A bit that breaks will need to be bigger because it will sit curved in the horse's mouth, but with two or more joints it won't use up as much size in the curve so you don't have to add as much.

My boy is in a 5 inch nonjointed kimblewick, and a 5.5 inch French link eggbutt... he is 15.1hh but he has Arab in him so he has a kind of smallish muzzle.

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post #6 of 8 Old 03-28-2012, 01:11 PM
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I had a top-of-the-line medium welsh pony mare who wore a cob sized bridle. She rode in a 5in slow twist and every now and then a 5.5in d-ring. It depended on the person riding her, but both bits fit her very nicely.
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post #7 of 8 Old 03-28-2012, 01:16 PM
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This is a more complicated approach than I've taken, but sounds like a nifty way to do it:
Measure Your Horse’s Mouth for Proper Bit Sizing | EquiSearch

We have always just used the hose or rope, slipped it into the mouth and marked on both sides where it sits, slipped it out and measured the distance between the marks. I do like the idea above of having it mounted on a headstall as that would make it easy to do as a one-person activity vs. having to try to get it in place, keep it in place and mark on both sides of horse's mouth.
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post #8 of 8 Old 03-28-2012, 05:28 PM Thread Starter
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Okay thanks....I did put my 5 in. bit in his mouth to see. It was maybe 1/2 in to big...so the tack store is ordering a 4 1/2 in. d ring. Hopefully it will fit.
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