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The most versatile fit dressage saddle... Yet another saddle thread?

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  • The most versatile fit dressage saddle... Yet another saddle thread?

    Most of my horses are fairly wide, being warm blood crosses. But I've got two, one tb, and one cross, that are not and now.... I have to find another saddle that works for them. One is a tb who has started at prelim and is prone to be back sore. So he has to have something that fits (well, they all do, but he does especially).

    I adore the County Perfection and the medium, which is like a wide in the newer connection or fusion, fits three of my guys beautifully. It just doesn't work at all for the two who are true mediums and I don't want to go out and spend $5k+ on another saddle.

    So what's the go-to saddle that is versatile for a more tb wither/shoulder? I've heard Neidersuss and Stubben. I do like a deeper close contact saddle with not too wide a twist, and cushy. And I want used. Under $1500?

    Yes, another saddle thread....
    -Ann

  • #2
    It is more than just the width of the gullet to fit a saddle, the entire shape of the back, side to side and front to back has to be factored into the fit equation. You have to fit the tree and the panel shape to the back along with the gullet width. I have two TB's and both take vastly different saddles. You might want to post pictures or more description of your TB's backs.
    "My treasures do not chink or gleam, they glitter in the sun and neigh at night."

    Comment

    • Original Poster

      #3
      Ah... I totally get that. I'm really looking for one saddle that is best known for fitting lots of horses. I have several who come through here. My guys are NOT flat backed and they aren't peculiar in any distinctive way (both reasonably uphill, neither downhill or sway, or with hug shoulders, etc).

      So if there are folks out there who ride several horses in the same saddle, and rhey aren't wide through the shoulder or back, I'm curious about what works best for them.

      I've got Mattes pads and shims etc., that are used to adjust as necessary.

      I've heard that Stubbens do well on tb types. I'm just starting to shop and am hoping I can widen the brands I consider. I live close to Middleburg Tack Exchange so I can go sit in lots of saddles there.
      -Ann

      Comment


      • #4
        I actually really like my wintec saddles. I shim as needed too. I love the wintec close contact and the wintec 500 dressage. I rode in an Ansur treeless saddle, and I think that will be my next purchase. I ride lots of different TBs, of all ages from unbroke to really going, plus do project horses occasionally.

        Sheila

        Comment


        • #5
          if you want the adjustibiity of the wintec, but would like leather, the collegiate convertible , which i stumbled upon by accident, works well, of course it is too much of a pain to change daily from horse to horse, but with the gullet change system and an adustible pad you can make it comfortable for a wide range of horses.

          Comment


          • #6
            My go to for the narrower TBs in my barn is a medium width tree in an Albion Legend tree, but, it is a flatter tree, which has worked for the ones I have had.

            actually, that is my favorite tree, I have saddles multiple widths. Since I don't think they make saddles on that tree any more, I won't sell the ones I am not using, I just clean, condition and store the unused ones in the house for the next horse that comes along in that width. The dressage models on that tree were Legend and Comfort and EuroLegend and EuroComfort. The euro has a cutback head. The jumping saddles I have are CC2.

            I use mattes pads to make minor adjustments.

            Comment


            • #7
              Maybe try the Thorowgood T8, it's a hybrid synthetic with some leather on it. They have trees to fit different types of backs and has a changeable gullet.
              http://www.thorowgood.com/T8.html
              "My treasures do not chink or gleam, they glitter in the sun and neigh at night."

              Comment


              • #8
                really looking for one saddle that is best known for fitting lots of horses.
                I think these kind of saddles are a myth, or are owned by people who aren't very observant about the impact of poor saddle fit.

                The only saddles that really fit lots of horses are the flexible treeless kind- maybe you should look into that?

                Comment

                • Original Poster

                  #9
                  Originally posted by wendy View Post
                  I think these kind of saddles are a myth, or are owned by people who aren't very observant about the impact of poor saddle fit.
                  Ah, I think you are wrong.
                  -Ann

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    A friend of mine had a Thornhill Pro-Trainer dressage saddle that was super for fitting everything but the super wide horses. It had panels between the gussetted for the flat backed and "banana-shaped" for the sway backed. With was medium with a spring tree. Between the soft foam padding, spring tree, and middle of the road panels, it fit a lot of horses. Definitely the most versatile saddle I have had experience with.

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Originally posted by EnjoyThe Ride View Post
                      A friend of mine had a Thornhill Pro-Trainer dressage saddle that was super for fitting everything but the super wide horses. It had panels between the gussetted for the flat backed and "banana-shaped" for the sway backed. With was medium with a spring tree. Between the soft foam padding, spring tree, and middle of the road panels, it fit a lot of horses. Definitely the most versatile saddle I have had experience with.
                      I have this saddle as well and between the gusseted panels and half points it is very versatile. It won't fit every horse but it does seem to fit a wider variety of horses than some saddles I've tried. I think a lot of the older, more close contact type, saddle are a bit more versatile as well. I had a Steuben for a short time and it fit a few different horses quite well. Of course none of them were wildly different but it wasn't like some modern dressage saddles that seem to be made with a specific horse in mind.
                      My little girl, Katai - 13.2 Haflinger/Unicorn
                      and her blog

                      "Ponies are the new black. Welcome to the darkside!" - Manahmanah

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Passier GG (with Freedom Panels). I have the "Extra", because I'm tall, and I love it. It looks big in pics, but I was surprised how much smaller it was in person. Just a fabulous saddle. Quite close contact...not a bunch of padding everywhere. The Albions are great too, but some models have a wider twist. I use both. I have the Albion Original Comfort. Both are versatile, very well-made, timeless saddles.

