Confused on what brand and size to buy for an English Saddle
 
 

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Confused on what brand and size to buy for an English Saddle

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    10-04-2008, 11:13 AM
  #1
Foal
Confused on what brand and size to buy for an English Saddle

Hello,

I am back riding English again for about 10 yrs off. I am 31 yrs old, 5' 6" and 130 lbs...I would like to purchase my own English Saddle, and don't know which brand to buy? I would like a nice leather..I am sick of poor leather and ill fitted saddles.
What brands do you all like that stand the test of time?
And what size do I buy..is the 16"-18" for the horse, or for me?
I should mention, the great farm I ride at..I ride various horses..from Missouri Fox Trotter, to several TB's, to half TB/Percherons. Would that make a big diff in the saddles?

Confused!

Thanks
     
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    10-04-2008, 03:40 PM
  #2
Foal
Hello Confused! It will be very difficult, if not impossible, to purchase one saddle that will fit all of those horses... Treeless saddles may be your closest option. As for tehe 13 - 18" size, that is for you... that is the seat size. Go to your local tack shop and try some one.. see what fits you best, what style you like... etc.. but again, it won't fit all of those horses.

Kim
     
    10-04-2008, 06:45 PM
  #3
Yearling
For fitting it to you: sit in the saddle like you were riding and stick your hand behind you. You should be able to get about a hand's width behind. I would say that you are most likely a 16-17 based on the information.
     
    10-04-2008, 07:07 PM
  #4
Green Broke
Since you're riding many different horses I would go with something that has a changeable gullet, like Wintec, Bates, or Collegiate, or something with a flex tree like Courbette's Swiss line of saddles. Wintec is a (quality) synthetic saddle, the rest are good quality leather saddles. If you don't want to hassle with changing the gullet plates every time you ride a different horse, then I'd go with the flex tree saddle.

Courbette's web site:
http://www.courbette.com/Catalog/catalog.html

The first section of Swiss made saddles are all made on their flex e-motion tree. I have a couple of friends with these saddle and they are very nice quality. The regular size flex tree fits most horses medium-narrow to medium-wide. The Magic saddle is made of all-weather leather, which is nice if you trail ride a lot.

The other direction you could go is a used Stubben Siegfried in a 30 or 30.5 cm tree. This tree size fits most horses quite well (except the big guys). Even the 31 cm tree fits a lot of horses. You'd just need to use a thick pad for a more narrow horse. Stubbens are GREAT saddles and worth their weight in gold. You can find a nice used one in the $250-600 price range, depending on how good of condition it's in.

The seat size is for you. I would recommend a 17 to 17.5" seat. Try to find a retailer that has a trial policy, so you can test ride a saddle to make sure it's comfortable and the quality you want. For your height and weight, a 16" or 16.5" would likely be too small. You want to be able to fit 4 fingers between your rear and the end of the saddle, and 3-4 fingers between your pelvis and the front of the saddle (at the same time). My mom is 5'5" and 120 lbs and a 17" saddle fit her just right. My daughter is 5'1" and 110 lbs and her 17" is only a tad too big for her, but she's still growing! .

Good luck saddle shopping!
     
    10-04-2008, 09:04 PM
  #5
Foal
I can also vouch for Courbette saddles, I 've had two and they were well made and lasted for years.
Depending on the depth of the seat, it's hard to say what will fit you. The hand width is good guide. A close contact 17" is much bigger than an all-purpose 17". The position of the knee rolls also makes a difference. You just have to try differnt saddles in the tack shop.

Getting a saddle to fit the horse can be much more difficult, you should get a saddler to evaluate the fit and make adjustments. It makes a world of difference to your horse and his attitude. Kind of like you wearing the wrong shoes. They might be the right size, but if they pinch your foot, it's awful.

I really like the Thorogood synthetic saddles. They are well made, and the new ones come with an adjustable gullet. They also come in high wither, standard, cob, narrow, wide, and extra wide. Easy to care for, and the seat is very grippy, for a secure feeling. Knee blocks are adjustable and removeable. The older model I have has 4 billets, the new ones have moveable billets so you can set the girth slightly forward or back, if you need to adjust the saddle on your horse's back.
     

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