How does this western saddle fit? (Saddle try #10)
Yes, it's me again. Still on the quest to find Sasha a saddle that fits! Since the last saddle post I made, I have tried 3 different saddles. All were obviously ill fitting -so I didn't even bother to post them..
This one has me on the fence though, one second I think "Yep! It's a keeper!" and the next I'm going "oooh...:?". I'm starting to get a bit frustrated, mostly with myself. I'm new in the whole "saddle fit" world, and boy-howdy is it tougher than I EVER imagined it to be! The saddle I will be posting pictures of today is try #10 (over a period of 4 months). While I am frustrated that I can't seem to find one yet, I am glad to be learning this valuable information.
I went on a bit of a wild goose chase the last couple months. I had thought Sasha was going to need a narrow gullet because her shoulders were a little more narrow. However I ran into a problem because her back and butt are wide! I finally figured it out by chance the other day, I got a saddle that I thought for sure was going to be too wide and sit down on her withers. Surprise, surprise though! It actually fit her quite well! It was because the gullet was wide, but the bar angle was more narrow. Finding that out, I have come much closer in the last 3 saddle purchases to finding a good fit than I have in the last 7 saddles.
This saddle below is one that I feel pretty good about, but not 100%. I don't know what it is, it makes me feel like I'm sitting too far back on her. Plus I saw where a crease forms in the skirt behind the Cantle which makes me wonder if I am putting too much weight on her behind. It's like a case of "Does this saddle make my butt look big?":wink:
I wonder too if it sits down just a hair in the front? I LOVE how much wither clearance she has though. A problem I've been running into with other saddles (even though she doesn't really have a wither:-|). This saddle gives me about three fingers clearance in the front (others only 1 finger to 1 1/2).
I don't know, like I said mixed emotions. I felt underneath, feels like I have pretty even contact. It sits flush to her back when her head is up, when her head goes down into grazing position it comes up about 2 - 3 fingers in the back. I rode her and worked her a bit in it. She started to sweat in the front. Her hair was a bit ruffled all the way down her back (I've tried saddles where the may look good, but some places the hair was practically untouched):-|
I just don't know what to think, I've looked through some more youtube videos. I want to do some more tests on her, double and triple check my saddle placement is good (that it is behind her shoulder).
I don't know guys, what's your opinion? Anything obvious that my green horn eyes aren't picking up on? (My two worries are: 1) possible sitting down in the front slightly? AND 2) Sitting too far back, the saddle makes me sit too far back.
***All the pictures below are on flat ground, no saddle pad, not cinched.
Here are some pictures of it with a saddle pad and cinched. *Last picture is with her head down in grazing position..*
Here are two pictures, of the saddle cinched with just the navajo pad (practically no saddle pad). I'm not sure why I didn't take any pictures of the saddle cinched without a pad???:-| I can take some if need be.
What do the sweat pattern look like?
You got your navajo pad on wrong. They fold to the size of a normal pad. Just sayin.
What kind of riding are you planning on doing?
That saddle looks like an old kinda crappy roping saddle. I can almost be certain that it isn't going to be very comfortable for trails.
If you're going used, look for a well known brand instead of a cheap used off-brand.
The points of the tree look like they might be gouging into her shoulder. Can you run your hands down along her shoulder from top to bottom and feel that the pressure is the same? or is it really tight up under the concho, then looser below it.? I am not talking about the skirt, but the tree.
It is hard to tell by pics. Pretty horse! The front fit doesn't look bad...but there is no way of telling where the tree actually hits by a picture..you can only tell that by running your hand under it when on bareback. From the pics I would guess you don't need a real thick pad. The horse appears short backed, I like cinch rings a little behind (e.g., 3/4) on short backed horses.. that s just my personal preference, everyone has one.
When the saddle pops up at the back, it is either to wide at the front or not a flat enough angle in the rocker. Have you tried a saddle with Arabian bars. They fit the wide sprung rib cage. I don't like the fit on any horse of that particular saddle you are using. It is also causing the cinch to interfere with the horse's elbows. If you would look at the seat, near the cantle screw, does the stitching for a V. If it is there, it will be quite noticeable as it's at least an inch to 2" long.
The saddle is not up without the pad so I don't think it is a bad fit.
Well thank you for all the replies everyone! :D I just wanted to let you all know, I am not keeping the saddle! Because she is so round, I was placing this saddle too far forward. It's hard to see her shoulder. When I placed it back behind the point of her shoulder, it was WAAAY to long for her. In actuality I've probably placed saddles too far forward for a long time, but as I said I'm learning about actual saddle fit and how important it is to be a right fit. Like your shoes!
Mostly plan on trail riding with the saddle, I tried it on her with some trails. I thought it was pretty comfortable. I would have had to add saddle ties though :?. I also do arena work with her, too -I would just ride her in an English saddle or bareback for that mostly though.
Speaking of brands, this isn't a brand name. I was wondering though, have you ever heard of a brand called Ozark?
What do you mean about the stitching in a 'V' pattern? I'm not keeping this saddle, but I'd like to know what you mean?
Thanks everyone for your detailed replies!
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