Do I need a new saddle or just a another saddle blanket?

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Do I need a new saddle or just a another saddle blanket?

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    10-12-2009, 10:39 PM
Green Broke
Do I need a new saddle or just a another saddle blanket?

I received my current saddle, Billy Cook Trail Saddle 10-1536 on Feb. 5 and have found it to be comfortable. Red has never acted like it bothered him at all. Never had any rub marks or soreness. Last Wednesday I thought he had some dirt on him but it didn't rub off. It was white-ish colored hairs on his back and I noticed they were on the the other side too. I nearly had a cow. I have been trail riding for the last 3 weekends, going up and down hills, etc. Before it had been riding in flat areas.

I was told to get Red another wool pad to go under my saddle blanket. My current saddle pad is a SMx Air Ride
The purple one. I went to the store today and spoke to the lady about purchasing another pad and I told her what the problem was and she said she thinks the saddle doesn't fit him. I called the Horse Saddle Shop and asked what size bars (I could have swore I was told when I bought this saddle at Teskeys that it was full quarter horse bars) this saddle had and he told me Regular Bars. UGH.

Red has kind of high withers...he is a registered QH but he looks like an appendix! If I need a new saddle I will be purchasing one immediately but I don't want to hop up and buy one if this isn't the problem! Thoughts or recommendations appreciated! Does anyone have this saddle?
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    10-13-2009, 12:26 AM
I don't know squat about western saddles. I do know quite a bit about slipping saddle pads and hills. After trying out every fabric available, I find only sheepskin pads do not slip back and forth when out on hilly trails. It may be that your saddle fits, but the pad underneath is shifting just enough to be causing the rubs.

If that were an english saddle, those marks on your horse would indicate that the gullet is too wide and allowing the saddle to shift from side to side. I'm not sure how that translates into a western saddle. Maybe put it on your horse complete with cinch, no pad and try to rock in back and forth and side to side to see how much it is moving.
    10-13-2009, 01:16 AM
Green Broke
Thanks so much! I will go out tomorrow and put the saddle sans blanket on Red and see how much it moves.

I will look into the type of pad you are referring to!
    10-13-2009, 03:20 AM
In my experience, when you get linear marks like that instead of round ones it's the pad. It the marks were more round I would say it's the saddle. I would get a wool pad to go under the Airride pad and see how that works. I like the Diamond wool pads.
    10-13-2009, 03:42 AM
Also, even one of those cheap-ish wool felt pads would probably do the trick.

Are those SMX pads the ones with the shaped wool lining sewn to the underside of a simple wool blanket? If so, I would say that probably it is one of the seams that is rubbing him and I would suggest a pad with a solid underside.
    10-13-2009, 09:29 AM
Green Broke
Thanks y'all! It doesn't have seams on the underside I don't believe. I am about to head out to the barn so I will be able to check it out.
    10-13-2009, 12:22 PM
SMX air rides have closed cell foam in them, some have a layer of felt as well, also some have medical grade wool. They are also designed to help distribute the weight of the saddle to help reduce pressure points. I have to put a wool blanket folded in half on my boy for that extra relief because the saddle I am having to use a semi qh tree saddle until I sell my saddle and can get him a flex tree saddle and I have noticed a world of difference in my horse, I don't think he ended up with those white hairs but I can't be sure cause his back is predominantly white lol but he is appearing more comfortable now and is able to flex his back correctly when I ride. Id look into getting a wool pad. Also you can get a breast collar and a crupper to help keep the saddle from slipping. Sorry for rambling but I hope some of my rambling may have helped. Good luck
    10-13-2009, 12:23 PM
And no they don't have seams on the underside. Or at least not all the ones I have seen
    10-13-2009, 06:14 PM
Green Broke
Thanks y'all! (you weren't rambling either! I need all the info I can get) I did go buy a black felt wool 3/4" pad today and spoke to the owner of the saddle shop. She didn't think it was a bad fitting saddle necessarily. Red does have a breast collar and back cinch that keeps the saddle from coming up when going down hill. I just got that after the first down hill run! Red thinks he is the horse from "Man From Snowy River" and wants to haul hinney down the hills! He is high in the back side anyway so I felt like I was going over!!

I am going to give the pad a whirl but if I think this is not it I feel a new saddle coming on. I am certainly not opposed to it and would love to have an Aussie saddle or a Tucker so if I must - I will! (This gives Honey Darling Precious a nervous breakdown)
    10-14-2009, 01:41 AM
Originally Posted by QOS    
I am going to give the pad a whirl but if I think this is not it I feel a new saddle coming on.
Thats kinda the situation im in...i have a NICE roper saddle that I love but even 5 pads under it wouldnt help the fit on my boy (no I didnt put 5 pads on him, it was just a statement) LUCKILY my mom has a cheap cordura saddle I can use for now. Hope the wool pad helps.

Also the flank cinch, also called the rear or back cinch, holds the back end of the saddle down on the horse's back during extreme activity such as roping or fast stops. It is a common misconception that a flank cinch will prevent a saddle from moving forward on a horse during downhill riding. It will not. If this is your goal, you would need to add a crupper to your saddle. A crupper is a piece that connects to the back of the saddle and goes around the base of the horse's tail. A crupper is a leather strap (sometimes made of other materials like neoprene lined and all) looped under a horse's tail and attached to a harness or saddle to keep it from slipping forward.

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