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nikelodeon79 10-02-2012 10:43 AM

Help me choose a western saddle
 
I'm trying to figure out which saddle to order. My budget isn't huge, and I plan on getting a nice pad so I have to figure that cost in the equation.

My horses is a 16HH Paint/TB and I would classify him as "medium wide," likely leaning more towards wide than medium.

I used to ride in a 14" seat but have definitely gained weight since then. I'm either a 15" or 16" now (5'6", 170 lbs).

Option 1: Used Circle Y. It is obviously the most expensive option, and is definitely a used saddle. Seller thinks it needs to be refleeced, but due to the location of the missing fleece, I don't think it actually needs to be done. 15" seat, 6.5" gullet. I'm concerned it might be a bit narrow. No return option.
http://i266.photobucket.com/albums/i...acksaddle3.jpg

Option 2: No name off Ebay. Actually looks like a decent enough saddle, price is very low, shipping is a bit high but the price is low enough so it doesn't really matter. Seat is 16", gullet is very wide (8+ inches). I'm concerned it might be TOO wide. No return option.
http://i266.photobucket.com/albums/i...acksaddle1.jpg

Option 3: No name off Ebay. Looks like the "cheapest" saddle, but still not as bad as some of the knockoffs I see listed all the time. Black color looks to be rubbing off, though. 15" seat, no info as to gullet/bars (I've asked the seller and am awaiting a response). Same price as the last no name, much lower shipping. 14 day return policy, not including shipping.
http://i266.photobucket.com/albums/i...acksaddle2.jpg

Option 4: Jeffers Equine saddle. Is technically a "no name," but looks to be well made. I actually had a very similar looking saddle from Country Supply many years back and it was one of my favorite saddles ever. Price is nice, shipping is free. Full QH bars, 16" seat. 30 day return policy, I'd have to pay for shipping the saddle back. It's on backorder for a month, though, so that's a bummer.
http://i266.photobucket.com/albums/i...lacksaddle.jpg

Tracer 10-02-2012 10:59 AM

Can you go into a tack store and find out exactly which size seat you are? No point going for one of the 15" if it's too small.

Option 1 seems like a bit of a waste of money, especially if it's the most expensive and yet might need repairs.

Option 2 made me drool :D But you might be better off going one that you can return if necessary. Also, I think 8" in western saddle equates to something that would fit a draft.

Option 3 is nice, but it does look quite worn. And of course, the gullet might turn out to be completely wrong.

Option 4 I like. I presume it is new and, although the picture is teeny, it looks like it's nice. But from what I know about western saddles (which is very little), FQHB might be a bit much for your horse.

nikelodeon79 10-02-2012 11:10 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Tracer (Post 1704192)
Can you go into a tack store and find out exactly which size seat you are? No point going for one of the 15" if it's too small.

Actually, I'm just going to have my trainer help me out... I'll ride in a few saddles at her barn and ask her what size is best for me.

Quote:

Option 1 seems like a bit of a waste of money, especially if it's the most expensive and yet might need repairs.
Thanks, I needed that. I had "Circle Y!" stars in my eyes. I just looked at brand and not the fact that the saddle's really run down. I did make a low ball offer on the saddle a few days ago, and it was promptly declined. I don't know why people offer the "best offer" option on ebay if they're only willing to accept a couple dollars less.

Quote:

Option 2 made me drool :D But you might be better off going one that you can return if necessary. Also, I think 8" in western saddle equates to something that would fit a draft.
A draft... or my mutton withered QH. Too bad I'm NOT looking for a saddle for him, and if I was, it would be a 14" seat to fit my skinny-butted Hubby. ;)

Quote:

Option 3 is nice, but it does look quite worn. And of course, the gullet might turn out to be completely wrong.
Hopefully the seller gets back to me on gullet size... and actually knows what a gullet is! I can't believe how many people have no clue.

