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Hey guys,

I'm about to move my mare up to a curb - just wondering if anyone has any suggestions for a nice transition bit? She's a very soft horse, doesn't need much, but it's definitely time for a new bit. She's in a loose ring snaffle right now.

Thanks!
 

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Well I would either get the 8'' with the D ring part (Because it would be SOOO handy to go back to snaffle if you need to without switching bridles), or the shorter shank one that will probably be easy for them to adjust to. I wouldn't normally put a green in the bridle horse in a long shank so fast, but some of them do well in it.
 

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Jr. Cowhorse bits are nice transition bits, I hear, but if your horse won't like the little bit of gag action there, I've found that these bits work good:



^ The curve in the shanks gives your horse a fair warning before the actual cue sets in.

 

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Start transitioning her with a bit a little like this:

This is a very soft bit that isn't hard on the mouth at all. If this bit works forever, great! It is easy on the mouth. If she is not as responsive in this bit, you can try a little harder bit, such as this:

If she isn't responsive in that one, (but she should be unless she was trained in something really big and allows absolutly no room for mistakes) then this bit would work also:

There are bigger bits out there, I know because the person who trained my horse trained her in one so I have to use one, but most horses don't. There are also shanked snaffles, but if you are going to compete, you shouldn't use one.
 

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Start transitioning her with a bit a little like this:

This is a very soft bit that isn't hard on the mouth at all. If this bit works forever, great! It is easy on the mouth. If she is not as responsive in this bit, you can try a little harder bit, such as this:

If she isn't responsive in that one, (but she should be unless she was trained in something really big and allows absolutly no room for mistakes) then this bit would work also:

There are bigger bits out there, I know because the person who trained my horse trained her in one so I have to use one, but most horses don't. There are also shanked snaffles, but if you are going to compete, you shouldn't use one.
OUCH! Those are NOT "transition" bits, those are for finished bridle horses.

OP, go with one of the billy allen's, you just can't beat them.
 

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I don't really believe in "transition" bits, simply because broken curbs put on 2x as much pressure and can cause more harm than good. Now I DO NOT agree with this guy on riding horses in halters, BUT, listen to what he says about the pressure of the bit. I take my 6-year olds and put them straight into a low-port Cavalry style curb bit. If your horse is nice and responsive and soft to the snaffle, he should have no problem going into it.

 

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Not much on the "snaffle" style mouth piece on a shanked bit. But I did have a cute little bit made by Keith Welling with a dog bone in the middle and short 5" swept back shanks. Most horses I put it on liked it. If you want to go with that style of mouth piece that might good to try.

Right now I have a Cactus bit with short 5" shanks with that square swivel port pictured above. My husband and I fight over that bit...lol...it works nice.
 

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I am certainly no bit guru, for sure. I pretty much do as my trainer says. My guy transitioned into a correction bit as soon as he was neck reining. I really love it. This is what we are riding him in....they are available from other places, I guess....I just love the balance of these, and to me the jointed mouth allows me to pick up a dropped shoulder, etc, whereas a one piece curb I don't think does. Must not bee too harsh, since this horse was ridden with out ANY bit until last fall.....

https://www.pards.com/products/productid/3763
 

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First off - Rick Gore? Oh god, I think the forum has seen enough of him around here.....That tom thumb video just drives me INSANE. The TT is a poorly designe bit an isn't very nice, but it is FAR from the "worst bit around"

I would not jump to a port or a correction mouthpiece right away. I would get something with a barrel, like I said earlier with the billy allens or perhaps a Myler. They are quiet, and it allows the horse to have similar action while getting used to the leverage as well as a solid mouthpiece. However, you still have lateral flexion with the barrel joint.
 

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I know, xD sorry about the Rick Gore-ness, but what he has to say factually is correct. You just have to laugh at his rhetoric... Anyway, what I meant to put out there was that a tom thumb is not a good "transition" bit for a horse coming off the snaffle into the curb. Cheers!
 

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I ride my mare in this bit and she loves it!! The only difference is mine has the dog bone in the middle to reduce the pressure on the bars. It is made from sweet iron and the horses love it BUT it does rust in 4-8 months and you will need a new one.
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Sweet iron is supposed to rust. It does not mean you need a new one. :)
 

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Sweet iron is supposed to rust. It does not mean you need a new one. :)
I feel like it totally defeats the purpose of the swivle shanks, no? The one I'm riding in now if rusted over and one shank is straight and the other is at a 30 degree angle. Lol. I usually stretch replacing it to yearly by drying the bit off after almost every use but hell, at $20 replacing it yearly shouldn't be a big deal if you own horses. ;o)
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