I have a pair of rubber reins that I bought several years ago from Smith-Worthington. I've only used them for showing, and they're pretty decent reins for what I paid for them (~$20 during their annual sale). However, in really hot weather, there's some sort of sticky substance (glue?) that leeches out where the rubber meets the little piece of leather that joins it to the solid leather rein. IIRC, there is some stitching to hold the two together, but it's still worries me because:
1) I'm afraid I'll be going over a drop, slip my reins, only to find I'm holding just the rubber portion of the rein while my horse spooks sideways at the flapping piece of leather left behind and we both part company.
2) Is there any way I can get the rein re-stitched and the glue removed? They're already starting to show minute cracks in the rubber, so I'm wondering if it's even WORTH repairing them.
Better yet (and closer), take them to Journeyman. The rubber does just start to melt after awhile. We re-rubber them when they get to that point. To help them last- NO SOAP on them, ever. Only clear water. And try to avoid getting flyspray on them.
Well, ok, since Em opened the door,I mentioned Bartville because they are quite reasonable, even after paying shipping to/from AND I usually have the reins back in my hands in 5-6 days from the time I mail them out!
One thing you can give and still keep is your word.
Well, then. Bartsville is totally off my radar and since they are kinda" off the grid" I don't think of them as convenient. Journeyman's is" easy" for us because we always seem to have reasons to be in Middleburg. What do I know?
Not saying you don't know anything. Quite the contrary.
But for some of us, yes even the NoVa folks, a trip to the post office is cheaper and easier than a trip to Middleburg.
Plus if you don't go to Middleburg, you don't spend $$$ you don't have at tack Box, Middleburg Tack Exchange, Journeymen or of course... The Upper Crust.
Just offering up an option that fits the bill a bit better for some. Hell my customized breastplate alterations used to cost me $100 at Journeymen. Same thing cost me $40 at Bartsville. And it was done in 4 days.
"Courage is not the absence of fear but rather the judgment that something is more important than fear. The brave may not live forever but the cautious do not live at all." ~2001 The Princess Diaries
Not sure whether I'm not getting your post or if you're not clear on how rubber reins are made... There should be one continuous piece of leather from bit to buckle with the rubber applied and stitched over it. That little leather piece the covers the end of the rubber is just cosmetic.
When reins are re-rubber they unstitch the old rubber and restitch new rubber. Sounds obvious but one thing to remember is that every time you put a hole (as each stitch is) in leather you minutely compromise it's strength. So when you rerubber you are adding a whole new set of stitches and holes. I prefer not to compete with re-rubbered reins and will only re-rubber them once. After that I pitch them (and cry a little.)
I've found fly spray to be the single worst cause of rubber gunkiness.
It's petroleum products that melt the rubber the fastest. So yep, fly spray will really do them in quick. I don't have any expensive ones, so I've thrown out two or three pair so far... can't STAND that gooey slime!