Snaffle Bits - The Horse Forum
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post #1 of 7 Old 11-13-2010, 07:29 PM Thread Starter
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Snaffle Bits

Ok, ive hit a slight problem lol. Im starting a 11 year old QH that I recently purchased from a friend, he is a western pleasure/working cow horse. He has alot of potential and really like to jump things. So I am wanting to start him off in english training, basics ex. Im looking for a bit to do that, I usually use a twist snaffle when I do my jumping on my other horse. But I honestly have no clue what to put a horse that has always had a simple shank in his mouth all his years so far. Any suggestions?

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post #2 of 7 Old 11-13-2010, 07:35 PM
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I personally would start off with a simple smooth snaffle. On a well trained horse, that should be all you need. Depending on the quality of training and riding he has gotten in the past though you may have to re-teach him how to be supple and flexible to each side.

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post #3 of 7 Old 11-13-2010, 08:09 PM
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I'd go for a plain single or double jointed snaffle.

I hate twisted bits, they are not plesent bits and if you need to use one then you seriously need to go back to basics with your horse and ride from your seat.

RIDE your horse FORWARDS and keep him STRAIGHT

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post #4 of 7 Old 11-13-2010, 09:31 PM
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Feel free to check out my OTTB thread. It will work well for you!
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post #5 of 7 Old 11-14-2010, 07:10 AM
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Originally Posted by smrobs View Post
I personally would start off with a simple smooth snaffle. On a well trained horse, that should be all you need.
I agree with this...and keep in mind that well trained western horses are typically very light in the mouth, used to a loose rein, and having their head, so if you're going to ride with constant contact, you're going to need to have very light hands or you'll have constant head tossing.

On the sixth day, God created the Quarter Horse.
On the seventh day, he Painted the good ones.
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post #6 of 7 Old 11-14-2010, 07:20 AM
Green Broke
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I always use double jointed loose ring snaffles, and I never have bit problems. I wouldn't use a twisted bit. I am a huge fan of soft bits.

I am currently using a double joint loose ring sweet iron/copper bit on my 3yo and it works well. Something like that might be worth a try?
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post #7 of 7 Old 11-14-2010, 08:30 PM
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Just start him back out with a snaffle of your choice...I personally prefer a simple loose ring. I will use a three peice if the horse has a low palate, but most horses are just fine in the simple single joint.

IF he was trained right, the transition back downwards should NOT be an issue...however, if the previous owners used the bit to control the horse, you will have to spend time getting him to respond in a simpler bit again...the advantage of the snaffle is the direct rein pressure...I don't care how long shanks are or how harsh a mouthpeice is, curbs are very easy to evade for a horse. The snaffle will allow you to be able to pull his head around, without confusing him. I start with lateral flexion...bending side to side until a horse is soft, and bends as I pick the rein up, rather than leaning on it.

"The ideal horseman has the courage of a lion, the patience of a saint, and the hands of a woman..."
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