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AmandaandTuff
Nov. 26, 2009, 03:59 PM
I bought a new (Camelot, nothing spectacular) bridle and was wondering what I can use to strip the wax and soften the leather.

I have pure neatsfoot to use once I get the wax off. How do I strip the wax?

hellerkm
Nov. 26, 2009, 05:16 PM
I bought a new (Camelot, nothing spectacular) bridle and was wondering what I can use to strip the wax and soften the leather.

I have pure neatsfoot to use once I get the wax off. How do I strip the wax?

I also bought a new bridle this week and here is what I did, I stripped with ammonia and water, then I neatsfoot oiled its then I used just a bit of Kirks castile soap to seal in the oil, one of the girls at the barn asked me what I do to my tack because her new bridles are NEVER as soft as mine. I told her what I wrote above. this is the first time I ever used the castile soap and I LOVE it much less tacky than normal addles soap IMO

AmandaandTuff
Nov. 26, 2009, 05:19 PM
What is the dilution of ammonia and water? Half and half?

hellerkm
Nov. 26, 2009, 06:02 PM
What is the dilution of ammonia and water? Half and half?
I do a bit less than half and half just for fear of drying out the leather too much and I use a scrubby pad when I strip it the first time not too hard though or you will scratch the leather just hard enough to scrap off the wax.

Lucassb
Nov. 26, 2009, 10:03 PM
Actually there is no need to strip the leather. Most people are in a big hurry to break in new tack, but the best way is to oil it lightly, working the oil in a bit by rolling the leather back and forth with your fingers, and then USING it - then clean as normal. If it hasn't darkened enough to suit you, oil again lightly, repeating the process of working the leather with your fingers to help it absorb. It will soon be nice and soft, and will last a long time with proper care.

hellerkm
Nov. 27, 2009, 07:36 AM
Actually there is no need to strip the leather. Most people are in a big hurry to break in new tack, but the best way is to oil it lightly, working the oil in a bit by rolling the leather back and forth with your fingers, and then USING it - then clean as normal. If it hasn't darkened enough to suit you, oil again lightly, repeating the process of working the leather with your fingers to help it absorb. It will soon be nice and soft, and will last a long time with proper care.

Don't you find that the oil does not penetrate the wax that is on the bridle? years ago I got a Beval bridle for christmas ( the only new bridle I got as a kid) and i dont' remember stripping it, I don't think i had wax on it?? but some of the less expensive bridles today seem to be coated in it, am I wrong??? And should I still just oil them over the wax and not worry about stripping them??

Lucassb
Nov. 27, 2009, 09:25 AM
Don't you find that the oil does not penetrate the wax that is on the bridle? years ago I got a Beval bridle for christmas ( the only new bridle I got as a kid) and i dont' remember stripping it, I don't think i had wax on it?? but some of the less expensive bridles today seem to be coated in it, am I wrong??? And should I still just oil them over the wax and not worry about stripping them??

Really good leather will often have a bit of a whitish substance on it when brand new that you can simply rub in with your fingers to address; it doesn't impede the absorption of oil at all. I am really particular about tack though, and try to buy the very nicest leather products I can afford - I feel it is a savings in the long run as good quality leather will last and look beautiful for many, many years. Maybe there is tack out there that needs to be stripped before using it, but I've never had any, and I've been doing this a looooooong time. I suppose you could always contact the manufacturer and inquire about what they recommend.

FYI generally the oil is best applied on the back (unfinished) side of new leather goods - it absorbs more readily there. If you gently warm the oil slightly and work it in with your fingers, rolling the leather to help it absorb, it works quite well. (Your hands will get oily and transfer the oil to all parts of the leather when doing this, including the front so there will not be any uneven coloration.)

I have bridles that are several decades old that are still in perfect show condition, and they have all been cared for this way. Over time it becomes the proper mahogany color and becomes very supple - I think the patina of nice, well cared for tack is much more flattering to a horse than new tack, but it does take time and consistent care to achieve.

AmandaandTuff
Nov. 27, 2009, 02:29 PM
I browsed through some older threads on this board and others and decided to try rubbing alcohol, saddle soap, then oil on my flash piece. It's much nicer to the feel, not waxy or too tacky. I'll have to do this to the reins, they're way too slippery from the wax.

klmck63
Nov. 27, 2009, 02:53 PM
Actually there is no need to strip the leather. Most people are in a big hurry to break in new tack, but the best way is to oil it lightly, working the oil in a bit by rolling the leather back and forth with your fingers, and then USING it - then clean as normal. If it hasn't darkened enough to suit you, oil again lightly, repeating the process of working the leather with your fingers to help it absorb. It will soon be nice and soft, and will last a long time with proper care.