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Why not have a collection of saddles? With used, you can keep the price point down. My mature Arabs moved into a variety of shapes, so I keep lots around and save time not adjusting anything. They all fit a thoroughbred type tree with wide channel, wither clearance, wither gussets and flatter panels out the back. Wintec's bridge so those are out. The English Walsall saddles plus a Thornhill Danube are working for us. How about something like a used Albion?

                          For example this one?

                          http://www.horseclicks.com/albion-le...saddles/417456

                          Comment

                          • Original Poster

                            #14
                            Originally posted by shall View Post
                            Why not have a collection of saddles? With used, you can keep the price point down. My mature Arabs moved into a variety of shapes, so I keep lots around and save time not adjusting anything. They all fit a thoroughbred type tree with wide channel, wither clearance, wither gussets and flatter panels out the back. Wintec's bridge so those are out. The English Walsall saddles plus a Thornhill Danube are working for us. How about something like a used Albion?

                            For example this one?

                            http://www.horseclicks.com/albion-le...saddles/417456
                            I actually do have three dressage saddles and three jumping saddles. It is a crowded tack room. But I'm selling 2 of the dressage saddles because they are too wide for the two tb types and I want to get one saddle for them, with the hopes that it will be versatile enough to fit the typical thoroughbreds.

                            In asking about more versatile tb type saddles, I'm hoping to find something that can be useful for the two I need to fit now as well as others that may come along. My County saddles are quite specific to the horses they were built for. As I mentioned before, I have a Perfection that works well for 2 horses. I also have a County Connection and a Childeric DAC that need to go as they don't add to the saddle I already have.

                            I've heard that Stubbens are good for the average tb. I'm also hearing that the Albion is quite forgiving. The older Stubbens I've ridden in seemed quite hard and the Albion I've ridden in had an uncomfortably wide twist. I will check out the Thornhill.

                            Thanks all!
                            -Ann

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              I think the Stubben Genesis with the biomex seat looks pretty interesting and can be found at a good price. The Thornhill Vienna II has good reviews and is inexpensive. I have one that fits my OTTB, but he is not typical..it is a 34cm. The leather is not as good as in the Passier. The Catherine Haddad Stubben is super cool, but still super expensive.

                              Comment

                              • Original Poster

                                #16
                                I have found a very reasonable Stubben Scandica DL. I recall many moons ago, riding in a Scandica and liking it. This one looks to be in very good shape. I have heard that the Stubbens fit the more TB types well and this one also has gusseted panels.

                                I've also found a Niedersuss Symphonie that looks good and is priced reasonably. But I've heard that these fit the more flat backed horses... which doesn't include my two guys.

                                I realize this is a stab in the dark. I just need to find something that will work across a few horses and is nice enough for showing.
                                -Ann

                                Comment


                                • #17
                                  There's really no "one fits all (or most)" saddle, though there are brands and models that work better for Tbs than others. However, without seeing the horse(s) in question, it's pretty much impossible to make recommendations, or to determine if one saddle is likely to fit both. Can you post photos, or links?
                                  Kitt Hazelton
                                  Saddle Fitter
                                  www.pantherrunsaddlery.com
                                  www.saddlefitter.blogspot.com

                                  Comment


                                  • #18
                                    Originally posted by Winding Down View Post
                                    Ah, I think you are wrong.
                                    But she's not wrong.

                                    The only time that sort of thing works reasonably well is when the horses are related to each other and are prone to being the same relative size and shape, or you just tend to purchase/ride horses who are similarly shaped.

                                    Saddles can fit a variety of horses "reasonably well", but if that were to be their long-term saddle, would most likely start causing problems because they don't fit well enough. That can be fine for the barn/rider where horses are coming and going on a regular basis, therefore aren't ridden for a year or more at a time in a saddle that fits well enough for the occasional ride but not well enough for a more permanent solution.

                                    Anyone can wear sneakers that fit "well enough" for a period of time, but if they don't REALLY fit well, they WILL start causing problems.

                                    That said, the saddle that is a true wide, that isn't either too flat or too curvy, is what you have to look for. The narrow horse can take a bit more padding. The horse who is curvier than the saddle can have a little shimming done in the middle. The horse who is a bit flatter than the saddle is probably going to be ok.
                                    ______________________________
                                    The CoTH CYA - please consult w/your veterinarian under any and all circumstances. - ET

                                    Comment


                                    • #19
                                      I think it depends on your definition of "reasonably well." IMO, if you have to shim and pad excessively, that means the saddle doesn't fit reasonably well. If you have to add a shim here or there to compensate for a minor inconsistency, that saddle could be said to fit reasonably well. JB's point about sneakers fitting well enough is spot-on to me.
                                      Kitt Hazelton
                                      Saddle Fitter
                                      www.pantherrunsaddlery.com
                                      www.saddlefitter.blogspot.com

                                      Comment

                                      • Original Poster

                                        #20
                                        Originally posted by JB View Post
                                        But she's not wrong.

                                        The only time that sort of thing works reasonably well is when the horses are related to each other and are prone to being the same relative size and shape, or you just tend to purchase/ride horses who are .....
                                        The two horses I want to share the saddle are similar. I thought I said this. Both tb types with moderate withers. They both fit very well in a medium tree Pessoa jump saddle.
                                        -Ann

                                        Comment

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