How bits work

Discussion in 'Training Horses' started by GoneRama, Jul 18, 2011.

  1. GoneRama

    GoneRama Gold Member

    Ok so recently I have come to discover that there seems to be a lot of different interpretations on how different bits work. I thought that it would be a great topic of discussion (and rather informative) to put up photos of common and the not so commonly used bits and ask for your interpretation of the bit and how it works.

    So let's start with a simple single jointed loose ring snaffle, we will go JP style for something different.
  2. info on archie

    info on archie Well-known Member

    After not riding in bits for quite a few years, I will be watching this thread with great interest-good idea GR.
  3. GoneRama

    GoneRama Gold Member

    That is what the first bit for discussion looks like.
  4. GoneRama

    GoneRama Gold Member

    All righty then my interpretation of this bit is......

    No poll pressure, nice soft direct action bit. The single joint means there is a nutcracker action on the jaw however the curved mouthpiece apparently softens the effect. Loose ring means there's a little more play with the mouthpiece. Can be pulled through the mouth but this can be stopped due to a) correct training and b) adding a chin strap.
  5. Nikiwink

    Nikiwink Well-known Member

    To add to the discussion though i'm sure its been posted before - has a very interesting section on the effect of different tack.
  6. GoneRama

    GoneRama Gold Member

    That's a good site NikiWink and I'm guessing that is what you base your interpretation of various bits off.

    Anyone else?
    Last edited: Jul 18, 2011
  7. TBPA

    TBPA Well-known Member

    It's a bugger to clean because if you are naughty like me and let your horse eat grass while bridled. It ends up coated all round the rings and in your bridle buckles, gross.
    Other features I see with this bit that would factor in my decision to use it
    The lose ring allows it to slide which is meant to help with horse who 'hang' on the bit. It must be correctly fitted as the sliding of the rings can cause pinching of the lips. The one shown is quite thin so would usually be chosen again for a horse that likes to hang or does not have much space in it's mouth. The one shown is of some metal other than straight stainless steel to either increase foaming, palate-ablity or just look pretty in a bridle with brass features.
  8. BitBankAustralia

    BitBankAustralia Well-known Member

    Great Thread, GR, thanks for starting it. I would add, re: slipping through the mouth, that it can be preventing by supporting the bit with the outside rein (if pulling to the inside and vice versa)

    Yes, direct action, yes with more play for the rider or the horse, yes, can get pinching so needs to be fitted correctly (with a single join, this means a finger width or so of space between cheek and ring when the bit is at rest).

    For more on bits, you can read my blog: Bit Bank Australia- horse bits, snaffles, weymouths, gags, pony bits - The Bit Bank Lady's Blog though I have been naughty and not updated it for a while- any suggestions for a new post?? :D
  9. GoneRama

    GoneRama Gold Member

    No worries BBA. Yes, have to agree about having a supporting outside rein to prevent slipping through the mouth.

    I will let a few more replies go up before I put another bit up for discussion. Remember there are no wrong answers only differences of opinion :))
  10. Lauren

    Lauren Gold Member

    Ohhh good timing. The other day I was browsing bits and found quite a few that I didn't quite understand how they worked, what sort of horse they're suitable, and what sort of rider (Obviously all bits aren't suited to a rider with 'harsh' hands, but are some bits more forgiving (besides the obvious snaffle)).
  11. Lauren

    Lauren Gold Member

    I would just like to say.. WHAT the heck!

  12. GoneRama

    GoneRama Gold Member

    Oh yep Lauren I see how that works.

    It's a western shank bit with the shanks being 'hinged' I suppose you'd call it.

    The shanks rotate around the mouthpiece to activate the chain only whilst leaving poll pressure out of it.

    The loop of chain between the ends of the shanks on the right is to stop the shanks separating too much ie keep them together.

    It has a lip strap or in this case a lip chain to hold the chin chain in place so that it doesn't ride too far up behind the jaw.

    There's some copper inlay to promote salivation and the port in the middle of the mouthpiece allows some tongue relief.

    It's basically a bit to activate the chain behind the jaw only.

    The whole contraption looks ghastly because of all the chain which could be replaced with leather/straps and do exactly the same job but wouldn't look so flash and blingy!

    An 'English' version of this bit would look something like this.......

    Ok mods I have rubbed the writing out on that pic there^^^ on photobucket but it's being a biatch and not playing the game. Stoopid thing.
    Last edited: Jul 18, 2011
  13. Sportsmans Image

    Sportsmans Image Active Member

    i saw a bit today that i never knew it even existed. i would like to know how it works and what its for.

    it was loose ring and like 2 snaffles in one. the joints were towards different sides and off center if that makes sense?

    the two lines of metal were on top on one another and not joined together just on the same ring:confused:

    good thread! i will be reading
  14. GoneRama

    GoneRama Gold Member

    I know the one you're talking about SportmansImage **)
    Give me a few moments and I'll find a piccy to see if I'm on the right track.

    ETA: OMG this is driving me insane, I know the bit you're talking about but the only pics I can find of the actual one you describe are all tiny.
    Last edited: Jul 18, 2011
  15. Lauren

    Lauren Gold Member

  16. Lauren

    Lauren Gold Member

    Thanks for the explanation GR, the english one looks a lot less scary!
  17. GoneRama

    GoneRama Gold Member

    Edited........Lauren beat me too it! Nice googling Lauren!
  18. GoneRama

    GoneRama Gold Member

    Ok so as far as I can see the idea of the W bit is two points of pressure on the upper pallet.

    People I am ashamed to know used to brag about the fact that they had bent a twisted wire version of this bit on a horse :( I dunno about you but I would be sick to the core to even use such a contraption let alone use it with enough force to bend it :eek:
  19. Sportsmans Image

    Sportsmans Image Active Member

    yes!!! thats the one!:D

    now what is it used for?

    ETA: wouldnt that be so annoying and how can the bottom joint put any pressure on the roof anyway because the other bit is in the way?

    eww they bent it!!! as in broke it? F*** id like to bend one of those in their mouths:(

    im quite happy here with my myler snaffle or any french linked snaffle.... my boy would have a fit with any of that in his mouth
    Last edited: Jul 18, 2011
  20. GoneRama

    GoneRama Gold Member

    Well when the bit is in the horses mouth it doesn't hang down like it does when it's on the bridle. When you apply pressure to the reins it pulls back against the bars/tongue of the horse and thus the double mouth pieces would sit flat across the tongue and push up into the pallet.

    Well that's my logic anyway.

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