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Woflgang Solo vs Albion vs....what?

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  • Woflgang Solo vs Albion vs....what?

    Anyone who has ridden in /owed/tried these saddles or similar...

    My saddle is a Trilogy Debbie Special (I am five foot two, 29" inseam aka avg leg proporption. The saddle is `17.5 inch and comfy but a bit too much saddle for me and does not fit horse the best, even though just re flocked (originally bought for previous horse with a diff build which it fit perfect)

    So I would eventually like to get a diff saddle, 17 inch this time, closer contact in seat/twist but still comfy and has room in shoulder area for horse. I tried an Albion SLK on him and horse went well in it, freed his shoulder, me, neutral...it felt a bit hard and twist a bit wide but I didn't hate it and could probably learn to like it . (the sample also too big 17.5) I tried a Wolfgang Solo on stand in saddle shop but never rode in one...might be next step. Below mid 3 k range is top of range, I would sell my saddle and have to make up the difference. Any input appreciated! (another brand out there I am missing. I would like an adjustable tree if possible)

  • #2
    The Custom Saddlery models, including Wolfgang Solo, can be adjusted by one of their reps. I had a Trilogy Amadeo for a big DW; it was a great saddle, loved the position it put me in. Then I retired DW and got a smaller, lighter, Oldenburg with a short back. Trilogy is rather long, and not a fit. Acquired a Solo with long blocks, which I just traded for a Solo with short blocks. I think the Solo is a nice saddle with fairly narrow twist, and not too long so appropriate for a shorter backed horse. I'd recommend working with one of their reps; mine was able to adjust the tree and add flocking with the equipment in her truck. If your thigh length is short, you might like the long block; I have a long thigh, and like the short block much better (roomier, less "locked in" feel).


    • Original Poster

      Thanks for the insight...exactly the problem, the Trilogy saddle is too long for horse who is short coupled with a compact build.


      • #4
        I've ridden in all three, my favorite of all was/is the Wolfgang Solo. I'm also 5'2 but have a short waist and longer inseam and very long thigh, so a 17.5 is usually a good fit. The Albion was OK, but overall too big for me, even though it was sized as a 17.5. Just felt like a lot of saddle. I wanted to love the Trilogy, but for me it was a crotch biter. Also felt very perch-y. I tried the Debbie in a bunch of different sizes because the rep was convinced that a different size would fix the problem, but the saddle bit me no matter the size. Had the same trouble with other Trilogy models, just not a good fit for my anatomy. The Wolfgang (with short block) was wonderful. Horse went will in the Albion (and was ridden in one w/ previous owner) and the Wolfgang. I didn't ride in the Trilogy long enough to get an idea about how he liked it. In the end, if I could have afforded a full custom Wolfgang Solo, I would have bought one. I ended up buying a new-to-me Wolfgang Valor in buffalo. We both love it!
        Last edited by duecavalle; Oct. 22, 2011, 06:36 PM. Reason: typo!


        • #5
          ETA: almost forgot -- horse is very short coupled and round.


          • Original Poster

            D-your post was very helpful, as you are same height as me and have tried all three saddles !! There is a custom rep in my area, I will definitely try the Solo before I make a decision. If I like it, I will have to save some $, s there will be a price diff between what I pay for a new one and what I can sell mine for...(I would perfer the fully adjustable tree which costs more)


            • #7
              Glad I could be helpful! If you can, try both the long and short blocked Solos. I wasn't crazy about the long block, but loved the short.


              • #8
                I have the long block Solo and am very happy with it, so is my mare. She's a smaller Holsteiner (around 16 h, need to measure her again) and I'm 5.7 with longish thighs. I tried a number of saddles and this one feels natural and comfortable. I ride a lot without stirrups (cause I need to work on myself and my mare prefers that I stay put on my behind and not hang on her face.... and this saddle lets me do that without worrying about her occasional "I'm 5, what-do-you-want?" acts ;0)).

                This is the saddle in action (and yes, one day I'll learn to look up...)

