View Full Version : Trying a new bit - don't shout at me!!
27th October 2009, 08:23 PM
I definitely need to get some brakes before I go on the beach ride so I did a bit of research and spoke to the woman at the tack shop, I said I was concerned about a dutch gag (recommended by my instructor) being too harsh/strong so we've sort of met in the middle!!
I got a 'loop ring (wilkie) french link snaffle'!! I should have taken a photo to show you but I never thought. It's basically got the big circle like a normal snaffle but then within that it's got 2 smaller sections, 1 at the top to attach the cheek piece to and 1 at the bottom for the reins. It is meant to help you have more breaks but not be as harsh as a gag.
OK now you can shout at me lol!
27th October 2009, 08:39 PM
I don't use a bit on my 9 year old TB ex racer, I ride him in a Dr Cooks bitless bridle and we have great brakes :)
27th October 2009, 08:51 PM
a wilkie is essentially a gag really, but they can be very helpfull bits we have quite a few in them at work they are kind of a nice inbetween bit without being a strong as some gags but a little more than a snaffle, they also can be really good for lifting and controling shoulders if you have something quite wiggly
The Little Magician
27th October 2009, 09:23 PM
I am not going to shout at you, I have a dobbin that goes along most of the time in a french link loose ring snaffle, easy to stop - hard to keep going!
One year he decided that if we had a canter, he wanted to be in front no matter what, he would put his chin on his chest and pee off with me, this experience frightened the hell out of me. So I tried various bits, including a single jointed pelham, he pulled my arms out around a 15 mile country canter, but I could stop him when I desperately needed too.
I dont know what was going on in his head for that 9 - 12 months, and then suddenly it stopped and he went back to his old dobbin self. A HUGE shock to my system!
Any way what I am getting at is, you want to go on this ride, you want him to gain the experience, but you also need to feel more confident in the fact you can stop him, which could also work in your favour as the more calm you are the better he should be, and above all else you need to stay safe.
Go for it and have fun.
27th October 2009, 09:30 PM
Thanks guys, nobody shouting yet then lol!
Little Magician - mid life crisis perhaps?!!
27th October 2009, 09:31 PM
Quite honestly bits are only as harsh as the hands at the end of the reins.
It is better in my opinion to do one light pull in a 'harsh' bit and get the horse listening to you, than be hauling away in a 'soft' bit.
27th October 2009, 09:56 PM
Ive seen these bits before, they dont looks too harsh to me
27th October 2009, 10:16 PM
I don't think you're going to get shouted at at all! If I took Mac to the beach I'd be wanting every bit known to mankind in his mouth! As has been said an bit is only as harsh as the hands it's used by and you want to be able to feel safe and secure and not be constantly battling him.
27th October 2009, 10:46 PM
The Wilkie is a great bit for just that little extra control. Another to consider is the Myler combination - it has a snaffle bit along with a noseband that is linked to the bit.
Use the top rein and you have a normal snaffle and if he gets strong use the bottom rein which then activates the noseband. So you have a bit and bitless in one go.
Watched it in use on a friends really strong horse and her control problems were sorted without resorting to a stronger bit.
27th October 2009, 11:00 PM
Double reins though?! Eeeek!!
28th October 2009, 10:05 AM
Double reins are actually pretty easy to get used to, I rode with them as a small child and never had any problems, after a couple of sessions you probably won't even notice you've got them instead of a single rein.
28th October 2009, 01:45 PM
Definately not going to shout at you - I think it can be a really good bit.
I used a wilkie type bit with Doris for a while, you'll see it if you check out my siggy picture :)
Doris came in a dutch gag and I wanted to change it but she was strong at the time and I needed more than a snaffle. I tried the wilkie and she was fantastic in it.
I only changed back to a snaffle this year because we started doing dressage and wilkies are not BD legal.
Let me know how it goes x
28th October 2009, 02:03 PM
Sounds like a good compromise to me CDR x
My Crazy Clan
28th October 2009, 03:03 PM
Hope he takes to it well :)
29th October 2009, 07:14 PM
I sympathise with your lack of brakes. When I first bought my TB she would be out of control in a snaffle when in company. So I got a kimblewick (not alot of choice of bits then) which I used for events or riding with more than one or two others. I'd rather be in control with a slight contact than hauling away on a gentle bit.
I continued to school in the german hollowmouth snaffle and soon we could use that in company and still be in control.
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