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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
My daughter started to do a lot more dressage this summer on Harley and since they had a h/j saddle, she borrowed my dressage saddle. Guess who has now lost her saddle...

I have tried a few used saddles from my local consignment dealer who is always wonderful and patient, but Rusty is such a thick guy that I need an XW. Oh, and I do not have a big budget (1500$ MAX in CDN) so it's not like I can go out there and custom order a saddle. This is strictly for my own backyard/trail use. But of course it needs to be comfortable for both myself and Rusty.

So far, the only one that comes close is this Hastilow. My concern is that it sits too high off the withers. It isn't off balance, and I do not feel like I am being tilted back or anything, it just seems to have way more wither clearance that a saddle should have. Thoughts??? Oh, and it is slightly too big for me at a generous 17.5", but that will allow me to add layers for winter, and it is really well padded with big knee blocks so I'm not hugely concerned. I am getting really tired of looking, and since Harley's H/J saddle does not fit Rusty properly, I don't have a saddle for when I want to ride with my daughter, which is really annoying.

Should I just get it and maybe have some of the flocking adjusted slightly to fit a little better on the shoulder? That is doable locally. Or pass on it??? The price is right and it's in excellent shape. Here are some photos of it sitting on Rusty girthed up but without a saddle pad. The dealer says I am placing it too far forward, which is entirely possible. But if I put it further back, the girth isn't in the right place.
 

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Hi Acadian! I just sent you a PM with an idea that may or may not be helpful :wink:
 

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My .02 cents worth...pass
You might be tired of looking but I don't like it.

To remove padding in the shoulder region is going to tilt the saddle down onto the shoulder, the optimum word is tilt.
The entire saddle gullet is perched over the top of the horse, not on the horse.
Just look how high the entire saddle sits above the horses back.

I don't like how you sit in it...you appear to be struggling to get with your horse.
You look to me that you are behind his vertical center of balance and fighting to post...
Your arms have near nothing of a bend, forgiveness in a bent elbow that you are comfortable riding with and Rusty deserves...no matter how "soft" when you have that straight a elbow it is not good for either of you..

I think you will regret buying this saddle.
Its to big for you, bulky clothes or not...you are still you...petite.
You sit to far back behind Rusty balance point although you are not feeling it yet, you will.
It does not fit Rusty well currently at all and I doubt re-flocking is going to change that much, maybe it would.. :shrug:
I would keep searching but the decision is yours to make.
:runninghorse2:...
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
I don't like how you sit in it...you appear to be struggling to get with your horse.
You look to me that you are behind his vertical center of balance and fighting to post...
Your arms have near nothing of a bend, forgiveness in a bent elbow that you are comfortable riding with and Rusty deserves...no matter how "soft" when you have that straight a elbow it is not good for either of you..
I hadn't thought of this... the larger seat size means I am sitting further back than I should. Good point. Thanks for taking the time to read and reply!
 

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have or would you consider a synthetic saddle? I have an Isabel Werth dressage saddle and it is one of the most comfortable saddles i have ever ridden in, in over 60 years of riding and many different saddles during that time; I have ridden in other wintecs and found them easy to ride in as well.
Some of them (mine) have the adjustable gullet which gives you more choice for Rusty as well.
I hear Thorogood also has some good saddles, I only have tried one out and I did like it.
 

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I hadn't thought of this... the larger seat size means I am sitting further back than I should. Good point. Thanks for taking the time to read and reply!

I've noticed this is true, even as a western rider. I bought myself a couple of 17" western saddles (19" English?) because I weigh over 200 lbs but I notice I prefer cramming into a 16" seat even if my belly touches the front because I feel more in balance with the horse. I like roomy, but I don't like feeling behind the motion of the horse either!
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
have or would you consider a synthetic saddle? I have an Isabel Werth dressage saddle and it is one of the most comfortable saddles i have ever ridden in, in over 60 years of riding and many different saddles during that time; I have ridden in other wintecs and found them easy to ride in as well.
Some of them (mine) have the adjustable gullet which gives you more choice for Rusty as well.
I hear Thorogood also has some good saddles, I only have tried one out and I did like it.
At this point, I'd consider anything I can get my hands on for a trial. We had a Thorowgood, but didn't like it. However, I am told that some models are better than others. Not a fan of Wintecs. We do have a Bates Elevation that we like, but even the Wide gullet isn't quite big enough for Rusty (he really needs XW) and I always find it sits a little weird on both horses. It is ok, but not amazing. The Lovatt and Ricketts that I bought for Rusty, but that my daughter has taken over, was perfect for him.

