I'm looking to buy a more secure saddle for my horse and I've had a few in mind but there are a few things, so I thought it might help to share my thoughts on here.
I'm looking to buy a halfbreed stock saddle and have a few options. I had a Wintec Swinging Fender Saddle but I didn't get a chance to try it prior to purchase. It fit the horse okay but I didn't like it - it was too wide in some places, and I felt my legs were pushed too far forward, so I recently sold it and have money for another saddle.
There is a few around. Rosie is about the standard gullet size for these types of saddles which is handy, but she does have a shorter back which has ruled out a few models. So these are my choices:
A saddle by this guy called the HP Saddle. You can only really buy them online and he has a no returns policy (so you can't send it back when it doesn't fit)! I've seen one and it was well made and I've heard some great reviews, you can send wither tracing and such as well. But I'm still uncomfortable. On top of this, I emailed him, he got back to me but then I emailed him again and haven't heard a response in a week, and I'm not so keen on that. It's $1400 plus postage.
Second option is the Ezy Ride synthetic saddle. Again heard good reviews and its meant to be a bit shorter. Closest store is about 2 hours away. Most stores don't offer a trial period - they offer fittings but they won't come out this far, but I could probably talk them into offering me a return period if it doesn't fit. It's tree is made by Keiffer and is adjustable via a heat thing. I've contacted the store and haven't heard back, willing to give it a bit longer, but I feel that $1500 is A LOT to pay for a synthetic saddle. Maybe its just me being a bit jaded or bitter but its $1500 for a couple of kilos of plastic and material, and I don't like that. There are other synthetic saddles on the market for a lot cheaper, less than half price.
Third option is the Eqwest saddle. Heard some good reviews. It's the cheapest of the bunch at around $1200 with postage, and its leather. She also offers a 7 day return period so I can have a few rides in it to make sure it fits me and the horse, and if it doesn't I can send it back (but I lose postage but not too bad). They reply quickly to questions and seem to have good customer service. Small business. Also short saddle. But I'm not quite sure I like the saddle, seems to sit a bit weird, maybe bulky? Still great deal esp. With the trial.
So anyway what are your thoughts on all of them?
They really are all my options right now, I've looked around for some good quality second hand saddles but there are few and far between as far as stocks go.
Which do you think I should pursue?