Originally Posted by HowClever
Nope, definitely thinking of CAIR.
From the website...
"The revolutionary CAIRŪ Cushion System replaces the traditional fillings in your saddle panel with air. There are two independently sealed Air Cushions within each Saddle Panel. The concept of air, as the ultimate in cushioning for the horse is simple.
Air being a fluid medium will constantly adapt to the horse’s working muscles. This means that your weight will be distributed evenly across the entire length of the cushion, virtually eliminating pressure points. This extraordinary comfort results in freer movement, better carriage and a happier horse. For such a simple concept the dramatic difference the CAIRŪ Cushion System makes to a horse’s comfort and performance is profound."
ETA: Just reading further on their website and apparently a popped CAIR panel can be replaced by a good saddlery now.
I hear what you say - unfortunately...well, I'll be polite and just say they're economical with the truth.
A Cair panel is a piece of foam sealed in plastic, not 'air' in the true sense. Actually each panel is in two sections which overlap, the front pad simply taped to the rear in the belief pressure on the front will partially transfer to the back. Which it does, sort-of, from what I can tell, though I don't have the 'Pliance'
pressure testing gear to prove or disprove it.
I would think 'popping' a panel would be a pretty uncommon event - I've cut into Cair saddle panels with a Stanley knife to make a slot for flocking adjustment and never punctured a pad. Sounds more like the old garage mechanic's tale of 'Oh, and you need a new xxx...' to me.
Now I've always assumed that they used closed-cell foam, which wouldn't deflate anyway (a bit like the better quality adjustment pads - the foam will never thin to zero however much pressure you apply) but maybe I'm wrong on that, or they've changed it. In fact maybe that's why they're now offering replacements: they never used to. In any case, it's still not really air.