gaited horse saddles
Posted 22 August 2007 - 08:10 PM
We have a 7 yr TWH that we do only trail rides with.
He's my husbands horse.
Right now Mr Noip rides in a Circle Y.
Standard tree. Nothing special about his saddle.
I believe when we bought it, it was listed as a trail saddle.
I don't like it, don't like how I sit in it and it weighs a ton.
His saddle is constantly shifting itself over to the left and hubby sits on the right side of the seat.
And he's constantly having to shift it back over.
I would like to know a couple of name brands to go with, so we can buy a saddle that actually fits the horses.
Posted 22 August 2007 - 08:29 PM
Saddles marketed to gaited horse owners do exist. The makers claim that somehow they can work "magic." I don't believe in "magic." (On the other hand I do believe in misdirection and presterdigitation. )
I ride in a Stubben, as does my wife. Fine, high quality saddles that fit very well (they even make a "gaited horse" Stubben; ours are Siegfried VSD/DLs). I've also got a Miller Collegiate and a custom made Western saddle. My wife has a "no name" trail saddle that mostly gathers dust.
I've seen Wintecs, Passiers, Circle Ys, Steeles, Tuckers, and many others. The ones that fit did so because they matched the conformation of the horse (and rider), not because of the name burned into the leather. Ditto for the ones that did not fit.
If you don't know how to fit a saddle, then learn. Get David Genedek's video ($25 from his website). Hire a professional saddle fitter to help you if you feel the need. But don't fall for the marketing hype of people who would perform a walletectomy upon you.
Good luck in your search.
Posted 22 August 2007 - 08:42 PM
Honestly, don't really look at name brand. Look at affordability, quality and fit before brand. I know all sorts of gaited horse owners who ride in everything from the special "gaited" saddles to arab trees to halflinger trees to plain QH and semi QH like me. It all depends on how your horse is conformed.
Posted 23 August 2007 - 07:56 AM
Stubben, Passier, and some other high end English saddles still maintain their reputation for quality by producing quality. We owned a Steele Plantation saddle several years ago and were very happy with fit, finish, and overall quality. I'm a bit "out of the loop" with Western or other types of saddles anymore, so I'm not sure who is quality and who is not.
I do some leather work. I don't make saddles, but have been "mentored" by a couple of saddlemakers in a few projects. About a year ago one told me that the materials cost for a standard Western saddle (tree, leather, thread, dye, fittings, fixtures, etc.) was running between $600-$750. It takes between 40-50 hours of labor to produce a good saddle, more if you want carving and stamping. Do the math, here, and you get some idea of what lies behind the price tag.
Now this guy is a "quality" producer. He won't make a "cheap" saddle. If you use lower quality material and off shore labor you can bring in a saddle for an "affordable" price. For the "weekend warrior" who rides only a few days a year that will probably do. If you're a serious rider it won't.
The "touchstones" are quality materials and workmanship; style consistent with planned use; and fit to horse and rider. Whether the horse is "gaited" or not is a big "so what?"
Posted 23 August 2007 - 08:31 AM
Look for your horses comfort 1st, then add your own. Try a Bob Marshall if you can get your hands on one. They come in a variety of styles. Here's a site with a lot of information. You can find them on E-Bay, too.Bob Marshall Saddles
[ 08-23-2007, 09:32 AM: Message edited by: mye ]
Posted 23 August 2007 - 09:08 AM
I know of the various anacdotes about them, but the plural of "anacdote" is not "data."
If you're a serious rider (and serious about the long term health of your horse) you don't use technology that was supplanted two millenia back by superior technology.
Posted 23 August 2007 - 10:37 AM
My husbands saddle was also very easy to break in,,was comfortable the first ride.The longest ride we have done with it was aprox 30 miles.Both horse and rider were pain free at the end of that ride.My husband uses this saddle in all terrains as well,hills,water crossings,flat.Never felt he was going to fall off the horse.Says he feels very secure.
Hope this helps,,
Happy trails to all,,
Posted 23 August 2007 - 06:44 PM
Same with treeless saddles. I have yet to find one that even properly fits a horse, which is why the original idea of treeless saddles was banned by the military back in the days of the civil war.
A special brand or idea of saddle isn't going to improve your horse's gait any, but a properly fitted saddle of any brand will greatly benefit you and the horse.
I ride in a barrel saddle with a semi-QH tree, and it fits most horses I've put it on. It has a round-skirt so that it doesn't cut into the hip and backbone of the horse.
Posted 24 August 2007 - 08:26 PM
Posted 24 August 2007 - 08:52 PM
A friend just told me about Brenda Imus...
So I need to go do some reading.
And I do realize that not all name brands are the best there is ....
I just thought it might be easier to say "so.and.so" has a good line or whatever.
But I do thank you for the replys!
Posted 25 August 2007 - 08:25 AM
Posted 25 August 2007 - 08:58 AM
Posted 25 August 2007 - 10:09 AM
Posted 26 August 2007 - 07:53 AM
Posted 27 August 2007 - 09:42 PM
Get a saddle to fit. Many of the tack shops have saddle fitters but some may not be very good. Read, rent videos and learn about saddle fit yourself.
I had a friend whose horse got very sore with a Imus saddle.
Posted 29 August 2007 - 12:32 PM
I USED THE CLOTHES HANGER BENT OVER THE WITHERS TO MEASURE THE HORSE AND BELIEVE IT OR NOT ENDED UP WITH AN ABETTA ARABIAN TREE CORDURA ENDURANCE SADDLE.IT COST SOME OVER 400.00$ ON LINE FROM ABETTA. I ALSO HAD AN IMUS AND I SOLD! IT.(OVERRATED)
Posted 30 August 2007 - 10:25 AM
Determine what you are going to afford, then buy the best quality used saddle that fits your horse in that price range.
I have a bunch of horses and a bunch of saddles for children's riding. I use good quality used Stubbens and Crosbys for hunt seat and Crates or Circle Ys in Western.
Having gone down the cheap, new route too many times and been disappointed, I have found that used saddles (good quality- find someone you trust to look at the tree) is the way to go.