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dynamite. 12-12-2009 10:35 AM

Bob Marshall Barrel Saddles
Opinions? I heard that they lose their shape after time and hurt your horses back. I am also concerned that they will not be very secure if your getting bucked around a bit by green horses. I have 2 mares that are table backed with no withers, and 1 that is a bit more average withered. If anyone has any experiences with treeless saddles in general, let me know what you think! I've been considering them for a while but I'm kinda scared to buy one!

reining girl 12-12-2009 02:24 PM

I was kinda doing the same as you, i was thinking about buying one but then i decided against it. 1) if your horse has a really round back, like mine, the saddle probably wont fit. 2) you have to buy a special pad and its the only saddle pad that you can use (and there ummm, rather ugly lol) but they are nice for the horse as there is not tree. I have never rode in one, so dont take my comment to heart, hopefully someone with more experience with them will comment. If you horses have no withers, than i dont think the saddle will work..... not sure though.

dynamite. 12-12-2009 03:28 PM

That's what I was thinking, it would be hard to keep in place with their flat backs.
And I checked out the saddle pads, I think they are kinda ugly too lol. I like my turquoise pro choice pad :D

reining girl 12-12-2009 04:07 PM

hehe ya.

MN Tigerstripes 12-12-2009 04:35 PM

I have an older BMBS. It is very well broken in (pretty flexible). No problems with it yet, very comfy to ride in. Mine is very secure and I wouldn't be even slightly worried about coming out if a horse decided to buck around. Soda seems to like it too and he was pretty unhappy with the other 10 or so saddles I tried on him.

I'll try to find a pic of it.

Colorado Dobes 12-19-2009 10:44 PM

You do not have to use just one kind of pad with a bob marshall saddle. You just need to use a good pad. But you should use a good pad no matter what kind of saddle you ride in.

dynamite. 12-21-2009 02:27 PM

reining girl, you said your horse has a round back? What type of saddle do you use on it?

luvs2ride1979 12-22-2009 12:22 AM

They do have to "fit" the horse. They are NOT a "cure all" and fit everything, like some people like to claim. The front pommel needs to match the angle of the horse's shoulders.

I have a Bob Marshall endurance saddle and LOVE it! I have friends with the barrel saddles and they really love them too. They're quite secure, though there is a little "play" in the side-to-side motion.

They will keep their shape and will be very comfortable for horse and rider IF you use the right pads with them. The most recommended pad is the Skito Treeless Saddle pad. They are custom made to order, based on your weight, your horse's conformation, and your saddle type. I have a Skito that I use with my BMSS and my horses are never sore, even after multi-day rides (and I am a 250+ lb rider!). Supracor, Equipedic, and Saddleright are three other brands that are also used with treeless saddles.

You need to choose a pad that gives spinal clearance and distributes your weight, since there is nothing in the saddle that does those things.

To increase stability, I use a roper-style 100% mohair cinch. It works like a charm!!

dynamite. 12-22-2009 10:12 AM

To anyone who has used a treeless saddle, would you feel confident sticking it on this and not worry about sliding?
She is literally table backed through the winter when she gets chubby. The summer isn't as quite flat but she still has a really round shape.

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