In early March 2013, Jancee and I visited with Pat and Deb Puckett outside of Benson Arizona. We were fortunate enough to get to spend 4 days riding the desert, and 4 nights sleeping in an authentic sheep wagon. Friday evening, we visited the infamous town of Tombstone, where we had dinner, visited the historic buildings, and enjoyed a night of Western Music at the Schieffelin Hall.
So, I bought some MAPP gas the other day and decided to make a stand to display one of my bits in the house. Well, as it turns out, I had so much fun making one, that I made another. I ride in my bits so there wasn’t really a need to make two stands, but I couldn’t help it. I used some old barn wood for the base. One stand is completely vertical using finish nails as the bit cradle, and the other stand is set at a slight angle, and I used number 8 draft horse nails as the cradle for it. I added a little hanger on the stem of each one for the rein chains to drape over.
Note, here’s a little tip: Notice the the few grains of salt on the top of the spoon. There is quite a bit more on the underside as well. After you are done riding, wash any debris or saliva from your bit, and while it is still wet add a little salt to it. The salt will dry and crystalize. The salt makes the bit tastier, and can help horses be more accepting, and help them to begin enjoying the bit sooner.
From Left to Right:
Garcia Style Spade with Santa Barbara cheek and spoon mouth
EG (Eduardo Grijalva) Spade with Santa Barbara cheek and alligator mouth
Marsh Brothers (Tietjen pattern) Nevada Cheek, Mona Lisa mouth with mild tongue relief
The angle of the spoon mouth piece on on the Garcia bit has more sweep than the mouthpiece on the EG bit, and the cheeks on the Garcia pattern bit are heavier than the EG bit. Overall the Garcia bit is a great using bit that lacks the attention to detail that is found in the EG bit. However, both have their uses and applications for what would fit and work for one particular horse vs. another.
The Marsh Brother’s Tietjen pattern bit has a Nevada loose cheek made of stainless steel with a sweet iron tongue relief mouth with hooded copper roller in the Mona Lisa style. It is a light bit that is easy for horses to get along with.
“What one sees in these old masters, was a separation of their riding from utility. Classical Riding was an art form.
When one uses a horse to do a job; herding cattle – it is not classical riding or art, it is work. When riders are more interested in competing with, and against each other, it is not classical riding, it is sport. When riders are only interested in entertaining the masses, the riding is not classical – it is circus. When riding is used to promote one system, one nation above all others, it is not classical or art, it is propaganda.
In the beginning, I think all riders are drawn to horses for the same reason; the sounds, the smells, the touch, the life around them and the country. Then the split occurs.
In one group the primary relationship is with people – the horse is really secondary. They need other people to validate or interpret their work. In a sense the prize becomes nothing more than an appraisal by someone in a position of authority as to how well you have met the requirements.
The second group, they want to experience a direct relationship with nature, or the horse. This is primary. They often obsess on technique, because it allows them to go deeper and deeper – to go farther on their quest. They often have an odd link to science, because the best science of their day lets them expand their technique. This group falls in love with motion. They are the romantics.”
– Paul Belasik –