Another Aussie saddle thread (Sorry!) - Page 2
   

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Another Aussie saddle thread (Sorry!)

This is a discussion on Another Aussie saddle thread (Sorry!) within the Horse Tack and Equipment forums, part of the Horse Tack category
  • MY AUSSIE SADDLE SAYS RINGER ON THE FENDER
  • Cariboo Halfbreed SADDLE

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    02-09-2013, 09:38 PM
  #11
Yearling
It's actually over $200 dollars cheaper than the Muster Master so I think that might make up for it :) I still like the Muster Master a little bit better, but I'd rather go for the better company with better quality saddles. I sent them an email to ask if it came in black at all (I hope so!)
     
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    02-10-2013, 01:49 AM
  #12
Yearling
You appear to have done a good amount of looking and checking out what's out there. I'm not going to point you towards any particular saddle. You'll be better at knowing what you want than I could be.
Just a few things to say.
If you don't have a makers name that you can confirm is in Australia (e.g. James, Sid Hill, etc....) then they are being made some place else. Most likely someplace in Asia (e.g. India, etc.....). Most of what Australian Stock Saddle Co and Down Under sell are not made in Australia. I know ASSC was apparently having some very expensive custom ones made in CA.
Good luck getting a Sid Hill. I've heard he's gone into simi retirement and might make one for certain long time customers in Aus, but not commercially anymore. So whatever Sid Hill's are out there will what you get to select from. However there are some excellent saddle makers in Aus.
I've heard mixed reports on Asian made saddles. E.g. I've seen people praise the Kimberely and heard terrible reports on others. I would certainly avoid anything I heard bad things about, didn't hear good things about, didn't have a manufacture I could check on or especially is a knock off trying to pass as a recognised brand.
If you must have one with a horn (something I dislike about Western saddles ) I hope you don't plan to use the horn as a functioning working horn. It's for show (to make riders who love the "Western" look happy ), but it should serve for hanging things off of.
My oldest mare has a bit of a wide back (just over 9.5" Western gullet) and my wide Sid Hill Bushmaster fits her pretty well. It might be about a 1/4" too wide, but a thick pad has worked real well and I use it with both my mares.
I would not recommend a stock saddle for my favorite kind riding, (but there aren't many that I think measure up well for truly long distance riding) because it doesn't provide enough surface contact area. A little better than the Hungarian/German style saddles (AKA English), but a lot less than a Trooper (which actually is an "English" design saddle from the Universal Pattern military saddle......go figure).
The stock saddle is great for weekend trail rides and as a working saddle. They usually have comfortable seats I could spend days riding on and if they had better weight displacement I'd certainly use them for my long distance riding. I own mine because of a mare who discovered that she could unseat a rider if she didn't want to go some place. Today she rides nicely. I've never had any horse unseat me from a stock saddle (an no horn to get hung up on ) so today it's my saddle of choice whenever I start a new horse under saddle even though I don't need it most times. I also enjoy it for trails and weekend riding.
     
