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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
i'm looking to buy a new dressage saddle and have the option of covered or smooth leather. if all other things are equal (price, options, etc.), which would you choose and why?

i've never ridden in a covered leather saddle so i'm not sure how that affects things, if at all, and would love any feedback. thanks!
 

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Covered flaps are often lovely soft calf leather stitched over a cheaper base. They look and feel really nice but won't last as long as a one-piece leather flap.

That's not to suggest they won't give good service for ten or twenty years, but half-a-century might be pushing it ;)
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
hum... do you know, or have you noticed if having ridden in one, that it makes any difference in the ride-ability of the saddle? more tacky as opposed to the "slickness" some smooth leather saddles have?
 

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Ah - it's probably personal opinion.

Softer leathers stretch more, so they do feel 'tackier'. They also tend to have a slightly grainy surface which helps with grip.

We have a pair of Ideal dressage saddles - an Elizabeth (calf covered) and a Jessica (plain flap but with suede seat and pads). The first belongs to my daughter (she had to have the dearest one, lol) and is very comfortable, though I've not ridden in it much. I like the Jessica for its suede which is a big help when your horse bucks down the centre line, convinced the arena boards in front of the judge are a jump :p

I'd have difficulty choosing one over the other. Sorry, that's not much help :)
 
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