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js
Jan. 11, 2010, 09:07 PM
Anyone have the newer ones with the Bayflex or AMS wool panels? Do you have a preference for either? I'm considering the A/O Pro but don't know which panel I would prefer. I've always had wool flocked but I'm not opposed to new panel materials like the Bayflex.

Edited to add:

Are they saddles not in fashion? Not good? I'm getting no responses. Either I must assume no one rides these saddles or you don't respond to infrequent posters.

City Ponies
Jan. 12, 2010, 09:58 AM
I'm not a fan of the newer Pessoas. When I went saddle shopping last summer I specifically hunted down an older 98'ish model A/O, Made in Paris for the better quality. I sacraficed a bit of condition with the little cosmetic blemishes but I find it much better quality and a better ride than the new A/O's. It cost me just as much as a brand new A/O as well, but I know I'll have it for 10+ years like my former Rodrigo of the same type.

Sorry I couldn't help more.

SquirrellyBred
Jan. 12, 2010, 10:02 AM
Unfortunately I haven't tried the newer Pessoas. I had an ancient Nelson Pessoa which I loved. All my saddles are currently Bates models with the CAIR (air panels), so you can tell I'm not afraid of new technology in panels! My recommendation is get the model you're considering on trial, either through a local shop or Dover, SmartPak, etc. and see what you & your horse think. Good luck!

pwrpfflynn
Jan. 12, 2010, 10:07 AM
I have an Gen X and LOVE it. Very Comfy.

hollynanne
Jan. 12, 2010, 01:33 PM
I'm not a fan of the newer Pessoas. When I went saddle shopping last summer I specifically hunted down an older 98'ish model A/O, Made in Paris for the better quality. I sacraficed a bit of condition with the little cosmetic blemishes but I find it much better quality and a better ride than the new A/O's. It cost me just as much as a brand new A/O as well, but I know I'll have it for 10+ years like my former Rodrigo of the same type.

Sorry I couldn't help more.

Agreed... the newer ones are not as nice... if you want a Pessoa-esque saddle... Look at Jaguars...

Like the others, sorry I couldn't be more help!
:(

FrenchFrytheEqHorse
Jan. 12, 2010, 03:43 PM
I am wondering if the problem Pessoas weren't more of a mid-2000s trend. I know a lot of people felt the quality realllly dropped off (myself included), but I cannot imagine Pessoa not having improved things since then, especially considering a)the prices theses saddles are fetching compared to other off the rack products, and b)the fact that there seems to be a larger number of people satisfied with their Pessoa saddles. Perhaps this is due to the number of people that never rode in the older saddles made in Europe, but it seems there are more and more satisfied customers.

That being said, I'd also recommend going with a used saddle if you are considering purchasing a new Pessoa. The likelihood of getting a nice deal on a higher quality product is pretty good.

hollynanne
Jan. 12, 2010, 03:45 PM
That being said, I'd also recommend going with a used saddle if you are considering purchasing a new Pessoa. The likelihood of getting a nice deal on a higher quality product is pretty good.
Ooh! TOTALLY agree on this one!

akhunterrider
Jan. 12, 2010, 04:11 PM
I don't personally care for the leather quality or design of the new pessoas. I rode in one a couple weeks ago and did not feel very balanced in it. You can get a lot nice saddle for about the same money, especially if you go used.

Calling Duck
Jan. 13, 2010, 10:11 AM
ah...be careful with that assumption. I had a Pessoa about 10 years ago with those little tacks on the pommel that said "Paris". Thought I was the bee's knees with my fancy French saddle. Got it from a friend who had purchased it new from a tack shop. Loved that saddle. Used it for years.

But, eventually when I got a new horse, the Pessoa didn't fit. Had the local saddle expert come out and try new (non-Pessoa) saddles on the new horse. He took one look at my "French" saddle and rolled his eyes at me saying, "Those were made in Argentina." I was speechless. Always wondered if he was telling me the truth. Maybe the brass tack was made in Paris...just not the saddle.

FrenchFrytheEqHorse
Jan. 13, 2010, 11:09 AM
ah...be careful with that assumption. I had a Pessoa about 10 years ago with those little tacks on the pommel that said "Paris". Thought I was the bee's knees with my fancy French saddle. Got it from a friend who had purchased it new from a tack shop. Loved that saddle. Used it for years.

But, eventually when I got a new horse, the Pessoa didn't fit. Had the local saddle expert come out and try new (non-Pessoa) saddles on the new horse. He took one look at my "French" saddle and rolled his eyes at me saying, "Those were made in Argentina." I was speechless. Always wondered if he was telling me the truth. Maybe the brass tack was made in Paris...just not the saddle.

