View Full Version : besides PdNs, other good used "pancakes" out there?

Dec. 4, 2009, 07:48 PM
I got a nice used pancake flat Crosby PdN that I really liked, but although it measured right for my leg, it just did not fit me right. I struggled with it for many months because I loved how I could feel my horse in it. I rode better w/o stirrups in it, but when I put my stirrups back there was always something screwy. Anyway, I keep looking at them and wondering if a different size might be the answer, but I think before I go that route I should investigate a different maker. I can't afford a Hermes Steinkraus, even seriously used, and they're pretty freakin' rare, anyway. Can anybody suggest some models I might be able to turn up in a similar price range to a PdN with the old school CC design?

Dec. 4, 2009, 07:58 PM
Crump Prix de Saute-- I had one "back in the day" and it's very, very similar to the PdN. They come up on ebay every now and then.:)

Dec. 4, 2009, 08:12 PM
I've seen a lot of the Steinkraus on eBay, they may not be as rare as you think. :)

Dec. 4, 2009, 08:37 PM
There's a Prix de Saute (17.5) on ebay now and also one at Middleburg Tack Exchange. Both are just under $200. The trees tend to run a little narrow but they are very flat. I have one that is the only saddle I've ever had that fits one of my high withered tbs. I love riding in it.

ex-racer owner
Dec. 4, 2009, 08:44 PM
I LOVED my old school Crump Prix de Saute!!! I received it as a gift in the early nineties and it still looked great when I sold in '06. I would have kept it, but it did not fit my new OTTB. Had I known what it was going to sell for on Ebay, I would have kept it! I really can't say enough good things about it.

That being said, be sure if you decide to go that route, that you get one of the older Crumps. I believe the company was sold and under the "new" ownership, the quality went downhill. The older stuff from early '90s, awesome!

Dec. 4, 2009, 08:47 PM
friend has an old collegiate saddle. flat as a pancake. we've got a crosby something in the school barn too. equilibrium maybe? it;s pretty flat. also comfortable. no knee rolls or blocks or anything. it's pretty old school.

Dec. 4, 2009, 08:55 PM
old Stubben. I used to ride in one. Flat and slippery as hell but definitely helped develop my seat!

Tha Ridge
Dec. 4, 2009, 08:56 PM
Might check out some older Beval Devon's, as well.

Dec. 4, 2009, 09:02 PM
Candyman saddles are great if you can find one!

Dec. 4, 2009, 09:10 PM
I am so surprised to see you mention a Candyman. I have one made in bridle leather....it is still a great saddle and is sitting in my tack closet. I used it to start all my babies. If we were closer I would sell it to you :yes: We used it some the past two summers and it is actually a nicer saddle than the PDN I also still have.I am not good at letting the things I am not using go.

Dec. 4, 2009, 09:16 PM
You might not like the depth, but at least sit in a Crosby Hunterdon. It may have a stirrup bar-to-center of seat length that works for you.

I also really like my Crosby AGA Grand Prix. Mine is odd-- it has no pencil roll under the knee. But even the ones that do might suit you. These were well-balanced and beautifully made saddles.

All of these are likely to be a tad narrow for most modern horses. You may be able to find an AGA Grand Prix in a wide.

While you are at it, you might consider a Crosby Equilibrium (the original saddle they built with Tad Coffin).

Every once in a while, you will see a pristine version of one of these old saddles that has been sitting in someone's closet forever. I'd partially let the appearance of one of these miracles determine which one I bought.

Dec. 4, 2009, 09:20 PM
There are usually several Hermes on ebay. Also, My County Stabilizer is pretty flat.

Dec. 4, 2009, 10:16 PM
You might not like the depth, but at least sit in a Crosby Hunterdon. It may have a stirrup bar-to-center of seat length that works for you.

I agree with this! I have a Hunterdon, and while I think I would personally prefer the PdN's depth I do love my saddle. If you can find one, definitely try it out.

Dec. 4, 2009, 10:27 PM
Another vote for a Crump Prix de Saute. I got one for the BF to learn to ride... it doesn't fit his butt, and is too big for mine, which is sad, because it's really nice! :yes:

Dec. 4, 2009, 10:28 PM
Might check out some older Beval Devon's, as well.http://www.chronofhorse.com/forum/images/buttons/quote.gif (http://www.chronofhorse.com/forum/newreply.php?do=newreply&p=4538575)

I second this. Try a Beval Devon 2000. The Crosby Hampton Classic is nice as well.

