Making a bridle ( part 1 ) - The Horse Forum
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post #1 of 3 Old 07-03-2009, 04:01 AM Thread Starter
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Making a bridle ( part 1 )

For those of you who may be interested - here's how to make a bridle

Making a Bridle


Firstly, here are all the tools needed. These are JUST for bridle making, there are other tools for making harness and other saddlery. The price of these tools totals around £1000!

From the top, in their ‘rows’ left to right, they are:

Splitting machine, lighter, gas blow-torch, lead block, stain, staining stick and polishing cloth

Scissors, screw-crease, edge-shave, rawhide hammer

*****ing irons, scribe, compasses, chisels, various hole punches, head-knife, cutting board, plough gauge

Pliers, beeswax, stitching awl, steel rulers, pencil, pin-hammer, polishing horn, looping sticks
PIC 1.jpg


The butt of leather is laid out on the cutting table. Different parts of the cow are used for different jobs. We only use the finest English leather.
PIC 2.JPG

Then all the various width straps required for the parts of the bridle are cut. For this, a plough gauge is used.
PIC 3.JPG

Here, Paul starts with the headpiece. In it’s ‘raw’ state, having the straps cut to the correct length. PIC 4.JPG

Now the ‘points’ are made (to pass through the buckles) next, Paul is ‘feathering’ the ‘point’ – taking off some of the leather to make it easier to pass through the buckle of the throatlash.
PIC 5.JPG
PIC 6.JPG

Now a crew-punch is used to make the hole where the buckle will go.
PIC 7.JPG

The piece of the throatlash where the buckle will be, needs to be ‘thinned’ or ‘split’ so it can be folded over and the buckle stitched on. This is the splitting machine in action. It’s the most expensive tool!
PIC 8.JPG

Here, a hole is made at the ‘split’ of the headpiece – it stops the leather splitting up the headpiece where the cheek pieces and throatlash are.
PIC 9.JPG


Now, the edge-shave is used to….yes, to shave the edges of the headpiece, and all the other pieces of bridle. It takes off the ‘sharp’ edge and makes it smooth and rounded. The parts which will be stitched together are not shaved, to give a smooth join where the leather is stitched together.
PIC 10.JPG

Continues ......
Nutty Saddler is offline  
post #2 of 3 Old 07-04-2009, 12:35 PM
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Join Date: Nov 2007
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Wow, lots of tools needed and time consuming! I can see why the quality, hand-made bridles cost so much...
luvs2ride1979 is offline  
post #3 of 3 Old 07-09-2009, 01:31 AM Thread Starter
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bump , give those who missed it a second chance
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