Buying first saddle - Page 3 - The Horse Forum
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post #21 of 27 Old 09-23-2014, 03:39 AM
Green Broke
Join Date: Aug 2009
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I personally have found barrel saddles to be a sort of "tight" seat with not much movement, I don't know what size you are looking for, but if you're meeting halfway in sizing you might find a barrel too constrictive as opposed to a more flatter style seat.
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post #22 of 27 Old 09-23-2014, 03:43 AM
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Originally Posted by Saskia View Post
I personally have found barrel saddles to be a sort of "tight" seat with not much movement, I don't know what size you are looking for, but if you're meeting halfway in sizing you might find a barrel too constrictive as opposed to a more flatter style seat.
I agree with this. I can ride a 16" barrel saddle, while I need a 17" seat in a flatter saddle.
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post #23 of 27 Old 09-23-2014, 10:21 AM Thread Starter
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It is a Tex Tan Hereford, yes.

We took the saddle home for trial last night. It seemed to us like it fit up fine, but neither of us have much experience. We're having a friend come over today to check it out for us.

The horse rode around great with it. Even my wife let her break into a lope! (She usually is content walking and trotting, at the most) One weird thing was the first time I started trotting around, she coughed a number of times. But then stopped. It was weird because I hadn't heard her doing that before, but we've only had her for three weeks.

Hope these photos work:
Gullet (EDIT: not sure why this pic won't orient correctly):

Left side:



We checked fit with our hand, and the only part that concerned me a little is that it seemed tightest right where the front of the bars land behind her shoulders. That may be evident in the first photo above. Perhaps I had the saddle too far forward in these pics? I followed directions from what I read online and what the saddle owner told me - set it on somewhat-too-far forward, then slid back until it seemed to "land just right" on her. I think the front of the bars were behind her shoulders. We had about 2 fingers clearance above the withers, and could snugly run a hand along the bars front-to-back. Saddle didn't rock on her, seemed to lay nicely.

Anyway, then we put on a pad and rode her for about 20 - 30 minutes, and she really seemed fine. We weren't running barrels or herding cattle, of course, but I got her to work up a sweat.

Also, we finally got to talk to her previous owner more last night. They had three different saddles they used on her, and unfortunately she didn't know if they were FQHBs or semi's.

I'm very open to hear what you guys think, if you can really say much just off the pictures and my description. And again, we're planning on getting an experienced friend's opinion in person tonight. Thanks for all your help!

Last edited by JAultman; 09-23-2014 at 10:29 AM.
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post #24 of 27 Old 09-23-2014, 01:31 PM
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Subbing (: I don't know much about western saddles, but am curious.

The sensitivity of the internet baffles me.
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post #25 of 27 Old 09-23-2014, 05:12 PM
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I would say that saddle is a bit big for her. If it's FQHB, then I would say she likely needs a semi. It's a touch wide through the gullet though that can be remedied with a thicker pad. However, that place that concerned you is also what concerns me. It appears the angles of the bars are too flat for her back, causing all the pressure to be on the tops of the bars instead of across their entire width. It's fitting her about like the drawing here on the right
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post #26 of 27 Old 09-24-2014, 12:39 AM
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You should be able to find a decent saddle for $500. My mom blessed me with a beautiful dressage saddle from a secondhand tack shop. We got it for a little over $500, it had some minor wear. It's an excellent saddle made in Vienna, not from a well known brand though. When I looked the same saddle up new, it was 2 thousand dollars! I'm in love with it, it's like a leather armchair
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post #27 of 27 Old 09-24-2014, 11:46 AM
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That saddle is too wide for her.
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