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Bit materials


16 july 2018 / Garbrielle van Zuilen & Micha van Rheden

For the real connoisseur: a different taste for every bit


Does your horse accept the bit? Various factors complicate the search for the right bit, one of which is the anatomy of the horse’s mouth. The space and the shape of the mouth, tongue and bars largely determine which type of bit best suits the horse. The shape, material and taste of the bit itself also play an important role. A horse will only accept and really be able to get on the bit when the bit fits perfectly.

This blog aims to inform you about the different lines of bits offered by BR. By learning more about the various materials and different lines, you can make a well-informed choice. Unfortunately, there is no simple way to discover which material or bit shape your horse prefers. Consulting an expert on bits to try out different types and materials is always advisable in your search for the ideal bit for your horse.

Four different lines

Because every horse is unique and responds differently to various materials and shapes, BR offers four lines of bits in addition to the standard range. The BR Soft Contact, BR Apple Mouth, BR Sweet Iron and BR Combo Comfort lines comprise a wide range of types of bits and sizes. This diversity ensures that our product range features a suitable bit for every horse.

The bits in each of the four lines are made of different materials, all with specific qualities. The design and composition of all the bits in these four lines support the same purpose: stimulating the chewing process and saliva formation to create a relaxed and pleasant contact between the bit and the horse’s mouth. Each line focusses on one specific material with its own distinct taste. Just like humans, horses all have their own specific taste preferences.

Soft Contact

The BR Soft Contact line features various types of bits in multiple mouthpiece thicknesses. The line is characterised by the use of Cuprigan, the anatomical design and the optimal finish of the mouthpiece which prevents the corners of the mouth becoming stuck between the bit and the rings.

Cuprigan is an alloy of copper, aluminium, iron and zinc. When this material oxidises, it creates a pleasant smell and taste in the horse's mouth. The anatomical design of the bit mainly follows the shape of the tongue and ensures gentle and even pressure distribution.

The mouthpieces are available in thicknesses of 12, 14 and 16 millimetres. The various thicknesses and the anatomical design make this line suitable for horses and riders looking for a pleasant, gentle contact with the bit. This line offers the widest selection of bit types, varying from a single jointed loose ring snaffle to a Weymouth curb.

 BR Soft Contact single jointed loose ring snaffle

Apple Mouth

BR Apple Mouth bits smell and taste like apples. The bits are made of hard PU with a metal core and stainless steel rings. The lasting, distinctive apple flavour means that some horses accept this bit easier than bits made of other materials. Apple Mouth bits are available in thicknesses of 15, 18, 19 and 20 millimetres.

 BR Apple Mouth single jointed loose ring snaffle

Sweet Iron

BR Sweet Iron bits are made of solid stainless steel combined with a blue sweet iron coating on the mouthpiece. When this material reacts with moisture, heat and air, it oxidises and develops a sweet-tasting surface rust. The blue colour disappears eventually, but the taste of the surface rust remains. All Sweet Iron bits have a mouthpiece thickness of 13 millimetres.

 BR Sweet Iron double jointed loose ring snaffle

Combo Comfort

The BR Combo Comfort line is made of flexible synthetic material and high-quality stainless steel, making the bits stable, yet extremely soft and friendly. The Combo Comfort line has been especially designed for horses that have difficulty accepting other types of materials and is the most neutral in taste. The synthetic material has a hardness of 90A and is FDA approved, which means that the material is free of solvents, does not contain plasticisers and is non-toxic. All mouthpieces have a thickness of 18 millimetres, making them thicker than the bits in the Soft Comfort line. The thickness makes these bits suitable for horses with more space in the mouth, but they are also suitable for young horses. The optimal finish of the mouthpiece prevents the corners of the mouth from becoming stuck between the bit and the rings.

 BR Combo Comfort single jointed loose ring snaffle

Type of bit

Considering the type of material is not the only important thing that makes choosing the right bit difficult. The specific type of bit also has a major influence on acceptance and getting the horse on the bit. There are many bit types available, including the single jointed loose ring snaffle and the double jointed eggbutt snaffle. Learn more about all types of bits in the second blog: ‘a mouth full: different bits’.