Western saddle pad opinions - The Horse Forum
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post #1 of 13 Old 03-24-2013, 08:43 PM Thread Starter
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Western saddle pad opinions

Are these pads any good?

Brookside Wool Trail Ride Pad Brookside (Supplies Tack - Saddle Accessories - Pads)

Unfortunately, I just don't have the money to spend on the really nice 5 Star saddle pads. It just won't work in any way unless I can find one for less than $100 and I haven't seen that at all in the months that I've been looking.

Another question, is the 34" x 30" length along the spine and then width from one side to the other or is it vice versa? I've been wondering this about western saddle pad measurements for a while now.

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post #2 of 13 Old 03-24-2013, 09:30 PM
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I haven't used a pad like that so far. I've had pretty good luck using the cheaper pads. Mine is a Reinsman that we bought for $30 to $40. It's worked well for me and I've had it for about 6 years. My wife has bought some more expensive pads thinking they were "better" for the horses.

Two were the Reinsman contoured type with neoprene underside. The horses did not like them and we have to use a felt liner pad to use them.

Her most recent was a Weaver with memory foam insert. After using it for the summer, her horse developed white spots on the sides if his whithers. She has gone back to her cheaper and simple pad.

All three were suppose to be better for the horse by wicking moisture away or letting air circulate better. However, the cheaper has turned out better.
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post #3 of 13 Old 03-24-2013, 09:42 PM
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I haven't used that one either. I have a Classic Equine ESP pad (that I wish I could replace for a contoured one due to the shape of my mare's back, as it slides down no matter what and smashes her withers. I do really like the pad otherwise.) and a Reinsman Tacky Too, the same kind usandpets mentioned their horses not liking, but I don't have an issue with it.

However, I can answer the measurement question: The larger number is the length down the back and the smaller number is the width. Most are usually around 30" wide, but length varies for different back lengths.
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post #4 of 13 Old 03-25-2013, 12:27 PM
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Mine is 100% wool felt for about $45 with a wool blanket over top.
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post #5 of 13 Old 03-25-2013, 01:18 PM Thread Starter
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Is there a difference between wool and wool felt? I mean, common sense tells me there should be.
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post #6 of 13 Old 03-25-2013, 05:43 PM
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Originally Posted by SEAmom View Post
Is there a difference between wool and wool felt? I mean, common sense tells me there should be.
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Many companies try to "fool" you when they use their terminology. Felting is a process - it can be wool, cotton, synthetic or all of the above, etc. To be honest, there is no such thing as a "100% wool pad" even tho many advertise as such. it depends on how much virgin wool is in them, how much reworked wool & how much "other" fibers (this is for the felted wool pads). Some pads that just say they are "wool pads" are needled wool - it is a woven type - has wool, but not very much of it, woven w/synthetics. These will always be cheaper due the cheaper materials & not much to process. Most wool felted pads are 55% or less virgin wool, 18-20% other fibers & the balance is reworked wool. (here is why 5 Stars are more expensive - they are 92% virgin, 1-2% other fibers & rest is reworked (used) wool.). Wool has gotten horribly expensive due to good ol China buying up so much of it from all over the world. They are now the leading manufacturers of carpets, so that is where the wool is going. Supply & demand - so drives our prices up too. :(
Personally, I would stay away from needled wool pads (Wades, Diamon Wool) - they have the lowest compression/concussion ratings. I believe Reinsman makes a wool felted pad, as are Slones,Wrights, etc. Read the info about them & if you have questions, ASK the company. If they him & haw around, they are not being truthful. :) If you can find a used 5 Star or Slone, that would be great too - they wear a long time & even used, will give you a lot of life yet. I sometimes know of used 5 Stars, so you can always check w/me too on those.
Another way to look at it ... would YOU want that material in a pad on you?? Neoprene is horribly hot, does not breathe - tacky too stuff pulls hair (put it on your head & rub it back & forth or pull one way - OUCH!) A scratchy wool pad (that is due to the "other" fibers" ) is going to be scratchy to them too.
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post #7 of 13 Old 03-25-2013, 05:47 PM
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ok, just went & looked at that Brookside pad. It is a lower content of virgin wool BUT should work ok. The only thing I would "complain" about it is that it has very little contour to it - it will not sit on your horse's back like it should & if your horse has high withers, will not give you any room at all.
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post #8 of 13 Old 03-25-2013, 05:53 PM
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The 5 star was my first contoured pad, and I can't believe that it took so long for me to buy a pad shaped like a horses back, to fit on a horses back, sounds so simple, but it took me a while
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post #9 of 13 Old 03-25-2013, 08:28 PM
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Here is what I've been using with Trooper for about 1.5 years ($62):

Ranch Tough Contoured Pad

The girl who rides Trooper 90% of the time only weighs around 115, and most of our rides are around 1 hour, so we're not talking heavy use. We usually use it by itself.

With a heavier rider or more intense riding, I'd think about putting more money into the pad. For our light use, this one has held up well, and I've never seen any sign of tenderness in Trooper's back when rubbing him down after the ride.

BTW - Trooper is the Appy in this picture:

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post #10 of 13 Old 03-25-2013, 10:43 PM
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bsms, I use them too with a wool blanket. For the price they are a good choice.

If you want to spend about $200 for a pad then there are great choices for that price bracket.
I believe in spending the most money I can afford for tack(and I do), but not everyone is going to drop a few bills to buy a pad.

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