best saddle brands for arabs - The Horse Forum
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post #1 of 10 Old 06-04-2017, 05:36 PM Thread Starter
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best saddle brands for arabs

So, I thought I was going to have some fun saddle shopping at a store 30 min away... well, it wasn't so fun. I even upped my price range to 1k, and what I seen there in their used saddles- a lot in my price range, but only a few that may work, but even then, the saddle was hanging more to the little small side ( for the gap in the middle for the spine, my saddle fitter said 4 fingers... one was just a hair bigger than 3 fingers, another one started a little more and 4 fingers, but at the back was a little more than 3. Workers at the shop said for 4 finger width, look for a 32-33 size, but most saddles didn't have it marked ( the one that was too small at least was marked 31). My saddle fitter is on vacation, so there was no point in taking the other one on the 3 day trial, but I was set to at least look.

However, I was only looking for 2 brands that my saddle fitter said were good used brands for arabs: Stubbens and Passiers. I need a 17 or 17.5 sized saddle, but as you arab owners know- working with a short backed horse... yay.

Are there other brands that tend to work better for short backed horses other than what I am looking at? ultimately, I know it comes down to how it fits the horse and all. I am looking for a decent saddle- not cheapo brand, but not top quality. I am just looking for an all purpose saddle.

I have a few options: my BO used to have an arab- the saddle was MIA tho- it has to be somewhere. I can ask if she could find it and do a quick saddle fit check myself and if I feel it is a possibility, call the saddle fitter back out. ( Also, my saddle fitter had a saddle that may work but didn't bring it, so when she comes out she could bring it- I know its slightly different type tho, so I may not like it even if it fits)

other option is: Once my aunts place sells, and everything is valued, I will be getting a decent inheritance. I then would have a much higher budget- could even buy a nice brand, brand new saddle. However, who knows ow fast this place will sell. So, for right now, I could spend the 5-600 bucks on a cheaper brand- thinking like a wintec synthetic that fits the horse and me, and just plan on buying a nicer, better quality saddle in the future once I get the inheritance. Yes, ideally it would be better to buy th e best saddle first- buying a new cheap saddle with the knowledge it will be replaced can be a waste of money- HOWEVER- it could then either be a trail saddle or could use it as the it can rain any minute saddle because its synthetic. Or I could cosign it- but lets face it- you get what you pay for, resell value for cheaper saddles may not even be worth it.

So, I rambled. But I am starting to think it would be a good idea to buy a cheaper brand saddle that fits ( seeing as there wasn't a lot of stubbens or passiers at this place- used or new) and waiting til i get more money to get a good brand, brand new saddle. But also was wondering if anyone knew other brands of English, all purpose saddles that tend to work better on arabs/ short backed horses- i may have simply passed over soem good saddles because I was sticking with what the saddle fitter suggested.
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post #2 of 10 Old 06-04-2017, 06:56 PM
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Look at Thornhills, their medium fit my Arabs perfectly. They tend to run wider than the Stubbens & Passiers, I found those too narrow. If you want fun, try finding a WESTERN saddle with a 25 inch skirt.....or less.
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post #3 of 10 Old 06-04-2017, 07:45 PM Thread Starter
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i'll check out thornhills mediums... thanks for the suggestions.

Yeah... I think I am at all I can handle now with the english saddles... western sounds darn near impossible!
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post #4 of 10 Old 06-04-2017, 08:38 PM
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Love my Barefoot! Fits my wide, short-backed, no-wither, forward girth-groove Rocky Mtn Horse. Nothing else fit!
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post #5 of 10 Old 06-04-2017, 09:28 PM
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Our arabs go in Arabian Saddle Company Rubicons. Duett also makes nice hoop-treed saddles (which are great for wide-backed horses).

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post #6 of 10 Old 06-04-2017, 09:47 PM
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Originally Posted by AnitaAnne View Post
Love my Barefoot! Fits my wide, short-backed, no-wither, forward girth-groove Rocky Mtn Horse. Nothing else fit!
I like the way the Barefoots fit, but do you have problems with them sliding? My horse is pretty muttoned withered.

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post #7 of 10 Old 06-04-2017, 10:33 PM
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Originally Posted by flytobecat View Post
I like the way the Barefoots fit, but do you have problems with them sliding? My horse is pretty muttoned withered.
I had problems with every saddle slipping! My gelding is very round

Until I bought a Haf Pad with the waffle bottom.

Now no slipping issues and I can even mount from the ground if needed without sliding the saddle. It's a little tricky, but once you learn it is easy. Can try to explain...I hold the edge of the right side of the seat with my right hand and pull on it while I swing up. (sort of like in an English saddle when someone hold the right stirrup). I hold the reins and some mane in my left hand. Do not pull on any part of the saddle with your left hand to get on!

I use a wide pommel in mine. With the treeless pads you have to put them on then let them sit a few minutes, then tighten them up more.

This is my gelding in the saddle

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post #8 of 10 Old 06-04-2017, 10:46 PM
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I should also add, my horse picked the brand of treeless, not me. I preferred the soft padded seat of the Torsion, the look of the Freeform, but my horse went best in the Barefoot.

I have a lot of different saddles because of my horse's odd shape. But the neat thing is, by changing the padding the saddle also fits my medium-wide QH mare with small withers and my medium sway-backed, old gelding with high withers.

I rode a almost 16 hand VERY WIDE Morgan gelding in it too. He could have used a wider pommel, but it was ok.

Mine is not an Arab, which you asked about, but he is an extremely hard to fit horse with similar issues as many Arabians.
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post #9 of 10 Old 06-05-2017, 01:27 AM
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The nicest saddle saddle I have seen on an Arab, and very well fitting too I might add, was a Dale Chavez Arabian saddle. It was like it was made for the horse, however I think those babies are high end pricewise.

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post #10 of 10 Old 06-05-2017, 02:32 AM
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Best fit I've had in saddles on Arabs are the Lovatt and Ricketts/Arabian Saddle Company saddles.
I've used their dressage and all purpose models. I'd like to have a Rubicon like Phantomhorse, but they are super rare to find used.
These saddles are expensive new, but you can often find a nice, newer model used for under $1,000.

I had a Duett, which did fit my Arab but the twist was too wide and I didn't care for it.

I bought a 17.5 inch Passier Nichole Gilbert recently and it is so beautiful but it doesn't fit my mare right. The panel shape isn't an exact fit in the back - a little too curved. So it is sitting until I resell it. It is just wide enough, but barely. I've had a Stubben I liked that fit my Arab pretty well in an XW tree, but the Arabian Saddle Company saddles fit better.
Plus they are comfortable for the rider too.
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