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Zimpatico 02-14-2011 08:44 AM

New Saddle... Why can I see so much flocking???
4 Attachment(s)
So, My Antares Hampton Classic arrived from Smartpak on Friday. I haven't been able to ride in it yet since Zee is still being rehabbed with handwalking :( Anyway, I looked over the saddle on Saturday and noticed that I can see an awful lot of the flocking. When I lift the panel, I can see white wool / foam under the billett attachment, and towards the back corner, where the flaps meet the panel. It looks like the bottom flap is only attached in two spots (one spot in the front, one spot in the back) and the bottom flap can move around a lot. When I lift the bottom flap, I can see a ton of flocking, and it almost looks like the leather was cut too short to cover the panels. The left flap is also not attached as strongly on the left as the right, where the front of the flap meet the tree point, and I can see flocking under there too. Is this strange, or just me??

Front of left flap where it meets the tree point (I know, the pictures are awful...)
Attachment 55585

Left billet area
Attachment 55584

Panels on left side
Attachment 55586

Back of right flap
Attachment 55587

MIEventer 02-14-2011 08:57 AM

Oooh jealous over here! Right now, as we speak I am looking at the saddle on the Smartpak Website...and DROOL! I looove the gullet channel, nice nice nice! And I am loving the angles of the panels...very nice!

If you don't want it....just send it over my way *wink*

I can't help you with the appearance of overstuffing....but I am sure someone can :)

Zimpatico 02-14-2011 09:01 AM

LOL!! I love the saddle. It's definately a perfect fit for a flat backed horse!! I'm just really hoping that maybe this was was made wrong and I can exchange for another one?!?!?!? I'm not really thrilled that there is so much flocking sticking out when the panels don't really feel over stuffed :(

MIEventer 02-14-2011 09:07 AM

Do you have a local saddler who could look at it for you, to tell you if it is a shoddy job or not?

Zimpatico 02-14-2011 09:11 AM

I sent an email to SmartPak this morning, so we'll see what they say. I have confidence that they'll tell me the truth. I have yet to have any poor dealings with them, so I hope they'll take it back if its not normal for that saddle.

MIEventer 02-14-2011 09:13 AM

I agree, I <3 SmartPak! I've been working with them for just over a year now, and I've never been dissapointed with their service, their knowledge and their eagerness to ensure that their customers are happy.

Zimpatico 02-14-2011 09:24 AM

Ok, what the heck am I going to do if this thing is just made like this??? It's the only stock saddle I've found that fits him! Oh boy... Anyone know if County Stabilizers are well suited to a flat back?

Saddlebag 02-14-2011 06:20 PM

Don't use this saddle. The billets are sew on incorrectly. They should be stitched vertically along the lengthwise grain of the leather, never across, even like they have done. This weakens the leather and that's the last thing you need. Overall the saddle appears badly made. I'm suggesting you return it if possible and not get another from them if this is how the billets are sewn. The is shoddy work and your life could literally be hanging by a thread.

Zimpatico 02-15-2011 08:07 AM

Thank you so much! Surprisingly, I have not heard back from Smartpak yet. But, I decided last night to send it back anyway. I cannot pay $2600 for a saddle that looks like this. This has turned me off to any of the off the rack models of custom brands :( It just doesn't look right!

MIEventer 02-15-2011 08:09 AM

I was really hoping Luvs2Ride would of popped in and said something - she's a saddle fitter - but I am glad you found something out about it, thanks to saddlebag!

Sorry you had to send it back - are you asking for another one to see if it made the same way?

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