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UK Saddle Brands

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  • leighbo009
    replied
    I just bought 2 new ones for my guys. One is a Takt saddle. It just happened to be that what I was going to order was already made, but the wrong leather for the original orderer. They remade the saddle and then sold me the incorrect saddle for a good bit cheaper. It is beautiful ( and brown). The other one was a similar sustation, but an ideal saddle. I know takt is made by frank baines.

    The fitter I used is sorta independent. She is a rep for takt and custom and a couple others I believe. I think she also fits frank baines. Where are you located? if your close, ill send you her info.

    Both are wool flocked. And great leather. I think the takt is higher quality, but also quite a bit more than I paid for the ideal. But I am very very happy with both.

    Leave a comment:


  • polkadotedpony
    replied
    I have an Ideal and I've been happy with it overall. I have the Tonnishia model in the regular leather with a short flap. It was a custom build and with shipping, tax and an upgrade to patent welting came in around $3,200. I believe the Ideals are made to order so you don't save much by going non-custom, unless you happened to find a saddlery with some ready made floor models. I think the Tonnishia is a slightly more expensive model built for bigger shoulders and shorter backs so maybe another model would be cheaper. I see a fair number of Ideal Jessicas used online.

    They're wool flocked so small adjustments are easy and I believe the tree can be adjusted 1 size up or down (ie. MN to M). I was a little skeptical about buying a new saddle and a less popular brand for a young horse (4 at the time), but I've been happy in the year I've owned it and my horse seems happy. Honestly the big name dressage saddles that hold their value have such a crazy new price point now I think the UK brands are pretty good deals even new. I did try to source a used one but there weren't many available in the US and the ones my rep had were crazy upgraded (buffalo, crazy stamping and welting, etc) so they weren't any cheaper than a custom ordered basic.

    Leave a comment:


  • MysticOakRanch
    replied
    Just want to add, some of these saddles (such as Ideal and Bliss, and probably others) are available custom - I know several people who have gotten Ideal saddles, custom fitted to them and their horses - for under $3k. And one or two that have gotten Bliss saddles in that same price range.

    I was looking at the Ideal saddles (custom) when I shattered my leg - which ended all saddle shopping. They are well made saddles, and we have a rep in the area. A few trainers in the area (FEI level) have bought these saddles.

    I think Frank Baines also customizes, although no rep in the area, so I haven't looked into that option at all, but they are well made saddles, and comfy. I rode in one a while ago when I tried out a horse, and was surprised at how comfy it was!

    So you are not just stuck with off the rack with some of these less pricey options.

    Leave a comment:


  • Brooklyn Born
    replied
    Hi Grace Like Rain

    Then I totally understand your pain! Fortunately my Baines rep was less than an hour away. Because she came down to my barn and did all the tracings and photos, if the saddle ultimately didn't fit, I would be able to return it . Of course it fits beautifully! You could ask the Frank Baines rep if they would partner with a local fitter that is closer to you. They might be willing to do that, or give you other options.

    If you go the Frank Baines website, they have a cool feature where you can Build Your Baines through a computer program. You actually design your own saddle with different leather options and colors, and it's free. It's fun!

    I ordered my saddle on October 21, and got it in November, a few days over a month later. Now my rep did say that it could take two to three months, and I was willing to wait. However, the Frank Baines company was shutting down for a few weeks over the Christmas holiday and I think they pushed my order through before they closed. I was thrilled it came early!

    I want to add that I also had a question about leather choices and actually messaged Frank Baines on Facebook about that, and they got right back to me the next day and fully answered my questions. I was very impressed.

    I chose buffalo leather for the major portion of the panels and chose nubuck leather for the seat and knee flaps. I also chose gold welting along the seat and cantle (just a bit of bling). And, as I mentioned, I chose serge panels rather than plain leather, for the underside of the saddle. I think the saddle might be a bit cheaper if you choose regular calf leather, but I'm not sure. I don't think the gold welting was additional.

    Even though I have only had it for about a month and a half, I feel this saddle has really helped my position and I'm pretty sure its working for my horse because everyone says her shoulders have never looked freerer. It is also incredibly comfortable.

