So I always hear people saying "this bit is milder than that bit" or "this bit is really strong!" but sometimes I really wonder which is the 'mildest' and which is too strong?
I'm curious to see everyone's opinion on bits, put in order of mildest to strongest and why they think some are stronger or milder.
Disclaimer: I'm well aware that the strength of the bit great depends on the hands of the rider and the horse's specific mouth size and shape. But I'd really like to compare the bits apples to apples.
So let's pretend all of the bits are the same, medium thickness (not especially narrow or wide)
Let's pretend that it's the all same horse with an 'average' mouth, not an especially high or low pallet, not extra sensitive anywhere
Let's pretend it's being used by the exact same hands using the same amount of pressure
I just want to compare the physical mechanics of the bits individually.
So pop up a list of bits you think ought to be mentioned, in order of strength
I suppose a few to mention would be - mullen mouth, french links, single jointed snaffles, rubber bits?, twisted bits (and the variations of those), kimberwicks, waterfords, chain bits (I mention this because it seems to have widely varying ideas of it's strength), if someone wants to do western bits as well that would be interesting to learn about as well.
I like the Happy Mouth bits but you do have to watch them carefully for any signs of being chewed as that can leave sharp areas on them but horses that I've had that are nervous of their mouths and newly broke horses always seem to accept them better than a metal bit
My first pick is a lozenge or french link snaffle. Loose ring then either an eggbutt or full cheek.
Should those not work when I am jumping I will bump up to a 3 ring lozenge gag or a lozenge chetleham gag. Unless I am riding a hunter then I will go to a pelhem. Personally though I HATE pelhems. But as gags are not allowed in hunters its what I have to use.
I will do everything to stay in a snaffle but sometimes there is no other option. Any leverage bit I use though I always have double reins. I will never ride a gag with one rein, and refuse to use converters with pelhems.
Sorry the pics are so big, I just pulled them off google.
Cheltenham gag with double reins.
3 Ring gag/Pessoa gag/Elevator bit (it has a lot of names) with double reins
Recently i've been pondering bumping my girl up a bit level for cross country as she can get heavy and strung out once and awhile. However I don't want to take her out of a snaffle because she is so soft with it. So Allison Finch suggested I try a Kineton noseband. So thats my next purchase as it just works on nose pressure which is better for my super sensitive girl. ::: Sustainable Dressage - Tack & Auxillary Equipment - The Bridle & the Bit :::
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