Replacing saddle billets?
I have this old Blue Ribbon English saddle (it looks like an all purpose) and I really wanted to use it, even though I ride Western, because you already have a fairly good saddle right here and it can save some money. The barn owner where I ride makes saddles, and I had him inspect it so I could see what needed to be fixed. He said the billets needed to be replaced, they had dry rotted. I'm not sure what else, though. That was all he said.
The stirrup bars are also a bit iffy; they are really hard to get a leather under and are immovable. I don't think they're rusty (I haven't looked at the saddle in a bit but I'm bringing it home today), just locked into one place. How can I loosen them up a bit?
About the billets: how much would it cost to have the billets replaced? The stitching is also coming undone a little on the panels, will they be fine (I don't do heavy riding, just once a week and I prob. Won't use that saddle *every* lesson) or does it need to be fixed?