I have saddle oiling OCD - The Horse Forum
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post #1 of 6 Old 11-30-2008, 06:03 PM Thread Starter
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I have saddle oiling OCD

Well, I can't stop oiling my saddle, I was basically wondering if its bad to over oil it and how do I know if I am over oiling? I managed to stop myself oiling this evening after 2 coats :roll:

Saddle history (will post pics later)
-2nd hand
-was really really dry, sister brought it back 4 years ago!
-probably oiled once a year?
-I gave it 3 generous coatings before Anglesey (Aug 2008)
-Went in the sea
-Another generous oiling September (after Anglesey)
-2 or 3 since then
-and todays 2 coats

I use the real neatsfoot oil with a paintbrush on the black parts of my saddle and usually glycerine soap it every week So, too much oiling? Or does it need it?
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post #2 of 6 Old 11-30-2008, 09:06 PM
Join Date: Oct 2008
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Lets see if I can give you some things to consider here..
I have recently brought back to life a 20+ year old saddle, and I had the same thinking at least as you are going through. Mine was at the very beginning of some form of minor age damage, or at least small surface cracking, and the first thing I did was to vacuum it entirely (it was left in a barn) quick-wipe and dry (a little water) then glycerin soap a few times. After I was sure it was completely dry, I then acquired "natural neatsfoot oil"..this opposed to anything synthetic,or mixed with natural, etc...THIS IS IMPORTANT as anything but animal-based natural neatsfoot will ruin stitching, and TOO MUCH neatsfoot of any sort will over soften the whole deal...too much of anything here is bad, too much of non-natural is worse. A quicker way (and many say much better) than scouring the countyside for natural neatsfoot is "olive oil" I haven't yet done it but, I know many people that will never again go to anything else such as neatsfoot for oiling and softening. Finally, if all components are in good order (stirrup mount bars, tree and it's components, stitching in general, girth/cinch straps and the associated mounting of them, or any obvious cracking, rips, etc..) then I have to wonder if you are overtly concerned about nothing.
Under normal wear and tear, simple quick wipe down, weekly inspection of leather and weight-bearing parts, and only soaping when it's really dirty beyond light wipe and dry, should be well enough. Oiling of any sort should be reserved for maybe once a year, once every other year, less or more dependent on temp, enviroment, etc..
I would at this point retreat from all oiling, soaping and make entirely sure that all is very dry (very soft cloths, and use as many as needed) to take-up any residual treatments you have given. Then inspect all parts to ensure that all is tight, clean, dry, and above all safe and sound. Maybe you can keep your saddle indoors (mine is allways with me in my office) out of temp and humidity extremes, and use a saddle carry bag when you are transporting back and forth. I also keep clean cotton cloth with my tack for after-ride wipe down, this includes at the end the normal gook clean-off from my stirrups before I stow away my saddle for the day. Do hope this helped.
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post #3 of 6 Old 11-30-2008, 09:33 PM
Join Date: Oct 2008
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My saddle pic

I had the afterthought to send along the "after" photo, as maybe that may or may not shed light on my earlier dialog. This is the result after maybe 40 hours of sweat and prayer.

Just and old Stubben I like didn't want to part ways with it quite yet..

Last edited by Loosewolf; 01-24-2009 at 09:36 AM.
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post #4 of 6 Old 11-30-2008, 09:51 PM
Join Date: Jul 2008
Location: Nova Scotia
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Most saddles only need to be oiled once or twice in a lifetime if they are well kept. You can definitely over oil leather! Only oil it if it's dry, which is usually the case with old saddle or saddles left in a dry area for long periods of time. You should wipe sweat from your tack after riding, and use glycerin soap about once a week (or every 5-6 rides if you don't ride daily).

Your saddle doesn't need any more oil. It has stains, scratches, rubs, and general wear and tear that will never come out. It looks like a good saddle though!
BeauReba is offline  
post #5 of 6 Old 11-30-2008, 10:45 PM
Join Date: Oct 2008
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about my saddle..

Yea Thanks Beau but, my saddle is pretty much finished for any time being.
my saddle (the one in the pic I put up) isn't the one in question, Moomoo (sp?) was our resident over-oiler. I was attempting to document what and how I got done though NOT drowning the poor thing.I CERTAINLY DO THANK YOU, it was a labor of love? (my hands still hurt..)

I wasn't sure which comment and/or pic we were refereing to there...

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post #6 of 6 Old 12-01-2008, 12:30 AM
Join Date: Jul 2008
Location: Nova Scotia
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Oops! I didn't notice who posted what lol

In any case, the saddle pictured doesn't need oiling, and yours probably doesn't either.

I know a guy who scrubbed a martingale so hard once he removed all the dye from it! Our instructor told him to scrub all the dirt off and he thought the dye was dirt.
BeauReba is offline  

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