Saddle Sizes - The Horse Forum
LinkBack Thread Tools
post #1 of 12 Old 12-13-2013, 02:19 AM Thread Starter
Join Date: Nov 2013
Location: North QLD, Australia.
Posts: 22
• Horses: 2
Saddle Sizes

I'm looking at buying a western saddle for when I bring my QH back into work. Just something big and comfortable to take him trail riding in. My question is I fit a 17" comfortably but I'm currently eyeing off a 16" saddle. How much of a difference with this one inch make? I'm just curious as to if I should try and stick to a 17 or not.

(Keep in mind I'm 5'7 and somewhat 'heavier' aka I have a big bum. I fit super well in a 17)
Posted via Mobile Device
titanium is offline  
Sponsored Links
post #2 of 12 Old 12-13-2013, 02:57 AM
Green Broke
Join Date: May 2013
Location: Louisiana
Posts: 2,721
• Horses: 1
In my opinion, one inch makes a huge difference. You'd probably be just fine jumping in a friend's 16" for a quick ride, but if a 17" feels right for you then I wouldn't look at anything smaller than a 16.5". I have had the opposite problem- I'm comfortably in the 15" size range in western saddles, but seriously considered buying a 16" Circle Y earlier in the year. The guy let me try the saddle, and the seat seemed WAY too big compared to the 15" that I've ridden in. Super comfy, but I was not willing to buy a saddle that really didn't fit me at all because of the good price and comfort.

The only way that I would consider doing it is if you are either able to sit in or try out a number of 16" saddles beforehand, or if you are willing to resell this saddle if it doesn't fit you properly. 16" is a pretty common western seat size, so if you have friends with western saddles then it is possible that you have some you can put your butt in. If this particular saddle is local, then I would strongly suggest a trial period, or going to the seller/tack store/whatever and actually sitting in it. The fit between sitting in it on a saddle rack and on a horse can be different, but you should be able to tell well enough if it definitely won't work before you buy it!

Also- you don't mention what sort of saddle you normally ride in. Have you been riding English up to this point and looking to buy your first western saddle? Or are you just looking for a new one for bringing your horse back? If you're used to riding in a 17" English saddle, then a 17" Western saddle will not be the correct size. Western and English saddles are measured differently, so for the most part a 17" English saddle is comparable to a 15" western saddle. Pardon me if you are aware of this difference or have never ridden English, but not everyone knows about saddle sizing between disciplines!
DuckDodgers is offline  
post #3 of 12 Old 12-13-2013, 03:00 AM
Join Date: Sep 2012
Location: Central Western NSW, Australia
Posts: 1,120
• Horses: 4
When you say you fit a 17" comfortably, if that in western, stock or english? I'm a 17" in stock and 18" in english, and only just fit a 17" western.
Tracer is offline  
post #4 of 12 Old 12-13-2013, 05:08 AM Thread Starter
Join Date: Nov 2013
Location: North QLD, Australia.
Posts: 22
• Horses: 2
Well there you go! I didn't actually know about the size difference! I'm glad I thought to ask.

And I am currently riding in a 17" all purpose. I did have a stock saddle but it broke a few years ago and I have no idea what size it was. I've ridden in both western and stock saddles, but I just really love the western saddles.
Posted via Mobile Device
titanium is offline  
post #5 of 12 Old 12-13-2013, 06:17 AM
Join Date: Dec 2008
Location: USA
Posts: 13,588
• Horses: 2

If you ride in a 17" English, the average conversion is to a 15" Western, but most people who are used to English often go with a 16" in Western for the extra room....


