I refuse to let my blog become a tiresome parade of horse-y posts. But I do make things for my horse, and since this blog is about me making things, here we go.
I've started using a hackamore on my horse, because I find the vaquero traditions fascinating. I realize most of you are not here looking for that sort of information, but in case you are, there's a very good book by Al Dunning that covers the history and method of proper hackamore horse training. There are three main parts to a hackamore: the bosal, the hanger, and the mecate.
|I didn't make any of this; it's simply for illustration.|
Mecates are traditionally made of horsehair. Modern retailers also offer nylon or cotton rope, which is popular with bright colors and easy care. I tried a nylon one that was gifted to me, and while it was nice and soft and worked okay, I wasn't happy with how slippery it was. My knots kept loosening, which is irritating at best and dangerous at worst. But I didn't have gobs of horsehair to braid, so what to do? Then I hit on common gardening twine. Reasonably strong, with a rough look that mimicked horsehair -- great idea!
It took about 8 hours of measuring, twisting, doubling, and more twisting, but I finally ended up with a pretty good result. The only problem? It needed to be 22 feet long, and I only made 18 feet. I measured my initial strands out to 25 feet, thinking that three extra feet would be gracious plenty to allow for the twists, but apparently not. It's a beautiful thing, but it needs to be longer. I'd also like it to be a little thicker. I may revisit this once the blister on my index finger from twisting goes away.
|Strands in progress...|