• Welcome to the Chronicle Forums.
    Please complete your profile. The forums and the rest of www.chronofhorse.com has single sign-in, so your log in information for one will automatically work for the other. Disclaimer: The opinions expressed here are the views of the individual and do not necessarily reflect the views and opinions of The Chronicle of the Horse.



Forum rules and no-advertising policy

As a participant on this forum, it is your responsibility to know and follow our rules. Please read this message in its entirety.

Board Rules

1. You’re responsible for what you say.
As outlined in Section 230 of the Communications Decency Act, The Chronicle of the Horse and its affiliates, as well Jelsoft Enterprises Ltd., the developers of vBulletin, are not legally responsible for statements made in the forums.

This is a public forum viewed by a wide spectrum of people, so please be mindful of what you say and who might be reading it—details of personal disputes are likely better handled privately. While posters are legally responsible for their statements, the moderators may in their discretion remove or edit posts that violate these rules. Users have the ability to modify or delete their own messages after posting, but administrators generally will not delete posts, threads or accounts upon request.

Outright inflammatory, vulgar, harassing, malicious or otherwise inappropriate statements and criminal charges unsubstantiated by a reputable news source or legal documentation will not be tolerated and will be dealt with at the discretion of the moderators.

2. Conversations in horse-related forums should be horse-related.
The forums are a wonderful source of information and support for members of the horse community. While it’s understandably tempting to share information or search for input on other topics upon which members might have a similar level of knowledge, members must maintain the focus on horses.

3. Keep conversations productive, on topic and civil.
Discussion and disagreement are inevitable and encouraged; personal insults, diatribes and sniping comments are unproductive and unacceptable. Whether a subject is light-hearted or serious, keep posts focused on the current topic and of general interest to other participants of that thread. Utilize the private message feature or personal email where appropriate to address side topics or personal issues not related to the topic at large.

4. No advertising in the discussion forums.
Posts in the discussion forums directly or indirectly advertising horses, jobs, items or services for sale or wanted will be removed at the discretion of the moderators. Use of the private messaging feature or email addresses obtained through users’ profiles for unsolicited advertising is not permitted.

Company representatives may participate in discussions and answer questions about their products or services, or suggest their products on recent threads if they fulfill the criteria of a query. False "testimonials" provided by company affiliates posing as general consumers are not appropriate, and self-promotion of sales, ad campaigns, etc. through the discussion forums is not allowed.

Paid advertising is available on our classifieds site and through the purchase of banner ads. The tightly monitored Giveaways forum permits free listings of genuinely free horses and items available or wanted (on a limited basis). Items offered for trade are not allowed.

Advertising Policy Specifics
When in doubt of whether something you want to post constitutes advertising, please contact a moderator privately in advance for further clarification. Refer to the following points for general guidelines:

Horses – Only general discussion about the buying, leasing, selling and pricing of horses is permitted. If the post contains, or links to, the type of specific information typically found in a sales or wanted ad, and it’s related to a horse for sale, regardless of who’s selling it, it doesn’t belong in the discussion forums.

Stallions – Board members may ask for suggestions on breeding stallion recommendations. Stallion owners may reply to such queries by suggesting their own stallions, only if their horse fits the specific criteria of the original poster. Excessive promotion of a stallion by its owner or related parties is not permitted and will be addressed at the discretion of the moderators.

Services – Members may use the forums to ask for general recommendations of trainers, barns, shippers, farriers, etc., and other members may answer those requests by suggesting themselves or their company, if their services fulfill the specific criteria of the original post. Members may not solicit other members for business if it is not in response to a direct, genuine query.

Products – While members may ask for general opinions and suggestions on equipment, trailers, trucks, etc., they may not list the specific attributes for which they are in the market, as such posts serve as wanted ads.

Event Announcements – Members may post one notification of an upcoming event that may be of interest to fellow members, if the original poster does not benefit financially from the event. Such threads may not be “bumped” excessively. Premium members may post their own notices in the Event Announcements forum.

