Shopping for the right gullet and tree size in an english saddle
So I have been english saddle shopping for my boy for quite some time now. I am so worried about finding the right saddle to fit the both of us. Especially him because he so stocky built. He is a draft cross and need a nicer quality saddle that I can have for years to come and that is also show ring quality. I guess to make a long story short. Does anyone have any recommendations or how to check for correct fitting and size of tree and gullet size. I know he will definitely need a wide tree but how can I be sure it fits him perfectly. Any tips would be greatly appreciated :)
Is gullet wide enough?
Is there wither clearance w/ rider up?
Do the points of the tree flare or spread out at the correct angle to match the horse? (Too narrow will pinch at the tree points, and too wide will dig in at the top of the panels.)
Is the amount of curve or rocker in the tree the same as the horse's back? (A wide or XW or WWX horse takes a straight not curvy or banana shape tree.)
brands for wide horses:
used to be able to special order XW in the Argentine brands like Ovation, but am not sure now
Bates/Wintec newest models may work
Wintec Wide AP
Google and see what's been discussed at horse grooming supplies forum. You will find more dressage saddles made for XW/XXW and a cc will be the hardest to find.
Courbette eMotion tree in XW is another.
Do a wither tracing. Cut the shape out of cardboard to take with you to tack stores. You'll just have to eyeball the curve (or "table" lol) of the back and compare the saddle tree to that.
http://www.yourredwagon.com/Degree%20Method.pdf can be used with photos, to some extent. Usually a horse that's wide in the front will be wide and table-backed all the way back, but there are some exceptions. We discussed the Wintec cc trees, and how with the XW, the gullet might fit but the tree is too curvy for the wide horse. Their "new" dressage and AP models 500 and Pro and Isabell (since 2010?) are a straighter/flatter tree than the past series of them that are currently sold as the 250 series.
thank you for all the good ideas and suggestions :) it will help alot
There are YouTube videos for saddlefitting. I didn't go into all of that because how to check saddle fit is pretty thoroughly documented in online writeups and videos.
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