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  1. #1
    Join Date
    May. 30, 2006
    Location
    California
    Posts
    754

    Default Custom Saddlery -- Off the rack

    I've been reading some amazing things about Custom Saddlery products (http://www.mysaddle.com/MYSADD~3/index.html) Unfortunately, a custom saddle is not in the budget, but one of their off-the-rack models is. So, has anyone bought any of their non-custom saddles? How did you like it? Sill worth it? Thanks!



  2. #2
    Join Date
    Nov. 5, 2001
    Posts
    3,979

    Default

    I don't like them...very hard, very "sharp" knee blocks and they also tilt the rider's pelvis forward while shoving their leg back behind the block...uncomfortable! it is a very restricting saddle IMHO



  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jun. 4, 2008
    Location
    Virginia
    Posts
    47

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Gucci Cowgirl View Post
    I don't like them...very hard, very "sharp" knee blocks and they also tilt the rider's pelvis forward while shoving their leg back behind the block...uncomfortable! it is a very restricting saddle IMHO

    I have to agree. I hate them, a lot!



  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jan. 31, 2007
    Posts
    261

    Default

    That's why they make chocolate and vanilla! I bought one 6 months ago and I love it. So does my horse. You can't beat their customer service either. I did not find the knee blocks to be restrictive at all and I sit very balanced in it. Another benefit is that my horse can be a little naughty. So when he is loving life and decides to stretch his back by launching into the air, those knee blocks come in very handy for keeping me tight in the tack.

    Saddle preference is such an individual issue. I would try one and see how you like it. You can't loose by looking.



  5. #5
    Join Date
    Jun. 11, 2006
    Location
    Sunny California
    Posts
    166

    Default

    With three different off-the-rack models there are different shaped seats/knee rolls to suit different people. While I don't love the way the Steffen's Advantage feels, I do like the Revolution and Wolfgang Solo.

    It's all personal opinion.

    You and your best friend may wear the same size jeans, but that doesn't mean you can both wear the same style/brand. It's all personal.



  6. #6
    Join Date
    Jan. 28, 2005
    Location
    N.E.
    Posts
    375

    Default hey hey hey......

    come on guys..don't be so quick to slam a saddle...think a minute..every rider has a different conformation...just like every horse! Some people have a pelvis that naturally sits in one position, some have a pelvis that sits another way, some have lots of 'padding' in the inner thighs, some have none, some have a long femur but are 5'2, some are 5'6 but differently proportioned......I can sit in some, and not in others...I would love love love to be able to ride Passier saddles....I help people with them every day..they are wonderfully designed and fit many difficult to fit horses..but I can't ride in them...just does not work for the way my body is put together....I can ride in Custom, but they don't seem to fit the fat pony off the rack rack ...I would have to go with a fitted.....THAT DOES NOT MAKE EITHER BRAND BAD!!! There are zillions of dressage saddles out there BECAUSE we are all put together differently, and so are our horses!!!!!
    he's a big horse with short legs...really!



  7. #7
    Join Date
    May. 5, 2005
    Posts
    638

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by papony View Post
    Saddle preference is such an individual issue.

    Definitely agree! Also I can vouch for their excellent customer service. If you get new trial saddle (as opposed to one that has been ridden in already), they seem to settle a lot more than any other new saddle I've had, so give it several rides to see if the width fits.



  8. #8
    Join Date
    Aug. 7, 2000
    Posts
    3,956

    Default

    well, I love Custom Saddlery.
    I have a VLX and it suits my body type and lets me sit in balance and in comfort..
    Maybe even more important, it stays balanced on my horses when they move as well as standing still.
    I like the workmanship, I like the styling, I like the tree, and I like everything about their saddles.

    Which does not mean they are the only saddles out there--just that they have good product.
    one oak, lots of canyons

    http://horsesportnews.wordpress.com/



  9. #9
    Join Date
    Jun. 9, 2007
    Posts
    116

    Default

    Aren't the saddle models constructed the same (tree/panel shape, etc.) for both the 'off the rack' & the 'fitted' models? The difference between them being maybe an upgrade in the leather or with the more 'custom fitted' saddle one of their reps will fit the saddle- (adjust/flock/whatever) for you at no additional charge? But if buying a Custom saddle 'off the rack', you would get no custom fitting options and/or a more standard leather?

    Am I understanding that correctly? Thanks.



  10. #10
    Join Date
    Mar. 11, 1999
    Location
    Clayton, CA USA
    Posts
    5,326

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by RhythmTempo View Post
    Aren't the saddle models constructed the same (tree/panel shape, etc.) for both the 'off the rack' & the 'fitted' models? The difference between them being maybe an upgrade in the leather or with the more 'custom fitted' saddle one of their reps will fit the saddle- (adjust/flock/whatever) for you at no additional charge? But if buying a Custom saddle 'off the rack', you would get no custom fitting options and/or a more standard leather?

    Am I understanding that correctly? Thanks.
    Yes. It all starts with the tree, whether it is custom or off the rack. Then there can be more sizing of the panel, flaps, special leather, etc. I have never understood the rush for custom, especially when you take into consideration that the horse is constantly changing shape, and that custom saddle may not fit in six months.
    Mystic Owl Sporthorses
    www.mysticowlsporthorses.com



  11. #11
    Join Date
    Feb. 24, 2007
    Location
    At the barn
    Posts
    440

    Default

    My pelvis would love to tip forward and put me on my crotch, but when I got my Wolfgang Valor I could not sit that way without being uncomfy. I also have a Revolution and both of them have allowed me to sit down and let go of the tight lower back so my pelvis can come upright.

