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Black Country

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  • Black Country

    Hello fellow horse peeps! I’ve had my eye on some used jump saddles and I would love some advice! I know the best way to decide is to sit in these saddles but that’s probably not an option as I live 5-10 hours away from a tack store. I am looking at a Black Country maelstrom, Black Country ricochet, Black Country quantum and a CWD se01. They are all around the same price, the cwd has a small tear where the seat meets the skirt so that’s definitely not ideal. My attraction to the Black Country is the ease of adjusting them to different horses because of the wool flocking. I am currently leasing a horse so it would be nice if I could at least try to use this saddle on my next horse when my ability level is ready for a step up. I’m 5’3” with very very short legs but I’m also a bit on the heavier side so I need a bigger seat. I’m only jumping 2’ right now so I’m not exactly an advanced rider but am wanting my own tack to feel a bit more secure in the saddle as the saddle I currently ride in is a bit slippery (a very old Stubben) and has a very very flat seat. Any opinions would be greatly appreciated!!

  • #2
    I have a Black Country Dressage saddle and I love it. The quality of workmanship is incredible and when I had it reflocked a few years ago to fit the changing shape of my horse, it was very easy. It is quite old now but it's in great condition. My brother used to be part of the development team for the handbag company, Coach, and when he saw my Black Country saddle, he thought the leather and workmanship were exceptional. He's not a horse person, but he thought the saddle was almost a work of art.


    • #3
      Love Black Country. I have a new Solare for the new horse, and have had the Quantum and Wexford. I also have the Eloquence dressage saddle and a monoflap for second horse. The quality and price are very good, and they fit my horses so well.


      • #4
        I have a Ricochet with wither gussets and it has been so useful on so many horses with those hollows behind the wither. The saddle is extremely well balanced, comfortable, and secure. I highly recommend.
        "Can you imagine what I would do if I could do all I can?" Sun Tzu


        • #5
          I have a BC Wexford. They are great saddles. Very well balanced, fit most horses very well.
          "Do what you can't do"


          • #6
            Echoing the other positive reviews - I have a Quantum and LOVE it.

            Since you mentioned currently riding in an older flat Stubben, I want to add that I had been riding in a very flat saddle before this. I got this one on trial, confirmed that it fit my horse and fit me, and bought it. I then had about two weeks of DEEP regret. I don't even remember the specific complaint I had, but it boiled down to being so different from the flat saddles I had been riding in. But my horse was happy, so I figured it would do until I found something better. Anyway, it took me a lot longer to adjust than I expected, but once I got used to it, it has been a fantastic saddle.


            • #7
              I bought a Tex Eventer used and it just does not work for me. The twist is a bit too wide for me. I do like the leather on the saddle and it is a quality saddle. I just am not a big fan of it personally.


              • #8
                I am fairly sure that Black Country builds on multiple trees, and there are some models that tend to work better on horses that have curvy backs (from front to back) and others that work better on flatter backs. So even though you can adjust the wool flocking, if you get the wrong basic tree shape for your horse, it's not going to be be a fit. Black Country also does a lot of custom builds so it is my understading that you can't really count on all the saddles with the same model name to fit or ride the same way.

                I own a BC GP Event saddle that a fitter declared an acceptable fit on a big shouldered TB with a lot of curve from front to back. It doesn't work at all on my flat backed lease mare. Last week, I took a lesson on a horse that went in a Black Country Ricochet that appeared almost identical to the GP Eventer - the only obvious difference was the square cantle. One thing I have noticed about the BC saddles that I have actually put my hands on is that they tend to be heavy relative to some other brands.


                • #9
                  The Maelstrom and Quantum are on the same tree. I prefer the Ricochet tree between your choices as I find it fits many more horses. It's a very popular saddle with horses and riders.


                  • #10
                    I own a BC jump saddle and I bought it used but the original owner told me it was custom made so a fusion of the ricochet and quantum. I use it for cross country and show jumping and have really enjoyed it. My 1989 collegiate finally bit the dust and this saddle came with the horse I bought. My horse is a draft cross so the wider bars and wool flocking are ideal as he changes and gets more fit. he does best in more of a U shaped tree as well.
                    when the world turns on you your horse will be there.


                    • #11
                      Love my Black County Saddles. Prefer my saddles to the high end saddles that are offered by local. Tack stores for collegiate horse shows. I like a wool flocked saddle. Dressage saddle has “serge” panels that mold to horse as the ride progresses that is really nice feeling.


                      • #12
                        Have an lovely older Quantum. Had it 6 years, has to be close to 20 years and the leather is in excellent condition. Fits my wide, but curvy TB's back very well. This one has a narrow twist, great balance. Highly recommend.

                        I also fell in love with the new Stubben Ascend and splurged on a new custom saddle. So now have to sell the BC, so good to see folks think highly of the brand.
                        You'll always miss 100% of the shots you don't take. - Wayne Gretsky


                        • #13
                          If I understand you right you are looking at purchasing your own saddle to help your riding right now and hoping to use the saddle on a horse you purchase.

                          I agree some of the old Stubbens were like riding on a pancake with stirrups. lol But if you buy a saddle there is no guarantee it will fit your current lease horse or you or your next horse. Yes, wool flocking makes the saddle adjustable but that is if it already more or less fits....a flat saddle will not fit a curvy back, etc

                          If you feel too slippery perhaps a sticky pair of breeches would help. It is quite possible the saddle you are using doesn't fit you or the horse.
                          Can you easily two point in your current saddle? If not it could be you need more core strength, or it could be the saddle doesn't fit you or the horse, both conditions would affect your stability in the saddle.

                          Is there any possibility of borrowing a different saddle, as many as possible, even if just to compare the feel and how you ride/feel secure in a different saddle?
                          My saddle is a BC and I love it! But I know from much searching, and trying on many saddles that what actually worked for me in a saddle was somewhat different from what I had thought. Flap length and twist are important.

                          Good luck