From my understanding, the Pessoas made in the late 90's were indeed made in Europe. Pessoa then moved their productions to Argentina, but as far as I know, still used/uses European leather. So the assumption that these saddles are made from Argentinian leather is pretty silly.

sadlmakr
Jan. 13, 2010, 11:21 AM
The older models of Pessoas are great. Fine quality and with wool flocked panels so they can be reflocked to fit the horse. The quality of the leather is great. So many saddleries are going to countries where labor costs are low.
If it says Paris it is from Paris.
Later on they were made in South America.
Many companies are making their Old Name saddles much cheaper in quality now.
Costs are eating up the profits.
With the economy all over the world so bad I don't see it getting any better soon.
Try to find a used one of high end quality and get it reflocked to fit.
Wish you the best in your search.
sadlmakr






From my understanding, the Pessoas made in the late 90's were indeed made in Europe. Pessoa then moved their productions to Argentina, but as far as I know, still used/uses European leather. So the assumption that these saddles are made from Argentinian leather is pretty silly.

ifiwereyou
Jan. 13, 2010, 11:30 AM
ah...be careful with that assumption. I had a Pessoa about 10 years ago with those little tacks on the pommel that said "Paris". Thought I was the bee's knees with my fancy French saddle. Got it from a friend who had purchased it new from a tack shop. Loved that saddle. Used it for years.

But, eventually when I got a new horse, the Pessoa didn't fit. Had the local saddle expert come out and try new (non-Pessoa) saddles on the new horse. He took one look at my "French" saddle and rolled his eyes at me saying, "Those were made in Argentina." I was speechless. Always wondered if he was telling me the truth. Maybe the brass tack was made in Paris...just not the saddle.

I thought the Paris was the name of a saddle model made by Pessoa... maybe I am wrong!

LWit317
Jan. 13, 2010, 08:32 PM
I could be mistaken but from what I have heard, Pessoa's used to be made in Paris way back in the day... pretty sure these saddles have the suede seats and flaps so they aren't to hard to miss. Pretty sure the leather for Pessoa's are in fact made in Paris but then shipped to Argentina where the actual construction of the saddle is done.
I just sold my A/O which I LOVED! I had it for about 6 years it was a fabulous saddle just didn't even come close to fitting my new horse.

terasa
Jan. 13, 2010, 09:38 PM
I bought a "new' pessoa a/o on ebay not too long ago. The thing is, although it's never been near a horse and is in new condition, but is actually an older saddle. The buttons do say "Paris" but on the underside it says "Made in England". So no, apparently the paris buttons dont mean "made in paris'.
Since that saddle, although gorgeous, doesnt fit me all that well I've ended up riding in a new Gen x with the adjustable tree. Its okay, nice quality and very very soft and comfy. It throws me off a bit though, cause personally it feels like theres quite bit of padding between me and the horse.
Looking at the two side by side is comparing apples to oranges. The nicer saddle quality wise is definitely the older one. Its beautiful. I havent had the heart to sell it yet :)

Movin Artfully
Jan. 13, 2010, 09:55 PM
There are a lot of misconceptions about the Pessoas on the internet. I am not a rep in any way for the company...only dealing in 2nd hand saddles...but did speak with the US supplier to have a lot of these questions answered. Plus, I have had 30+ Pessoa saddles in my posession in the last 2 years...so have been able to make my own judgements.

In 2007, I was told that Pessoa started moving factories from England to Argentina around 12 years ago. Leather was marked "Cuir de France" and has been for the entirety of their production, although their saddles were never made in France. They phased out production in England, however continued to use the same leather sources.

From my personal observation, saddle quality suffered in the mid 90's. I do not have exact years, because while people can tell me what year they purchased their saddles, they typically do not know how long they sat in the tack shop. There is demonstrable improvement in the leather for saddles purchased in the early 2000s...and the 2006- 2008 models I have seen are very, very nice and improvement from the "original made in England" stamped saddles I have seen.

I have had one 2009 model that is not marked "Cuir de France"- I have not inquired to find out about their current leather sources...but will be keeping this saddle as my personal saddle, so that might say something about the quality.

