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View Full Version : which sheepskin half pad?



Samigator
Dec. 21, 2011, 11:48 AM
My husband apparently really loves my horse. He bought me a Christmas gift that he let me open early- a super nice Beval sheepskin therapeutic half pad with felt/wool top.

The pad is beautifully made and super soft/cushy. I hear that over time it does mold to the horse/saddle like the flocking in a saddle's panels. My only concern is that it seems pretty bulky/thick. I love the sheepskin, but am thinking about maybe exchanging it for something with a little less substance. I want to be able to use it in the hunter (flat) show ring, dressage ring, and schooling at home or on trail rides, etc. I'm not an eventer, but I figured the eventing group would have input on both the hunter and the dressage sides of life.

My horse has got some ongoing/recurrent back soreness, and we typically have the flocking adjusted in our saddle about once a year, so it's usually a decent fit. Well he lost a fair amount of weight this fall, and we're building him back up, but the saddle is a little wide in the front part of the tree right now so I've been using a front riser foam pad along with my plain thinline half pad that I always use. I can't see adding this pad to the other two (it would be like that children's book about the man with many hats :winkgrin:), but I feel we still need the front riser at least for now.

So. . . considering all of that, I'm thinking about maybe trading this pad in for something with sheepskin (which I love) that is a little less bulky, but can shim a little bit if needed. I'm considering the Thinline Saddle Fitter pad.
http://www.stcroixsaddlery.com/ThinLine_Saddle_Pads_p/pt_tln_3315.htm

Then there's also this one: http://www.stcroixsaddlery.com/Fleece_Saddle_Pads_p/pt_ecp_hpcp.htm

What would you recommend? Trade it in for one of these or just a plain sheepskin half pad, or keep it and ditch the thinline? Thanks in advance!

deltawave
Dec. 21, 2011, 12:14 PM
That Thin-Line one was just on TOTD for a huge discount . . . maybe just a day or two ago! :eek:

I just ordered one of the Ecogold knockoffs that was mentioned on the Ecogold thread from VTO. Success, maybe? I'm horrible with brand names. :uhoh: I want to try a non-slip one; I have plenty of sheepskin half pads (see above, don't remember what brand) but Boscoe's saddle pads always slip back so I'm trying one of those.

scubed
Dec. 21, 2011, 12:30 PM
I really like my Griffin Nuumed pad. 11 years old and in great condition. Thinner than Mattes/Beval/etc. http://www.classicdressage.com/catalog/product.php?CI_ID=300&Item='GFNM04%20Premium%20Euro%20High%20Wither%20Ha lf%20Numnah'

You may be able to find on ebay

Wordplay1832
Dec. 21, 2011, 01:02 PM
The dover circuit brand one is actually suprisingly nice. I've had it for several years and it's held up well. I use it over a square pad so I don't have to wash it very often because it rarely gets gross, but when I do it washes up quite nicely! It is thick enough but not too bulky. I use it with my dressage saddle that is fit to my horse and it doesn't alter the fit too much, just gives my sensitive horse a little more protection.

My jumping saddle is a hair too wide for my horse so I don't use that with it anymore I use an ecogold memory foam half pad because I needed it to help fix the minor pressure points my jumping saddle has. While this does feel a bit thicker I feel like it works well with a nicely fit saddle too because it disperses pressure evenly, so maybe that might be a good one too (though less traditional in the hunter ring I'm sure). If you definitely need the riser pad right now and think that you just want a normal sheepskin pad, I feel like the Circuit is a way better value than a Mattes, etc.

yellowbritches
Dec. 21, 2011, 02:05 PM
Depends on how hard you plan on using it. I have used sheepskin straight to the horse's back for a couple of years now (on some highly efficent sweaters). My sheepskins take some serious abuse, including washing once a week or so. Honestly, the Mattes is worth the money if you are using them like I do. My Mattes has held up VERY well.

I also had an Engel sheepskin that I loved and held up great...until it didn't. It basically just dies. The fleece suddenly started falling out, the hide got hard and crunchy...it just sucked. Sad, as it was decent quality at a very nice price.

I bought an ECP recently....we'll see!

Fleeceworks SUCK. A lot. Even when not abused.

Tiffani B
Dec. 21, 2011, 02:10 PM
I have two Mattes pads and love them, one for my CC and one for my cutback. They are not that bulky and definitely help keep the horse comfortable.

