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Dressage Bridles

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  • Dressage Bridles

    I'm going to be buying a new saddle and want to get a new bridle ... he's a QH and my old horse was a big warmblood so my old bridle is way too big! My old bridle came with the horse so I don't know what to look for, name brands, etc. on dressage bridles. I hear that crank nosebands make the noseband far more comfortable for the horse. Also padded over the poll makes for a more comfortable bridle. Is that true? I ride currently with a flash and while it doesn't make a difference on the horse, I like the way it looks. Also, I love the look of the bridles with the brass (or brass colored) hardware on the browband. Is that popular or should I stay away from that? I also love the raised noseband and browband look. Concerned that if I get a white accent on a padded bridle, it will be darn near impossible to polish up against the black. What are everyone's opinions? I want a good quality bridle but I'd like to stay under $100 if possible. Thanks for your opinions!!

  • #2
    The only decent quality bridle I've ever seen in that price range is the Smarptak bridle. You will find lots of recent threads on here if you search. I believe the Harwich is the one around your price range. Most of the bridles I would call good quality run $300-$600.

    Brass clincher browband is fine. White padding is less popular than it used to be, but does look good on the right horse. If the horse has facial markings- I personally dislike the white padding. Brass and white on the same bridle will definitely be too much.

    Yes, I personally like the padded crank nosebands and padded crowns. Just don't actually crank the noseband as tight as it can go. Adjust it like any regular noseband.


    • #3

      Recent thread on this topic.
      2012 goal: learn to ride like a Barn Rat

      A helmet saved my life.


      • Original Poster

        Thanks for the link and for the suggestions! I do SmartPak so I'll check out their bridles. I just can't do $300 for a new bridle right now. Wish I could!! I've seen either really positive feedback or really negative feedback on the FSS bridles on EBay. They look lovely and are in my budget. Rather concerned that it seems to be either great or horrible with the company though in so far as service.


        • #5
          I bought one of th FSS bridles a few years ago and thought it was okay. I would not buy another - I definitely think you can do better for your money.

          In my experience, the service was fine, but the leather quality was so-so, and pretty much impossible to condition.


          • #6
            One more option to consider...

            I saw the new Ovation bridles at Dover, and they looked REALLY nice for the money. They're slightly more than you're looking to pay, but I thought they were much better quality than the Dover house brand bridles.

            Just bridles has them for $135, and you can mix and match sizes. This has the mono crown. http://www.justbridles.com/index.php...id=10&parent=2

            Also, if you really want brass fittings, Bit of Britain has the Harmon Kraft bridle for ~ $100. http://www.bitofbritain.com/The_Harm...dle_p/0076.htm


            • #7
              Check out JustBridles.com. They have lots of different dressage bridles, plus you can buy them in pieces of different sizes so you get a custom fit for your horse. And they have some that are not very expensive. I got a Bobby's double bridle for a little more than $200. If you see a double you like, you can just buy the pieces to make a single bit bridle.

              On my bridle, the noseband is padded almost all the way around and especially under the buckle, so you don't necessarily need a crank to get a nicely padded noseband.


              • #8
                Dover carries the Crown padded bridle.

                A few ladies at my barn have Crown bridles and they look very nice for the price!
                I personally use the Kieffer Dagmar, literally the entire thing is padded down to the flash and cheek pieces, and doesn't need to be broken in. May be a little above your price range ($189), but I figured I throw it out there.


                • #9
                  Harwich Padded Crank Noseband Dressage Bridle by SmartPak is on sale for $87.95.

                  A black browband with brass is also on sale for $20.95.

                  So... you can get everything you want for $108.90 with free shipping.


                  • #10
                    If you can manage some wiggle room in your budget try Pink Equine.

                    These bridle compare with the $300+ ones so you'll never need to upgrade later. You can pretty much get a custom sized & designed bridle made in England for the price of a cheap one sold in the US. The leather is really nice but the sizes runs large. Use their sizing chart and don't be afraid to mix and match pieces to fit your horse.

                    If there is no wiggle room then Dover's has some that are pretty nice for the money: Crown Padded Flash Bridle or Crown Jawband Flash Bridle

                    You can always add a padded crown piece later. It seems as if everyone sells them.
                    Camels spit, Mary, camels - Catherine Haddad "Dressage Critic


                    • #11
                      Originally posted by Old Fashioned View Post
                      If you can manage some wiggle room in your budget try Pink Equine.

                      These bridle compare with the $300+ ones so you'll never need to upgrade later. You can pretty much get a custom sized & designed bridle made in England for the price of a cheap one sold in the US. The leather is really nice but the sizes runs large. Use their sizing chart and don't be afraid to mix and match pieces to fit your horse.

                      If there is no wiggle room then Dover's has some that are pretty nice for the money: Crown Padded Flash Bridle or Crown Jawband Flash Bridle

                      You can always add a padded crown piece later. It seems as if everyone sells them.

                      I'm trying to order a bridle from them right now but having a horrible time getting my "members login" to work did you have a problem with this?


                      • #12
                        Their login can be sticky at times. I did have a problem once. I emailed them and it was resolved within the hour. Shoot them an email.
                        Camels spit, Mary, camels - Catherine Haddad "Dressage Critic


                        • #13
                          dressage extensions gold brow, crank, padding, $99


                          • #14
                            I have two pink equine bridles, a pony and a cob, neither fit my large pony, and I used the darn measurements, now I've pieced them together to work. Expensive way to get a bridle. However, costumer service and shipping time have been absolutely ridiculous with BOTH orders. First time it went missing, they sent a replacement right away after I posted here on coth about it. This year, in Jan, I bought the cob bridle with reins. After 2months I got the bridle supposedly blamed on US homeland security according to pink equine... the reins were on backorder... Several emails later, they supposedly sent me a different set of reins in march that never arrived... I inquired about just getting a refund and they said they would send me a lost item form to fill out, which is no problem, but they only offered me half what I paid for them, when I inquired why I wouldn't get full price for them, I never heard anything back, never got the lost item form, still have no reins, and I guess I'm just out the money for them.

                            Needless to say, I'll never buy from them again and though the work is lovely, I will not recommend them to anyone unless you buy from a US distributor that already has it in stock!
                            Your Horse's Home On The Road!


                            • #15
                              I have had very good luck with Kieffer bridles. The list is a little more expensive, but you can often find them in the range you are looking for and they fit the smaller heads well.

                              Also look here, http://www.tackwholesale.com/paris-t...bc9054c4af2d43
                              I have been impressed with the quality for the price, though I would not consider them "high quality" bridles

                              Bobby's English Tack is high quality and this is in the vicinity of your price range. You can always change out the browband
                              OTTBs rule, but spots are good too!


                              • Original Poster

                                Thanks so much for all the great info! Really appreciate all the suggestions, links, etc.!!


                                • #17
                                  The Stubben Raised Flash Noseband Bridle is a great bridle.


                                  • #18
                                    Kieffer Maike bridle in black .... A++++