I have heard good things about the Isabel Werth, but I live in a place where there are NO saddles for sale. Literally, we have one tack shop and they no longer carry saddles (they used to, but didn't sell enough so they stopped). We don't even have a Greenhawk. So I'm searching for used since I want to be able to try it on, and in my experience, at least around here, you get the best bang for your buck on a used, decent quality saddle. I can order online, but then I am out the shipping both ways if it doesn't work.

My consignment dealer just told me she has a nice XW saddle in a 17" coming in next week that might work for us, so I guess we'll just keep looking and trying them on.
 

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So I have no advice on saddle fitting or brands, but if the saddle your daughter took over was a perfect fit, is there a reason why you cannot take it back for your horse and go on a saddle search for a new saddle for her horse rather than yours?
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
So I have no advice on saddle fitting or brands, but if the saddle your daughter took over was a perfect fit, is there a reason why you cannot take it back for your horse and go on a saddle search for a new saddle for her horse rather than yours?
Either option would work, and that's what I told my consignment dealer. If we find another saddle that is in better condition, she would probably use it for shows. If we find one that has some flaws or blemishes, I can ride in it. Both horses require similar sized saddles, and my daughter and I are almost the same size (she has a couple of inches on me, and I'm about 10 lbs heavier than her). The problem is that this doesn't help me find a saddle since the specs are pretty well the same.
 

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Sounds like a situation that could be both frustrating (finding the saddle that fits) but good (you will have saddles that fit both horses and people once you do get them). I hope you find something.
 

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Was your saddle stolen? Maybe I should not leave my saddle lying around in the tack room at the training barn. I am a little worried about my Mattes half pad.
 

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Discussion Starter · #16 ·
Was your saddle stolen? Maybe I should not leave my saddle lying around in the tack room at the training barn. I am a little worried about my Mattes half pad.
No... my daughter is using it now. And she has a hunter/jumper saddle as well, but I don't like it because it doesn't fit Rusty very well (he's slightly broader) and because I don't feel as secure in it as a dressage saddle.
 

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Discussion Starter · #17 ·
Sounds like a situation that could be both frustrating (finding the saddle that fits) but good (you will have saddles that fit both horses and people once you do get them). I hope you find something.
Yes, I only ever want to buy horses that are the exact same size as my two now, LOL

We're always swapping stuff back and forth. Come to think of it though, I would still have my dressage saddle if it didn't fit Harley so well... :think:
 

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Either option would work, and that's what I told my consignment dealer. If we find another saddle that is in better condition, she would probably use it for shows. If we find one that has some flaws or blemishes, I can ride in it. Both horses require similar sized saddles, and my daughter and I are almost the same size (she has a couple of inches on me, and I'm about 10 lbs heavier than her). The problem is that this doesn't help me find a saddle since the specs are pretty well the same.
I know many people don't trust saddle shopping online, but if you know of exactly what saddle fit before, have you considered taking a peek at Ebay?

What saddle did you use before? Many saddles are similarly made to fit similar horses, so there may be brand suggestions that fit like your previous saddles does.
 
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Discussion Starter · #19 ·
I know many people don't trust saddle shopping online, but if you know of exactly what saddle fit before, have you considered taking a peek at Ebay?

What saddle did you use before? Many saddles are similarly made to fit similar horses, so there may be brand suggestions that fit like your previous saddles does.
Yes, I have checked ebay and other reliable online sources, but if it doesn't fit (like 90% of the saddles I have tried so far), then I have to resell. Would rather be able to try it on. I have done trials with sellers in Ontario, and they are very good about it, but it's 70$ shipping both ways. Every time I try a saddle and return it, I'm out 140$. If I do that 5 times, I'm out 700$. Makes no sense.

I have not found the exact replica of the saddle I have now, though my dealer is looking for one. The problem is that even if it's the same size and model, the shape can vary from year to year. So the only way to really know is to try it on. That being said, if I DID find the exact same saddle in the exact same size (Lovatt and Ricketts, 17W, Concord model), IF it was a decent price, I might be able to risk it, but so far, I have not.

The other annoying thing is that EBay.ca is full of listings from the US. Trials are not possible or realistic in those cases and shipping, duty and other costs go way up anytime I have to get something across the border. I end up paying twice as much. So ideally, I'd prefer something in Canada.
 

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I have a (used) Germania Klasse dressage saddle I got for $650. I love it. I see they come in wide and extra wide tree. Have you tried one?
 
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