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Tuesday, May 21, 2013

Elytes on the breast collar

Rightfully so, one of my Dear Readers asked me to post pictures of my elyte system that was described like this:

1.  Wrap several layers of electrical tape around the syringe and attach it with one "go around" with a tab.  I positioned the syringe to the tip was up, so that the salt didn't fall out.  Not much sponge water got into it. To use, unwrap, give elytes, and then unwrap tape until you have sticky again.......and reattach.
==> wasn't  very nice.....

So.....This doesn't make a lot of sense.  :).  We shall blame it on being in my last week of school, and trying to make complete sentences too soon after a 50.....

First an overall picture.

 Yes, the breast collar is on the ground and not on a horse.  What do you want from me????????  Some sort of quality.

Use your imagination.

Now that you have the orientation of the breast collar, let's zoom in on option 1, which is shown on the off side of the breast collar (near the bottom). 

I've unwrapped the electrical tape so you can see the set up better.  Note that the syringe is positioned with the tip up.  Another option would be to get wire caps to close up up the tips - but I was out of time and couldn't find my stash of them, so my tips were open.  If the tips were closed, you could put the tip up or down without having to consider either the elytes being shaken out as you trot, or water getting into the syringe when you sponged.  Some water got into this syringe, but since I administer by sucking water in the syringe anyways, I decided it didn't matter. 

The electrical tape is wrapped around the syringe several times, before wrapping it around the breast collar, with a tabbed end.  To give the elytes, you would unwrap the syringe from the breast collar, give the elytes.  Even in the presence of water and sweat the electrical tape holds well to the breast collar, but once you unwrap it, sometimes it doesn't want to stick.  So the theory was to reattach the syringe, I could unwrap the tape from the syringe until it was sticky enough to reattach to the breast collar. 

In reality, I never used this syringe during the ride because my second idea worked so much better.  In fact, I wouldn't have even tried "option 1" if I had been able to find more of my syringe containers to set up this:

2.  Take bottom part of plastic that the syringe comes in.  Tape that with electrical tape to the breast collar.  Put syringe into this holster.  Put a piece of tabbed electrical tape (or perhaps in the future, velcro?) across end and on sides of holster.  Holster filled with some water, but didn't affect the elytes.
==> worked like a charm!

I think that  with the pictures, this is self-explanatory.  Using electrical tape I taped the plastic holder to the breast collar,  I then inserted the syringe into the holster, and used another piece of electrical tape across the top of it to hold it in. 

Even with lots of sponging and scooping, there wasn't a lot of water build up in the plastic holder.  In the future I would be nice to replace the top piece of tape with something more permanent, but I didn't have any issues with the tape during the ride, even late into the ride after it had been used. 

The best part of putting my elytes on the breast collar was not having to dig for syringes in my saddle bag - where they take up room, and have a tendancy to fall out.  They were accessible and easy to get to. 


  1. Great timing: I just busted a syringe last weekend b/c I had to stash it in a saddlebag!

    I sent a link to this post to the American Trail Gear girlz--maybe they'll steal the idea and make it all purty and fancy!

  2. If they did I would totally buy it. I was thinking of a little stretchy pouch thingy? The "lid" could be sized for an empty syringe, with a slit at the top (or maybe the lid is a 2 part string thingying that comes around the side base of the syringe) that the plunger can go through when there's something in the syringe.......

  3. Ooo, quite interesting! Did you have any problems with your reins getting caught on it?

    Wondering now if I can make something suitable out of my stash of stretchy lycra...

  4. Thanks for posting this. I think it might have been me that asked (I probably wasn't alone in that) and then I never followed up! Just saw this now.. this helped visualize.. much better..

  5. ok, so now I have another question... you are just putting in your dry mix of electrolytes into these syringes, right? Then where do you get your water/juice to mix with it? Do you just use one of your water bottles you are carrying or take it out of the water along the trail? I always like to elyte with applesauce and water but it makes a royal mess.. just trying to figure out a new system.

    1. I've mixed applesauce with my electrolytes in the past and use wire caps to cap the syringes. right now I've gone back to just dry electrolytes in a syringe and I suck up water from water trough to administer them. pulling the water into the syringe seems to make sense is all them enough to give them. it's less messy but, there may be additional lost out the mouth if the horse's head isn't kept up while giving.

  6. ok.. I have resorted to the more expensive pre mixed electrolytes to pack along with because the applesauce gets so messy. thanks for the post


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