Quote:

Option 4 I like. I presume it is new and, although the picture is teeny, it looks like it's nice. But from what I know about western saddles (which is very little), FQHB might be a bit much for your horse.
Yup, new and shiney. :) I did the "templates" and Eclipse is actually somewhere between a semi and full QHB. He is somewhat wide, but does have relatively high withers so fitting is going to be an issue. I figure with the return option, though, it's not too much of a risk, just probably around $30 bucks for return shipping. SUCKS that it's backordered. I had it in my cart ready to order last night, but then had second thoughts and backed out. When I checked this morning... backordered. *cries*

TackJack 10-02-2012 04:05 PM

I would avoid Option 1 - I dont think it would be wide enough in the bars for your horse.

I like Option 2 - maybe you can confirm the gullet width? Sometimes people mis-measure. I've seen some out there as 10" or 12" and so forth because the measurement location is slightly off.

I also think Option 4 is safe because it seems like you know more of what you're getting and there's a return policy.

In order of my preference: 2, 4, 3, 1


Hope it works out for you and your horse!

DrumRunner 10-02-2012 04:21 PM

I don't know about the rest of you but I steer FAR clear of anything no name or cheaply priced on Ebay..Far, far away.. Especially with no return policy..

Keep looking, those saddles are okay but don't settle on one of those if you don't love it and know what you're getting. Ask a ton of questions at tack stores, sit in a lot of different styles, and remember your favorites.. There's also the question on what type of saddle you're looking for? All western saddles are made a like..

tim62988 10-04-2012 02:47 PM

i'm not sure what your price range is, but check out craigslist.

also have you looked at abetta saddles? they have lots of options, easy to keep clean, hold up really well, and priced pretty cheap for a new saddle.


i'm also in the hunt, semi-qh bars for my high withered, wide backed TWH, and so far the abetta is the one that under a grand (one i'm getting is 475ish, but you can find new/used down closer to 350-400 with a return option)

SouthernTrails 10-04-2012 10:26 PM

.

Medium/Wide in English roughly relates to 6.75" Gullet or Regular QH-Bars

#1 is too narrow

#2 I doubt is 8" but not worth the risk, verify size

#3 While inexpensive is American Made, verify size

#4 From Jeffers is a piece of Junk, there is no such thing as a New all Leather Saddle for under 500.00 that is worth a flip, you may find a closeout like a low end Simco or American Saddlery (the both have low end and high end models) for 450.00 or 500.00 but that would be an at Cost Closeout.

You can find a New Fabtron, Abetta or Bighorn in a Synthetic that is New in the 400.00 price range.


.

nikelodeon79 10-05-2012 09:27 AM

For those asking about the measurement of the wide saddle, this pic is actually on the ad:
http://i266.photobucket.com/albums/i...widesaddle.jpg

Would've been a great saddle for my mutton withered QH... but my new horse has somewhat high withers so I don't think it's going to work. :(

I'm wondering if I should just up my budget a few hundred collars and get something I REALLY like, like these:

16" Tex Tan (semi bars, I've asked about gullet width):
http://i266.photobucket.com/albums/i...9/16textan.jpg

16" Crates:
http://i266.photobucket.com/albums/i...9/16crates.jpg

16" Big Horn:
http://i266.photobucket.com/albums/i.../16bighorn.jpg

I really should consider non leather saddles and do have a few on my watch list... but I'd really rather have a leather saddle.

deserthorsewoman 10-05-2012 10:46 AM

You have to try a good cordura saddle. The essential parts are leather. Skirt and fenders are cordura." Soft"fenders sure are nice. And depending on the maker, they ride just like their leather ones. Stay away from the no name one's. Circle Y and Big Horn IMO are the best. Abetta I find too hi tech looking and the Wintecs I can't get myself to even try....
As for fit for high withers/tall horse I would definitely go Big Horn

nikelodeon79 10-05-2012 11:00 AM

My trainer has a bunch of Big Horn cordura saddles and I did ride in one and liked it on her OTTB. Maybe I'll wait on buying a saddle and use one of her Big Horns for awhile and see how it fits me and Eclipse.


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