Incidentally, I also think buying 2nd hand is the way to go ;) I'd be happy to answer pm's to the best of my knowledge.

trafalgar
Jan. 13, 2010, 10:45 PM
I went down to Middleburg to look for used saddles about nine years ago and was told by a very well respected tack store lady that she did not think the Passoas were very well made. I looked them over and had to agree, especially compared to my ancient Seigfied and my daughte'rs Crosby. However, my daughter has a very long leg fron hip to knee and we had a devil of a time finding a saddle that fit both her and her horse. We ended up buying a Pessoa called the Stadium and it fits both girl and horse very well and is very comfortable.....we got it for a very good price from Dover for some reason....discontinued color I think.....It is used alot and has been great no problems. We also bought Pessoa leathers and they were shredded within a year, I never saw tack fall apart so fast. Go figure!

mvp
Jan. 14, 2010, 08:16 AM
Pessoa suffers from the same price vs. quality problems the every saddle company has encountered.

Really good quality leather, tanned well has skyrocketed in price. It's a shock to me too that you have to pay at least $3k before you get "back" to leather chosen and tanned to British and French standards. The one slight exception to this rule is the Black Country Quantum.

Yes, most Pessoas you will find floating around now were made in Argentina. But there's better and worse factories there. Pessoa (an early entrant there) seems to have assembled the right manufacturing team. I think their quality is higher than that of other workmanship in other companies (say, Marcel Toulouse, Beval Stamford, and more).

But Pessoas are, by and large, well-designed. They tend to fit lots of horses. They tend to fit many riders, though you increasingly must be of the long-femured variety to be happy in any modern saddle. Shorties and those of us who learned to ride in the PdN era aren't always accommodated.

Pessoa improved upon the design of Bates' changeable gullets. I'm told their easier to switch in and out. I find Pessoas remarkably heavy (Why?), but that difference is immaterial to the horse carrying it. The Bayflex foam is good, but the panel design-- especially the way they flare out in the cantle section-- makes this saddle comfortable for many horses.

To me, Pessoas are a good, reliable "middle of the road" saddle. Are they worth $2 grand and change? Not in my curmudgeonly view.... but then neither are any of the saddles competing for the same slice of the market.

If I had to/desire to buy new, I'd certainly try an Ovation (leather just about as good, another "make many happy" design, and less $$) before I plunked down for a Pessoa. I would not, for example, put a Pessoa, an Ovation and a Dover Circuit on my same "comp" list.

SportsFan46
Jan. 14, 2010, 10:27 AM
The question was asked about the AMS v Bayflex panels in the Pessoa saddles.
Until a few years ago all Pessoa saddles were of the Bayflex panels. These panels are great and there is never a problem with them. However since the demand for saddles to be refitted, the Pessoa factory developed the AMS panels which brings the best of both worlds with a neoprene liner around the wool flocking. This keeps the wool from bunching. There are gussets on these saddles that make for easy access by a saddle fitter.

mvp
Jan. 14, 2010, 10:44 AM
The question was asked about the AMS v Bayflex panels in the Pessoa saddles.
Until a few years ago all Pessoa saddles were of the Bayflex panels. These panels are great and there is never a problem with them. However since the demand for saddles to be refitted, the Pessoa factory developed the AMS panels which brings the best of both worlds with a neoprene liner around the wool flocking. This keeps the wool from bunching. There are gussets on these saddles that make for easy access by a saddle fitter.

Getouttatown! That's good to know. I'd love to feel one up, just to, you know, to educate myself.

P.S. Your man on this BB board for things Pessoa is PROTACKGUY.

PROTACKGUY
Jan. 15, 2010, 04:30 PM
wow A lot of interesting posts here...

In regards to the Gen-X saddle. The saddle was always made in Argentina... It was never made in England, Paris or anywhere else. The success and quality of the Gen-X was one of the principle reasons Nelson moved his production of all Pessoa saddles from England to Argentina.
As Nelson saw the cost escalating in England and the quality that he could achieve in the Argentina he made a commitment to move his production to Argentina to the one of the worlds most sophisticated saddle factories..
The only reason that the saddles are as reasonable in price as they are is due to the efficiencies of the saddle maker now making them. The saddles have never used Argentine leather.
If the saddle was still made in England the prices would be easily double what they are today with no difference in quality.
Rodrigo has ridden his Argentine made Pessoa to 3 World Cup Championships

jewll27
Jan. 15, 2010, 05:06 PM
Im going against the grain here and letting you know I do not like my older pessoa AT ALL! I had a new gen x that I loved but sold b/c I needed a different size and thought I was getting a deal on an older model pessoa. I dont like the fit on my horse, it pinches his withers so I have to use a half pad. I also find it so incredibly uncomfortable. Im seriously considering getting a new one.

LARGEBORE
Jan. 16, 2010, 11:07 AM
Pessoa seems to have two price ranges, the Gen-x saddles and the more expensive A/O and Legacy saddles. What is the difference between the two ?

