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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I keep an eye out in my local classifieds trying to find a decent beginner saddle and came across this, its probably too small for my 180lb fanny but i have 2 young ones that could maybe use it and or possibly clean up and resell it. I am wanting to buy it, but figured i'd post here first and just get opinions. It belongs to an older couple that no longer ride or have horses but seem trustworthy and kind over the phone.


They said for 120 bucks they'd sell it, with a folding saddle rack and the saddle pad. Claim its in perfect working order and ready to ride. Everything in the picture comes with it.


Just looking for opinions yall, thanks!
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
I would of already paid for it and probably gone to retrieve it in person.
That is a nice saddle...
:runninghorse2:..

I am meeting them at 1pm this afternoon at a feed and tack store to get it. Ironically I am the production engineer of a company that produces large animal wound care and natural fly spray products and am dropping an order off locally. Since its a steal I am going to shower them with some free products that we make.


Thanks for yalls input, I am novice to the riding world but my better half came with 2 ponies that I was tired of watching get fat and started riding a lot this month.
 

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A little bit of TLC, some saddle soap and Neatsfoot oil to recondition the leather after cleaned well will have that saddle gorgeous.
You can see the patina of good leather through the dust & dirt yet.


As for prices...
A used saddle stand like that one is worth $30 with the shelf on the bottom of it.
Wool/mohair wide cinch in looks near new condition is bucks...$40 at least.
Complete flank cinch and the connector strap...good quality by the appearance... $50 and every bit of that or more!
Saddle pad...no idea of it is but even a cheapy sold brings $10...
Gut feeling nothing this couple have is cheap quality.


Do be careful with the seat as it looks like it is suede and probably padded at that.
No saddle soap, no Neatsfoot oil or conditioner to it...
To raise the nap get a suede brush from a shoe department or use a very small, fine bristled metal brush found in auto parts stores will raise and clean the nap easily...


This is a great find...after cleaning, share some pictures of the beauty discovered. :smile:
:runninghorse2:...
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
A little bit of TLC, some saddle soap and Neatsfoot oil to recondition the leather after cleaned well will have that saddle gorgeous.
You can see the patina of good leather through the dust & dirt yet.


As for prices...
A used saddle stand like that one is worth $30 with the shelf on the bottom of it.
Wool/mohair wide cinch in looks near new condition is bucks...$40 at least.
Complete flank cinch and the connector strap...good quality by the appearance... $50 and every bit of that or more!
Saddle pad...no idea of it is but even a cheapy sold brings $10...
Gut feeling nothing this couple have is cheap quality.


Do be careful with the seat as it looks like it is suede and probably padded at that.
No saddle soap, no Neatsfoot oil or conditioner to it...
To raise the nap get a suede brush from a shoe department or use a very small, fine bristled metal brush found in auto parts stores will raise and clean the nap easily...


This is a great find...after cleaning, share some pictures of the beauty discovered. :smile:
:runninghorse2:...



I definitely will, i am super stoked now haha, I will clean her up nice.
 

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YEp. buy it , NOW! nice saddle, with rough out seat. super nice cinch it'll work nice for showing, too.


Around here, that set would go for around $400 or more.
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
So, I went and checked it out with my gal - the owner our aforementioned lawn ornaments, and she agreed that it was a steal. Minor repairs for aesthetics. Leather is in great condition for age.

The lady who was the owner and her hubby were both there and she is now gonna send us an inventory of all her other tack and likely sell it for penny's on the dollar. She was very very into the horse world back in the day and still has all her gear but no more horses. Super nice folks.


I will definitely post here with pics after its cleaned up and oiled up
 

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Echo what the others say. Cleaned up you could turn it around here locally where I live in Montana for an easy $400, possibly a tad more. Even if it doesn't fit you it's resale value is much more than you are paying for it. If it were me I would have bought it already.
 

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Measure the seat for size. you mentioned your weight, but what about your height? Do you know how to measure a western saddle?



 

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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
Measure the seat for size. you mentioned your weight, but what about your height? Do you know how to measure a western saddle?




Yes its a 15, and I am 5'9'', i can sit in it and have about 2-3 fingers between my thighs and the pommel and some room to move around but its not a tight seat on me but nowhere near as much space on the 17 i been riding, it may be pushing it but its comfortable for me although i just sat on it while on the rack so... I will ride on it for a bit after i clean up. My other half "insists" its too small for me but hasnt seen me sit in it yet. I WILL at least try it, i aint trying to compete, i want to ride for pleasure and learn horsemanship, so if its comfortable for me and its comfy for the horse and it doesnt impede me learning proper riding fundamentals then id like to use it, even if its smaller than most recommend, its also about personal preference, just as long as its a proper fit for the pony and not causing bad habits.



Also FYI i looked at the serial and its a saddle from 1987...its as old as I am! Pretty neat considering its condition.



The blevins needs replacing, it looks like galvanic corrosion since they are aluminum and the rivets are copper and it corrodes and migrates to the rivets in between the leather straps. It causes the straps to separate making it hard for the slide to fit. I will replace them. Curious as to why they use aluminum, SS does not weigh that much more and won't cause that kind of corrosion...



