Big Bit For A Good Horse! HELP.

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Big Bit For A Good Horse! HELP.

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    06-21-2008, 03:54 PM
Big Bit For A Good Horse! HELP.

Lucky is soft, supple, gentle and EXTREMELY responsive to his rider in MOST situations. I rode him in just a halter and he did probably 50x better than he does if I ride him bridled. I would ride him in a hackamore, but he doesn't always respect the halter while leading, which we have been working on INCREDIBLY and he has much improved. The only thing is, if I ride him in a hackamore, it would be a gentle, leather nose band not a mechanical, similar to that of his halter and I'm afraid it might not offer enough attention grabbing, even though he's kind of a lazy horse to begin with, he's five, and he's stubborn and he does get goofy still. Sometimes he will want to eat grass, and when he does, he wants to eat grass! It's like a wrestling match and I can't imaging winning that with a hackamore on.

To make a long story short, lucky hates his bit and I am starting to. I love the idea of it, I just wish it was a little less shank.

It's a very heavy solid bit, it weighs about a pound, pound and a half to be honest.

It's a curb, but it has no port. It's a mullen mouth, not a straight bar, but the curved mullen mouths. Which is great, because lucky does not tolerate ported bits. Period. If you even touch the reins on a ported bit he stops in place and will not move until you change bits. And that's fine, I'm okay with that, I'd rather ride in a snaffle than a curb anyway BUT none of the snaffles I have fit him. They are all pony sized, and he's... well definitely not a pony! Now, the DOWNSIDE of that wonderful bit... is the shanks are 8 1/4" long. NO BODY needs that much leverage, period. That is way too much bit for me, way too much bit for him. If I even pull the rein a tiny bit, its like hell for his mouth, I feel like dancing on blades when I ride him in that bit, one wrong move and somebody's hurt.

The girl I bought him from said she only ever rode him in that, she has no idea what he may have been ridden in but he showed a few classes in western pleasure when he was two, and then did an entire season when he was three and four in that bit. I hate it though.

I am not experienced enough to deal with this bit properly and assure the happiness and safety of my horse.

It has to be changed.. The thing is, is I have no idea what bit to change to.

I want to do a snaffle, perhaps. Here are some bits I was eye-balling and let me know what you guys think. My price range is about $75, but I'd like to spend as little as possible because if the bit doesn't work out, I want to have the funds left to buy a different one.

Anyways, here is the list of the various bits I've been considering...
NOTE: Prices are without shipping. Add between 6 or 7 dollars for shipping, depending on bit weight.

The Colt Bit

Description: 5/8" sweet iron mullen port mouth. 5" cheeks. Colts that have a lot of natural flex can use this bit to learn curb pressure and help collect themselves without over flexing. This mouthpiece is especially gentle for tugging a young colt around. This mouthpiece is especially gentle for tugging a very young colt around. About $25.

Racing Dee

Description: Stainless steel Dee ring snaffle. 5" copper mouth. About $20.

Racing Dee w/ Roller

Description: Stainless steel D-ring snaffle with copper roller. Dees are 3" high, 2" wide. Middle link eliminates nutcracker effect. About $25.

Eggbutt w/ Roller

Stainless steel eggbutt snaffle. Has added copper roller to keep the mouth moist and soft. Middle link eliminates nutcracker effect. About $25.

Flexi Eggbutt

Description: Stainless steel eggbutt snaffle. 5" mint flavored flexi mouth. Gentle bit for a soft mouthed horse. Mint flavor encourages horse to accept the bit. 3" Rings. About $20.

Hackamore I was Considering

Description: 2-way adjustable leather with fleece lined nose. 7 1/2" shank. Adjustable curb chain. About $20.
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    06-21-2008, 08:09 PM
Green Broke
Honestly I ABSOLUTELY HATE those mechanical hackamores, I know you said it wasn't one, but It actually is.... I would go with the first curb.... I have one like it except it's the loose jaw one.... only because he's used to leverage....... my next choice would be one of the two snaffles with a roller.....
    06-21-2008, 10:40 PM
Personally I like any bit with a Billy Allen mouth piece. The barrel in the center prevents the nutcracker effect that snaffles and curbs have. The shanks (if you decide on a leverage bit) move independently of each other as well. It can be had with or without shanks - it is the mouth piece that was created by Billy Allen and produced my many bit makers.

Her are some links:,123_Billy...ts.html?page=1
They can also be had in a "D" ring snaffle.
    06-21-2008, 11:04 PM
Green Broke
Originally Posted by iridehorses
Personally I like any bit with a Billy Allen mouth piece. The barrel in the center prevents the nutcracker effect that snaffles and curbs have. The shanks (if you decide on a leverage bit) move independently of each other as well. It can be had with or without shanks - it is the mouth piece that was created by Billy Allen and produced my many bit makers.

Her are some links:,123_Billy...ts.html?page=1
They can also be had in a "D" ring snaffle.
I love the billy allen too, but almost ALL of them have 8 inch shanks....

The 9th one, the one with california shanks is the one I have it has 5 3/4" shanks so has little leverage....... and I know you are a parelli fan, so these shanks fit within his guidelines.....

It's a really nice bit and i'm really impressed by it, and I totally reccommend it!! It took me FOREVER to find one w/o long shanks...
    06-22-2008, 02:18 AM
Yes, I agree that any double-jointed bit will be much less severe than a single-jointed bit.
Keep in mind that a bit (or hackamore) is ONLY AS SEVERE AS THE HANDS USING IT. A snaffle in the wrong hands is many many times worse than a hackamore in the right hands.
Anyways, end of rant.
I personally like either the eggbutt or racing dee french link. They will eliminate any possible pinching associated with loose rings, and has a doible joint, so no nutcracker effect.
However, if you're planning on showing anytime soon, in western you have to use a shank (curb) bit.
    06-23-2008, 02:19 AM
Thank you, JDI...I ride a mechanical, and I really don't understand the vilifying of it any more than any other bit in the wrong hands. Hoover loves the mechanical, and responds much better than anything else I've used...the halter style isn't enough to get his attention, and he had started fighting the bit (a full cheek snaff).

If your horse has never had a hack before, I would recommend borrowing one from a friend and seeing what he thinks before you buy one. If you are used to the shanks and being careful of the pressure, I really don't see you hurting him in a hack. The important thing to remember is keeping the pressure slow and constant rather than jerking, and your hands sensitive. You can even switch the curb chain on the one posted for a leather strap. I believe that's considered an english hack.
    06-23-2008, 10:35 AM
The racing dee with roller looks almost exaxtly like the bit that we use on Twister except the one we have has shanks. They are grazing shanks so he can eat with it on. I have found it to be a really great all around bit. Not too harsh, not too easy. If you want just holler and I'll snap a picture for ya.
    06-24-2008, 02:15 PM
Could I use that colt bit for showing? I am not sure if its show legal because of the way they shanks are designed...

I decided to buy the Dee-Ring with the copper roller. I tried one of my barn managers egg butts, single break, and he did not stop mouthing the bit he jerked when I applied rein pressure. I could hear the bit clinking on his teeth, I tried lowering it and raising it and neither helped. I'm not sure if he's ever had a broken mouth piece in before to be honest... I think he was just broken out in a solid mouth piece. This shall be interesting. I'm positive the middle link will make the bit sit differently in his mouth. Wish me luck guys.

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