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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jul. 31, 2012
    Location
    Oregon
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    25

    Default Any Saddle Fitting experts?? Could really use advice!Warning, LOTS of picture links!

    Hi Everyone,

    I am quite familiar with how to go about fitting a jumping saddle but am new to fitting dressage saddles (my old dressage horse was a very, very easy fit). The new boy is not quite as easy as a fit and I think I need some help. LOTS of links to pictures in this post sorry, just wanted to provide as much info/pictures as possible for good advice

    *He is 16 hands, has tall withers, broad shoulders and a decently "normal" width back.

    http://i1044.photobucket.com/albums/...les9712005.jpg

    *He also has "'dips" on the sides of his shoulder blades right behind his withers.
    http://i1044.photobucket.com/albums/...les9712004.jpg

    http://i1044.photobucket.com/albums/...les9712003.jpg

    *I have 2 saddles I am trying out on him. The first one is my Stubben saddle. Very comfortable for me and seemed to fit him nicely through the back but tight on the side of his shoulder blades. Here's 2 pictures of the Stubben just sitting on his back
    http://i1044.photobucket.com/albums/...les9712026.jpg

    http://i1044.photobucket.com/albums/...les9712025.jpg

    http://i1044.photobucket.com/albums/...les9712023.jpg

    *Here's the Stubben all padded up:
    http://i1044.photobucket.com/albums/...les9712016.jpg

    http://i1044.photobucket.com/albums/...les9712015.jpg

    http://i1044.photobucket.com/albums/...les9712018.jpg

    *Here's the Wintec just bare (by the way, it does have an adjustable gullet and currently has the black (medium?) gullet in. The Wintec seems to clear his shoulder area a bit better but doest seem to allow as much room through the spine area?:
    http://i1044.photobucket.com/albums/...les9712027.jpg

    http://i1044.photobucket.com/albums/...les9712029.jpg

    http://i1044.photobucket.com/albums/...les9712030.jpg

    *And here's the Wintec all Padded Up
    http://i1044.photobucket.com/albums/...les9712011.jpg

    http://i1044.photobucket.com/albums/...les9712012.jpg

    http://i1044.photobucket.com/albums/...les9712014.jpg

    http://i1044.photobucket.com/albums/...les9712013.jpg



    **Big time cookies to whomever took the time to look through all that! I really appreciate it So what do ya'll think? I think the Stubben is the overall better choice but am a bit concerned about the tightness on the sides of his shoulders, I can *very* snuggly fit my hand in between his shoulder and the saddle. The Wintec doesnt seem to clear his spine/back as well which I thought was a concern? But am not sure how much of a difference I would get just changing the gullet to the medium-wide size (which I dont have but am more then willing to get)?

    Big big thank you to any input!



  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jul. 31, 2012
    Location
    Oregon
    Posts
    25

    Default

    As a final note please excuse the dusty Stubben and ugly/dirty blue pad with flip flops LOL. I am pregnant and have *obviously* (and shamefully) been slacking in my tack care since I've not been riding.

    Both saddles when all "padded up" in the pictures are padded with a a Roma wither relief pad (seen here http://www.doversaddlery.com/roma-wi...nt/p/X1-19456/) and a little knit pad (my old trainer always called it a knit pommel pad but I genuinely dont know if that's correct or not?) but instead of laying it across the withers I chose to lay it across the back of the saddle to try and even out the saddles.

    Maybe someone has some better padding options/thoughts that might work better for this whole saddle fitting situation?



  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jul. 4, 2004
    Location
    E. Washington
    Posts
    733

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by redsmom15 View Post
    Hi Everyone,

    I am quite familiar with how to go about fitting a jumping saddle but am new to fitting dressage saddles (my old dressage horse was a very, very easy fit). The new boy is not quite as easy as a fit and I think I need some help. LOTS of links to pictures in this post sorry, just wanted to provide as much info/pictures as possible for good advice

    *He is 16 hands, has tall withers, broad shoulders and a decently "normal" width back.

    http://i1044.photobucket.com/albums/...les9712005.jpg

    *He also has "'dips" on the sides of his shoulder blades right behind his withers.
    http://i1044.photobucket.com/albums/...les9712004.jpg

    http://i1044.photobucket.com/albums/...les9712003.jpg

    *I have 2 saddles I am trying out on him. The first one is my Stubben saddle. Very comfortable for me and seemed to fit him nicely through the back but tight on the side of his shoulder blades. Here's 2 pictures of the Stubben just sitting on his back
    http://i1044.photobucket.com/albums/...les9712026.jpg

    http://i1044.photobucket.com/albums/...les9712025.jpg

    http://i1044.photobucket.com/albums/...les9712023.jpg

    *Here's the Stubben all padded up:
    http://i1044.photobucket.com/albums/...les9712016.jpg

    http://i1044.photobucket.com/albums/...les9712015.jpg

    http://i1044.photobucket.com/albums/...les9712018.jpg

    *Here's the Wintec just bare (by the way, it does have an adjustable gullet and currently has the black (medium?) gullet in. The Wintec seems to clear his shoulder area a bit better but doest seem to allow as much room through the spine area?:
    http://i1044.photobucket.com/albums/...les9712027.jpg