    02-10-2013, 02:09 AM
  #13
Yearling
Quote:
Originally Posted by its lbs not miles    
You appear to have done a good amount of looking and checking out what's out there. I'm not going to point you towards any particular saddle. You'll be better at knowing what you want than I could be.
Just a few things to say.
If you don't have a makers name that you can confirm is in Australia (e.g. James, Sid Hill, etc....) then they are being made some place else. Most likely someplace in Asia (e.g. India, etc.....). Most of what Australian Stock Saddle Co and Down Under sell are not made in Australia. I know ASSC was apparently having some very expensive custom ones made in CA.
Good luck getting a Sid Hill. I've heard he's gone into simi retirement and might make one for certain long time customers in Aus, but not commercially anymore. So whatever Sid Hill's are out there will what you get to select from. However there are some excellent saddle makers in Aus.
I've heard mixed reports on Asian made saddles. E.g. I've seen people praise the Kimberely and heard terrible reports on others. I would certainly avoid anything I heard bad things about, didn't hear good things about, didn't have a manufacture I could check on or especially is a knock off trying to pass as a recognised brand.
If you must have one with a horn (something I dislike about Western saddles ) I hope you don't plan to use the horn as a functioning working horn. It's for show (to make riders who love the "Western" look happy ), but it should serve for hanging things off of.
My oldest mare has a bit of a wide back (just over 9.5" Western gullet) and my wide Sid Hill Bushmaster fits her pretty well. It might be about a 1/4" too wide, but a thick pad has worked real well and I use it with both my mares.
I would not recommend a stock saddle for my favorite kind riding, (but there aren't many that I think measure up well for truly long distance riding) because it doesn't provide enough surface contact area. A little better than the Hungarian/German style saddles (AKA English), but a lot less than a Trooper (which actually is an "English" design saddle from the Universal Pattern military saddle......go figure).
The stock saddle is great for weekend trail rides and as a working saddle. They usually have comfortable seats I could spend days riding on and if they had better weight displacement I'd certainly use them for my long distance riding. I own mine because of a mare who discovered that she could unseat a rider if she didn't want to go some place. Today she rides nicely. I've never had any horse unseat me from a stock saddle (an no horn to get hung up on ) so today it's my saddle of choice whenever I start a new horse under saddle even though I don't need it most times. I also enjoy it for trails and weekend riding.
Thanks much! The more I think about it, the more I want to lean away from the Muster Master... As much as I do like it. James Saddlery is based in Australia, and from what I hear has fantastic saddles. I really like the one I posted a few posts back by James. I don't think it's a legitimate stock saddle - the first and second saddle in the series (Ringer) are, and honestly I think the only difference is the bit of skirting around the back and Western fenders. I'm pretty sure the seat is exactly the same. So I'll have the Aussie seat and poleys (Which I am interested in - some people say they feel trapped, but I think I would like the security) -but it has that 'western flair' to it that I really like. It's a modified Stock saddle, really.

I do in fact NOT want a saddle horn, as much as I do like them. They are useless unless I'm a roper and they're dangerous if your horse has an accident. No reason to stick one on there. I plan on using it for trails and whatnot, but nothing major - no endurance. The most it would ever see is maybe a weekend long riding/camping trip in the future. Which, speaking of, I have heard that Aussie saddles are easy on the knees. I love my western, and it may just be because it's too big for me but my knees just kill after an hour or more of riding. So, that's another thing to look forward to!

I am still looking around a bit. Spending so much on a saddle means I'm going to have to be 100% happy with it if I'm going to buy it. I've contacted James about possibly getting a custom - I don't want it much different from the one I'm looking at, but if I could I would change a few teensy things (And they have a gallery of custom made saddles on their webpage...) I do think you're right about ASSC making expensive customs - they'll make a saddle exactly to your specifications if you want them to. Which would be nice if they were more reputable, etc...

Glad to hear a Stock is as comfortable as I've heard. I look forward to warmer weather when I can actually think about purchasing! Though, I guess it's a good thing it's still winter... Gives me PLENTY of time to do my research like I should.
     
    02-10-2013, 02:47 AM
  #14
Trained
Hi!

Got your PM but didn't have my computer, i'll just reply here.

Firstly, the link you had in your PM to Cooper Saddles - He is a custom saddler about an hour from me - Small world! Amazing saddles, most pro campdrafters here use them, I got a quote for one a few months ago and it was $4,950. So a bit out of your budget LOL! But they are a good thing to look at to see what a good quality fender saddle will be like.

I have a custom made stock saddle so I don't have any experience with the saddles made for export unfortunately. However I have heard ok things about James Saddlery for what it's worth.

Halfbreed/fender saddles should come fairly wide. It's the traditional stocks that tend to be narrower as our foundation stock horses were mostly bush TB's with some pony thrown in. QH only got her in 1957 so we are still playing catch up with the super wide ones!

You have a traditional stock saddle which are the ones with the full flap and stirrups on leathers, not fenders. Then you have a fender, which is the same as a traditional but with fenders instead of the leathers. They normally still have the wool flocked panels.

The halfbreeds are the ones with the western panels, and no flocking beneath the tree, so you pad them like a western saddle.