Charities/Rescues – Announcements for charitable or fundraising events can only be made for 501(c)(3) tax-exempt organizations. Special exceptions may be made, at the moderators’ discretion and direction, for board-related events or fundraising activities in extraordinary circumstances.

Occasional posts regarding horses available for adoption through IRS-registered horse rescue or placement programs are permitted in the appropriate forums, but these threads may be limited at the discretion of the moderators. Individuals may not advertise or make announcements for horses in need of rescue, placement or adoption unless the horse is available through a recognized rescue or placement agency or government-run entity or the thread fits the criteria for and is located in the Giveaways forum.

5. Do not post copyrighted photographs unless you have purchased that photo and have permission to do so.

6. Respect other members.
As members are often passionate about their beliefs and intentions can easily be misinterpreted in this type of environment, try to explore or resolve the inevitable disagreements that arise in the course of threads calmly and rationally.

If you see a post that you feel violates the rules of the board, please click the “alert” button (exclamation point inside of a triangle) in the bottom left corner of the post, which will alert ONLY the moderators to the post in question. They will then take whatever action, or no action, as deemed appropriate for the situation at their discretion. Do not air grievances regarding other posters or the moderators in the discussion forums.

Please be advised that adding another user to your “Ignore” list via your User Control Panel can be a useful tactic, which blocks posts and private messages by members whose commentary you’d rather avoid reading.

7. We have the right to reproduce statements made in the forums.
The Chronicle of the Horse may copy, quote, link to or otherwise reproduce posts, or portions of posts, in print or online for advertising or editorial purposes, if attributed to their original authors, and by posting in this forum, you hereby grant to The Chronicle of the Horse a perpetual, non-exclusive license under copyright and other rights, to do so.

8. We reserve the right to enforce and amend the rules.
The moderators may delete, edit, move or close any post or thread at any time, or refrain from doing any of the foregoing, in their discretion, and may suspend or revoke a user’s membership privileges at any time to maintain adherence to the rules and the general spirit of the forum. These rules may be amended at any time to address the current needs of the board.

Please see our full Terms of Service and Privacy Policy for more information.

Thanks for being a part of the COTH forums!

(Revised 1/26/16)
See more
See less

Tell me your Antares horror stories!

  • Filter
  • Time
  • Show
Clear All
new posts

  • Tell me your Antares horror stories!

    I've been a longtime fan of Antares. I just love them, they're comfortable, they fit me well, and they fit my horse well.

    The problem? I've had two with broken trees. This appears to either be a trend (based on the info I've seen on the forum), or the few people that it has happened to have been very vocal about it. The second time it happened I wanted to blame it on my horse taking a fall off of a jump, but to be honest, it was making the dreaded squeaking noise prior to that and I just didn't want to admit it to myself because of my loyalty to the brand.

    I have been on a horse hiatus for the last few years (in which I sold my saddle), but I just got my horse back from a lease. Now the journey of saddle shopping starts. I have never bought used before, but finances necessitate it at this time.

    Are the Antares really becoming that unreliable? I found one almost identical to my old custom, but now I'm scared to buy it. I also found a very nice demo CWD for a good price from CWD, and they say purchase comes with the "perks" of buying new (as in free adjustments if necessary and a free girth or leathers). I'm leaning towards the CWD.

    Please tell me your Antares horror stories so I feel better about my potential decision of abandonment.

  • #2
    I have nothing, I love mine it will be 3 in May. No complaints about anything.


    • Original Poster

      Originally posted by akstaj View Post
      I have nothing, I love mine it will be 3 in May. No complaints about anything.
      My first one didn't break until it was 4, then "POP" landing off a jump. Broken tree head!

      Good luck!