    http://i1044.photobucket.com/albums/...les9712029.jpg

    http://i1044.photobucket.com/albums/...les9712030.jpg

    *And here's the Wintec all Padded Up
    http://i1044.photobucket.com/albums/...les9712011.jpg

    http://i1044.photobucket.com/albums/...les9712012.jpg

    http://i1044.photobucket.com/albums/...les9712014.jpg

    http://i1044.photobucket.com/albums/...les9712013.jpg



    **Big time cookies to whomever took the time to look through all that! I really appreciate it So what do ya'll think? I think the Stubben is the overall better choice but am a bit concerned about the tightness on the sides of his shoulders, I can *very* snuggly fit my hand in between his shoulder and the saddle. The Wintec doesnt seem to clear his spine/back as well which I thought was a concern? But am not sure how much of a difference I would get just changing the gullet to the medium-wide size (which I dont have but am more then willing to get)?

    Big big thank you to any input!
    Just a question, why so much padding? A saddle should fit with a thin pad, or half pad or nothing, if it doesn't fit that way, it probably doesn't fit with all that padding.

    The Wintec looked pretty decent, and the Stubben looked lower in the pommel, but the panels looked nice. What does the Stubben look like with just a regular pad or a half pad?



  4. #4
    Join Date
    Aug. 29, 2012
    Location
    Bahstin, Mass
    Posts
    756

    Default

    I am also questioning why so much padding. The Stubben looked pretty good when it was just on his back, but when you added all of the pads beneath it went south. The Wintec didn't look as bad all padded up, to me.



  5. #5
    Join Date
    Jul. 31, 2012
    Location
    Oregon
    Posts
    25

    Default

    The way his withers and dip in his shoulders are all put together I cant imagine finding a good solution (except a several thousand $$ custom saddle which is for sure not in the budget lol) without having to do some serious padding combinations. I could TOTALLY be wrong though. However that being said, with no wither relief pad both saddles were *tight* on his withers/shoulder area and both saddle also had the "middle" of the saddle as the lowest point which in past experiences I have always been taught that your saddle should be as level as possible. Again, I'm no expert in this and that's why I am seeking out more opinions

    Here's the Stubben with just a regular pad and the pommel pad in the back (which genuinely only adds *maybe* a 1/4 inch lift);

    http://i1044.photobucket.com/albums/...les9712019.jpg



  6. #6
    Join Date
    Jul. 31, 2012
    Location
    Oregon
    Posts
    25

    Default

    The Stubben was pinching the top sides of this withers/shoulder with no padding but I do agree that it looked better "nekid" then all padded up-perhaps there's a half pad out there that would provide enough wither clearance/relief so I could ditch all the multiple padding business?



  7. #7
    Join Date
    Jul. 17, 2007
    Location
    Landrum, SC
    Posts
    1,827

    Default

    If the fit is "tight" to begin with, you don't want to add a lot of padding. It's like wearing thick socks with shoes that are too tight... it just makes the shoes tighter.

    Of the two choices, the Stubben (without all the padding) follows the contours of his back the best. The flatter Wintec tree and longer/straighter panels look to be poking him at the rear. Even more so when you're mounted, I'm sure. Changing the gullet will have no effect on that issue.

    If a new/"new" used saddle is out of the question, the Stubben would have to get my vote, but I think you can do better than both.

    Do you have a budget for something else?
    Athletic Horses. Educated Riders.
    www.Ride-With-Confidence.com



  8. #8
    Join Date
    Jul. 31, 2012
    Location
    Oregon
    Posts
    25

    Default

    Melissa, thanks for the response I guess I was attempting to get the saddle a little farther "off" his back? What you are saying makes sense to me though, tomorrow I will try the Stubben just with the normal schooling pad alone and see what that looks like.

    I can sell the Wintec (imagine I will get about $400ish for it. It's literally in *brand* new condition) and then could use whatever I got for the Wintec to try something else. A new saddle is out of budget, but if I sell the Wintec I could try out another "new to me" saddle. Did you have ideas about a specific brand/type that might be worth looking into?



  9. #9
    Join Date
    Feb. 20, 2009
    Location
    Midwest
    Posts
    101

    Default

    You should try something else. I don't think either saddle fits him well at all.
    Look at County saddles. They are designed for Thoroughbred-type horses.



  10. #10
    Join Date
    Jul. 31, 2012
    Location
    Oregon
    Posts
    25

    Default

    Cincinnati, I would say both of these saddles are about medium tree size. Does anyone have an opinion on a better tree size? Maybe a medium wide? Or even a wide?



  11. #11
    Join Date
    Jul. 31, 2012
    Location
    Oregon
    Posts
    25

    Default

    http://item.mobileweb.ebay.com/viewi...nid=8827627387

    I found this county saddle on ebay, seems like a good deal. Thoughts?



  12. #12
    Join Date
    Jul. 4, 2004
    Location
    E. Washington
    Posts
    733

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by redsmom15 View Post
    http://item.mobileweb.ebay.com/viewi...nid=8827627387

    I found this county saddle on ebay, seems like a good deal. Thoughts?
    Do you have a good saddle shop you can go to and try on saddles with a knowledgable person or even a saddle fitter?

