Western Saddle fit help please!

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Western Saddle fit help please!

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  • +can skirts of a saddle be shorten
  • What's wrong with western saddle fit

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    12-13-2010, 07:40 AM
Western Saddle fit help please!

I am trying to find a new reining saddle that fits both my horse and my butt. So, we are in the process of trying some. It is difficult, since saddleries around us are VERY limited, and shipping is a real PIA. Anyway, went to talk to a guy about a custom, but he had this in stock, which he said I could use for 4-6 mo, and he would credit the full amount toward a custom. His wait period is 4 months anyway, so figured I would try it. However, I think it is too tight through the withers. I took the saddle and pics back to him, and he told me it fit well, but I had it positioned wrong. Could be, I am new to this whole western thing. He was all over the fact that the mayatex pad was crooked....I am not thinking that is THAT big a deal-the 5-star under it is straight....anyway-here are some pics-any help would be really appreciated. I am very confused.




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    12-13-2010, 08:46 AM
Green Broke
Those pictures are too close up to tell much, and it's best to take photos without any pad underneath the saddle. With the pad on, it's hard to tell if the saddle is placed correctly.

I have attached pictures I took of my mare when fitting an old hard seat saddle to her. I can't find the pictures I took of her without the pad. I took the same two angles with the pads and without. The front angle is a tad flat on her, but the saddle is level and sits well over her withers. It looks like it would pinch her withers, similarly to your photos, but it doesn't.

The one thing I'm worried about with your saddle is the overall length. You want the front concho to sit about 2" behind the back edge of the shoulder blades. With the saddle placed correctly, the back skirts should be no farther back than the mid-line of the flank (where the hair grows up).
Attached Images
File Type: jpg bridgette_side.jpg (59.6 KB, 474 views)
File Type: jpg bridgette_front.jpg (93.7 KB, 338 views)
    12-13-2010, 08:53 AM
I will have to try and get different pics later in the week when I get back to va....Based on that, we would be close length wise, but most of the reiners are the same length, unless I go to the Lady crates with the round skirts.

    12-13-2010, 08:54 AM
Green Broke
Well, if you're going custom you can always have the skirts shortened.

Most of the modern styled western saddles are too long for many horses with moderate to short bakes. I cringe at most of them in the WP ring...
    12-13-2010, 08:58 AM
Right-I can shorten it up then, he and I are not agreeing on the size of the tree at the moment....I want FQHB, and he says Semis.....
    12-13-2010, 12:12 PM
You really need to sit in it to check clearance. I bought a saddle that looked good and when I sat in it the clearance changed and it rubbed the withers
    12-13-2010, 12:15 PM
Green Broke
If that saddle is semi-qh bars that's on him, then he may be right. Semi-qh bars are steeper. That saddle on my mare is Full QH bars, and she's a wide mare. The angle is a bit too flat. She goes best in QH bars though, semi is just a tad too steep for her. A tree that's pinching at the top generally means that the bar angle is too flat. It may or may not be too narrow, but the bar angle is the more important factor.
    12-13-2010, 04:06 PM
Ok-here are the specs on the saddle. I thought it was FQHB, he told me it is Semis. I am getting more confused by the moment. Thanks so much for your help!

Saddle Information:
  • Size:16"
  • Tree: Equi-Tex QH bars
  • Cantle Height:3"
  • Gullet:6 3/4"
  • Swell Width 12 1/2"
  • Rigging:7/8 In-Skirt , Stainless
  • Color:Russet
  • Silver:Hand Engraved Sterling Silver Plated
  • Weight:42lbs
I know the one I have been using (a Rocking R) is FQHB, and the gullet is about 8" (concho to concho). It fits him ok, but doesn't sit level-tips forward a bit.
It fits better with 1/4" shims under the saddle just behind the shoulder blade, so perhaps he is right.....hmmmm
    12-13-2010, 04:21 PM
I don't think your horse needs a full bar. But every brand is different in bar size. I also want to see the saddle with out a pad as it looked tight at the top and wider as it went down and may not be laying flat against the horse. If you want help get proper pictures
    12-13-2010, 04:43 PM
As I said, I will on Wednesday when I get back to Va. I am in Ny at the moment....Thanks.

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