Samigator
Dec. 21, 2011, 02:52 PM
thanks everyone.

So I take it nobody likes the Beval, Thinline or the Equine Comfort ones I posted???

I was really hoping to exchange it at the store where he bought it, and they don't carry all of those other brands there. These are the choices they have: http://www.stcroixsaddlery.com/Therapeutic_Saddle_Pads_s/216.htm?searching=Y&sort=7&cat=216&show=12&page=1

As for how hard I plan on using it, I probably ride 3 times per week on average, and I would use it over a cotton square pad, not directly on the horse's back.

Tiffani B
Dec. 21, 2011, 03:02 PM
I have a Thinline and it seems very hard. I don't care for it.

Samigator
Dec. 21, 2011, 03:29 PM
I have a thinline and I like it, hence why I'm considering the thinline sheepskin pad. Though, I'm not sure it comes with the thinline material as well as the sheepskin? But the sheepskin would surely make it softer!

KateKat
Dec. 21, 2011, 04:34 PM
I feel you on the Beval pad. I had one, but it is SO.THICK. It did compress slightly, but not enough. It also slid around under my saddle which I hated.

What I have now is the Ultra Thinline Sheepskin Comfort pad. I LOVE this pad. Its shimmable, like the saddle fitter, and has full sheepskin under the Thinline.

Wordplay1832
Dec. 21, 2011, 06:18 PM
I haven't tried any of the ones you posted-just the circuit and ecogold. I've ridden in the Engel ones too but they were used over a pad so remained really nice

Samigator
Dec. 21, 2011, 06:54 PM
KateKat, I'm going to have to see if they have that pad or can order it. Looks great. Thanks!

Petstorejunkie
Dec. 21, 2011, 07:03 PM
I'm a Mattes or bust kinda girl.

tGievent
Dec. 21, 2011, 07:56 PM
I have the old standard thinline and I was using that with the circuit sheepskin on my roly poly arab for dressage. It's pretty nice- but after lots of washes it eventually shrunk and is now too thick to go under anything but my Isabell for my arab. I have a new TB with HIGH HIGH HIGH withers so I just invested in the Thinline comfort sheepskin because it's shimmable and thick AND has another thinline on it. Planning on using it with my current Thinline for a while to be sure we don't have a slipping problem. I'll try to remember to mention if it works out or not...:)

mg
Dec. 21, 2011, 09:55 PM
I have a Horsedream sheepskin pad that's been going for about 10 years now and is still in fantastic shape (http://horsedreamimporters.com/pads.php). It's not as "hip" as a Mattes pad, but it's a fantastic half pad that does its job really well. I had a saddle fitter out once who saw my Horsedream pad and got VERY excited. She couldn't stop raving about what great pads they are. I figure if a high quality saddle fitter approves of them, they can't be too bad! ;)

Fancy That
Dec. 21, 2011, 10:11 PM
I have a Horsedream sheepskin pad that's been going for about 10 years now and is still in fantastic shape (http://horsedreamimporters.com/pads.php). It's not as "hip" as a Mattes pad, but it's a fantastic half pad that does its job really well. I had a saddle fitter out once who saw my Horsedream pad and got VERY excited. She couldn't stop raving about what great pads they are. I figure if a high quality saddle fitter approves of them, they can't be too bad! ;)'

Those are CHRIST PADS and they are VERY well known to be EXCELLENT!!! LOVE THEM.

I also love my Engels....I didn't know that crap out after awhile, I've had mine for about 6 years and it is still gorgeous. Mine is a true numnah....it is a shaped pad and the sheepskin goes DIRECTLY on the horses' coat. (afterall, that is how you get all the benefits of sheepskin....by having it ON the hair/skin of the horse, not on top of a baby pad)

I know my opinion about using sheepskin directly against the horse is unpoplular, but I strongly believe that the excellent qualities of sheepskin are realized in that manner (wicking, breathability, shock absorption, comfort, etc)

yellowbritches
Dec. 22, 2011, 09:02 AM
'

Those are CHRIST PADS and they are VERY well known to be EXCELLENT!!! LOVE THEM.