    We don't have an english shop near by so I am doing things longs distance. Even then I have back and wither tracings to send off for fitting help.

    You are lucky in the fact your horse is an easier "type" of horse to fit with some withers. My horse is just a really wide AQHA and have limited options.

    You may want to look at Kieffers or Passiers, they have nice taller pommels and gusseting that would look better on your horse. Lots of older used ones, too.



  13. #13
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    Aug. 12, 2010
    Location
    Westford, Massachusetts
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    4,088

    Default

    If you come across a Roosli Pilatus, you might want to try that. I have a mid-90s vintage Roosli and it has fit very well on horses with "TB" type backs, real withers, that dippy bit and a somewhat curvy back. The horses seem to really like it too.

    They aren't common, but an older one shouldn't be super expensive if you do find one.



  14. #14
    Join Date
    Jul. 1, 2003
    Location
    PA
    Posts
    574

    Default

    With out having a good gullet shot from the pommel I would say the stubben is just a hair wide and is "sucking" his wither up into the gullet. If you look at the difference between the two saddles bare the Wintec is a good inch or 2 high on the wither. I also prefer to see saddles girthed up to see how they will really look once the panels are squished.

    From the pictures the Wintec looks like it would fit just fine with a single good quality pad.

    That being said. If you like the Stuben the best I would try just an ecogold triple protection pad. It would be similar to adjusting the panels to make a wide saddle a little narrower.

    If the dips behind the withers is causing a problem you can buy pads just to fill the dips. Ecogolds is called a Wither care pad. I am sure there are plenty of them out there. It doesnt look to be as bad as some that I have seen.



  15. #15
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    Aug. 28, 2007
    Location
    Triangle Area, NC
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    Default

    Both saddles are sitting on his scapula which will effect the fit.
    Place the saddle on his back, put two fingers in the channel at the cantle and pull back steadily until its feels impossible to slide it further. That's where the saddle will want to sit. If its natural place to sit is correct, you should be able to locate the back of the scapula (shoulder blade) and place at least 3 fingers between it and the front panel of the saddle. Feel free to lift your horses leg to help find that scapula.

    The stubben is too wide, and the channel too narrow.
    The wintec is too flat in the panels.

    Look to get at least 3 fingers all the way through the channel on the underside. You'll want panels that can be heavily flocked, as he will eventually take a M tree but for now probably could use a MN. He, being so long backed and somewhat flat towards the back of his rib age, would appreciate gusseted panels (like the back of the wintec) but softly flocked and on a swoopier tree than a wintec.
    Look at butet, lauriche, newer passiers, newer stubbens, frank baines.
    www.destinationconsensusequus.com
    chaque pas est fait ensemble



  16. #16
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    Jul. 17, 2007
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    Landrum, SC
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    Default

    I didn't mean to imply the Stubben was a good fit, just better than the Wintec, which is just plain too flat for his back conformation. The Stubben, even without pads, looks too narrow (and you can feel that as the "pinch" at the shoulders).
    Athletic Horses. Educated Riders.
    www.Ride-With-Confidence.com



  17. #17
    Join Date
    Jul. 31, 2012
    Location
    Oregon
    Posts
    25

    Default

    Looks like I have some saddle shopping to do! I used to ride in a Kieffer Wein a long time ago when I owned my TB mare and I loved loved that saddle. It was so comfortable to ride in and she seemed to be very comfortable in it. Perhaps I will try to hunt down one of those used to try next.

    Unfortunatly there's essentially nobody reputible in my area that rides dressage, no english/dressage tack shops anywhere near by and the nearest person I trust for saddle fit is a solid 3 hours away. However that being said I dont mind trying out a few different saddles to get to the correct one. I think what petstorejunkie said about having a saddle that might be able to be reflocked this time next yearish when I have him back in shape might be a good idea, as I know he is out of shape right now and I'm sure that being back in show shape will change his back conformation. Melissa I agree with you that the Wintec is just too flat after looking closer at the pictures. And whomever said the Stubben is "sucking in" his spine/withers I think is correct with that statement too.

    So I'm off to the wonderful world of Ebay and Tacktrader again (lol); this time in search for a Medium/Medium wide tree with a bit more of a swooped tree, that has lots of shoulder clearance and a softly flocked underside....wish me luck lol



  18. #18
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    Aug. 28, 2007
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    Triangle Area, NC
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    Default

    Feel free to post pictures of the saddles before you take them out on trial
    www.destinationconsensusequus.com
    chaque pas est fait ensemble



  19. #19
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    Jul. 17, 2007
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    A possibility?
    http://www.farmhousetack.com/servlet...ta-Used/Detail

    Made on the Swiss "Flex" tree.
    Athletic Horses. Educated Riders.
    www.Ride-With-Confidence.com



  20. #20
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    Nov. 7, 2006
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    Knoxville TN
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    Default

    Widen the wintec, put it on his back, no pad, girth it up and take a picture from the side.

    For the padding - keep the regular thin pad, the one right against the horse's back. Keep that one. Throw the other two in in the trash.



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