Dec. 4, 2009, 10:31 PM
I love my old Clinton Northrup close contact saddle. Flat as a pancake, but still comfortable and has the best balance of any saddle I've ever owned.

Dec. 4, 2009, 10:32 PM
JustaBay-- is that your Candyman on Ebay right now?

I have never seen one mentioned, or up for sale....let alone at the same moment.

I looks cool. If is is yours, can you tell me whether it's flocked with foam or wool? I'm not in the market, just curious.

Dec. 4, 2009, 11:52 PM
the crosby sovereigns are pretty darn flat too.

Dec. 5, 2009, 12:22 AM
The last several 16.5 inch older Hermes saddles that have sold on eBay have gone for a little over $600... The one I bought went for even less than that.

Dec. 5, 2009, 07:43 AM
Huh! Every used Hermes I've ever seen, even on eBay, has been priced at least 2k. Bad timing on me I guess. But thanks for so many great suggestions! I'm familiar with Crump; they resold Zaldi, a Spanish maker, which for many years was a real favorite of mine. :) Can't beat leather from Salamanca, no matter what you say about the French. And they also made great cutbacks when I rode Saddlebreds. I'll take a look at the Prix de Saute that's on eBay!I have also heard the story about the Candymans, but I can't remember the details anymore.

Anyplace Farm
Dec. 5, 2009, 07:49 AM
Is the flap also flat on it? As in no knee roll? I have a saddle I bought new from Middleburg Tack Exchange by Boullion that MTE said made the Prix de Saute. Either that or they said it was made in the design of the Prix de Saute. I keep it on hand as my second saddle (it has a pigskin seat) but would sell it.

Dec. 5, 2009, 08:13 AM
I rode in a Candyman for a couple of years which I loved, fit a wide variety of horses and felt very well balanced. It was very well-used but had stood the test of time exceedingly well. Unfortunately the man who designed them passed away a few years ago, so they're no longer being manufactured.

Dec. 5, 2009, 08:17 AM
If you have $2500 to burn, Black Country will build you anything you want. I saw a Black Country Quantum once that was a dead ringer for a Crosby PDN--plain flap, shallow seat, old-school havana leather. But it had been made custom for the horse and rider.

Dec. 5, 2009, 09:51 AM
The man who had them made under his Candyman label was Jean Guy and he lived in Quebec. He used to carry a bucket of candy on his golf cart that he would share with everyone at the the shows.The saddles were made in the same factory in England as the PDN and all other Crosby saddle. He made a jumper saddle and a hunter saddle and they have been togh balanced saddles. Sold all matter of tack, all great quality and wool coolers with leather front straps. He was a friendy man that loved people and spending time with them. Was a farrier too at one point but in the time I knew him well. He loved when us "further away people" would come to show in Quebec.
One more detail...he didn't ever have a shop....sold out of th eback of his van or mail order.

Dec. 5, 2009, 09:57 AM
After my PDN wore out beyond use I found an almost new Anthill Grand Event on E-bay for under $200.

Lazy Palomino Hunter
Dec. 5, 2009, 10:56 AM
I had a friend who had a Beval Devon (http://www.beval.com/Products/Devon/2133000.aspx) that I really liked- they're SUPER flat, but still are quite comfortable and very non-restricting (they have a padded flap, but no knee rolls or anything).

Much more comfortable than an old PDN, albeit much more expensive. ;)

Lazy Palomino Hunter
Dec. 5, 2009, 11:03 AM
Some used Devons:

17 1/2" (http://www.allthebestusedsaddles.com/beval-devon-prototype-536.aspx)
17" (http://www.allthebestusedsaddles.com/17-beval-devon-243.aspx)
17" (http://www.allthebestusedsaddles.com/17-devon-493.aspx)
17" (http://www.allthebestusedsaddles.com/17-devon-420.aspx)
16 1/2" (http://www.allthebestusedsaddles.com/16-devon-437.aspx)
15 1/2" (http://www.allthebestusedsaddles.com/15-beval-devon-338.aspx)

Dec. 5, 2009, 11:25 AM
Huh! Every used Hermes I've ever seen, even on eBay, has been priced at least 2k.

