I have an embarrassingly huge bit collection. Here’s how I like to keep them clean and ready to go.
I dilute it out to about 1:10 and just let the bits soak while I clean and condition the leather. After about 30 minutes, any crud that’s built up will usually come off with a quick wipe with a clean sponge or cloth. It makes the rings nice and show sparkly, too.
And I figure the horses probably enjoy the mild minty taste the next time they’re bridled.