Just wondering what is your favorite type? Sheepskin, neoprene, etc... Anyone still use string girths? I have heard they are supposed to be the most comfortable for the horse. I have a red OTTB if that answers why I am asking this question...
I LOVE string or mohair girths. I haven't found a horse who isn't comfortable in one, including ones that get rubs or irritation form every other kind known to man. In general, you size them the same as any other girth OR one size larger because they do sometimes shrink when you wash them. I always use a string girth for schooling and if you can get a brown one that matches your saddle, they are great for show.
Not having the elastic prevents being able to over-tighten them-many, many people over-tighten elastic girths. Simply because they CAN go up all those extra holes doesn't mean they SHOULD. I also love when I can find a good used balding girth. A single elastic shaped leather girth would be my next choice.
I'm not a fan of neoprene or fleece (especially those fluffy fake fleece) girths with double elastic ends. IME they are slippery and the saddle can roll, even if they are tight (not to mention they can be overtightened even more with double ends. Plus neoprene gets SO sweaty underneath and I've had more than one horse lose hair from the smooth neoprene. The Wintec neoprene, I find, is a little better.
I like my ADT anatomic, triple layer (so not too much stretch) elastic at both ends in brown color so it never looks dirty, leather girth. Nice, nice leather that is padded but isn't overly so. The anatomic works great for my slightly girth forward boy and I don't like to clean fleece. I did have to special order mine last summer in a 44" size and in brown rather then nut (now brown is the in stock color), but that didn't cost extra.
I do use a wintec straight for dressage for the same horse. Though one day I'll get around to getting a leather anatomic that isn't overly padded. In the winter he prefers the wintec covered with a black fleece sleeve - weirdo.
I like the Wintec girths. And string. And some fabric ones that go in the washer that I got on sale from Tack of the Day. Hate fleece 'cuz it attracts burrs and stuff when you go "out in the wild." Which is every day for us. Shaped leather is always nice for dress up.
* What you release is what you teach * Don't be distracted by unwanted behavior* Whoever waits the longest is the teacher. Van Hargis
I also have a red TB. I own five girths for him, two of which meet with his approval. The only thing he will agree to wear are those chafeless leather girths. His least favorite are the nylon girths with the fake fleece. They create a horrible pressure point at the very center of his chest.
If you order a string girth, just make sure you get mohair and not nylon. I use a mohair girth all the time in the summer and my horse likes it. In the winter, I more often use a neoprene or a fleece-lined girth, but I interchange all three of them regularly depending on what's being washed or what is at the front of my tack trunk, and my sensitive QH is fine with all of them. (:
I have a mohair girth and IMO it is too slippery and too stretchy. I thought my sensitive horse would prefer it to leather with elastic, but it allowed my saddle to slip forward and that makes him buck. Fail.
::I do not understand your specific kind of crazy, but I do admire your total commitment to it::