Sold my 30 yr old Steinkraus (in great condition) on eBay not too long ago for $850. They are out there but you have to be patient. Other pancake saddles I've had that I loved was my Jimmy's 20th Century and my Barnsby Puissance (not many of either of these around though). Also had a Beval but it was not my favorite (something with the position of the bars was NQR for me).

Have you scoured the used saddle sites for deals? At least with them you can get a trial as opposed to eBay where you are stuck with what you buy, generally.

good booie
Dec. 5, 2009, 11:37 AM
A saddle I once owned but sold because it was too big for me but one of the flattest saddles and best eq saddles I ever owned was a Stubben Camelot. I highly recommend this saddle. Not too pricey either.

My first saddle was a PDN. Had it for years, like 25, and sold it for more than my grandfather paid originally.

Dec. 5, 2009, 11:51 AM
older crosby equilibrium tad coffin model (my fav!)
crosby sovereign (I think sovereign is just a pdn with "sovereign leather" though)
jeffries falcon
passier made an older comet and comet II that were pancaky and nice
and I've got a lovely hans biglajzer that is pancake flat and just lovely, they're nicely made saddles out of oregon but resale very cheaply because they're unknown, if you ever have an opportunity at a hans I suggest checking it out

finally there is a nice UK made brand I think called blue ribbon, but beware, there is a crummy low end brand that goes by a similar or same name... the good one was popular about 20-30 yrs ago and made nice whippy-like pancake saddles

finally, when purchasing a used pancake, be sure you look carefully at the panels underneath (if ebaying, get good clear photos). These saddles were made to last and can easily be 25-30 yrs old and still look great topside, but the panels could be shot (ie cracking, very uneven, lumpy & hard) and usually these older pancake saddles have very little spinal clearance, often only 2 fingers towards the rear and that could be painful for your horse... thats why I've culled my collection down to the TC crosby and the Hans B, both have nice wide channels for the spine but are still pancake flat.

Dec. 5, 2009, 11:54 AM
Remember the Barnsbys? *le sigh*

I'm wiht you, OP. I have a crosby pancake I picked up for a hundred bucks at a tag sale. No idea if it will fit any horse I will ever own, but it was flat and I figured I should get it.

When I go to buy a jumping/eq saddle, it will be a pancake. I am looking for a dressage saddle now which affords the same close contact.

Dec. 5, 2009, 12:10 PM
Ebay has some fine deals on this genus of saddle right now.

There is a Warwick specimen available now. I never got the chance to ride in one, but I remember them as beautifully made. I do like pig skin seats, but as a rule these will be harder than the calf skin (both British and French) that we like to sit in now.

The new Crosby Equilibrium DSL will have Schrump leather on the seat (I'm not nearly the fan Crosby said I should be), but it's a nice deal if you want one of these.

It will be hard to find one, but I also liked the balance of the Moritz I used to own. Mine was a Golden Elite, not the darker, Crosby Sovereign wannabe that was the cheaper version. Moritzes were well made and flocked with synthetic wool, I believe. IMO, they will provide a kind of panel that is better than the foam ones you find in most of these old flatties.

Dec. 5, 2009, 12:29 PM
Wow, thanks for these fabbo replies!! Really helpful! I am looking at a Jimmy's 20th Century online right now but didn't know what to make of it - thought I might have heard of the bridles, but it's great to have a recommendation on the saddle. So much food for thought...and yeah, I'd love to drop $2500 on a custom Black Country...I have one that I got used and it's my everything saddle but it's not a pancake that I really need to tighten myself up. But not this year! :winkgrin:

Dec. 5, 2009, 02:40 PM
You might also be able to find a Beval Natural. If you look for the older ones, they are pretty flat. I have one that I bought used several years ago to replace my PDN :) Happy shopping :)

Dec. 5, 2009, 03:15 PM
Alas for me I take an 18". I have also noticed the pancakes seem to fit down lower on my horse, so his usual easy fit medium bod seems to want a narrower tree, but I'm kind of scared to go all the way to a narrow. I figure, better to go med. and re-flock if I find one that really fits ME first. But I also sort of hate the notion of piling saddle pads under there to tweak the fit for him until I figure out if the saddle is right for me...bleech. It's really defeating the purpose, isn't it? On the other hand, if it's too narrow, that's just a bust, period. Oh, the drama!

Dec. 5, 2009, 06:07 PM
mvp- I wish it was my Candyman on ebay!! Then at least I'd OWN one!!!!