      No but seriously, I'm sure most of them are fine. I probably just had bad luck and I'm looking for justification. Lol


      • #4
        My only problem has been with the rep, too eager to sell and when saddle did not fit properly, very hard to get out to check the fit and then no options but to trade in or spend more money on different pannels. Done with foam saddles


        • #5
          I had an entirely different saddle problem with Antares but the way they dealt with it (or I should say, tried NOT to deal with it) left a very sour taste in my mouth. I did end up getting a refund - finally - but would not purchase from them again.

          I know quite a few people who have CWDs and love them. I don't think you could go wrong there.
          We move pretty fast for some rabid garden snails.


          • #6
            I also had a bad experience with Antares which is detailed somewhere around the forums as it was a multi-month, multi-page affair. I like the saddles, but I can't say much for the service. And now that I'm hearing about more and more broken trees, I don't know that I like the saddles, either.
            "I'm not always sarcastic. Sometimes I'm asleep." - Harry Dresden

            Amy's Stuff - Rustic chic and country linens and decor
            Support my mom! She's gotta finance her retirement horse somehow.


            • #7
              I had broken tree horror stories as well... And my saddle disappeared for 6 months at one point... Oh and they put calf skin panels on my buffalo saddle.. The whole thing was a mess. Love my saddle but unfortunately the other problems outweigh it, and I will not purchase another one again.


              • #8
                Although I love my now 10 year old Antares that, by the way, still looks fabulous, my allegiance changed over the winter to Superior Saddlery after I had to spend $800 to get my Antares to fit my horse (needed entirely new panels). Wasn't really Antares' fault, as I bought the saddle used, but the overall style of the panels on the Antares when I bought it was such that I was told it wouldn't really fit any horse ever, much less my TB mare. (Only about a thumb's width between the panels, overall balance tipped the saddle forward.)

                After my saddle went to Superior Saddlery, it fit as close to a dream as I could possibly get without spending $6,000 on a new custom.

                Any saddle purchases I make in the future will be from SS.

                Actually had no problems with Antares customer service, surprisingly. I emailed them about the fit issue on the email from their main website, and was called by one of their fitters (NOT a rep) within an hour. He came out, looked at my horse, didn't charge me because my trainer is sponsored, and gave me a solution to my problem that WORKED and was within my budget.

                *shrugs* Not bad, Antares, not bad.

                If you like the CWD, get it. I tend to think (now I may be imagining this) that the older (so pre-2005) Antares are substantially heavier and more durable than the newer ones (when I pick up mine and then pick up a friend's that is from '08ish on, mine feels heavier), so maybe they were using a different leather supplier and/or tree material? But I don't know, this is speculation.


                • #9
                  The tree on my 4yr old antares started squeaking one day. It somehow broke. Trying to get ahold of antares to fix the problem took months and trying to get them to resolve the issue was even worse! I still haven't gotten my saddle back!! While I love their saddles, I won't buy another antares again. The customer service is just awful.


                  • #10
                    Ugh. My Antares issues are well documented on COTH, but here is the short version:

                    1. Bought saddle. It was squeaking when I tried it with the rep there, and he claimed it was just the leather (which would have made sense since the leather was new).

                    2. A few months later, the squeaking is worse. I begin to suspect broken tree. After much harassing of the rep, I send the saddle to HITS, they have a saddler open it, and, yes, it is broken at the pommel. They send my saddle to France. It is gone for 6 months. They send me a used saddle to ride in in the meantime - it ALSO has a broken tree at the pommel - same break as my saddle had (I noticed it right out of the box and never put it on my horse). Rep comes to pick that one up and I show him where it is broken. They send me a new saddle that supposedly has the same specs as my own saddle. It isn't even close to the same and does not fit my horse at all. SO, I wait for my saddle to come back. Antares did give me some leather strap-type goods to compensate me for my troubles, which was nice.

                    3. Saddle comes back. They have changed the billet configuration, which they were not supposed to do, but I don't care. I ship back the other non-fitting saddle (which I was never able to use anyway). I ride in my recently-fixed saddle for the next, oh, two years or so.

