Breaking in new tack - The Horse Forum

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post #1 of 11 Old 08-04-2013, 03:52 AM Thread Starter
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Breaking in new tack

Hallo there!

I am so used to buying and looking after second hand tack that, that now that I finally want to start using the new bridle for Star, I have now idea what to do with it! Do I oil it first to let it soften a bit? Any advice will be much appreciated. :)

Thanks!
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post #2 of 11 Old 08-04-2013, 06:13 AM
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Any new bridle leather should be soft enough to use. Just keep it clean and oiled.
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post #3 of 11 Old 08-04-2013, 07:22 AM
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If you don't mind a darker color and it is good quality leather-soak it in olive oil. I keep a ziploc bag of it just for this purpose. I had never heard of it prior to a couple of years ago-but if is wonderful! I soak it a minimum of overnight, then take it out and wipe it and let it sit another day or so. Makes it buttery soft.

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post #4 of 11 Old 08-04-2013, 08:31 AM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by trailwalker View Post
Any new bridle leather should be soft enough to use. Just keep it clean and oiled.
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Thanks trailwalker, this one is a little hard though. Not overly hard, but not super soft and pliable either. I am ashamed to admit that South African leather is not near as good in quality as English leather.

Quote:
Originally Posted by franknbeans View Post
If you don't mind a darker color and it is good quality leather-soak it in olive oil. I keep a ziploc bag of it just for this purpose. I had never heard of it prior to a couple of years ago-but if is wonderful! I soak it a minimum of overnight, then take it out and wipe it and let it sit another day or so. Makes it buttery soft.
Well, it's black so a darker colour would make it, black-black, which is good. ;) Won't it smell a little funny from the olive oil though? Do you think one can do this with leather oil too?
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post #5 of 11 Old 08-04-2013, 09:23 AM
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Olive oil doesn't leave an odor. I worried about that, too, when I changed to it.
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post #6 of 11 Old 08-04-2013, 10:19 AM Thread Starter
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Olive oil doesn't leave an odor. I worried about that, too, when I changed to it.
Thanks boots! Now to figure out how I will steal my mom's olive oil without her noticing...
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post #7 of 11 Old 08-04-2013, 10:29 AM
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If you're too scared to soak leather in oil - like I was! - you can commit to oiling it after every ride for a spell, too. I bought a gorgeous and spendy CWD bridle that was a) the wrong colour and b)quite stiff. I cleaned it with quality cleaner after ever ride,then oiled it with neatsfoot. A trick I. Learned was to warm up the oil just a bit and use a brush to "paint" it on, let it sit for a moment, then rub it off with a cloth. Please keep in mind though that if you're using warn oil, you want it to dry out before you use it - another use for warm oil is to stretch leather.
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post #8 of 11 Old 08-04-2013, 12:18 PM
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I also use Neatsfoot oil on all my leather tack (only pure oil, never the compound). What I normally do is sit my bucket of oil out in the sun if it's summertime to let it warm up.

Then I'll paint the oil on with a sponge or a brush and work the leather a little bit. That opens up the pores in the leather and lets the oil really soak in. Because I do that with all my new tack, I can go for a year or so without oiling again. I'll also oil again anytime my tack gets wet because water will dry the leather out.
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post #9 of 11 Old 08-05-2013, 12:26 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JustDressageIt View Post
If you're too scared to soak leather in oil - like I was! - you can commit to oiling it after every ride for a spell, too. I bought a gorgeous and spendy CWD bridle that was a) the wrong colour and b)quite stiff. I cleaned it with quality cleaner after ever ride,then oiled it with neatsfoot. A trick I. Learned was to warm up the oil just a bit and use a brush to "paint" it on, let it sit for a moment, then rub it off with a cloth. Please keep in mind though that if you're using warn oil, you want it to dry out before you use it - another use for warm oil is to stretch leather.
I have a friend who often buys new headstalls. Every youngster he sells has it's bridle go with it.

He swears by warming the leather first. In summer, it's easy. He lays them on the black bed of his truck. In cooler months he actually puts them in a roasting pan in the oven until slightly warm. His wife is good-natured and has the wifely "eye roll" down!

I haven't done this, but his headstalls and reins are in wonderful condition in no time.
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post #10 of 11 Old 08-07-2013, 03:09 AM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by boots View Post
I have a friend who often buys new headstalls. Every youngster he sells has it's bridle go with it.

He swears by warming the leather first. In summer, it's easy. He lays them on the black bed of his truck. In cooler months he actually puts them in a roasting pan in the oven until slightly warm. His wife is good-natured and has the wifely "eye roll" down!

I haven't done this, but his headstalls and reins are in wonderful condition in no time.
Thanks boots, is this to prep the bridles for oiling? Seems you either heat the oil or the bridle. Wonder what will happen if you heat both. :P
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