I have looked for one locally for years, damn near impossible to find in a 17.5, as anyone who has one will never sell it. Offered a lady at one barn whatever she wanted for hers, and she said thanks but no thanks:)

Not as common as the PDN, but just as good and worth the wait if you can get one. If I ever get my hands on one, I will never ever sell it lol

Dec. 5, 2009, 08:00 PM
mortabella's post about couch-y saddles like a BC and flat ones reminded me:

If you learned to ride in a flattie, you can ride in anything. It may not work in reverse. I'll cruise around in something thick and helpful, or go back to the hardwood floor, leather-n-chrome minimalism of a PdN with no problem. The only time I really want the bucket saddle is when I'm tired and jumping big or planning something whack like fox hunting.

Dec. 5, 2009, 09:16 PM
Old Blue Ribbon Avantis turn up on Ebay every now and then. You might look for one of those. I had one years ago and loved it.

Dec. 5, 2009, 10:15 PM
I remember those well...sort of. Real digression here. I remember seeing in the Blue Ribbon catalog, circa...1974? '75? an Avanti "skirtless competition jump saddle" that I just coveted like nothing else, and when I was catch riding and needing a saddle, someone incredibly generous offered to buy me whatever I wanted, so that's what I got, but they got it straight from Avanti. It was sort of a forerunner monoflap, but it had an overgirth and an undergirth. Basically an overgrown racing saddle. Anyway, the Blue Ribbon Avantis on eBay are NOT the same model! :lol::lol: Quelle disappointment every time I look at one!

Dec. 5, 2009, 11:17 PM
Pancake saddle club! Yay!!

Another big vote for the Crump Prix de Saute, the older the better. I have one in wide, one in medium :) Love the fit of the seat for me. I think they are worth well more than what I paid ($150 or less shipped).

I also had a Candyman for a little while, but sadly it didn't work out for me. I had been so excited to find one with padded flaps and a pencil roll, so I could try to enter the realm of padding gradually, without too much deviation from the flat. Unfortunately the rolls didn't fit my leg right. I've also ridden in one of the totally flat Candyman's, and while not my size, it rode nicely.

At one lesson barn I rode in a variety of flat saddles, and got to thinking they were pretty much all the same. Then one day I got one that had an unusually narrow seat....my hip bones kept falling off the sides. Coach says "it's like riding on a thong isn't it" :P I don't know what brand that was, but now when I'm looking at these oldies on eBay I definitely look at that part!

Dec. 5, 2009, 11:22 PM
If you are interested in a Moritz huntseat elite saddle, I have two of them right now that I am looking to find a new home. I like them, they are well made saddles and are flat pancakes just like a PDN. They unfortunately do not fit my horse at all, or I would be using them. I grew up in a PDN, (I still have it - can't seem to part with it even though it doesn't fit my horse either) and wish I could ride in it! The only saddle that seems to fit my horse right now is a crosby XLE, and the only one I could find has knee rolls. =(

PM me, and we can talk about them some more if you are interested. What size saddle are you looking for?

Dec. 6, 2009, 12:01 AM
How about a Hartley Galaxy?

Dec. 6, 2009, 12:03 AM
Keep in mind that the older saddles, especially Hermes, run narrower than most new saddles... and you will probably ride in a smaller size than you do in a new saddle. My Stackhouse is a 17"... My Hermes is a 16", so you might be fine in a 17 or a 17 1/2....

Dec. 6, 2009, 12:43 AM
You know, I think there's a Hartley on eBay right now and it's one of the 16" neighborhood that I just looked at and went damn! I could be mistaken because I think I've looked at 90,000 saddles on there. I just wish there was a real tack shop less than 2-3 hours away :lol:

It seems like the twist on my PdN was narrow, but the tree was stamped Medium and it was too wide for my definitely not narrow - at least never before - gelding. Sort of strange. :confused: But if I could go with a 17" that would open a lot of doors...I just still have nightmares about the chair seat I get from most 17.5's. :eek: But granted, those aren't true pancakes...

Dec. 6, 2009, 01:14 AM
I love, love, love the pancake saddles too! I just recently sold a Courbette Stylist (http://www.flickr.com/photos/39570028@N06/sets/72157620718924029/) that I adored. That may be another option, they are in the $300ish range I think. Back in the day, I had a Lovett & Ricketts that was so plain it barely felt there. I don't know the model, but I adored that saddle!