View Full Version : BC or TC??

Nov. 28, 2009, 09:53 PM
Alrighty: its come down to the final two saddles that fit my big guy: a Tad Coffin or a Black Country. Both fit him well, and can be fitted to me. Which one would you choose? Is one better then the other for BIG fences?


Nov. 28, 2009, 11:51 PM
Sorry I can't give you a comparison, (I've never sat in the other saddle) but I do really love my black country wexford. I feel tremendously secure both due to the lovely knee and thigh blocks, and the texture of the leather. I'm sure it would serve well over the big jumps.

Nov. 29, 2009, 01:06 AM
OMG the Black Country by a mile!

1. If both fit your horse and both fit you, why would you spend almost double on a Tad?

2. The Black Country is a higher quality saddle. It is wool flocked, so if you ever change horses, or when your horse changes shape over the course of a season (and if you take regular tracings it is amazing to document how much their back changes), the Black Country can be tweaked to suit, while the Tad can't. The Black Countrys come in a variety of different tree widths AND SHAPES, for a much better fit for the individual horse. The Tad just comes in different widths; but low and high withered horses and flat and scooped backed horses apparently all get the same shaped tree in Tad's world....oookay.

I have a Tad which completely doesn't fit a single horse I put it on. Other people seem to be luckier than me but I flatly can not get a saddle that bridges this badly (http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v298/meupatdoes/1124091404.jpg) to fit anything. Maybe everyone else is riding a table, every horse I've ever met has had curves.

Nov. 29, 2009, 07:29 AM
Oh, yeah, Black Country Quantum or Maelstrom over a TC for big fences.

I'm a tad surprised that both fit your horse well. The tree (front to back, at least) and panels on these saddles seem different to me. But who am I to question your horse's judgement?

The BC is just "more saddle"-- a deeper seat and *plenty* o' knee and thigh rolls to help you over the big ones.

I grew up in the flat PdN era, so I'm happy riding in a minimalist saddle. But with a good fitting BC, I don't feel that the stuff in front of my leg gets in the way but like how it helps out over drop fences and such.

I also think you will get more saddle for your money with a BC. That's true initially and also in the long run. TCs are made from lovely, soft leather that just won't last the way the BC leather will. (By the way, BC does allow you to choose different leathers.)

All saddles lose their value (way too much, way too fast, compared to yester-century). With the BC you will lose a bit less simply because you started out with a more durable saddle in the beginning for which you paid a much better price. You may be able to sell a BC or TC for about the same price later on, but that's only if the TC "fetish" continues, and if BC saddles remain the sleepers of the close contact saddling world. I wouldn't bet on either trend continuing for, say, the next 5-10 years.

The TC is the more traditional-looking saddle of the two, but since you are jumping larger fences and fitting horses, the BC's wool panels may make the BC the better long-term investment for you since it will do the job you want.

Nov. 29, 2009, 03:09 PM
Thanks for all your input! I'm going to go with the BC, its not as pretty, but its way cheaper (yay!!) and everyone on here seems to LOVE them.

Nov. 29, 2009, 03:36 PM
BC will build "pretty"-- but it takes some study and engineering on your part and that of the tack shop ordering for you.

I'm not a fan of either their covered Maelstrom saddle or the vintage leather they use on the Quantum. The Maelstrom's flaps were so soft on the demo I tried that they wanted to curl up around my leg. The vintage leather won't do that, but it's not beautiful. Their pig-skin printed calf might make you happy. They'll also do a smooth calf in New Market if you can deal with a light colored saddle.

Get swatches from the ordering saddler or tack shop. I'm fussy, so I'd get swatches of leather for both the calf they use on the seat and also the leather they'll use for the flaps. The British calf they use on the seats will last better than will french calf and also better than the very soft stuff Tad uses. But it looks to me like it's tanned with a layer of color on the top that might not acquire the lovely patina that something like a Butet would.

Since this is custom and you should be happy with it, do your homework.