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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jun. 28, 2009
    Posts
    57

    Default Devoucoux Biarritz or Oldarra

    Thoughts, impressions, etc one versus the other.

    Coming off an Antares which is an awesome saddle but a little too chair seat for me.

    I have read concerns about Devoucoux custom orders going bad and or fit issues but the saddles I have tried seem excellent.

    The saddle would be used on a range of warmbloods and a few WB/Thor crosses.

    Use: Jumping and some flat work.

    I am primarily interested in model differences (over time) and overall impression of the saddle fit/horse comfort versus Antares.



  2. #2
    Join Date
    Aug. 31, 2004
    Location
    VA
    Posts
    4,345

    Default

    You really should sit in them, I thought it was night and day. The Biarritz felt like a nice saddle and the Oldara felt like my butt had found its soul mate. LOVE that saddle.
    -Grace



  3. #3
    Join Date
    Sep. 28, 2006
    Posts
    51

    Default

    Love my Oldara- the Biarritz was a little too much of a "chair" seat for me. The Oldara certainly isn't flat though, but very comfy. I have the regular tree, fits my shark wither TB just fine, no troubles. Just my 2 cents!



  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jun. 28, 2009
    Posts
    57

    Default

    Thanks. So far so good.

    How are the saddle fitters in the North East and in general? My Antares rep was great so I hope to duplicate that with Devoucoux.

    I live in CT btw!




  5. #5
    Join Date
    Jul. 26, 2001
    Location
    Toronto, Canada.
    Posts
    6,419

    Default

    I have only had experience with the Biarritz...but its been a good one. Comfortable without being too chair-like. I tried the CWD and Biarritz. No problems with fit, their standard tree fit both TB's and WB. Would recommend a wide tree if you had thicker WB's though. I find the saddle to be a really good "all rounder", I feel comfortable enough in it over the bigger jumps, but also lets me feel comfortable when I drop/shorten stirrups for equitation/flatting or jumping.



  6. #6
    Join Date
    Jun. 28, 2009
    Posts
    57

    Default

    Bump



  7. #7
    Join Date
    Nov. 13, 2004
    Location
    City of delusion in the state of total denial
    Posts
    8,801

    Default

    I haven't sat in the Oldara, but I went to a Biarritz off of an Antares and loved it.
    "I'm not always sarcastic. Sometimes I'm asleep."
    - Harry Dresden

    Horse Isle 2: Legend of the Esrohs LifeCycle Breeding and competition MMORPG



  8. #8
    Join Date
    Nov. 25, 2007
    Posts
    328

    Default

    I have a Biarittz and love it! I traded my very uncomfortable Antares for it!

    Devoucoux has been great to work with. My current saddle was not made for my horse, who happens to be very difficult to fit (very board whither and shoulder) and they have adjusted it for me at no charge! They have sent the saddle fitter to my barn to adjust the panels right there! I have ridden in an Oldara and found it to be very comfortable, I just didn't feel as secure in it because my horse kicks hard behind!

    David Attal is probably the rep in your area and he is great to work with! If you call the office speak to Joe!
    Last edited by JA; Feb. 28, 2010 at 01:28 PM. Reason: add something



  9. #9
    Join Date
    Jul. 18, 2009
    Location
    Florida
    Posts
    565

    Default

    When I was saddle shopping a few years ago, I really thought I wanted an Antares. I had ridden in a few and really liked them, until I tried a few Devoucouxs. I tried and bought my Oldara from the Devoucoux dealers at WEF, so I didn't go though any custom ordering, but I can not say enough good things about my Devoucoux. I like the position it puts me in - correct and comfortable, and as far as my tuchus is concerned, it is totally the most comfortable saddle I've ever ridden in.



  10. #10
    Join Date
    May. 16, 2001
    Location
    Alaska. Not in an Igloo.
    Posts
    8,993

    Default

    I loved them both (although I currently ride in an Antares).

    I'd only be worried about buying new- as Devoucoux does not have the best customer service reputation.

    If you can find one used it is a tougher decision.
    Seig Heil Polo Shirt!



  11. #11
    Join Date
    Feb. 1, 2001
    Location
    Finally...back in civilization, more or less
    Posts
    11,666

    Default

    I have posted several times about my horrific experience with Devoucoux in general, and David Attal, the CT rep, in particular.

    I have nothing against the saddles themselves, but would advise trying to find and buy a used one if you can. Trying to get a new one that FITS is a nightmare. (Do a search on this board to find the many horror stories.)

    Suffice to say I had a very nice older Socoa that I liked (and preferred to the Biarritz, which put me in a chair seat FWIW.) I asked David to order me another Socoa with the same specs as my old one, just adding padded flaps. Which you would think would be fairly freakin' straightforward... but SEVEN MONTHS and THREE SADDLES later, I still didn't have one that came anywhere *near* fitting my horse, and frankly he's not very hard to fit.

    Among the highlights of my experience:

    "Customer service" rep put the wrong delivery address on saddle #2, and when it failed to arrive, refused to either trace it or give me the shipping info so I could do it for myself. It was "out of her hands" once it shipped, she said. Said "customer service rep" then proceeded to use caller ID to avoid my increasingly concerned phone calls trying to locate it (but answered immediately when phoned from a friend's cell..)

    I did finally FIND the saddle with the help of a sympathetic shipping company rep... on a loading dock in New Jersey... my husband drove there (from our home in CT) to retrieve it since it could not be re-routed without an OK from Devoucoux, which they refused to provide. Unfortunately when it arrived, it bore ZERO resemblance to the saddle I ordered, and had such a forward flap on it it actually sat on my horse's shoulder...