    Try one and see what it does for YOU.

    Different strokes for different folks.



  12. #12
    Join Date
    Aug. 22, 2005
    Location
    mid-atlantic
    Posts
    2,586

    Thumbs up

    I really love my Wolfgang Solo. I've had it a little over a year and it still looks brand new. I would say that their off-the-rack saddles are one of the best values for the $$$ out there.
    "You become responsible, forever, for what you have tamed." - The Little Prince



  13. #13
    Join Date
    Jun. 11, 2006
    Location
    Sunny California
    Posts
    166

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by clint View Post
    Yes. It all starts with the tree, whether it is custom or off the rack. Then there can be more sizing of the panel, flaps, special leather, etc. I have never understood the rush for custom, especially when you take into consideration that the horse is constantly changing shape, and that custom saddle may not fit in six months.
    That's the beauty of Custom's custom fitted saddles - the tree can be adjusted as your horse changes. You're not stuck with sized tree. The tree is fitted to your horse & can be refitted as needed.



  14. #14
    Join Date
    Sep. 29, 2007
    Location
    Northern CA
    Posts
    1,616

    Default

    The only way to decide if their saddles will work for you is to try them. If there is a rep in your area, they can bring the saddles out to try for a fee, otherwise, you can probably have one shipped. As several people have pointed out, the biggest decision is not whether the saddle works for someone else, it is whether it works for you and your horse.

    And like any saddle, if you talk to enough people, you'll find some who didn't like the saddles, and others who did, some who had bad experiences with customer service, others who loved the customer service. That is the case with just about every saddle and every company.

    By the way, if you call them, ask if they will be vending at any of the bigger shows in your area - it might be worth trying a few saddles at the show (for free ).



  15. #15
    Join Date
    Nov. 3, 2006
    Location
    Maine
    Posts
    2,628

    Default

    I have the Advantage and adore it. Another lady in the barn just bought an Advantage as well.



  16. #16
    Join Date
    Aug. 7, 2005
    Location
    Southern California/Muenchen
    Posts
    2,987

    Talking

    Quote Originally Posted by retrofit View Post
    I really love my Wolfgang Solo. I've had it a little over a year and it still looks brand new. I would say that their off-the-rack saddles are one of the best values for the $$$ out there.
    I have the Wolgang Solo as well and ADORE it!! However it did not fit my horse as well as my current saddle...so I made my current saddle maker mimic the rider fit of the Solo...and voila I have the best of both worlds....I love their products- just need to find a smaller horse to fit my saddle...LOL!!! But I am saving it because you never know if in the future- I'll have a horse that would be a good fit for it...This saddle has done a lot for my riding and correct, long legged seat- using all the square inches of control I have along my long legs...I can only vouch for them as an excellent product!!
    "the man mite be the head but the woman is the neck and the neck can turn the head any way she wants..." -smart greek woman



  17. #17
    Join Date
    Jan. 24, 2000
    Posts
    2,369

    Default

    I had the Wolfgang Solo (long thigh blocks) on trial and loved it. I have long legs and it fit me great. However, as it was a Med tree and I have decided to quit dressage on my Medium width horse, I returned it. But, as soon as I get a horse to ride dressage on, I am immediately ordering another. I got the "off the rack" one and the quality was exceptional. I was told by Custom that the off the rack CAN be re-adjusted in the future, but not with an extreme change in width. The leather was very grippy, I don't see the need to pay the extra $1200 or so the the Buffalo leather.
    I ordered from Dressage extensions, since CS did not have my seat size in stock. They were great. I have also worked with both CS stores and recommend either. There is a CS dealer about 2 1/2 hrs from me but all they wanted to try to sell me was another brand.



  18. #18
    Join Date
    Jul. 3, 2005
    Posts
    627

    Default

    I don't like the tree in them. The tree is very ridged and inflexible. IMO they are not a good choice for a horse with a sensitive back. They are lovely and cushy for the rider though.



  19. #19
    Join Date
    Aug. 7, 2000
    Posts
    3,956

    Default

    Unless things have changed at Custom Saddlery, they are one of the very few saddlemakers who actually use different trees.

    I know when I got my VLX, that was one of the reasons they asked me to sit in so many different model saddles--to see which tree I liked best for me/horses.

    ANd must say, one of the reasons I got their saddle was precisely because the tree sat so well/balanced nicely on the horses in motion.

    For sure, deciding on a saddle is an individual choice!
    one oak, lots of canyons

    http://horsesportnews.wordpress.com/



  20. #20
    Join Date
    Nov. 1, 2001
    Posts
    12,695

    Default

    I bought a VLX when CS first started selling them on the West Coast. It was not off the rack - semi custom. I tried several of their saddles, many were made on different trees. But I liked the VLX the best. One thing I learned from working with their rep is that if the saddle doesn't fit the horse properly, it won't position the rider properly and even a saddle that fits the horse must be tailored to fit the rider too for optimum performance. For instance, a saddle may sit properly on a horses back but if it doesn't fit the rider, it will be uncomfortable. Or a saddle may fit the rider well on a plastic model but the slope of the horse's back may make the angle uncomfortable for the rider.

    So off the rack saddles, even the ones CS makes are a bit of a hit and miss. You need to find a saddle that fits your horse and then have it worked to fit the rider. This is only possible to a certain extent with an off the rack saddle.
    See those flying monkeys? They work for me.



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