Western Saddle Fit Critique Please
So I finally got my western saddle for Dante paid off on my birthday yesterday and I tried it out... And to be honest I am not as pleased with it as I hoped. It is a Corrientes saddle, 16 inch seat. The owner of the tack shop I bought it from had come out earlier in the year to help me figure out some measurements I'd need when looking for a saddle to fit my big guy and when I went to the shop she told me this saddle should be a good fit. So after months of paying on it I finally was able to bring it home. I rode in it twice, Dante worked up a sweat and when i pulled the saddle off afterwards there was no dry spots and no ruffled hair, basically his back looked like it did when i put the saddle on except it was sweaty.
However, my two biggest concerns are 1. The flare in the front is reaaaally tight, especially on his left side (right side is not as bad) and it does get harder to get the hand in when its cinched. However once i get my hand past the flare and under the bars it is not tight but comfortable and has even pressure. But I am still concerned that its not wide enough.
2. The length of the saddle. To me the saddle looks way huge on him. The skirt is i believe 28-29 inches. None of my pads really fit it its so big... well one kinda does but I would have to invest in a larger pad for sure if I were to keep the saddle. I know the bars on the saddle end a couple inches before the end of the skirt but it still seems like the saddle is too far back, and the skirt sits really close to his hips.
In all honesty my gut is telling me that this saddle is not a good enough fit to keep it but maybe I am over-thinking it? What do you all think? I am having the tack shop owner come out to have a closer inspection of it on him and to bring out more saddles to try on him but I figured it would be good to have more unbiased opinions. Thanks!
does it feel any better if you tap it back an inch? I can see waht you are saying for his left shoulder. the angle that is sits on his back looks good.
maybe some of the other Western Saddle Gurus can give a better critique.
I did flex the flare on the front skirting just to see if it would loosen up its stiffness and that did help somewhat.
I first took him on a trail ride yesterday and then worked in the arena today. He was definitely rusty... but he did extremely well considering he has been a pasture puff most of the year. He never offered to buck when we cantered, which he doesnt normally do but hes young, fresh, still a shade of green (broke but not finished...), and I was expecting some kind of rebellion cuz i was making him work... :lol: And he cantered in the arena! (He's never done that before... basically just wanted to trot big and fast...) And he went right into it almost every time i asked! Didnt always get the correct lead but hey it was a start. So yeah I think the better saddle fit has helped him be more comfortable in his movement but I just am not sure this is the perfect saddle and giving him enough freedom to really move- friesian style ;)
Something is amiss, the images are a touch dark to really tell about the fit for sure.
I will say, I am pretty sure that is not a true Corriente Saddle, the shape of the pommel is all wrong, the overall quality is not there and I cannot see Corriente's Logo on the Keeper.
I would get my money back, sorry, just too many things look off.....
it is common for a horse to not be the same on both sides and you wont get a perfect fit from side to side. It does look like the leather is bent from pressure and should soften up. It might be as close as you will get. You shouldn't have seen dry spots, that is a good thing unless i miss understood what you were saying.You could get a shorter skirt but 28" is not very long. A barrel saddle is 26" lots of saddles are 32".
I agree that it does not look like a Corriente. Are there any markings on the saddle?
I also think it is a little too narrow in the withers. It'd be nice to be able to feel under the saddle but I'd be inclined to think that the front of the tree is the part that is too narrow.
Can you get better pictures?
I think you all are correct in the fact that something is amiss with the saddle. I dont believe it is a Corrientes saddle either. I looked over the saddle and could not find a makers mark on it. Then comparing the saddle to corriente saddles from their website, nothing matches, the ones online look way more well tooled and put together. I mean even the silver on the skirt is flipped weird... I feel kinda like an idiot now.
Not only that but I compared the saddle to my other geldings saddle for size and the "Corriente" is definitely narrower thru the gullet and channel. I think it has semi-QH bars....
Here are pictures with better lighting i hope... I managed to find an old camera instead of using my phone, hopefully these are better for you all to critique.
First up the "Corriente"
More Corriente fit...
And here is my Ammerman for comparison . First pic ammerman is on top of the "corriente"
I kind of like the fit of the barrel saddle better, the older saddle.
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