One little spot on the silver wiring on the cantle is broken but not functionally a problem and hard to notice. Other than that, it cleaned up nicely, still got a few crevices to get the glycerin into but I plan on applying the neatsfoot today and putting the parts back together after a few applications.



It truly is a beautiful saddle.


Question though, the leather has a shiny layer of some sort of lacquer its faded in places you'd expect, but how will the neatsfoot absorb? is the lacquer porous enough or am I missing something?
 

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You sure it is lacquer or is it the leather patina you're seeing now with nourishing the leather fibers?

UncleArthur is a craftsman and does saddle rehab...he may know the answer to that question.
Hopefully he will see and comment here.
A few others also do leather work and rehab and might offer insight.
Only thing I would say is give it a day before oiling...make sure all saddle soap/glycerine is removed so the leather can absorb the neatsfoot everywhere...
Very thin, light applications and let it soak in well everywhere before adding more.
Do not do in sunlight I found allows best even absorption of the leather.
Wipe off excess and buff to a shine with a towel or long bristled soft brush...

Remember spit and polish shoes...that is how my saddles deep patina glisten when I'm done.
Good leather will speak to you and tell a tale, listen carefully to it sing as you work magic. :cool:
:runninghorse2:...
 

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Discussion Starter · #16 ·
You sure it is lacquer or is it the leather patina you're seeing now with nourishing the leather fibers?

UncleArthur is a craftsman and does saddle rehab...he may know the answer to that question.
Hopefully he will see and comment here.
A few others also do leather work and rehab and might offer insight.
Only thing I would say is give it a day before oiling...make sure all saddle soap/glycerine is removed so the leather can absorb the neatsfoot everywhere...
Very thin, light applications and let it soak in well everywhere before adding more.
Do not do in sunlight I found allows best even absorption of the leather.
Wipe off excess and buff to a shine with a towel or long bristled soft brush...

Remember spit and polish shoes...that is how my saddles deep patina glisten when I'm done.
Good leather will speak to you and tell a tale, listen carefully to it sing as you work magic. :cool:
:runninghorse2:...

It may not be lacquer it just looks like there is something, but it may not be. I will re-evaluate this afternoon.


Thanks everyone for yalls participation!
 

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Discussion Starter · #17 ·
Update on cleaning up the hereford w/ pics

Cleaning is going well, applied some neatsfoot, in hindsight maybe even too much but i suppose it drank it all up itll be fine. I then did a quick application of the glycerine let dry and gave a quick buff just on the tooled portion of saddle...i couldnt resist, i wanted to see it with a lil shine.

Last pic is a few days ago from front porch, it was raining like crazy, sunny, and a rainbow you can see all the way to the ground...checked and no gold. i thought id share.




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Looks lovely.
I would not oil it again for a while...
Use the saddle and see how it feels after a few times riding and the leather working.
If the work makes it feel stiff, un-moving and dry looking a very, very thin amount of oil applied, let soak in and wipe off the excess always before riding or it does a job on your clothing...it is oil.
It appears a concho is missing from right side front of the saddle...
Get that taken care of before using the saddle so all stays tight and not shift.
Replacement conchos often can be found online that match or nearly match.
Being this saddle is from the 80's and has what appears as silver lacing...you might have silver concho's too.
Silversmiths, certain ones did make for particular saddle companies but I don't know who did what...
I don't know how to replace that either as never looked to honestly...
Some of our tack gurus have done and could offer words of advice I'm sure or what isn't on a you-tube video today.
But the beauty of the saddle, the leather patina is gorgeous as I suspected under the dirt.
Nice find and happy riding once that missing concho gets taken care of. :cool:
:runninghorse2:...
 

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Discussion Starter · #19 ·
Looks lovely.
I would not oil it again for a while...
Use the saddle and see how it feels after a few times riding and the leather working.
If the work makes it feel stiff, un-moving and dry looking a very, very thin amount of oil applied, let soak in and wipe off the excess always before riding or it does a job on your clothing...it is oil.
It appears a concho is missing from right side front of the saddle...
Get that taken care of before using the saddle so all stays tight and not shift.
Replacement conchos often can be found online that match or nearly match.
Being this saddle is from the 80's and has what appears as silver lacing...you might have silver concho's too.
Silversmiths, certain ones did make for particular saddle companies but I don't know who did what...
I don't know how to replace that either as never looked to honestly...
Some of our tack gurus have done and could offer words of advice I'm sure or what isn't on a you-tube video today.
But the beauty of the saddle, the leather patina is gorgeous as I suspected under the dirt.
Nice find and happy riding once that missing concho gets taken care of. :cool:
:runninghorse2:...

I actually have all the concho's and hardware, i just unscrewed them to clean. They are in a bucket with all the other leather straps, they actually look like copper, i have not cleaned any metal yet. The silver on the horn is real silver though and needs to also be cleaned.


I only need to put new blevins on, since the originals are corroded badly enough i wouldnt put a kid on it unless it was one of my horses.


Thank you for checking in! I am having a lot of fun doing this and sharing it with you folks. Also really helping me understand saddle construction.
 
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