PROTACKGUY
Jan. 16, 2010, 11:24 AM
Pessoa seems to have two price ranges, the Gen-x saddles and the more expensive A/O and Legacy saddles. What is the difference between the two ?

Pessoa does have two price ranges of saddles.
The Gen-x range retails from $1295 to $1495 while the Professional series which includes the A/O and the Legacy are around $2300.

The most significant difference is that the Professional series uses FRENCH CALFSKIN for the seat, knee pads and panels while the Gen-x series uses high quality English made COWHIDE.

The professional series is also the first to integrate new design features like hidden stitching, molded knee rolls, extra supportive seats, sticky leather etc.

The new line of Gen-x series that is now being inroduced has some upgraded leather options and now has the extra supportive seats as well... Given time, Pessoa innovations in the professional range trickle down to the Gen-x's.

atouchofclass
Jan. 16, 2010, 11:39 AM
WOW Just did some searching on the Gen-X

Looks like they have some new models for sure.

I found this info on their site

http://www.englishridingsupply.com/en/productscategories.php?cat=589140440&brd=101256578

Looks like the Original Gen-x is back with the fixed tree at $1295. Then they have XCH model that is now $1395. Plus a dreamy covered leather saddle for $1395 and two neat eurostyled saddles in waxy leather. The grained model at $1450 and a smooth one at $1495...

Now how do I get to see the real thing? The photos are kind of small.

js
Jan. 17, 2010, 12:00 PM
Pessoa does have two price ranges of saddles.
The Gen-x range retails from $1295 to $1495 while the Professional series which includes the A/O and the Legacy are around $2300.

The most significant difference is that the Professional series uses FRENCH CALFSKIN for the seat, knee pads and panels while the Gen-x series uses high quality English made COWHIDE.

The professional series is also the first to integrate new design features like hidden stitching, molded knee rolls, extra supportive seats, sticky leather etc.

The new line of Gen-x series that is now being inroduced has some upgraded leather options and now has the extra supportive seats as well... Given time, Pessoa innovations in the professional range trickle down to the Gen-x's.

I sent you a PM. I did not get your first PM response can you resend it. I would really appreciate your opinion/advice. Thanks.

terrybradshaw
Jan. 18, 2010, 07:28 PM
found a place allsaddles.com that seems to have a lot of saddles including Pessoas. they seem old fashioned (not a very fancy website)...but I called them and they were very nice.

Kkriley
Oct. 10, 2014, 08:00 PM
I have a Pessoa Rodrigo saddle stamped medium tree. It fit a 17hand, high, narrow withered ottb like it was made for him but does not fit my pony at all which is a HUGE disappointment as I was under the impression the Rodrigo was a pony saddle. When I measure the saddle it measures as if it should be extra narrow when measured at the point of the tree but almost 5 inches button to button! The only horse this saddle fits are high narrow horses that are usually impossible to fit idk how this is a pony saddle. The saddle is super comfy and balanced to ride in though and the 17 hand narrow withered ottb really moves well in it. I am disappointed that is does not fit my pony. I guess I'm back to saddle shopping... :-/

anotherera
Oct. 10, 2014, 08:51 PM
I HAD one back in the late 90's. Hated the thing. Fit all of my horses, didn't fit me, as it sat me in the weirdest position. I found it so different than my Devon, Stubben, and Prix de Nations. Needless to say, I didn't have it long! Currently looking for a new saddle, and a Pessoa isn't going to be one I try.

alto
Oct. 10, 2014, 09:00 PM
I have a Pessoa Rodrigo saddle stamped medium tree. It fit a 17hand, high, narrow withered ottb like it was made for him but does not fit my pony at all which is a HUGE disappointment as I was under the impression the Rodrigo was a pony saddle. When I measure the saddle it measures as if it should be extra narrow when measured at the point of the tree but almost 5 inches button to button! The only horse this saddle fits are high narrow horses that are usually impossible to fit idk how this is a pony saddle. The saddle is super comfy and balanced to ride in though and the 17 hand narrow withered ottb really moves well in it. I am disappointed that is does not fit my pony. I guess I'm back to saddle shopping... :-/

There are many Pessoa Rodrigo saddles other than the "Pony" version, you can also get the "Pony" with a "pony" tree or not :)

Even if you do have the Pessoa "Pony" saddle, there are many ponies that don't fit this saddle just as there are many horses that don't fit any given "horse" saddle.
There is also the possibility that the saddle was altered at some point (unless you bought it new etc).