Tack stiff, grungy and basically…nasty?!
What You Need: Wash cloths (a little abrasive, not soft), hand towel, glycerin saddle soap bar, tack conditioner of your choice and water.
How you do it:
- Pull the straps out of the keepers each time, and once a month remove reins and the bit to really clean and check the integrity of your equipment.
- Scrub the tack with a wet washcloth and glycerin saddle soap – a washcloth gets the grunge off the leather better than a sponge. Repeat if needed.
- Wipe down with hand towel to remove excess water and saddle soap.
- Using your hands, apply the tack conditioner – use your hands so the conditioner gets on the tack and not soaked into a cloth or sponge.
- If warm water is not available at your barn, then bring some from home in a thermos.
- A scrubby pad (like kitchen scrubby) may be warranted for really grungy tack.
- A cap full of ammonia in about three quarts of water (small bucket) can be a good rinse off (first step) for horribly dirty tack.
- A hex screwdriver is handy for cleaning out the holes.
- Texas Pete’s Hot Sauce will get brass sparkling but be sure to rinse it off well as it will burn a horse’s sensitive skin and irritate eyes.
- The more often glycerin saddle soap is used the more supple your tack will be.
- The thicker tack conditioners (paste rather than liquid), such as Oakwood, are great in wet conditions! If you get caught in the rain, no worries! Wipe the tack off with a hand towel and the tack will be smooth and supple, not be crusty or stiff when it dries.
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