I also love my Engels....I didn't know that crap out after awhile, I've had mine for about 6 years and it is still gorgeous. Mine is a true numnah....it is a shaped pad and the sheepskin goes DIRECTLY on the horses' coat. (afterall, that is how you get all the benefits of sheepskin....by having it ON the hair/skin of the horse, not on top of a baby pad)

I know my opinion about using sheepskin directly against the horse is unpoplular, but I strongly believe that the excellent qualities of sheepskin are realized in that manner (wicking, breathability, shock absorption, comfort, etc)
Keep in mind that I abuse the hell out of my sheepskins. I do not put a pad under them to protect them from sweat and dirt. They go directly on my horses' skin, which means they need to be washed very frequently (in the spring, summer, and fall they get washed at least once a week. I can go longer in the winter). So, I abused the Engel, a lot. I loved it, as it was a very nice pad, a good fit for my saddles, and seemed to want to hold up great. But then it just suddenly stopped being great. I was very sad, as I preferred it (for fit) to my Mattes. My Mattes, however, which I have had about the same amount of time and abused just as much, just keeps on trucking along.

I have had other sheepskin, used the more standard way (over a pad instead of under) that are 5, 7, 10 years old, and they are still in good shape. But they get washed far, far less, and don't get soaked with sweat all summer long. That makes a big difference in their longevity. The only sheepskins I do not like, no matter how you use them, are Fleeceworks. I have been disappointed time and again by those.

Oops....read for content, YB. Fancy, I didn't get at first that you used yours like I do. I wonder why yours has lasted so well, so long and mine crapped out a year+ into its life.

purplnurpl
Dec. 22, 2011, 09:18 AM
That Thin-Line one was just on TOTD for a huge discount . . . maybe just a day or two ago! :eek:

I just ordered one of the Ecogold knockoffs that was mentioned on the Ecogold thread from VTO. Success, maybe?

Yes, Success. I bought the contoured pad for Boom when I was showing in the hunters.
Nice pad.

I would also recommend this site:
http://equinityperformance.com/

because you mentioned on going back pain.
My lil paint horse has some on going issues as well and he LOVES the equinity pad.
I was crying about his back on COTH one day and Royce contacted me and asked me to try her pad (sort of like a case study).
It's really really cool.
It's a type of jelly pad but you can cut it! So it comes in that big square--I cut mine with scissors and then used baby powder along the open edges to make the stickiness go away.

I took one of the extra pieces and cut it and used it as a crown piece. :yes:
I bet it would make nice paddock boot insoles too!
~Royce has another material that is thinner and has a sticky back (peal away paper to reveal sticky side). I might look into that for insoles. {thinking to self}

But I saw that the company carries a 1/2 pad with shims as well.
It's a bit more pricey than the one that you linked.
But the equinity pad may be a nice option to use to maybe work out the kinks in his back. : )

I use it always now. The horses really seem to like it.
Until now, I swore to lothe all gel type pads.

purplnurpl
Dec. 22, 2011, 09:22 AM
I use the full size roma sheep skin pads.
http://www.legacytack.com/pc/10996//Roma+Merino+Square+Saddle+Pad.html

LOVE them,
accept they fall apart in the washer.
I use it directly against the skin so they need washed once a week.
The fluffnstuff is all over the place and then eventually the skin comes off and I'm left with sections of no sheepskin. :(

Samantha37
Dec. 22, 2011, 09:30 AM
I love the ThinLines! I have a ton of their products and am a huge fan.

TBKate
Dec. 22, 2011, 10:02 AM
I have an Engel which I LOVE and which has held up beautifully--but I baby it. I use it over a baby pad, and I avoid washings by stiff brushing it after rides (once it dries) and only washing when it gets grubby looking. Maching wash cold on the "hand wash" cycle and it's ready to go again! I think it's about 5 years old at this point.

Fancy That
Dec. 22, 2011, 02:57 PM
Yep, I have 4 Engel pads and even though I use the sheepskin directly on the coat, I don't wash them as often as others would. (hitting the dried stuff w/ a stiff brush does help avoid washing alot)

I also don't ride that often, 2 - 3 times a week if I'm LUCKY :)

Samigator
Dec. 22, 2011, 08:08 PM
thanks everyone for your input! Turns out the store carries more than they list on their website!

I was able to exchange the Beval tonight for this pad: http://www.adamshorsesupply.com/browse.cfm/mattes-sheepskin-correction-half-pad-with-trim-all-purpose/4,7007.html

A Mattes correction pad with pockets for shims (and 3 sets of shims included), sheepskin full bottom (except at the spine) and trim around the front and back. I think it's going to be a winner! Plus I got my 20% discount through the store so I saved $50! :D