off billet versus latigo? - Page 2 - The Horse Forum
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post #11 of 22 Old 04-27-2013, 08:08 AM
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It is interesting how the word latigo has come to mean a cinch strap when latigo is the result of a particular tanning process which produces the reddish color and makes it resistant to sweat.
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post #12 of 22 Old 04-27-2013, 09:07 AM
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If you are worried about bulk, you can also use a nylon latigo. I like them better than leather anyways, and they are much thinner.

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post #13 of 22 Old 04-27-2013, 06:12 PM Thread Starter
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I had no idea that latigo had to do with tanning! I wonder if thats why so many of the saddles are that pretty reddish color.

I'll try the nylon then bsms. One of our neighbors is letting us borrow an old bear trap barrel racing saddle to see if we like them. It has a really thick leather latigo and I'm betting my daughter won't like that much between her legs and the horse. Shes used to using her legs when shes riding. I'm waiting til he can come over and help me with the saddle the first time to check the fit and teach us how to do it right. That gives me time to pick up a nylon one.

We can buy this saddle if it works out well for us and I'm hoping it will. Its a pretty saddle and light compared to the others I've looked at. I've had no luck finding an aussie saddle locally so we can try it and this is the only bear trap I've found so far too.
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post #14 of 22 Old 04-27-2013, 06:34 PM
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The reddish saddles aren't latigo. The process used to make latigo also makes it somewhat stretchy, not something you want saddle leather to do. If your cinch straps are nylon then don't use a cinch made with nylon webbing, use a multi strand cinch. There has to be a bit of give and using all nylon doesn't have that. Any chance we can see a pic or two of the bear trap?
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post #15 of 22 Old 04-27-2013, 07:49 PM Thread Starter
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I'll have to check that. The cinch I have has wool on one side and I'm not sure what the other side is made of, never really looked at the other side.

Ok..I went and looked and its thick black nylon strapping on one side with wool stitched to the other side. So this kind has no give then? I know our feed store has the multi-strand kind and I think leather ones also.

I can post picks of the saddle once its here. Hes going to bring it with him when he comes to help us with it. It looks like a really good saddle. Old but it looks well made and well cared for. I don't see any cracking or thin feeling parts in the leather. The leather is really thick and very flexible and the tree feels rock solid. The fleece looks a bit matted but I got a 1" wool fleece pad to try under it also. The only part I'm worried about as far as condition is the tie strings that hang down. If I understand right, they go through the saddle and the fleece and are supposed to hold the saddle together? Well, the strings that hang off the saddle are mostly gone on all of them, just a...trying to think how to describe it. You guys probably know what it looks like anyways...not a knot there but the leather threads through each other. So that knot kinda thing and various odd lengths of strap hanging down is all thats there. I can see them on the fleece side and there they look strong but the other side looks worn out.
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post #16 of 22 Old 04-27-2013, 07:54 PM
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FWIW, I'm fond of mohair cinches. Ours is holding up well, and the horses don't seem to get as sweaty. You could also use a leather off-billet if it concerns you. I'm skeptical about how much a leather latigo 'gives', but with a leather off billet on one side and mohair in between, I'm sure it would be fine.
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post #17 of 22 Old 04-27-2013, 11:07 PM
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Going back to the knotted latigo, I've never knotted any of mine in my 25+ years of riding. I just buckle it using the tongue on the cinch and the holes in the latigo, then I run the excess up through the keeper. I've never had one come loose and it is a lot faster and easier to adjust them, IMHO.


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post #18 of 22 Old 04-28-2013, 02:38 AM
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In the beginning when I first started riding, I knotted the latigo. Once I started using the buckle on the cinch, I've never knotted.

I like leather rather than nylon. I've had nylon loosen up when knotted.
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post #19 of 22 Old 04-28-2013, 05:45 AM Thread Starter
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That looks much better then knotting! This saddle doesn't have holes along it though...it had 3 handmade holes in one section and it doesn't have a keeper. The keeper must be the tag with a slot in it? I'm pretty sure it didn't have one of those.

How does the latigo running up through the keeper differ from an off billet strap then? Well, besides length.
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post #20 of 22 Old 04-28-2013, 11:53 AM
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The latigo doesn't have to go thru the keeper. My latigo isn't all that long. With some horses, mine won't reach the keeper so I just run it back thru where it attaches to the saddle.
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