Join Date: Oct 2007
Location: Greenville area / SC
It's the leverage bits that riders need to know about concerning ratios. Excluding the mouth piece there are basically two components to the leverage bit. They are the Purchase and the Shank. (Both pieces together make up the Cheek).
The Purchase is the piece above the mouth that the bridle and curb strap (or chain) are attached to and the Shank is below - which the reins are attached to.
If the Purchase is 2" long and the Shank is 6" long then the ratio is said to be 1::3 - which is fairly mild. When the Purchase is 2" and the Shank is 8" then the ratio is said to be 1::4 which is on the more severe side. Now think how fast that changes if the Purchase is only 1" but the Shank stays the same - now you could be talking about a ratio of 1::8!
The ratio, say 1::3, means that for every 1 oz of pressure you apply by pulling back the reins, it's effect is multiplied by 3. What compounds this is how tight you make the curb chain. If you have it very tight then the extra force takes place sooner then if the chain is looser.
That is a very simple and fast explanation. Hope it helps.
I'm not arguing with you, I'm just explaining why I'm right.
Nothing sucks more than that moment during an argument when you realize you're wrong.
It's not always what you say but what they hear.