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pastrychef 03-27-2013 09:13 PM

english saddle questions...
Hi, Ive gotten back into horses after being out of it for a couple years. My butt won't fit in my old english saddle anymore. So iam looking for another one. And there is so much to saddles now.

If my horse wears a fqhb western saddle, what width in a english saddle should i get?
Also has anyone ever owned or had experience with ? what are thier saddles like?

I found a ad for a colleigate , ap...has a spring tree. It says it has the same size tree as a Thorowgood wide tree? well how wide is that? lol. Would saddle be of any use to me? its a very nice looking saddle.

anybody have any tricks to knowing what size saddle your horse should wear? i have a young one too, and iam wondering if there is any tricks to fitting them properly to see what size they should wear or what signs to look for ...for ill fitting ones.


freia 03-27-2013 09:52 PM

Get a flexicurve. You can get them online, or at craft stores, or at fabric stores. Quilters use them to cut cool patterns in fabric. If that's not an option, straighten out a coat-hanger wire.

Find the rear edge of your horse's shoulder-blade. Go 2" further back, then lay your flexi-curve (or wire) over the withers/back and get a good tracing or mould of your horse's back shape. This location is important, because it's pretty close to where your saddle's tree points will sit. Now lay your tracing down on a piece of cardboard and trace it. If you cut it out, you can take your "horse" saddle-shopping and make sure the angle of the tree on the saddle you buy matches your horse. Or you can take a picture and send it to online shops, and the good ones can help you find a fitting saddle.
Do the same thing along the length of the back. Start at the withers or about 2" behind the shoulder-blade. Do your tracing about 1-2" to the side of the spine - where the panels will sit. You can take that shopping with you or send it to a seller as well.
Note that on English saddles, what one maker calls a medium may be very different from what another calls a medium. They all fit differently. In general, an angle between tree-points of about 90 is a medium. Wider is M/W or Wide, narrower is the narrow sizes. But all the makers have different shapes to the tree - some U-shaped, some V-shaped. Some have narrow gullets, some wide ones. Your tracings are your friends. There is no standard. Or to put it bluntly, it's a bit of a crap-shoot.
At least when you get your tracing and see the angle, you'll have an idea of whether you're looking for medium, wider, or narrower trees.
When you get a saddle, you'll be looking for the tree angle and shape matching your horse's shape. You'll also be looking for the panels making full contact with your horse's back. There's a sticky on here called "Does you saddle REALLY fit" which has the 9 fitting videos from Schleese. They're worth a look once you put a saddle on your horse.

Dustbunny 03-28-2013 01:36 AM

Freia...Good information. I have thought one could also use lead cane like stained glass people use to get the shape for the correct width.

pastrychef 03-28-2013 05:05 AM

Wow that info is perfect. Thank you very much for taking the time. Very very much appreciated!.
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Tack Collector 03-28-2013 09:19 AM

If it's a Ruaz Diaz Collegiate, from Miller Harness days and has a RD on it, ART and a number is regular medium tree. Just a 4 or 5 digit number was a wide in some cases. I think we found one wide tree that had a W stamped on the saddle near the model number.

Don't know about Thorowgoods.

Thornhill is a brand that has wider trees for table-backed horses. County, Duette, maybe even the current Wintec or Bates AP or dressage saddles. But the Collegiate Convertible cc and Bates and Wintec ccs are all more curvy than the AP and Dressage saddles.

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