This is what I do as well, but I don't think it would work on some of the less expensive leather products I have seen. I'm definitely in the save and scrimp until I can afford the really nice bridle, breastplate etc. if it's at all possible at the time.

On some of the less expensive tack there seems to be an almost plasticy layer of wax, in which case I'm sure you'd need to strip it. As per what to strip it with, ammonia seems to be popular for sure, but I've never tried it and would be very cautious!

hellerkm
Nov. 27, 2009, 03:40 PM
This is what I do as well, but I don't think it would work on some of the less expensive leather products I have seen. I'm definitely in the save and scrimp until I can afford the really nice bridle, breastplate etc. if it's at all possible at the time.

On some of the less expensive tack there seems to be an almost plasticy layer of wax, in which case I'm sure you'd need to strip it. As per what to strip it with, ammonia seems to be popular for sure, but I've never tried it and would be very cautious!

Each pony will have one Beval show bridle, but for their schooling bridles which have more of a chance of getting broken I buy cheaper stuff so that if it breaks ( during a fall or during a stupid kid move ) I can replace it cheaply and quickly, I do send the broken one to get fixed and I am now at the point where each pony has a schooling bridle, and a spare, I am now working to affording 3 nice Beval show bridles.
My best friend rode on the A circuit when we were growing up and they always bought really nice tack, to this day you can go into her tackroom and find the Beval and Jimmy bridles that she used as a kid and they are in PERFECT shape, good tack will last forever and someday I might be able to afford GOOD tack for schooling and showing but right now we do what we have to!

klmck63
Nov. 27, 2009, 03:59 PM
Each pony will have one Beval show bridle, but for their schooling bridles which have more of a chance of getting broken I buy cheaper stuff so that if it breaks ( during a fall or during a stupid kid move ) I can replace it cheaply and quickly, I do send the broken one to get fixed and I am now at the point where each pony has a schooling bridle, and a spare, I am now working to affording 3 nice Beval show bridles.
My best friend rode on the A circuit when we were growing up and they always bought really nice tack, to this day you can go into her tackroom and find the Beval and Jimmy bridles that she used as a kid and they are in PERFECT shape, good tack will last forever and someday I might be able to afford GOOD tack for schooling and showing but right now we do what we have to!

Oh, I never had anything nice until I got out of that stupid kid who might break something with a stupid mistake stage! :lol: I'm officially an adult now, so I guess I can be trusted! :lol: I still don't have a separate show and schooling bridle, though. No budget for that. I just clean and condition everything religiously!

My first horse that I had when I was young was all decked out in HDR, not fantastic quality but passable and not terribly expensive.

Good tack is definitely an investment but it also definitely lasts forever if you take care of it properly!

Lucassb
Nov. 27, 2009, 04:07 PM
You can always check Ebay, TOB classifieds, and the various consignment tack websites for great deals on high quality used bridles. I'd rather have a well cared for high end used bridle than a cheap plastic-y new one any day, and if you are willing to spend a bit of time searching, you can usually spend about the same on a good used bridle as you would on one of the cheap new ones.

hellerkm
Nov. 27, 2009, 04:17 PM
You can always check Ebay, TOB classifieds, and the various consignment tack websites for great deals on high quality used bridles. I'd rather have a well cared for high end used bridle than a cheap plastic-y new one any day, and if you are willing to spend a bit of time searching, you can usually spend about the same on a good used bridle as you would on one of the cheap new ones.

Good ideas! I do have two good consignment tack stores within a reasonable distance I will remember to check them each time I go in!

AmandaandTuff
Nov. 27, 2009, 05:50 PM
This is my new work bridle :) Still shopping for that show bridle. I just don't want to deal with the plastic feeling when I'm working her.

LegalEagle
Nov. 27, 2009, 06:34 PM
This is my new work bridle :) Still shopping for that show bridle. I just don't want to deal with the plastic feeling when I'm working her.



I think Findeight said put just a "glug" of ammonia into your bucket. To the horror of many on here, I did this with my new (at the time) Beval bridle and then oiled it and now it is perfect. It was taking oil unevenly before.