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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Mar. 14, 2006
    Location
    Dillsburg, Pennsylvania
    Posts
    174

    Default SmartPak Bridles - question

    So I received my new SmartPak bridle last week (specifically the Harwich fancy stitched, padded) and I'm having issues getting it to take oil.

    Before I put the bridle together I stripped it with water & ammonia and then gave it two coats of Effax leather oil and it did not darken one little bit. I didn't want to over-oil it, so I used it a few times, cleaned it again and then gave it a coat of Hydrophane darkening oil which typically darkens everything pretty significantly in my experience. Following the coat of Hydrophane, parts of the bridle (the laced section of the reins) seem to darken a smidge, but the rest of the bridle is still that ugly orange-y 'new' color. Any ideas of what to do??? Has anyone else had issues getting their SmartPak bridles to darken?



  2. #2
    Join Date
    Oct. 14, 2004
    Location
    Lexington, KY
    Posts
    1,352

    Default

    I ordered a Plymouth cheapie for my bridle-eating baby and its supposed to get here today (I ordered it on Tuesday....I <3 Smartpak..wish Dover would take some hints from SP!!). I will report back this weekend and let you know if I have the same problem. Have you tried warming the oil at all or calling Smartpak's customer service?
    ************************
    "I can't help but wonder,what would Jimmy Buffett do?"

    https://falllinefarmblog.wordpress.com/



  3. #3
    Join Date
    Mar. 14, 2006
    Location
    Dillsburg, Pennsylvania
    Posts
    174

    Default

    I warmed up the oil before applying it every time and nothing...

    I'll give SmartPak a call today and see what they say; I just thought I'd try here first, COTHers pretty much always have the answers!

    I do love SmartPak and I will say that for the price, the bridle is very, very nice. The leather is good quality and soft, it just seems to disagree with my oil... And yes, please report back with your findings Jersey! Thanks!



  4. #4
    zoryphoros Guest

    Default

    My Wellfleet fancy stitched figure eight took oil perfectly. Odd. Then again, I only used water, no ammonia, to get the waxy stuff off.



  5. #5
    Join Date
    Jun. 8, 2008
    Posts
    627

    Default

    My Wellfleet took oil just fine. I didn't strip the coating off though, I never do, never had a problem with it.



  6. #6
    Join Date
    Feb. 18, 2001
    Location
    New York, NY
    Posts
    7,151

    Default

    I wouldn't have stripped the bridle. I only ever strip a bridle if it doesn't take oil after the first coat.



  7. #7
    Join Date
    Mar. 14, 2006
    Location
    Dillsburg, Pennsylvania
    Posts
    174

    Default

    I've always been taught to strip a new bridle before oiling and have never had an issue with it before, and they've been nice bridles (Beval New Canaan, Vespucci, Edgewood). I guess I didn't think it would be a problem with this one... I'm not too worried about it as I only bought the bridle to school in, I just thought it would take oil a lot better.

    It does appear from the price point that the Wellfleet is a nicer bridle, I wonder if that's why they took the oil so well...better leather maybe??? Not that the Harwich is not nice leather, because it is, considering the price.



  8. #8
    Join Date
    Jun. 8, 2008
    Posts
    627

    Default

    I bought one of thier cheep Plymouth standing martingales, since I don't plan on showing in it, just using it on his girraffe days. It took oil just as well as the Wellfleet.



  9. #9
    Join Date
    Oct. 14, 2004
    Location
    Lexington, KY
    Posts
    1,352

    Default

    Reporting back with my findings. I had the same problem with my Plymouth. I oiled with NF compound and found that all of the flat pieces darkened but the raised noseband and browband did not. I figure it was a $50 bridle so likely, the bridle was made from different cuts of leather. Its not a big deal, maybe I'll call SP to see what they think but Im not too concerned because the way my horse eats bridles, it may not last long!
    ************************
    "I can't help but wonder,what would Jimmy Buffett do?"

    https://falllinefarmblog.wordpress.com/



  10. #10
    Join Date
    Dec. 28, 2008
    Posts
    1,418

    Default

    Normally I would never suggest this but for my smartpak bridle (the ~$115 one, can't remember the name) I had a little bit of an issue getting it to take the oil evenly (although it did take oil fairly well overall) so I tossed it in a plastic bag with a bunch of warm oil and shook it for 5 minutes. I figured even if it got a little over oiled I could just strip it since it was a cheap schooling bridle. Worked like a charm. I let it air dry for a few hours and it looked beautiful. I did not strip it prior to oiling though.



  11. #11
    Join Date
    Aug. 18, 2009
    Location
    Woodbridge, Virginia
    Posts
    143

    Default

    If the bridle doesn't take oil at all on the raised parts then it is most likely coated and not very good leather. A lot of the Indian made bridles are like that. They look nice and pretty but will not take oil because of the coating. After a few years the coating may start to peel off. They usually work very well for schooling so I wouldn't worry about it.
    "But if you buy them as ponies aren't they cheaper?" - Favorite non-horse person quote.



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