                    4. Antares calls me asking where one of the two saddles they sent me to ride in while mine was being fixed is. WHAT? I never did figure out which one they were looking for, but one was picked up by a rep and one was shipped back. I explain to Antares that both saddles were LONG ago returned to the company and that one was broken so perhaps that one is missing because they scrapped the piece of garbage. They never return my call, and never bring it up again.

                    5. After about 2 1/2 years of having my saddle back, the NEW tree breaks, this time at the "waist" (under the seat area). Unbelievable! Get that one fixed (still under warranty), and then sell it. Attempted to get the company to buy the piece of crap back from me at the FMV if it was not broken, but they were complete asses about it - actually suggested that it might be my riding or my weight or something that is causing the trees to break (Yeah, good call, idiot. I've been riding my whole life, and I'm 5'6" and 130 lbs. - I'm not sure what they think I could possibly do to break trees this often - and in two different places no less!).

                    Anyway, I HATE the company and will never do business with them again. EVER.


                    • #11
                      Originally posted by Griffin View Post
                      My only problem has been with the rep, too eager to sell and when saddle did not fit properly
                      I don't have a "horror story," but this ^ was my experience. I liked the saddle for myself, but it didn't fit my horse at all. The rep seemed to just shrug it off and be like "oh we can just take some off the panel here and no problem" (which I was having trouble visualizing what he was talking about). Was a little too sketchy for me.
                      Originally posted by rustbreeches
                      [George Morris] doesn't always drink beer, but when he does, he prefers Dos Equis


                      • #12
                        Not a fan of Antares or CWD.


                        • #13
                          If you have the money for new, & a fabulous rep (who is not leaving/transferring for the duration of your tree warranty), then give it a go as you l.o.v.e the saddle.

                          If you find a used saddle that still has at least 3 years remaining on the tree warranty & a fabulous local rep, give it a go as you l.o.v.e the saddle.
                          (make sure to inspect the tree before buying, I supect it is much easier for the original purchaser to get a response from the company).

                          If any part of the "fabulous local rep" is missing, buy an Antares only if you can afford to replace tree/panels etc & have an alternate saddle to use while your beloved Antares is away in Repair Land ...

                          My kid loves Antares saddles - they just fit ... HER
                          - the equine part, not at all, he'd need a lot of tree/panel adjustments, and the rep is not exactly local, the company has NO demo saddles that would fit during any of the we'll fix that for you scenarios, after everything I read about Antares Customer Service, & then the "faulty tree" shipment (heartily denied by the very nice, very surprised no-so-local rep ), even the lovestruck kid decided Antares was not for her

                          Now if you have The Horse for which Antares designs their tree (& panels - unless panel replacement is in your budget), buy that nice, used Antares with the newly inspected tree & minimum 3yr tree warranty (& put aside $$ every month for a potential tree replacement). Insist that the rep bring you a replacement saddle that fits (remember you have The Horse so this should be simple enough ...) before you ship yours out for repair - keep a paper trail of everything etc, etc.


                          • #14
                            trees breaking after only 4 years of use? What the heck is up with that. That is just downright pitiful. Buy a saddle that will last you a long time!


                            • #15
                              I got mine last year, no issues so far but I'll make sure I get it checked asap if it starts squeaking!


                              • #16
                                My saddle rule is "stay away from anything foam filled and French."

                                Then again, I prefer having a qualified Master Saddle Fitter (takes three years minimum to get certified) drive to my place, give me several different brands and options to test ride, custom build what my horse and I need, and then hand deliver and personally ensure the fit (as opposed to just mailing), for half the money.

