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The Northwest Cowgirl 07-01-2012 03:11 PM

What kind of bit is this?
1 Attachment(s)
Hey guys,
A while ago I bought a english tack set for me and my 4 year old Quarter Horse. It came with two saddle pads, saddle and girth, and a bridle. I've been riding him in the saddle, but I'm not sure what kind of bit is on my bridle and if it's ok for my horse, or if it's too severe. I am currently riding him in basic snaffles, but I'd prefer not to have to go buy another for him (I'm on a budget:P).

I'm going to attach a picture I got from Google that is the same thing basically, and I'll try to get a pic up of my bit personally


texasgal 07-01-2012 03:12 PM


Dressage10135 07-01-2012 03:24 PM

Yep, that is a kimberwick.

The Northwest Cowgirl 07-01-2012 09:48 PM

Would it be too harsh for a horse that's been using snaffles?
I don't know my bits yet, don't want to put something too harsh in his mouth.

Mckellar 07-01-2012 10:20 PM

Hmm wonder how this thread could turn out! Lol, why do you need to change bits ? A bits only as harsh as you the rider make it but there's a big gap between snaffle and kimberwick. If your horse has only been ridden in a snaffle then I would t switch over right away. But again, why do you want to change bits and what kind of snaffle are you in. And how did you come up with a kimberwick

Woodland Eventer 07-01-2012 10:24 PM

Most people say a kimberwick is harsh on a horse's mouth. I disagree very much. Any bit can be harsh on a horse if the rider makes it so.

I switched my pony from a d-ring snaffle to a kimberwick(without a port) when she started getting too strong for me to ride. She freaked out because of the chain at first, but has been riding in it ever since we took the chain off. When I have a western horse that is transitioning into English riding, I use a kimberwick because it has all the elements of your traditional western bit(leverage, curb chain, port, etc.).

Delfina 07-01-2012 10:26 PM

It's far more expensive to hire a trainer to fix problems caused by cheaping out and using incorrect tack than to go buy a snaffle.

If your horse goes well in a snaffle, there's zero good reason to use a Kimberwick. Not only that but is your Kimberwick even the right size? Using the wrong size bit can cause all sorts of problems, including physical pain/sores.

Spend a few $$$ and get a correctly fitting, appropriate bit.

katec1991 07-02-2012 10:48 AM

If your horse is still going well in a snaffle, then I wouldn't change it.

But a Kimberwick really isn't that harsh of a bit, depending on where you hook the reins. If you hook them on the top hole, then it's not bad, but the bottom hole gives leverage and makes it a bit more 'harsh'.

I use this bit on my gelding. He responds to it very well.

rascalboy 07-04-2012 02:29 PM

I personally wouldn't use it.
It is almost impossible to have contact with the horse while using a ported leverage bit such as a kimberwick. As soon as the rider touches the reins, it puts pressure on the mouth, which is normal for any bit. However, a leverage bit also puts pressure on the underside of the jaw, which is basically thin skin and bone. And it also puts pressure directly on the poll, which is, again, thin skin and bone. In most disciplines the rider should establish a contact with the horse. This really can't be done with that kind of bit because contact actually punishes the horse.
Most horses can get used to the pressure and learn to ignore it (in Woodland Eventer's case, apparently). Depending on how often the rider uses the reins, you can actually deaden the horse to pressure applied to the underside of the jaw and/or poll.
I mean, it's basic logic people. You can't deny that the bit works by applying pressure to the mouth, jaw, and poll, regardless of how "gentle" a rider is.
A normal snaffle works on the fleshy part of the mouth only. (Some would argue that broken snaffles put pressure on the roof of the mouth as well but that's another story).
So yeah, please don't use that bit. It doesn't sound like you have enough experience to use it properly. Just go get another snaffle. Try and get a french link instead of a single jointed broken snaffle. They're like $10. I'm sure you can handle it.

Ray MacDonald 07-04-2012 02:35 PM

I agree with you mostly ^ But it isnt that harsh of a bit.. Really the only thing is the chain would be the harshest peice.. You can always get a leather or nylon curb. But I do agree that it is 'harsher' than a snaffle.

But I am not fully understanding what you mean by pressure is punishment?

I would stick to snaffles ;)

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