May all your Trails be happy and safe ones

SouthernTrails is offline  
post #6 of 12 Old 12-13-2013, 07:17 AM
Green Broke
Join Date: May 2011
Location: Vidor, Texas
Posts: 2,805
• Horses: 3
The only way for me to know if it's a good fit is by sitting in the saddle that I'm interested in.
Dustbunny likes this.
gigem88 is offline  
post #7 of 12 Old 12-13-2013, 07:48 AM
Green Broke
Join Date: Aug 2009
Location: New South Wales, Australia
Posts: 4,847
• Horses: 1
I usually ride in a 17 inch English, maybe I'd prefer a 17 and a half. I can ride comfortably in a 15.5 inch, but I prefer riding in a 16 inch (western). Depends on the seat as well - you'd think they'd all be the same but there not! Sometimes I'll sit in a 15 inch with heaps of room, or sometimes she are super small, just depends on how it is designed.
Saskia is offline  
post #8 of 12 Old 12-13-2013, 07:55 AM
Join Date: Aug 2013
Posts: 303
• Horses: 0
My dressage saddle was a 17.5 and my Western saddle is a 16.

When our horse was getting fitted for the High Horse Eldorado we are now using, I talked about going up one size so my hubby would be comfortable. The fitter said I wouldn't be in that bigger size and because I am the regular rider I should go with what fit me (once we got the right saddle for the horse).
wdblevin is offline  
post #9 of 12 Old 12-13-2013, 09:17 AM Thread Starter
Join Date: Nov 2013
Location: North QLD, Australia.
Posts: 22
• Horses: 2
Ah yes, I can see what you guys mean. I asked a saddler and she suggested a 15'.

Why do I ride horses? Because I look at my horse, and see my hopes and my dreams.
titanium is offline  
post #10 of 12 Old 12-13-2013, 10:45 AM
Join Date: Jan 2011
Location: Ontario
Posts: 17,193
• Horses: 0
The tree in a western is the same length for both the 15" and 16" seat. It is longer in a 17". The tree is not to exceed the last true rib. I find the rib midway down the belly then either ruff the hair drawing a line that follows the rib or use chalk. Nowadays one can often get a better deal on 15" saddles as there is a greater demand for 16's and 17's.
Saddlebag is offline  

Quick Reply

Register Now

In order to be able to post messages on the The Horse Forum forums, you must first register.

Already have a Horse Forum account?
Members are allowed only one account per person at the Horse Forum, so if you've made an account here in the past you'll need to continue using that account. Please do not create a new account or you may lose access to the Horse Forum. If you need help recovering your existing account, please Contact Us. We'll be glad to help!

New to the Horse Forum?
Please choose a username you will be satisfied with using for the duration of your membership at the Horse Forum. We do not change members' usernames upon request because that would make it difficult for everyone to keep track of who is who on the forum. For that reason, please do not incorporate your horse's name into your username so that you are not stuck with a username related to a horse you may no longer have some day, or use any other username you may no longer identify with or care for in the future.

User Name:
Please enter a password for your user account. Note that passwords are case-sensitive.


Confirm Password:
Email Address
Please enter a valid email address for yourself.

Email Address:


Human Verification

In order to verify that you are a human and not a spam bot, please enter the answer into the following box below based on the instructions contained in the graphic.

Old Thread Warning
This thread is more than 90 days old. When a thread is this old, it is often better to start a new thread rather than post to it. However, If you feel you have something of value to add to this particular thread, you can do so by checking the box below before submitting your post.

Thread Tools
Show Printable Version Show Printable Version
Email this Page Email this Page

Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
Confused on saddle sizes! mrstorres2566 Horse Tack and Equipment 2 09-10-2013 09:08 PM
Delgrange Saddle Sizes jess522 Horse Tack and Equipment 0 07-21-2011 11:59 PM
Saddle Sizes? LindseyHunterx24 Horse Tack and Equipment 16 11-17-2010 07:33 PM
Saddle Sizes? LindseyHunterx24 Horse Tack and Equipment 0 11-17-2010 05:50 PM
Saddle sizes? huntergrl Horse Tack and Equipment 2 01-31-2008 09:08 AM

Posting Rules  
You may post new threads
You may post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are On
Pingbacks are On
Refbacks are On

For the best viewing experience please update your browser to Google Chrome