I would reccomend something like this: Harris Entertainment :: Stock Master Plain Skirt

I just had a look at these saddles in person at a big horse sale, and a friend has one. While they aren't top of the range, they are a good quality saddles with some well thought out features. However they are still a bit out of your price range.
     
    02-10-2013, 03:57 AM
  #15
Yearling
Quote:
Originally Posted by Shoebox    
Thanks much! The more I think about it, the more I want to lean away from the Muster Master... As much as I do like it. James Saddlery is based in Australia, and from what I hear has fantastic saddles. I really like the one I posted a few posts back by James. I don't think it's a legitimate stock saddle - the first and second saddle in the series (Ringer) are, and honestly I think the only difference is the bit of skirting around the back and Western fenders. I'm pretty sure the seat is exactly the same. So I'll have the Aussie seat and poleys (Which I am interested in - some people say they feel trapped, but I think I would like the security) -but it has that 'western flair' to it that I really like. It's a modified Stock saddle, really.

I do in fact NOT want a saddle horn, as much as I do like them. They are useless unless I'm a roper and they're dangerous if your horse has an accident. No reason to stick one on there. I plan on using it for trails and whatnot, but nothing major - no endurance. The most it would ever see is maybe a weekend long riding/camping trip in the future. Which, speaking of, I have heard that Aussie saddles are easy on the knees. I love my western, and it may just be because it's too big for me but my knees just kill after an hour or more of riding. So, that's another thing to look forward to!

I am still looking around a bit. Spending so much on a saddle means I'm going to have to be 100% happy with it if I'm going to buy it. I've contacted James about possibly getting a custom - I don't want it much different from the one I'm looking at, but if I could I would change a few teensy things (And they have a gallery of custom made saddles on their webpage...) I do think you're right about ASSC making expensive customs - they'll make a saddle exactly to your specifications if you want them to. Which would be nice if they were more reputable, etc...

Glad to hear a Stock is as comfortable as I've heard. I look forward to warmer weather when I can actually think about purchasing! Though, I guess it's a good thing it's still winter... Gives me PLENTY of time to do my research like I should.
Some of the "customizing" that ASSC does is to the Asian saddles they have. Basically, if it's not over $2,000 (probably evey more higher today) it's very unlikely to be made in Aus. And if you order from Aus remember to calculate the conversion. The Aus dollar use to be less back in the 90's, but todays it's higher than the US dollar.

Can't say about the western fender (I haven't used one in years), but my knees feel fine after I ride. They're in a comfortable position and the stirrup straps allow for easy movement forward and backward.

There are many things I'd change about my stock saddle and I would except that it is a Sid Hill and someday I'll probably sell it so changes I made would only decrease it's value and make it tougher to sell. (I'd cut out almost all of the flap and the sweat flap underneath and add a rear cinch ring). If I could I'd love to find someone who could make me a trooper with poleys and virtually no flaps. For long distance riding all that extra leather is just weight I don't need and I change to nylon stirrup straps.
Since you're not getting a horn I might suggest making or getting a strap to attach across the front of your saddle. Makes it a lot easier to have a "handle" at times. I find it easier to carry that way since I can just carry it on my shoulder with the leather handle. I also like to put the ends of my leads (I use as reins) through it so I can drop them and not lose them.
You can just manage to see it attached at the pommel of the saddle it in this photo. One of the most unimportant, yet appreciated strips of leather I own . Nothing fancy. Just a long strip of good leather with a buckle.
Attached Images
File Type: jpg sit3.jpg (75.0 KB, 59 views)
File Type: jpg sit4.jpg (35.9 KB, 59 views)
File Type: jpg Sit2.jpg (28.3 KB, 57 views)
     
    02-10-2013, 09:48 AM
  #16
Green Broke
The reason I went with an Aussie saddle was for comfort. I was leasing at the time and the western saddle that the owner had was so uncomfotable and my knees would hurt 15 minutes into a ride. My friend had an Aussie and suggest I get one and I got a cheap one off of craigslist. Wow what a difference. I can ride all day with no pain! When I adopted Hunter and he grew up my Aussie saddle was too big for him and the long fenders cut into his shoulder so that was when I opted for a new one and bought the endurance one.

