I'm seriously considering getting a Styleline close contact for Monty, they are relatively cheap still here as they are brand new to Australia. I have seen one in person and the stitching looked good, the leather was very grippy which is great for a jumping saddle.
...but because it's a cheaper saddle that I don't know much about I'm a bit wary, so I'm wondering if anybody has experience with them? And are they good for jumping BIG (as in 4' or thereabouts) in? Monty's done 4' and I want him to help my confidence before I have to work with a young and green horse and teach her to jump.
Looks like a nice enough saddle, the one I tried on Monty was WAY too narrow but they do have changeable gullets (by a saddle fitter that is) so I will be able to get one adjusted to his width... but it was up a bit at the back, more than it should have been (they aren't gusseted so they are supposed to be up a bit to keep the weight away from the horse's loin) and I'm wondering if that's likely to be worse if I buy one in a wider gullet.
I did have a saddle on an old pony of mine that when he got too fat and needed the gullet widened it lifted at the back, then was fine again as soon as the gullet was right, but I'm not sure... I feel like it might be a bit too curved for him. He is a pretty straight-backed horse.
This is the allpurpose version but the close contact is pretty similar in shape, just squared off in the cantle and cut more forward:
And this is the horse I'm considering it for:
Note that I totally can't afford a new saddle right now but I will save up for whatever I find that fits him!