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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Nov. 16, 2000
    Location
    Concord, NH
    Posts
    4,898

    Default Opinions on "the next bit"

    My mare loves her single jointed rubber D ring. But it's turning out to be not quite enough when we're jumping. I tried a KK loose ring with the oval/lozenge center, and she HATED IT. And I realized that I changed up a bunch of things on her. So I'd like some opinions about what part of her rubber D she likes so much - and keep that part, and amp up the control on another piece.

    Options if I only want to change one aspect of her current bit at a time:

    Single joint metal D - this would definitely be a stronger bit.
    Single Joint Rubber Loose Ring - doesn't scream 'more control' to me.
    Single joint rubber full cheek with keepers - this would be a hair stiffer than the D, right?
    Double Joint Rubber D - do they even make this? And wouldn't that be milder?

    OR - keep her bit and add a flash. But she doesn't really open her mouth as much as just run through the bit. For 5 months she went in a Nathe and loved it, learned to accept contact and then one day 'oooh, I can just barge on through here' so we went back to the rubber D which had been too much bit.

    I know she hated the bit vs hating the extra control/mental aspect because while I had more control at the event, she seemed a little fussy, and the next week left it on her bridle and she was terribly fussy, even hacking. Put her rubber D back on and "oh thank you".


    She has a very wet mouth if that makes a difference.

    Thank you!



  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jul. 1, 2011
    Posts
    2,039

    Default

    Have you tried flatting/jumping small in the nathe then switching to the rubber bit for most of you jumping? Sometimes the switch between a soft bit and slightly most bit can be enough.



  3. #3
    Join Date
    Nov. 16, 2000
    Location
    Concord, NH
    Posts
    4,898

    Default

    Yes- and the reason I stopped using the Nathe at all was that once she realized she could just run through it, she did - both on the flat and over fences. She still respects the rubber D in the dressage ring, but out galloping around I have begun feeling a bit out of control so I would like to switch to something that allows me to still have the softer bit on the flat - she has just started to ignore it so I think I have the time to sort it out.

    I have sort of ignored the out-of-control feeling because I am not jumping - I use a bridge and the occasional one-snap pully rein because it's winter and I'm out on the trail - I don't need that finesse, but she's getting stronger (good) and more confident (good) but also more cocky- where I need to be able to have some control.

    Rubber pelham just seems way over the top, but maybe not? I am fine with 2 reins.



  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jan. 7, 2005
    Location
    Southern Ohio
    Posts
    973

    Default

    I'd be inclined to just try a metal bit.

    I went through the same process with my big horse... We started with a big fat hollow eggbut, went to a happy mouth d with a link, which was sometimes enough for XC, sometimes not, so I tried a loose ring metal bit and that worked, but I wasn't strong enough to get him to change his shape while galloping faster when we moved up to training (he's a big powerful guy with a monster gallop and I'm not that big).
    So we've settled on a full cheek(with keepers) dr bristol with the dr. bristol part flipped over (so its essentially a full cheek with a link)
    -Chelsie
    "Hell yes I can ride. I was riding when I fell off!"



  5. #5
    Join Date
    Jul. 19, 2003
    Location
    Middleburg, VA
    Posts
    12,751

    Default

    I would go with the metal D first. A very simple step up. I highly doubt you'll get a noticeable difference with the other options, and she may hate the double jointed rubber just as much as the metal one.

    You could also try a similar Happy Mouth. I sometimes think of HMs as a middle step between rubber or Nathe/HS Duo and metal.


    1 members found this post helpful.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Jan. 14, 2006
    Location
    Nashville, TN
    Posts
    4,000

    Default

    I'd try a happy mouth D.



  7. #7
    Join Date
    Mar. 16, 2009
    Location
    NH
    Posts
    590

    Default

    Go with a metal single jointed bit.

    My guy *loves* his single jointed rubber full cheek. He is a million times more accepting over it than any other bit. He hated the HS KK D that I tried him in first, tossed his head on the flat and just leaned on it when galloping. Now he is jumping with a single jointed *thin* loose ring snaffle. He is still fussy but he respects it enough.

    One thing to note, you can also try adding either a running martingale or a figure-8 for jumping. Even for a horse that doesn't open their mouth, a figure-8 can make a difference if they are resisting by crossing their jaw slightly. It will also lift the bit up in their mouth a bit which can change how they act. A running martingale can give you a bit of extra umph when you need it without changing anything else.



  8. #8
    Join Date
    Feb. 14, 2001
    Location
    Lexington, KY--GO BIG BLUE!!
    Posts
    3,185

    Default

    Try a metal single joint first-- but if she's really running through it, I like a soft rubber pelham. You can ride off the snaffle rein exclusively, but the curb rein is there for the times when you need an "emergency brake." My horse needed a nathe for six months as he learned to accept contact and take a half halt; however he got quite strong at times jumping, and any kind of double joint made him curl. The rubber mullen pelham was similar to the nathe, but gave me a lot more control when needed.

    I later transitioned him to a single-joint happy mouth, a single-joint metal eggbutt, and now (many months later) he is going really well in a KK. Since he's learned to carry the bit, seek contact, and accept a light half halt, he no longer curls in a double-joint. I still use the pelham for xc, if I expect him to be a little too fresh.
    “A clever person solves a problem. A wise person avoids it.”
    ? Albert Einstein

    ~AJ~



  9. #9
    Join Date
    Nov. 16, 2000
    Location
    Concord, NH
    Posts
    4,898

    Default

    Thanks! I think I will first try the regular metal D (especially since I have one!) - but good to know the rubber pelham isn't out of the realm. I really do like the option of riding with 2 reins and only invoking the curb when you need it.



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