                Oh, and a definite benefit with Custom Saddlery is that they let you trade in saddles for very reasonable rates which gives you the assurance that if, in a couple of years, the horse has outgrown the saddle (which is with a Custom hard to do because they are so adjustable..., but if you need a new saddle, then) you don't have to worry about how quickly you can sell your old saddle to get a new one. My rep is also great with finding the exact thing that I need used for maximum savings : )
                "Reite dein Pferd vorwärts und richte es gerade.” Gustav Steinbrecht


                • #9
                  What about the Steffen Advanatge single flap? Anyone ride in it yet? Compared to the Wolfgang solo?


                  • #10
                    I too have ridden in all three and have the Wolfgang Solo with the short block. I am 5'3, but have a 19" thigh, so all the long block saddles I feel jammed in-especially in the 17.5. I prefer a narrow twist which is why the Albion I tried didn't work. Same as the Debbie. I have a second horse that my Wolfgang doesn't fit and I have not been able to find anything yet that works for us both! My Custom Rep suggested the Wolfgang Constanze, but I am still recovering from the last $3700 spent, and the 10k before that on the lst 3 saddles that didn't work! Does anyone know of something less expensive that rides similar to the Solo? Get a demo saddle from Custom or try a used one and good luck!


                    • #11
                      Albions are amazing, I absolutely love them. All of my personal horses are in them, as well as my sales and competition horses. Most of my clients prefer Albions for themselves, as well. The horses seem to be more comfortable and perform better, and I love the beautiful position it puts the rider in (when properly fitted, of course) and how comfortable it is. I never feel as though my saddles are in the way or that I am unstable. Did I mention that I love Albions?

                      It sounds like you may actually want a 16.5, have you tried a narrow seat? I am 5'8" with with a long, narrow frame, and have found that a 17.0 is almost too big for me. The 17.5 certainly is, and I have a good 6" on you, so you must be swimming in yours! I have also found that a narrow seat is actually better for me, and I have yet to decide about twists (there is a difference between narrow seat and narrow twist, which most people don't realize). Whatever you decide, make sure it really fits you! Nothing is worse than an ill-fitting saddle. Trust me, I've spent many a ride in tears when things haven't fit right!


                      • Original Poster

                        Good points about the Albions...The one I tried that horsie liked that she said was the best for me (I think it was an SLK), it did have a narrow seat and she said I needed a narrow seat. The demo was too big, a 17.5 inch so she said a 17 inch would be good...said a 16.5 inch would be too small.

                        The saddle felt nice and balanced, though not squish and super comfy...but maybe I should just stick with the Albion and the smaller one would be fine...

                        What do you think of velcro knee blocks to move them around as an option on the Ablion vs the regular ones? The knee block (or thigh block, not sure what it was) was a bit far from my knee..


                        • Original Poster

                          NW Dressage, as you have a number of Albions...do you prefer one type of leather to the other? Is it worth upgrading or is the basic leather fine?


                          • #14
                            You sound like you are a very similar build to me. I've owned several dressage saddles over the years and tried many more. I ordered the Albion SLK with the blocks on velcro, the narrow seat (in 17 size, since Albions run small), and then an extra option of extra padding in the seat bone area. I've had it three years and I love it. It's the best saddle I've ever owned, and it's one of the few that has allowed me to really drop my legs around my horse. I also like the velcro on blocks, since it's nice to be able to move them around depending on what I'm doing or what horse I'm riding. I also got the adjustable tree option, although I haven't had to use that.


                            • Original Poster

                              Wow, didn't know they have an option of extra padding, thanks for the tip!


                              • #16
                                Ok, i have another question. The custom saddlery fitter in my area charges $500 just to come out! Thats just to sit in the saddles she has. Not fitted. This is outrageous to me. Is $500 the standard for saddle fitters to come out?


                                • #17
                                  $500? How far is she from you? I got charged something like $150 for her time/gas etc. I think $150 was reasonable for the time she had to take to get to my place.


                                  • #18
                                    I am 90 mins from her front door and that is a SPLIT charge with someone else not from from me.


                                    • #19
                                      Darn, the one that came to my place that charged $150 was like 3~4 hours away!!! I would flip out if I were you... Did she tell you how much she charged?


                                      • #20
                                        This was just a quote...of course when i found how much it was i cancelled my appt. I wanted to ask around to see if I was "out of touch" with what it really cost to have someone out.

                                        Any suggestions on how i can ride in the 3 custom saddlery saddles i want to try without paying the $500 to use the fitter in my state? I am in Ohio. Any fitters out there willing to come to Ohio ?