                                Really puts spending $4.5k for something that is not adjustable that a single-brand, uncertified rep sends me via a box into perspective.
                                The Noodlehttp://tiny.cc/NGKmT&http://tiny.cc/gioSA
                                Boy Wonderhttp://tiny.cc/G9290
                                The Hana is nuts! NUTS!!http://tinyurl.com/SOCRAZY


                                • #17
                                  Originally posted by bluebuckets View Post
                                  the overall style of the panels on the Antares when I bought it was such that I was told it wouldn't really fit any horse ever, much less my TB mare. (Only about a thumb's width between the panels, overall balance tipped the saddle forward.)
                                  This is, shockingly, what happens when you take a universal set of foam panels and slap them on something that is designed to have as narrow a twist as possible, because riders (ie the "checkbook controllers") go on and on and on about narrow twists and the horses, whose spines are X UNITS WIDE (which is physically impossible to accomodate with stirrup bars that are X-3 units apart and that's just how it is), can't talk.

                                  This is a common problem among various brands of the "foam filled and french" persuasion but they are selling to people who honestly believe that their saddle fits everything they ride, despite the fact that pretty much universally the gullet is way too narrow and the panels are far to A-angled (more narrowness for the rider!), not to mention the total and universal absence of gussets.

                                  However, options like "front gussets" and "rear gussets," to say nothing of K panels or Trapezius panels, or having different tree SHAPES for low, regular, and high witherered horses, while tremendously improving your fitting options across the spectrum of equines, mean you can't just slap the same cookie cutter set of panels on the same tree that varies only in seat size and possssssibly slightly in width (but not shape!), and it is cheaper instead to just make the same exact thing and sell it for $4,500 over and over again and send it to people in a box.
                                  The Noodlehttp://tiny.cc/NGKmT&http://tiny.cc/gioSA
                                  Boy Wonderhttp://tiny.cc/G9290
                                  The Hana is nuts! NUTS!!http://tinyurl.com/SOCRAZY


                                  • #18
                                    While I agree with a lot of what meup says about the "French custom" saddles (which often end up being more semi-custom) I do have to plug Devoucoux here- he loves their standard tree, which is why I called Devoucoux in the first place, but the rep really listened to my explanation of what the horse likes and paid very good attention to the horse's body. Foam panels, yes, but foam panels that were custom-fitted to the horse (on-site at one point, by one of their master saddlers.) Wide gullet, a trapezius panel, and what mvp called at one point a "cathedral-style" pommel that comes absolutely nowhere close to his withers. Now, that saddle doesn't fit any other horse on this planet! But it fits mine.

                                    Prior to the Dev I had an Antares, purchased used. It was a good fit at the time I bought it (Julian was great!) but as my horse's topline developed, it was no longer a good match. I thought I needed basically the same thing but with a few tweaks to the panels. What I wanted and what came in the box were two totally different things, and what came in the box didn't even remotely fit. The rep suggested a few adjustments that made it clear he'd failed geometry class.
                                    "I'm not always sarcastic. Sometimes I'm asleep." - Harry Dresden

                                    Amy's Stuff - Rustic chic and country linens and decor
                                    Support my mom! She's gotta finance her retirement horse somehow.


                                    • #19
                                      We have had at least three Antares in our barn that developed a substantial twist towards the left (i.e., the front of the right flap is 1.5-2" in front of the left flap). I talked to a rep down at Thermal, and he said that sometimes a bolt (?) that holds the tree parts together comes off, but that it wasn't worth it to have the saddle fixed, just buy a new one. My saddle was about 10 years old when I noticed it, but the others were only a couple years old. There was no "pop" and no squeaking, so I don't know if the tree broke or something just came apart. So then I bought a CWD, but I never seemed to get it broken in during the 5 months I rode in it. I bought a new horse who hated that CWD (but loves my trainer's CWD) and I eventually ended up with a used Antares Spooner that the horse liked. It's held up ok so far.


                                      • #20
                                        And all I ever owned were "cheap" saddles (Crosby, Ainsley, Collegiate, - etc) and never had a tree twist or break on me. I couldn't imagine spending so much money, to only have to junk the thing after a few years.

                                        APPSOLUTE CHOCKLATE - Photo by Kathy Colman