How do I loosen up stiff fenders?
 
 

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How do I loosen up stiff fenders?

This is a discussion on How do I loosen up stiff fenders? within the Horse Tack and Equipment forums, part of the Horse Tack category
  • Stiff stirrup femders
  • How to loosen a stiff old saddle

 
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    05-10-2010, 08:58 PM
  #1
Weanling
How do I loosen up stiff fenders?

I am using my daughter's passed down western saddle that hasn't been used in a very long time. It's creaky and stiff and has such an amazingly soft seat! The problem is that the fenders (and hence the stirrups) are really really stiff. My knees hurt so bad at the end of the ride from trying to keep the stirrups turned out. Other than riding in it all the time, how can I go about loosening up the fenders? Since I only ride once a week I don't have a lot of opportunities to just break them in. Any other suggestions.
     
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    05-10-2010, 11:07 PM
  #2
Foal
Place the saddle on a saddle stand and wet down the backside of the fenders (some people use a spray bottle of water, some use leather oil). Take a common broom, such as a corn broom, and turn the fenders as they would sit if you were riding in the saddle.

Hold the fenders in that position and thread the handle of the broom through the fenders. The broom handle should hold the fenders in the riding position while they dry and help to mold them into a more comfortable riding position.

Another alternative are the pieces that you can purchase to place at the end of the fender.....they attach to the stirrup and actually swivel, thereby reducing leg strain from a stiff fender. Many catalogs sell them, so they should be easy to find.

Hope that helps.
     
    05-13-2010, 04:16 AM
  #3
Started
^^ Exactly. The only thing I would add is to condition the leather really well.
     
    05-13-2010, 09:47 AM
  #4
Weanling
My trainer suggested the broom handle thing too, so right now it's on a nice saddle stand with a pole (not a broom) through the stirrups. I've been spraying the inside of the fenders with water a few times. We'll see what happens.
     
    05-13-2010, 10:08 AM
  #5
Showing
First I would use a Murphys Oil Soap and water solution to clean and soften the fenders then I use this method to permanently turn my stirrups so that they are always facing front: Turning Western Stirrups
     
    05-13-2010, 10:14 AM
  #6
Weanling
Quote:
Originally Posted by iridehorses    
First I would use a Murphys Oil Soap and water solution to clean and soften the fenders then I use this method to permanently turn my stirrups so that they are always facing front: Turning Western Stirrups
Thanks. That was helpful. The saddle I'm using is actually my daughter's that she doesn't fit into yet so I'm a little hesitant to turn the stirrups at my length, because we'll have to shorten the stirrups when she grows another couple of inches. Once she starts using it, I'll definitely do that for her. It has really wide fenders and I don't think it was used much, even though it's 40+ years old. I'm going to add baby powder to all the creaky places this weekend because I get so sick of the creaking sound.
     
    05-13-2010, 04:56 PM
  #7
Showing
Shortening the stirrups should not change the twist since you adjust the length by raising and lowering the fender on the bar of the tree, not having your fender stay in the same spot and lowering the leathers.
     
    05-13-2010, 05:01 PM
  #8
Weanling
Quote:
Originally Posted by iridehorses    
Shortening the stirrups should not change the twist since you adjust the length by raising and lowering the fender on the bar of the tree, not having your fender stay in the same spot and lowering the leathers.
Gotcha...I haven't really looked at the underside that much to figure out how things all worked out.
     
    05-13-2010, 05:42 PM
  #9
Trained
I've always rubbed in baby powder to looosen stiff leather and it's always worked for me. :)
     

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