5.5", SQHB western saddles? - The Horse Forum
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post #1 of 13 Old 11-24-2018, 01:52 PM Thread Starter
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Question 5.5", SQHB western saddles?

Anyone know which saddle brands have 5.5" gullets & SQHBs?

Specifically looking for a western, 5.5" gullet, SQHBs, 14" seat or roomy 13.5", light to medium weight, flat seat/minimal rise, short bars, minimal skirting, full or center rigging.

Websites don't list all the info, so I can't even narrow down the long lists before contacting the companies to find out the missing info. Others can't tell me the angle of the bars or are measuring the gullet wrong. =/

To top it off, all local tack stores, within 3hrs one way, don't have saddles that fit and none have 5.5" gullets.


I feel like the next horse I buy, I will choose it by how it fits a saddle that fits me perfectly first...Literally take it to meet the horse, put it on, if its not a wonderful fit, pass on the horse immediately.
I'm shaving years off my life because of this impossible search...

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post #2 of 13 Old 11-24-2018, 02:09 PM
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I would start by looking at either a good quality treeless saddle or Arabian western saddles. I'm also thinking of narrow, thin breeds like little Pass Finos, or a section B or C Welsh pony. Perhaps finding some social media groups where you may find one for sale from these breeds. Going slightly off western, you will have more to choose from in a Fjord or Icelandic traditional saddle. Good luck!
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post #3 of 13 Old 11-26-2018, 11:46 AM Thread Starter
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Google is showing those as pretty English looking and hornless. I've been ponying my other ponies off a my pony and a horn is nice to have for that.

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post #4 of 13 Old 11-26-2018, 12:18 PM
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I'm thinking you're going to have to go with something that's not a typical saddle to get that narrow. Even the Arabian treed saddles are usually 6 3/4 gullets they just have shorter bars that don't extend as long. I would look at Orthoflex Saddles (used, the good ones aren't made anymore) or maybe the Specialized Saddles. A lot of Endurance riders have to use those to fit their hard to fit narrow Arabs and both are fairly adjustable so that might be an option. Kuda makes saddles with customized gullets but the smallest they go is 6.
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post #5 of 13 Old 11-26-2018, 01:48 PM
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Just curious, what breed of horse are you trying to fit a 5.5 gullet to? Can you post pictures of the spine from behind? I want to see lol
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post #6 of 13 Old 11-26-2018, 05:06 PM
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My SQHB saddles range in width from 7" - 8.5 ". Finding one that narrow is going to be difficult. Look into older ones-- western saddles made in the early 1900s were made to fit much narrower horses than most modern stock horses.


Also, where are you measuring from?
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post #7 of 13 Old 11-29-2018, 11:34 AM Thread Starter
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I've been talking to a lot of other colonial spanish horse owners and many of them have had to find very old, narrow saddles, go custom on the tree or just shim and hope for the best. Problem with old saddles is many don't measure the gullet right or I can't figure out what the tree is by searching and the ones I find in stores are usually huge in the seat.

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post #8 of 13 Old 11-29-2018, 02:59 PM
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Hand hole width



We set the distance between the bars by the hand hole width measured at the point where the fork meets the bars. We don’t use the gullet width measurement at all. The Why We Use Hand Hole Width Instread of Gullet Width page explains this. Our hand hole measurements are in the wood. Some other makers use the measurement in the rawhide. This is an important distinction to have clear with your tree maker. Three and three quarter inches best fits narrower bodied horses, especially thoroughbred types. Four inches is a very common width for working ranch horses. Four and a quarter inches fits larger, wider horses. We will make the hand hole four and a half inches wide for exceptionally wide horses.

Measuring a Saddle Tree

I haven't heard of any gullets that are 5.5". I've got a 15 hand horse who weighs 800-850 lbs and used a 6.5" gullet.

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post #9 of 13 Old 11-29-2018, 05:08 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by secuono View Post
Anyone know which saddle brands have 5.5" gullets & SQHBs?

Specifically looking for a western, 5.5" gullet, SQHBs, 14" seat or roomy 13.5", light to medium weight, flat seat/minimal rise, short bars, minimal skirting, full or center rigging.

I've been talking to a lot of other colonial spanish horse owners and many of them have had to find very old, narrow saddles, go custom on the tree or just shim and hope for the best. Problem with old saddles is many don't measure the gullet right or I can't figure out what the tree is by searching and the ones I find in stores are usually huge in the seat.

I have never seen a semi QH bar saddle that has a 5.5" gullet. Even pony saddles have a larger gullet than that. We have an old pony saddle at home that I just measured that has a 12" seat with a 6" gullet.



(Granted, it is technically impossible to measure the true gullet on a finished saddle. You technically need to measure the gullet width on the bare tree. )


I wouldn't even think that old saddles would have gullets that narrow.



Where are you measuring?
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post #10 of 13 Old 11-29-2018, 06:16 PM
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Traditionalists measure the actual gullet width here: Saddle Gullet - Gullet Sizes
But most people seem to measure farther down, about even with where the conchas/screws at the front of the tree attach the jockeys. That can vary the measurement by 2-3", so it's important to know where you are measuring at, and where the saddle seller is measuring at.
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