Solo or Lumiere or your other favorite bridle? I'm shopping

Does anyone have a solo bridle? How close is the fit? What do you think?

I’m now working with a trainer who really likes these and am considering changing my horse’s bridle. He’s currently in a horse-sized Kavalcade on the last holes (I can’t imagine a real horse-sized horse that this bridel would fit) and I’ve contemplated taking my Anky double bridle apart. But the padded poll seems attractive in these. As does the price. I’ll keep my wavy browbands that fit my horse.

Can anyone comment?

I don’t use a flash. It’s fine to just take it off or get a model that doesn’t have a flash.

I’m a huge fan of Solo bridles - the customer service is unbeatable and you’d be hard-pressed to find better quality for the price. I currently have two snaffle models and a double.

The only fit quibble I will say is that on two of the three horses I have used them on, the crank nose bands fit a bit small. I basically needed an oversized noseband and every thing else regular full size. Solo was more than happy to swap out the nose band for me

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I’m not a huge fan of the Solo bridle I have. The noseband is stiff, and the cheek pieces are 5/8" instead of 1/2" so it looks clunky. Quality is OK. The browband that came with it is nice and I currently have it on my mare’s bridle. I ended up buying a Lumiere bridle and like it a lot better for a similar price point (the Lumiere also came with a nice fancy browband, but it’s more the all-rhinestone kind so I don’t like it for daily use). Sizing on the Solo was pretty true, but it’s hard to buckle the noseband onto the first hole due to the stiffness. It doesn’t contour over my mare’s nose at all. In contrast, I just got her a Collegiate Comfitec weymouth bridle and the noseband is soft enough to fit her face right out of the box.

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Which ones do you have, @BigMama1? I like the simplicity because I don’t ride with a flash, but I also like the satin. I like the rolled features of the Stella.

@outerbanks77, the Lumieres are also really nice! I like the Alison, and I like that they give you many options to change out the browbands and reins. Which model did you get? It seems that most of the models have a non-crank noseband but they don’t mention it for some and the buckle system looks interesting. I emailed them to ask about the Alison in particular. Which Solo model did you purchase?

My horse is going to be bit - fit by a Fager rep that a neighbor trainer is getting out in a couple of weeks. Apparently, she can also measure a horse for a PS of Sweden bridle. I’ll draw the line with the bit and cheaper bridle.

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Mine is the Mila, so not crank or flash. They were good about changing out parts for me, but others have received the wrong parts, so good to build in lots of lead time before you really need it.

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Oh nice! How do you like the leather quality?

I’m right now thinking of the Alison bridle with the rolled padded Italian leather reins and the black onyx browband. That is what I’m thinking right now…

I’ll try on a Solo bridle this weekend and look at them more carefully.

Thanks so much to you both for your replies!!!

I have the Satin, Splendour, and Senterline.

Their website only shows the Satin. How do you like that one? I think that is the one I’d get.

@J-Lu,

I am so glad you are getting professional advice about the Fager bit for your horse. Their selection can get overwhelming!

My riding teacher’s problem Arab (to whom the judge’s stand was the gate to Hell and demons) has calmed down considerably since I gave him a titanium-coated Kimberwick (the style bit he consented to obeying rein aids even when it was stainless steel.) I have not ridden him in a few years but my riding teacher has started mentioning that she would like to see how he does in my double bridle with the Fager titanium double bridle bits the next time I ride him since all the other horses have reacted so positively to them.

I am now convinced that a significant percentage of horses have subtle but irritating allergic reactions to the stainless steel bits, and with one mare I ride also had problems with copper and “sweet iron” too.

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Here is my guy in the Solo Simplicity.

Leather quality is nice. I’ve been using it as my daily bridle for about a year now and the only wear that I really notice is the patent where I buckle the noseband. But it’s certainly not noticeable when I’m riding. I went with the cob, as that’s what his measurements were. He’s always between a cob and horse and you can see the cob fits, but on some of the looser holes.

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Yes, the other two I think I bought in their first year of business and they have replaced those models with newer ones. I like the Satin a lot. The leather is soft but sturdy and the noseband isn’t so big that it overwhelms the horse’s face.

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@J-Lu laughing because here is my girl in Fager bit, Solo browband, PS Sweden crown and Lumiere for the rest of it. Nothing wrong with the Lumiere crown, just no throatlatch to buckle with the Ps. Happy with the leather - has been used several time a week for almost a year. Too bad she blinked when I thought I’d gotten a nice photo!

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Wow, that is a beautiful picture! That bridle looks fantastic on him. I thought you were posting the model from the Solo website!

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Ha! She’s wearing all of the components of my “bridle world” right now! She looks like she’s about to drive out and meet her friends for a night out.

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He’s got a good face!

But I do think the bridle compliments it well. Noseband isn’t too big. It’s simple, but classy looking.

I really like my Passierblu Spirit bridle. It’s simple but modern-looking with a nicely padded cutback crown and generously sized browband. The cheekpieces and throatlatch adjust on both sides. The price was reasonable. There’s no crank noseband though, if that’s an issue. Also, according to the Passier website you can get it without a flash and in some other color options, but in practice I’ve only seen it with a flash.

Here’s my 15.3 hh TB wearing the cob size. He has a slim but not short face and tends to end up between cob and horse size, so this was the best fit I could manage. The browband is plenty long and I think it’s more comfortable around the ears than his previous, less ergonomic bridle.

ETA a close-up photo of the noseband. I like how it has padding where the flash attaches. I position the flash buckle on the padding so none of the metal is touching the horse. I don’t know if he cares but I like it.

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I did not have a very good experience with the Lumiere bridle (I ordered the Abigail). Even though all of the pictures on the website showed the bridle’s noseband as being essentially two parts (the noseband and a separate chin strap/back strap with added cushion. This is the style I am used to. What I received was a noseband that is all one piece of leather, with a buckle on only one side. Furthermore, the padding under the chin was essentially fixed in place. So if you had the noseband buckled at the exactly smallest hole, the chinstrap was at the center. But if you had to loosen the noseband (as I ride a draft, I had to put the buckle on the last hole), the chin strap was very much only on half of her face. It was bizarre and ridiculous. Obviously they only designed the bridle to work if you never adjusted the noseband. And they clearly knew about the problem, because all of their website photos had a completely different attachment system.

I attempted to contact them and left a review, but I never heard from them. As I obviously couldn’t use a bridle that had a chin pad stuck to one side of my horses face, I ended up swapping that part of from a previous bridle. But overall I was very unimpressed with the bridle and with the company for ignoring me.

Huh. I’ve been in contact with them and it turns out the changes I would make would make the bridle the Aubrey. It has a little added gel pad said the rep. YES, I was confused by the photo of that model. It LOOKS like a crank and there is a buckle on both sides and I couldn’t figure out what was happening on the right side. Your experience is incredibly disappointing. The rep told me that their customers don’t like cranks anymore. I tend to like cranks because they equalize the pressure and there’s no need to crank them. What do people think about that?

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Thank you. How nice! Their website shows a TON of options for this bridle. THey have a crank but the noseband is bulkier. I like the non-crank noseband better - my horse has a really refined face. Thanks!!

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Your thoughts on cranks are correct. Studies on the pressure confirm that they do a better job than a regular French caveson. Still people tend to shy away from them because of the name. IME, they can be a little bulky on a smaller head.

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