Love those poleys for times Hunter bucked too. Have had a few english riders ride Hunter and they didn't like the poleys as they got in the way of posting.

Here is a bit of info on fitting and riding in an Aussie saddle as it is different than western or english. The good thing with the authentic ones is that they are adjustable, I need to get mine adjusted as since Hunter has grown he has filled out but we wanted to wait until he was five before adjusting.

Horse Saddle Fitting : Cariboo Outback, Australian Saddles & Supplies
     
    02-10-2013, 10:33 AM
  #17
Trained
Just a note: ASSC saddles that aren't made in India are not made in AUS because they are made in California because that's where Colin Dangaard lives now.
Posted via Mobile Device
     
    02-10-2013, 11:49 AM
  #18
Yearling
Quote:
Originally Posted by Hunter65    
Have had a few english riders ride Hunter and they didn't like the poleys as they got in the way of posting.

Here is a bit of info on fitting and riding in an Aussie saddle as it is different than western or english. The good thing with the authentic ones is that they are adjustable, I need to get mine adjusted as since Hunter has grown he has filled out but we wanted to wait until he was five before adjusting.

Horse Saddle Fitting : Cariboo Outback, Australian Saddles & Supplies
I've heard that some people say they can't post with them, but everyone I know, myself included, that ride one post just fine. I have to wonder how they are posting that causes a problem. I can lead all the way forward and give my horse a treat while riding and the poleys don't hamper that so they're certainly not in the way of posting.

Not all authentic "made in Aus" stock saddles are adjustable although many, if not most probably still are and the "traditionalist" in Aus will certainly still make them that way (asian made ones are adjustable since it allows for use of less expensive material). Some of the newer ones, like my Sid Hill, are not adjustable. Using a modern man made material for strength instead of the traditional metal bars and wood. Not that it matters to me since it's mine fits. The trooper (my saddle for long distances so the most critical for fit) is much easier to make adjustments to and repair. Just not as good for breaking in a new horse that wants to test your authority

My dream saddle (which doesn't exist so no one makes it) would be a high quality saddle with a stock saddle top for me on a trooper frame for weight displacement and air flow for my horse. Which probably explains why I have both types of saddles
     
    02-10-2013, 03:20 PM
  #19
Trained
The only adjustability in a good Aussie made stock saddle is adjusting the flocking. A good half breed saddle has NO adjustability once made. You can buy a cheaper bates stock or fender with a changeable gullet but that is it.

How do those saddles claim to be adjustable?

A good stock saddle is made on a high quality tree that will fit most horses of the same type, and you tweak the fit by either re-flocking (traditional) or padding (half breed).
Posted via Mobile Device
     
    02-10-2013, 03:57 PM
  #20
Yearling
Wild Spot, they claim to be adjustable tree-wise. So, if you get it and it doesn't fit, just send it on back and they can adjust the tree for you. It's pretty common in what I've seen so far.

So, I just got an email back from James Saddlery. The saddles are made to order and can come in black! They take 4 weeks to make and 8 weeks to deliver. *sob* it's going to take so long to get here... But I'm so excited! I think this is the saddle I want, almost for sure.

I'm going to see if I can get a few things tweaked on it, since they are made to your liking when you order. I'd like silver (Stainless) rings (Fittings?) instead of brass. One thing I am wondering. The saddle I am looking at is lined underneath with genuine sheepskin. I really like that. I also know that most Stock saddles have flocking underneath. That kind of appeals to me, as then I wouldn't really need a thick saddle pad. With the sheepskin I'll likely need to use a thicker one, right? Would it be better if I asked it to be flocked (If that's a possibility)?

I'm also going to ask and see if the Western fenders are interchangeable with English, because I would like that. I love western but I'd like the option. I don't want too much tweaked on it, just a few things here and there. So I suppose it would be semi-customized. Their saddles aren't adjustable, they are built to order.
     

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