    I tried an Adam Ellis as well (which might be a bit cheaper), but the fit didn't work for her or me.

    Good luck in your search and feel free to message me any questions. You can also check out Frank Baines's website and Facebook page to look for more info and feedback.

    Leave a comment:


  • enjoytheride
    replied
    I second the Bliss, but want to add that Bliss has a mid range of saddles called Loxley that it in at under 3k custom. I know several Arab people that were very happy with them. I have their off the rack line (only thing custom is adjusting the flocking) Cavaletti and it fit my Arab.

    Leave a comment:


  • GraceLikeRain
    replied
    Brooklyn Born thank you so much for sharing all of that! I'm on a narrow 14.2 pony and am shorter than you are so I totally appreciate the challenges of saddle fitting!

    The closest Baines rep is at least 4 hours away from me. I don't know if they would be willing to partner with a local independent fitter. Given the number of options available, I worry a bit that an independent fitter may make a recommendation that the rep would not if they were seeing the pony in person. $3,000 is more than I want to spend but it is easy to lose a few hundred shipping saddles around.

    How long did it take from placing the order to receiving the saddle? Did you get any leather or "bling" upgrades or just the panel and flap changes?

    Leave a comment:


  • Brooklyn Born
    replied
    I am adding my support for a Frank Baines! I recently received my custom Elegance Deluxe dressage saddle from them and I am completely in love with it, and so is my pony. I worked through a local tack shop (who is a Frank Baines rep) and the whole experience from start to finish was wonderful. I even received my saddle a month earlier than I expected. My 14,2 quarter horse mare has not been an easy fit over the past 6 years that I have owned her (she is 12 now). Her shoulders are different sizes and she is relatively short backed, Add in my issues (i'm petite and short (5'2 1.2") and finding the right saddle for us both has not been easy. I trialed a Frank Baines from the tack shop and really liked it. Then I ordered my first custom saddle.

    The wonderful thing about Frank Baines is that they have so many options for each saddle type. For my horse, I had them do serge panels on the bottom, and gusseted front and back panels (you can even choose the size of the gussets). The front gussets have made a huge difference in freeing up her tight shoulders. I shortened the billets since she is a pony. For myself, I had them shorten the flap length to fir my short stature. There are also many other options including types of leather for panels, seat, and flaps. And one can add quite a bit of bling if they want.

    I paid $3000 for my saddle (I know it's a bit more than you wanted to spend), but honestly it is worth every penny to me and it is far less than some custom saddle prices. All my previous saddles have been used and I have always worked with a saddle fitter to make sure they were a good fit for my horse. However, they were never "just right" for her or me without tweaks or extra pads or just settling for good enough. That's why I decided to take the plunge with the Frank Baines. And so far I don;t regret it! From the quality of the workmanship to the customer service, they have been fantastic.

    Leave a comment:


  • Suspiria
    replied
    FatDinah the 5w Baines is equivalent to about a 36-38 cm Duett, and approximately 1-2 tree sizes wider than Bates/Wintec XW. It's roughly the same as the Pessoa/Ovation XCH gullets' XXW.

    Leave a comment:


  • Nous
    replied
    I had a Ryder Legacy saddle at one time, which I liked. They have various saddles and do flaps in 15, 16 & 17". I'm not sure of the cost new as my saddle was second-hand.

    They have various US stockists, see their website:
    rydersaddles.com



    Leave a comment:


  • KyrieNZ
    replied
    What about a second hand WOW? They are the most adjustable saddle known to mankind, and I swear by them.

    Leave a comment:


  • Mango20
    replied
    I had a Jeffries jump saddle made to tracings. The price brand new was around $1600, which was the same price made to tracings as it was if I just ordered a MW. I had had a Jeffries before and liked it. I really love my new saddle, and my horse is much happier, too.

    I would very much like to replace my 16" County Competitor from the 1980s, and would be in the same boat as you, looking for something around 16.5", and for a very small horse with wide withers and a very flat back. I've already tried the consignment saddle search with her, and she's nearly impossible to fit (we found a Bates Innova for my son that worked well for her, but the seat is so big I seem to lose my ability to ride in it).

