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Baucher bit ruminations

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  • Baucher bit ruminations

    I have a new horse who seems to have taken to many aspects of the baucher french link bit and be happy. He has a small mouth, its stable in his mouth, doesn't rattle around, and it may be that there is a component of poll pressure which he responds to, I am guessing, by holding himself correctly because the bit etc. is more comfortable when he does.

    I am wondering how much pressure does this bit put on his headstall of the bridle? where on his head, and how uncomfortable is it, if it is at all? Is this a mild sort of action, how is it applied, and does anyone have any concerns or observations about using the baucher which gave them pause, or caused them to feel that it had its uses and why they might have stopped using it and what they in turn used after that.

    I like the way my horse goes in it, but I don't know why he does so.
    Airborne? Oh. Yes, he can take a joke. Once. After that, the joke's on you.

  • #2
    Bauchers do NOT have poll pressure. You need shanks for that.
    Tell a Gelding. Ask a Stallion. Discuss it with a Mare... Pray if it's a Pony!

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    • #3
      IMHO there is *no* poll pressure from the baucher. I encourage you to put it on your horse's head, slip a finger under his crownpiece, and have someone pull a rein. The orientation of the rings does not permit it to create leverage. If it were possible to impart leverage with a baucher, it wouldn't be legal for lower-level dressage.

      OTOH, my horse is addicted to his lozenge baucher. For him, it's partly about stability but that's not it completely. I know that because we tried him in a full cheek with keepers and that was okay with him, but the baucher was much better. According to my trainer, what "did it" for my horse was that the baucher suspends the bit above the horse's bars. The full cheek is equally stable but it rests ON the bars.
      Head Geek at The Saddle Geek Blog http://www.thesaddlegeek.com/

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      • #4
        Originally posted by jn4jenny View Post
        IMHO there is *no* poll pressure from the baucher. I encourage you to put it on your horse's head, slip a finger under his crownpiece, and have someone pull a rein. The orientation of the rings does not permit it to create leverage. If it were possible to impart leverage with a baucher, it wouldn't be legal for lower-level dressage.

        OTOH, my horse is addicted to his lozenge baucher. For him, it's partly about stability but that's not it completely. I know that because we tried him in a full cheek with keepers and that was okay with him, but the baucher was much better. According to my trainer, what "did it" for my horse was that the baucher suspends the bit above the horse's bars. The full cheek is equally stable but it rests ON the bars.
        Also, as further proof it has no poll pressure, I ride my mare in basically the western equivalent of a baucher (think a pelham, with no curb chain, with the rein on the top ring). She is EXTREMELY, ridiculously sensitive about her poll, and straps/ropes applying pressure to her poll. If I rest her leadrope across her poll, and just tug on it a TINY bit, she loses her mind.

        If a baucher had poll pressure, my mare would bascially be unrideable in the setup I have her in now.

        They're great for sensitive horses, who don't have a ton of room in their mouths.
        Tell a Gelding. Ask a Stallion. Discuss it with a Mare... Pray if it's a Pony!

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        • #5
          When I was in the States I used one on my not very sensitive horse. It gave better lateral bend and he couldn't hang on it as well. I have always heard they exert poll pressure but the above posters seem adamant that they do not. Mine is a french link as well. French links are the only bit I could ride my horse in and not get run away with in medium and extended trot. The baucher made him more supple.

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          • #6
            The baucher bit/poll pressure association is a commonly held, but incorrect belief. Much like the idea that all Arabians have one less vertebra (some do, some don't, same as in many other breeds). Some stuff just gets repeated enough that folks come to think its a fact when it isn't.
            Dawn Jones-Low
            Faerie Court Farm
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            • Original Poster

              #7
              Well, thanks, all - I am expereincing the same favorable response from my horse, but I had heard something about poll pressure as well. I have not been able to see how that worked, and was concerned, so I asked, before I got him into a situation where he responded negatively to poll pressure. Good idea to put my fingers up there and check it out.

              That is interesting that the bit hangs above the bars, and not on them, and would explain why my horse likes it so much better, and stopped his head flpping and inverted ways with it. Poor dear has little room in his mouth, and not much room on the bars, so this makes sense as to why he responds well in it. Very light and easy to ride, need little hands with him anyway, and he bends and uses his back lovely with it.

              Once or twice I've asked him to put his head and neck down and he's stretched way out with it, on his own, when we were warmed up and trotting, and as I am not on the ground to watch, and he's new to me, and I didn't know if he was evading or stretching his back. I was surprised with his response, but I put it to good use and won a spur of the moment hunter flat class with that one. Otherwise, he puts his back into his laterals beautifully and I feel we are getting stronger and more defined in our movements with this bit. I'll see what my trainer says next week with our lesson. I think everythings good with this bit.
              Airborne? Oh. Yes, he can take a joke. Once. After that, the joke's on you.

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              • #8
                The Baucher does NOT exert poll pressure. You need a curb chain or strap for that to provide leverage. Some horses have a very thin layer of flesh over the bars of the mouth. The bit hurts when it puts pressure on the bars. The Baucher hangs in the mouth by the headstall, rather than sitting in the mouth, on the bars, like a regular snaffle - and all it's variations. That makes it a much milder bit and more comfortable for the horse. A double jointed Baucher is even milder with less possibility of the joint of a single snaffle hitting the palate.
                Tranquility Farm - Proud breeder of Born in the USA Sport Horses, and Cob-sized Warmbloods
                Now apparently completely invisible!

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