Join Date: May 2010
Location: Queensland, Australia
To me, a good false tail is one that isn't too heavy and isn't falling apart. It should preferably not appear like a toilet brush at the top.
I paid $190 for Maggie's false tail and it's made by Champion Tails (bought from Saddleworld). The Champion Tails website is playing up a bit at the moment. I quite like my falsie and it looks decent when I put it in. The downside of having a black tail is that her tail sunbleaches so I have to regularly dye it to match her falsie. I don't have any pics of her with it in as I've only used it at home as I'm playing around with placement at the moment to make sure I can put it in and not have it looking obviously fake. The quality is quite good. It's not heavy and isn't falling apart - and it really wasn't taken care of while I moved houses and got a little messy but hasn't lost many of the hairs. I do condition and brush it regularly when I'm using it though.
The thickness generally depends on the horse. Maggie can pull off any thickness as her tail is naturally thick at the top and thins on the way down. My old horse Joe, his tail was thin from top to bottom and so only looked good with a filler tail.
Sorry, I haven't really answered all of your questions but I hope it's enough - my brain's a jumbled mess leftover from ANZAC day celebrations!
...Every rider has that one horse that changes everything about them...