    Leave a comment:


  • TequilaMockingbird
    replied
    Takt Saddles are made in the UK. I'm really happy with mine, though they had to remake it for me when the first one that arrived didn't fit properly. It was annoying that I had to wait so long but I got a loaner saddle for free for the whole time it took from ordering to delivery of the final product.

    But they're now over $3k based on their current price list.

    Leave a comment:


  • GreyDes
    replied
    GraceLikeRain Yes, the Smith Worthington trees are adjustable. I send mine back to the factory in CT along with tracings. The UK made saddles have a 20 year warranty on the tree, including adjustments.

    Leave a comment:


  • Brown Derby
    replied
    I too have a Kings Saddlery and love it. I bought it in the early 1990's from Tack in the Box. I think it is a Sandringham. The quality is superior to many of today's mid-range saddles. I am quite petite and the 17 fits well. And it's comfy.

    Leave a comment:


  • GraceLikeRain
    replied
    Originally posted by GreyDes View Post
    I’ll throw out one more brand to take a look at - Smith Worthington. Their top end saddles are made in the UK and they have a mid and lower end range made in Argentina. The mid range is Stellar, and will be slightly over $2K new.

    I bought one of their dressage saddles several years ago for a 14hh Arab who also needed a crazy wide tree. They are lovely to work with and may be able to get a stock model to work. They definitely have 16 1/2” options, although I’m not sure about flap length.

    https://www.smithworthington.com/ind...&parent=5&pg=1
    Is the tree adjustable? Horse is currently a MN but I could see that changing so I'm hesitant to buy anything that does not have some adjustability.

    Leave a comment:


  • Equibrit
    replied
    You could get an idea of what's available by looking here; https://www.preloved.co.uk/search?keyword=Saddles

    Prices are cheaper too, even with shipping.

    Ran across this; https://www.ebay.com/itm/16-5-Passie...QAAOSwVotckwfk

    Leave a comment:


  • SillyHorse
    replied
    I love my Harry Dabbs HD Platinum. Also agree that Smith Worthington is a great saddle at a more moderate price.

    Leave a comment:


  • GreyDes
    replied
    I’ll throw out one more brand to take a look at - Smith Worthington. Their top end saddles are made in the UK and they have a mid and lower end range made in Argentina. The mid range is Stellar, and will be slightly over $2K new.

    I bought one of their dressage saddles several years ago for a 14hh Arab who also needed a crazy wide tree. They are lovely to work with and may be able to get a stock model to work. They definitely have 16 1/2” options, although I’m not sure about flap length.

    https://www.smithworthington.com/ind...&parent=5&pg=1

    Leave a comment:


  • joliemom, again
    replied
    I have a Bliss of London Paramour, their monoflap dressage saddle. They were at Rolex Kentucky about 3-4 years ago, where I was able to sit in a few of their saddles. After a weekend of sitting in just about everything - Stubbens, Custom, Black Country, etc. - this was the one that suited me and my horse the best (i.e. shark finned Thoroughbred).

    When I'd saved up the $$$$, I contacted my local rep and we were able to fit the boy, then send off the measurements to the UK.

    Had I not purchased the Bliss, I would have gone with the Black Country Vinici. They're similar, but I found the Bliss put me in a slightly better position.
    A MONO-PANEL EXPERIENCE FOR TRUE HARMONY There is nothing better than a mono-panel to create that special intimacy between horse and rider. The saddle becomes almost transparent with the unique closeness through the twist and the leg that the Paramour Dressage delivers. A selection of large supportive rolls, innovative 3 point girthing system compliment the finesse that gives the Paramour Dressage unparalleled advantage in the mono-flap market. Offered in luxurious French calf or Nubuck hide for extra grip.

    Leave a comment:


  • EVneo
    replied
    Harry Dabbs as well - even new, some of their models will likely be in your price range. It's what I had hoped to buy for my gentleman...until....he needed....a black country. That still doesn't fit quite right (I love it though!).

    Leave a comment:

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