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How to Tie an Off Billet on a Western Saddle

Updated on January 14, 2014

How to Tie an Off Billet on a Western Saddle

The off billet is the strap that holds the cinch on, on the off side or right side of the saddle and horse when the saddle is in place. Most everything is done from the left side of the horse, mounting and dismounting, saddling, bridling and leading. The off billet stays in one place a majority of the time unless you are changing horses or the horse being saddled has lost or gained weight.

Step 1

Place the saddle blanket and saddle on the horse from the left side. Using a horse that is well trained is best so you have a horse that will stand still while you are tying the off billet. Moving targets are no fun to learn with.

Step 2

Measure how long the off billet needs to be tied. The cinch should be centered under the horse's barrel so if you start with the center of the cinch directly behind the front legs and centered between them and then bring it up towards the saddle you will find how long to adjust the off billet.

Step 3

Lace the off billet down through the cinch and then up through the rigging of the off billet and then back through the cinch. You will now need to adjust the length of the off billet to the previous measurement.

Step 4

Tie the off billet using the cinch tie knot. Lace the end of the off billet through the rigging that attaches it to the saddle down and out the left side of the rigging. Pull the slack all the way through. Lace the billet up through the rigging on the left side of the billet, this creates a loop across the front of the billet when pulled almost completely tight. Lace the end of the billet down through the loop you just created and pull tight. The length can be adjusted by loosening the knot, adjusting the length and re-tightening the knot.


Your horse may naturally "bloat" when you are tightening the cinch and tying the off billet. This happens because it is natural for them to resist the pressure and push back against it. to avoid the cinch from slipping you can let your horse relax by walking him around for a few minutes and then re-tightening the cinch and off billet. This allows the saddle to stay firmly in place when you are on the horse and creates an extra measure of safety for all involved.


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    • profile image

      Liza H. 

      6 years ago

      Great tutorial! The off billet is an important part of your western saddle so it is important to secure this in place.

      Liza's website:


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