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Discussion Starter #1
I picked it up used off the wonder that is Craigslist and it doesn't have any markings that I can see. I was just wondering what brand it could be.

It is a leather western hornless endurance saddle that fits myself and my horse wonderfully. Any guesses are appreciated.

Thanks In Advance! :)
 

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Discussion Starter #6
Yup, what I was going to say.

It's a very cheap copy of a Tucker saddle, built on a sub-par fiberglass tree with low quality leather and webbing. Definitely not worth buying, at any price.
What are the side effects of a sub-par fiberglass tree and low quality leather/webbing? Will it cause discomfort to the horse? Or does this just mean that is won't last with prolonged use?

I appreciate your input!
 

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Lisa,

The Trees are Hollow

To put it bluntly:

Best case scenario, your Horse ends up with a "sore back"

Worst case scenario, you end up in the Hospital with a "broken back"

I have too many of those Trees that have Broken and then things like the screws, nails and staples that hold everything together fall off and parts go flying.


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I agree with ST. The tree may be warped and can cause soreness. If it is miraculously (sp?) straight, it can warp or crack with time and exposure to heat/cold. The leather can crack or break with use. The hardware can break with use.

My husband bought one of those cheap saddles, but an aussie model. It had english type stirrup bars. The left stirrup bar BENT the first time he got in it, and he even used a step!

They're just not worth buying. You're better off getting an affordable synthetic like abetta or fabtron, or an older used saddle.
 

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Discussion Starter #10
Lisa,

The Trees are Hollow

To put it bluntly:

Best case scenario, your Horse ends up with a "sore back"

Worst case scenario, you end up in the Hospital with a "broken back"

I have too many of those Trees that have Broken and then things like the screws, nails and staples that hold everything together fall off and parts go flying.


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Thank you for the explanation. Both sound like fairly frightening situations.

I agree with ST. The tree may be warped and can cause soreness. If it is miraculously (sp?) straight, it can warp or crack with time and exposure to heat/cold. The leather can crack or break with use. The hardware can break with use.

My husband bought one of those cheap saddles, but an aussie model. It had english type stirrup bars. The left stirrup bar BENT the first time he got in it, and he even used a step!

They're just not worth buying. You're better off getting an affordable synthetic like abetta or fabtron, or an older used saddle.
I should have been clearer in my initial post. I have already bought this saddle and have been using it for several months now. As far as I can tell the tree is straight and the entire saddle is very comfortable for me and the mare I ride. However, I am definitely going to pick up a different saddle just to be safe. I have been looking at the synthetic options from Abetta because I like the lighter weight and low care material.

Thank you guys for letting me know about the dangers of a no name saddle. I won't be making the same mistake twice. :oops:
 

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If it seems to be working for you guys, go ahead and use it. Just keep an eye out for wear and tear. But I have been through quite a few saddles, from cheap to expensive (for me), and price is no guarantee of fit any more than spending a lot of money on a horse is a guarantee a horse will ride well! So take your time and shop for a better saddle, but if the one you are using now works well and doesn't cause your horse problems, well, you might as well use it until you find something better.

Is an Abetta really better than the trekker? Maybe it is, I don't know. But the Abettas I have have seen in person have not been exactly high quality either.

If you are looking for a nice quality synthetic, I like Bighorn Corduras. I have one that is still going strong after 12+ years. :) I don't know what they are going for currently, but I have seen some good deals on them- new and used, on eBay in the past.
 

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Lisa,

Many people use the Trekkers, it is not like everyone of them is going to vaporize before your eyes :lol::lol:

Those are just a Brand that has a fail rate many, many, many times higher than an American Made.

Just give the Saddle a Good Inspection before each use and you should be OK, if you have already been using it a few months and it has not broken the tree, sounds like you got a good one, just watch the minor stuff during an inspection, like the screws, nails and staples, of course most of them are hidden so look under the skirts, flaps, etc.

I have seen a few that are 2-3 years old and are still OK :)

As trailhorserider, said Bighorns are a good inexpensive Saddle, you can sometimes pick them up used for half of the 370.00 new price :D


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Discussion Starter #13
If it seems to be working for you guys, go ahead and use it. Just keep an eye out for wear and tear. But I have been through quite a few saddles, from cheap to expensive (for me), and price is no guarantee of fit any more than spending a lot of money on a horse is a guarantee a horse will ride well! So take your time and shop for a better saddle, but if the one you are using now works well and doesn't cause your horse problems, well, you might as well use it until you find something better.

Is an Abetta really better than the trekker? Maybe it is, I don't know. But the Abettas I have have seen in person have not been exactly high quality either.

If you are looking for a nice quality synthetic, I like Bighorn Corduras. I have one that is still going strong after 12+ years. :) I don't know what they are going for currently, but I have seen some good deals on them- new and used, on eBay in the past.
Thank you for the suggestion! I will look into the Bighorns.

Lisa,

Many people use the Trekkers, it is not like everyone of them is going to vaporize before your eyes :lol::lol:

Those are just a Brand that has a fail rate many, many, many times higher than an American Made.

Just give the Saddle a Good Inspection before each use and you should be OK, if you have already been using it a few months and it has not broken the tree, sounds like you got a good one, just watch the minor stuff during an inspection, like the screws, nails and staples, of course most of them are hidden so look under the skirts, flaps, etc.

I have seen a few that are 2-3 years old and are still OK :)

As trailhorserider, said Bighorns are a good inexpensive Saddle, you can sometimes pick them up used for half of the 370.00 new price :D


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I will take taking a better look at my saddle before every use. I appreciate the reassurance that it isn't going to just *poof* fall apart with my next ride. The biggest thing when I bought the saddle was how well it fit my mare. There is a TON of flocking underneath and the cut really frees up movement for her shoulder. And of course my tush appreciates the extra padding on the seat. :lol:
 

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Abettas are DEFINITELY better. They are made in the USA on solid Ralide trees, which are a specific brand of saddle tree that is also made in the USA. The trees are shaped right and last (Circle Y and Textan use them!). I have an Abetta that has been used and abused for around 8 years. It looks pretty worn and ugly now, but the webbing all held together nicely and it still rides well.

Trekkers and other cheap brands are made in Asia on hollow fiberglass trees. If you're lucky to get one that's straight and doesn't fit too bad, it can still end up warping or cracking with use and exposure to heat or cold. Not to mention the metal hardware will often have impurities which makes it weak and increases the chance of it breaking. The stitching and workmanship are also sub-par, which can also cause structural weakness.

No, price is not always reflective of quality, as in Abettas and other more affordable saddles. But, you do still get what you pay for... If you're paying under $600 for a NEW leather saddle, then there's got to be some "cuts" in quality or workmanship, or both.

A good leather saddle will last a lifetime! I have a 1920's military style saddle that my husband bought. We had the rigging re-done, but everything else on it is ORIGINAL! It's in great riding/using shape. My daughter's saddle is a 1950s Sears saddle. It needed some minor repairs, but the fleece and leather is all original. I also have another 1950s saddle that's in great shape, with no repairs needed. A pony saddle I use in lessons is a 1960s Big Horn and it's just adorable and 100% sound.

Some of these cheap saddles may be okay now, or even for a year or three, but talk to me in 5 or 10 years and let me know how they're doing, after that long of consistent riding... ;-).
 
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