Bits, bits, and more bits!
Here’s some bits from my collection of bits with some brief explanations. This isn’t an all inclusive bit post, as that would take a huge amount typing, but I hope there will be a little info here to help you in your knowledge of different bits and their uses.
First, check out Driving Essentials’ website… They have a super overview of bit cheeks, mouthpieces, and rein settings!!
I took this screenshot from Driving Essentials’ website as well for rein settings on Liverpools:
Now for the moment you’ve all been waiting for…. My bit collection!
Above is an archmouth 2 slot Liverpool with German silver mouthpiece. It’s a great Liverpool to start out in. Gives the horse some tongue relief without being too bulky. The German silver tastes good and will generally help the horse salivate more.
Above is a square port Liverpool. This is one of my favorite bits. It’s hard for them to get their tongues over it if they are a bit inexperienced or cheeky with the bit and also gives a lot of room for fleshy tongues to have space. I rarely find the horses are uncomfortable in a square port. This one is a fixed cheek which means the sides of the Liverpool are not free to turn. That’s good for driving pairs, but sometimes can make the bit a little less softening for a single.
This bit above is referred to as an ultimate tongue relief bit. The square port and the swivel action of the cheek pieces makes it so the horse can hold the bit where it is most comfortable for his tongue and the curb can be engaged without rotating the mouth of the bit at all. Some horses love these.
Above is a Tulip (hinged) bit with rollers. This is a great choice for horses that are a little strong in the hand, but not a bit for a beginner driver or uneducated horse as the hinging action intensifies the pressure on the bars of the mouth. The port over the tongue provides some tongue relief.
Above is a Buxton driving bit. It is a traditional driving bit with a bar across the bottom known as a slobber bar in the US. In England, the bar on the bottom is called a “bottom bar” which is the correct term. The bottom bar prevents horses in multiples from tangling the reins around the shank of the bit. The shape of the buxton makes it excellent for driving multiples because it wont pinch the face when the crossover rein is engaged in a pair.
Above is a butterfly bit with French link mouthpiece. Super soft bit. The joints keep the bit from engaging much curb action. However, butterfly bits offer fewer rein setting options than liverpools.
Above is a bit for showing stallions in hand.
Above is a traditional Friesian driving bit that would be found on horses pulling sjees vehicles.
Above is a segundo buxton. This is not a bit for an inexperienced driver or horse. The large port acts on the roof of the mouth.
Above is a bit that I call “I Said Woah MoFo” bit. The twisted wire makes it very harsh on the bars of the mouth, although it does have a nice arch to allow some tongue relief.
A Mullen mouth is the most standard of all the carriage driving Liverpool bits. The shape provides tongue relief and the Liverpool cheeks give you the most options for rein settings.
Above is a really cool bit… it is a Wilson snaffle. The rings give you multiple different rein settings on the snaffle. The mouthpiece is a twisted wire, which is pretty harsh, but it’s also a Mullen shape which gives the horse some tongue relief. I can honestly say I’ve never used this bit and bought it brand new purely for the purpose of adding it to my collection.
That is an overview of my bit collection. If I posted them all, we’d be here all night. Do you have any interesting bits you can add to this post in the comments below??