What western saddle brand/type is good for Arabians?
I know there are saddles with Arabian trees. Unfortunately, many of them have features I dislike, including two piece seats and a checkmark profile, with a narrow deep spot right next to the cantle. Maybe it is being a guy, but I hate that design:
I was wondering if anyone had success using a non-Arabian saddle. For example, I like the feel of Wade tree saddles, but will they clear the withers on an Arabian? I also like cutting saddles, but I would still worry about it clearing the withers.
I once used a FQHB Abetta...seemed to fit OK, but the bars went too far back. I currently use a Circle Y arabian (Mojave). It is 26.5" long, and that is the absolute longest I can afford to put on my gelding's back. The mare is taller and longer, so she can handle that length without a problem. But it has a lumpy rise, kind of like an S-curve. I'm 53, and have no desire for more kids, but I don't want to start singing soprano either!
I like Arabians, even if my mare is sometimes a royal pain in the rear, but finding a saddle that fits is a challenge. Has anyone tried Billy Cook? I tried a medium width Circle Y once, and it was too narrow for them. What about a hard seat Rocking R?
Also, for comparison, a Bates AP saddle with a med-wide gullet fits both horses OK if I use a wither pad on the gelding. Otherwise, I only have a pinkie of clearance over the wither when riding. But with the wither pad, the gelding acts happy and comfortable...although I also use a Navajo blanket under the Bates.
BTW - the local stores have terrible selection. And I was in the largest when a woman came in and asked about what saddles would fit her horse's back...she was told all the saddles in the shop would fit any horse. She walked out, as did I. So going to a local shop really isn't an option. I'll end up buying off the Internet from a store with a good right-to-return...but the last time I shipped a saddle, it was $90. I wouldn't want to get it wrong too often!
I like my Circle Y saddles with Arab bars.
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