The horses I ride have so far “told” me they to not like the Fager tongue relief bits with my hands, because of my MS I have big problems sometimes with where my hands are horizontally. I am SO GLAD you like the Lilly fixed ring, I am reserving mine for occasional variety to avoid total boredom.
The two horses I ride really like my double bridles with the Fager bits. They seem to appreciated the no longer available Fager Victoria mullen mouth Weymouth, and they seem to enjoy the Fager Alice titanium bradoonm three piece dog-bone with a center roller.
At one stable the owner told me that she no longer wanted me to ride her elderly horse with problems with just a snaffle, she wanted me to go on using my double bridle because this arthritic elderly mare moves so much better with it. Recently I changed this mare from the Fager Victoria mullen mouth Weymouth to the Elisabeth titanium Weymouth with a tiny vertical port.
At the other stable I ride an elderly QH gelding with treated navicular disease (good farrier) and I am using the Fager Victoria titanium Weymouth and the Fager Alice titanium bradoon. My riding teacher is there, and she is now starting to talk about me riding her personal horse (Arab gelding with some problems) in lessons for a while just so she can see how he does in a double bridle. He is already on a titanium Kimberwick and he goes on “strike” if asked to wear a bit of any other metal. She told me that when that time comes I should just bring my double bridle with the Fager titanium bits I use on my current lesson horse and put it on her horse (same width mouth.)
One interesting thing about the Fager bits is how they recommend selecting the bits for the double bridle, and this is not the “normal” way. Fager recommends that the WEYMOUTH be the widest of the two bits, between half a cm. and 1 cm. wider than the bradoon. This is so that the “purchase” of the Weymouth does not interfere with the action of the bradoon. This looks quite odd to my eyes, but it does work, especially with horses with short “smiles.” The horses fuss at my hands less when I do the double bridle bits this way.
With the wider Weymouth it is more possible to use the regular sized ring Fager snaffles as the bradoon, so you could even experiment with using the Lilly as the bradoon since none of the Fager bradoons work in exactly the same way as the Lilly.
I love my Fager double bridle bits so much I just bought three varieties of the Fager Weymouths for the gelding. I already have two for the mare and I am planning on buying the other two. Fager has promised to make a new “mullen mouth” Weymouth, the Diane, which has a taller center arch than the now discontinued Victoria, and I plan on getting one for each horse.
At this stage of my life, 70 years old and crippled with MS, I get the most enjoyment out of riding horses with the double bridle. The horses understand my hand aids better, the horses like playing calmly with both bits, the horses show no fear of the bits, and they are just a little bit more willing to obey all my aids, hand, leg, seat and weight.
I now think that just by carrying a Weymouth curb in their mouths even with sagging reins, the horses are collecting themselves slightly, transferring their weight from their forehands to their hindquarters. Nothing really overt but their front feet are not landing as hard and the ladies watching me ride their horses really like this.