I have the MDC "Comfort" stirrups...like plain old, weighted, fillis irons, but with an adjustable eye. I did not like flexible stirrups, they feel very unstable. I've found the Comfort stirrups work well if I turn the eyes to 45 degrees...a little less torsion on my older hip joints. I was having some pain in my right hip after riding with the plain fillis irons, which I don't experience with these.
I've yet to see much of a deal on them anywhere, I've never seen them on sale.
Contact the manufacturer directly, he often has DEALS on "seconds"- less than half price, if you don't mind an imperfection in the color, some small scratches, etc. I bought the black ones there was some of the black paint was coming off. I went ahead and peeled off the rest so they are metal color now.
I bought a pair from Middleburg Tack Exchange. They had quite a few sets, and I found one marked down to.... $74. They have really helped knee/hip pain for me. It only takes about 10 minutes for my knees to unlock after dismounting now.
I have had the Intelligent ones (both swivel eye and flex) for a couple of years. I love them. Much better for my knees, and I didn't have any problems with feelings of instability caused by the flex. They feel completely natural to me. They've also held up very well.
"The formula 'Two and two make five' is not without its attractions." --Dostoevsky
I love my MDC Intelligence stirrups! I have the non-flex ones with the swivel eye. I ride with my stirrups "backwards" and clicking them out to 90 degrees really helps me feel comfortable. The only problem is that if I lose a stirrup the stirrup will go bouncing around off of the horse's side. Okay on my deadhead WB (we did an entire Grand Prix that way one time and I think it helped her keep up the pace!), but not so okay on my TB. It also makes the stirrup very difficult to get back.
Still, though, I much prefer the MDC Intell to regular stirrups. I can't comment on the flex-ones. I sprain my ankles when the fences get big with anything with flex.
I bought a new (to me! haha 18 year old Hennig) saddle and need new leathers/irons because I think my friend is buying my old saddle w/ leathers/irons. I had flex irons with the comfort pads that you zip tie on and I really liked those. The flex was good for my weak ankles and the comfort pad good for keep your stirrups in nasty weather. I saw the MDC ones and thought they sounded like a really good idea. I may contact the manufacturer and see if I get lucky. I'm also stalking Ebay I'd really like some black ones....
Yay! Won some black ones on Ebay for $115. A little more than I wanted to spend but they are new. I figure stirrups don't really "wear out" or anything...
Now to find some leathers I want (Anyone have the Toulouse half holes?)
And to find the comfort pads that zip tie onto the irons. I like the no slip even with wet, sandy boots
I have the MDC Ultimates in black . Love them! They have helped a ton w/ my knee pain (had ACL/meniscus surgery). They flex just enough but never feel unsteady like a lot of other brands out there . Highly recommend them .
"When a horse greets you with a nicker & regards you with a large & liquid eye, the question of where you want to be & what you want to do has been answered."CANTER New England
DRATS!!! I was too greedy and didn't read the ad very well.... I bought the ones without flex instead of the ones with flex! I emailed MDC to see if they had any.... Guess mine will go back on eBay since I really wanted the ones with flex...
Had them, hated them, went back to regular stirrups. Did not help my achy knees and ankles at all and I had an alarming tendency to lose them while jumping which was never an issue with the old fashioned kind.
I have the ones that flex in black. My only complaint is that after two years the black finish is beginning to flake off.
I like the fact that by adjusting the angle I can pretty much eleminate the twist in my stirrup leather...much more comfortable for me. They have definitely helped me with my bad ankles. Just out of curiosity I switched back to a different type of stirrups for a few rides and I could really tell a difference.
Have 'em (flex and swivel), love 'em. My black ones have stayed pretty black except for one the I kept bonking on a particular gap in a stonewall we'd go through. Can't tell unless you really examine it, though.
I have the Ultimate Comfort stirrups (I think. they swivel and they're flexible too) and I LOOOOOVE mine. So comfy and they make my pain level so much less. I don't think they flex too much and I honestly don't even notice the difference in "feeling" between regular fillis irons and these. They make hacking so much easier on my joints, too!