    The second saddle they offered (several months past the promised date) was an even worse fit. When I called to advise them of the problem, I was told, "well, we are all in FL at WEF now, just use that one for the next couple of months and David will come out and take a look at it when he gets back at the end of March..." Um, no, that didn't sound too good to me but that was their only "answer."

    I ended up flying - with the saddle - down to WEF and stood in their booth at the horseshow until they agreed to take it back and make me one that fit. Long story short, the third one - an Oldara, not a Socoa -wasn't any better than the first two.

    I pretty much had to threaten them with legal action to get my money back (which they *finally* agreed to) ...and bought something else.

    The horse in question now goes quite well in an off the rack Butet with the FB2 tree, and I will never spend another penny with Devoucoux, particularly not with David Attal, who forgot how to use a telephone the day he got my first check.

    I wish you luck.
    **********
    We move pretty fast for some rabid garden snails.
    -PaulaEdwina



  12. #12
    Join Date
    Apr. 8, 2008
    Location
    Chicago-ish
    Posts
    272

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Lucassb View Post
    "Customer service" rep put the wrong delivery address on saddle #2, and when it failed to arrive, refused to either trace it or give me the shipping info so I could do it for myself. It was "out of her hands" once it shipped, she said. Said "customer service rep" then proceeded to use caller ID to avoid my increasingly concerned phone calls trying to locate it (but answered immediately when phoned from a friend's cell..)
    Hahahaha I know exactly who you're talking about and he does love his caller id.

    ETA: Shoot just noticed it was a she. They must teach that in training!
    Last edited by MistyPony; Feb. 28, 2010 at 07:12 PM. Reason: Oops pronouns



  13. #13
    Join Date
    Nov. 25, 2007
    Posts
    328

    Default

    Lucassb When was your horrible episode with David et al? Did it happen to be when Frank Briand was the US manager? Because the WORST person to ever deal with! I did have him send me the completely wrong saddle... ie grain Oldara instead of a buffalo Biarittz but once he was removed from the position Devoucoux has been nothing but wonderful to deal with. That was early 2006!



  14. #14
    Join Date
    Jun. 28, 2009
    Posts
    57

    Default

    Thanks for all insight and feel free to keep it coming if you have not yet posted.

    Lucassb, I recall your Devoucoux horror story from another thread but thanks for taking the time to share it again.

    I would agree the best route is used/demo for Devoucoux and most other custom makes. I believe in bird in the hand or better put a saddle that fits now versus one that may fit 3-6mos after you buy it.

    Thanks again for sharing your experience especially for a fellow CT-er who would likely work with the same cast of characters with a custom order.

    I like the Devoucoux saddles but the odds seems to be against those who venture into the custom route.

    I am also going to give the Butet FB2 a try as well.

    Again I love my Antares from a comfort perspective but I should have gone with the half deep seat model or a Butet style saddle.

    If I cannot get a good trade-in on my Antares I have no issue with keeping it.

    However if i can swing a good trade on a gently used Oldara or Butet I am going to do it.



  15. #15
    Join Date
    Apr. 26, 2006
    Posts
    394

    Default oldara

    Hands down the Oldara model is the most balanced saddle I have ever ridden in! I think Patrick is in your area, he is great!

    Or try Cori Mcgraw used saddles. She may have one and she is EASY to deal with.



  16. #16
    Join Date
    Jun. 28, 2009
    Posts
    57

    Default

    Thanks



  17. #17
    Join Date
    Aug. 2, 2004
    Location
    Whidbey Is, Wash.
    Posts
    10,240

    Default

    Another Oldara rider here. I bought last year, and love it. If my mare's a bit pokey (which is a lot...) and I'm using a lot of a seat, I can get rubbed in a rather owie way in an owie place due to the raised twist, but otherwise it is a heavenly saddle.

    I'm not in your area, and my rep was not ideal (my 10am appt turned into a 5pm appt, her excuse was traffic from Seattle to here), we got the correct saddle ordered...and then she disappeared. I knew the order wouldn't go through until my CC was charged, and I waited almost two weeks waiting on the charge. Nada. I tried calling several times, left two VMs, before she called back and said I had given her the number minus the last four digits. Ummm, I was holding it and reading it, not sure how that could have happened. Whatever.

    Ever since it arrived, I've dealt with Joe at the main office. Wonderful guy, very patient, explains everything. My cowboy BF even called and talked to Joe to order me matching leathers and a set of irons (that aren't iron, ha!). BF said "the guy on the phone" looked up my order and matched everything perfectly, and I got the perfect length leathers just by BF's description.
    COTH's official mini-donk enabler

    "I am all for reaching out, but in some situations it needs to be done with a rolled up news paper." Alagirl



  18. #18
    Join Date
    Jun. 28, 2009
    Posts
    57

    Default

    One last bump.

    Who would be a good East Coast Devoucoux person to contact about a demo unit?



  19. #19
    Join Date
    Aug. 31, 2004
    Location
    VA
    Posts
    4,345

    Default

    Eric Leysalle is fantastic. Tell him Grace Wilkins sent you
    -Grace



  20. #20
    Join Date
    Jun. 28, 2009
    Posts
    57

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by TheOrangeOne View Post
    Eric Leysalle is fantastic. Tell him Grace Wilkins sent you
    Thanks!!!



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