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Saddles for short chicks: Recommendations?

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  • Saddles for short chicks: Recommendations?

    Please COTHers, I'm begging you....

    Here's my deal: I'm 5'2" with reasonable proportions...for a child! I want a close contact saddle with a fairly straight flap or really, a modest distance between the deepest point of the seat and the pocket your knee should reach.

    16.5 PdN-type saddles are fine. 16.5-ers with padded knee rolls (usually with deeper seats, forward flaps) not so much. My knee always behind the pocket. My favorite saddle of all time, however, is a 16 Crosby AGA Grand Prix. Won't fit the current beast, or any that's not pretty narrow. Can't believe I really ought to ride in a 16, as either my a$$ truly is big or I have spent my whole life thinking it is! The horse is not tough to fit, though he needs a wide-waisted saddle and some padding behind his scapulae.

    The only options I see currently are a County Stabilizer. I'm going to look into Black Countries, but I don't know if they'll make a true kiddie saddle for a check-writing grown-up. I'm both paranoid and cheap: I'd really like not to have to spend $3000 on a saddle when it's geometry seems so unusual that it's likely that I won't be able to ride in a demo of the exact saddle I'd actually buy.

    Any recommendations for off-the-rack options?

    Thanks so much! I'm sick of paying $100 in shipping each time I try.
    The armchair saddler
    Politically Pro-Cat

  • #2
    I had a trainer who was SHORT-- not even sure she was 5'. She had a Luc Childeric M. Worked well. I've also seen shorter folks in Beval saddles-- Butet and Devons. So while all off the rack options, I think the Devon is the only one not near 3k.

    Comment


    • #3
      Please do give Trumbull Mountain a call

      If you're paying $100 each shipping, you're getting ripped off, unless you're regularly shipping all the way across the country LOL It cost me $35 to ship my trial BC back to Trumbull.
      ______________________________
      The CoTH CYA - please consult w/your veterinarian under any and all circumstances. - ET

      Comment


      • #4
        Originally posted by mvp View Post
        Please COTHers, I'm begging you....

        Here's my deal: I'm 5'2" with reasonable proportions...for a child! I want a close contact saddle with a fairly straight flap or really, a modest distance between the deepest point of the seat and the pocket your knee should reach.

        16.5 PdN-type saddles are fine. 16.5-ers with padded knee rolls (usually with deeper seats, forward flaps) not so much. My knee always behind the pocket. My favorite saddle of all time, however, is a 16 Crosby AGA Grand Prix. Won't fit the current beast, or any that's not pretty narrow. Can't believe I really ought to ride in a 16, as either my a$$ truly is big or I have spent my whole life thinking it is! The horse is not tough to fit, though he needs a wide-waisted saddle and some padding behind his scapulae.
        I have the exact same problem. I've tried 3 or so saddles recently that have padded knee rolls, and they just don't fit right. So right now, I'm riding in an ancient saddle that belongs to the barn and is in need of some serious repair. But atleast it is foundationally good (kind of like those 'fixer-upper' houses). I'll make sure to report back to this thread with any developments in my search that might help you.



        Okay, so I just when and looked at the Dover Saddlery website and here is a saddles that doesn't look like it's cut all that far forward:

        http://www.doversaddlery.com/hermes-...1-15254/cn/92/
        Last edited by damecheval; Apr. 5, 2009, 12:14 AM. Reason: adding link

        Comment


        • #5
          I'm 5' and if I buy an adult size, I'm less than a 16" size. Seriously, I just buy childrens saddles. I used to have a pessoa childs size 15 3/4 and now I ride in the same size Crossby. Buying children's saddles is also cheaper!

          Comment


          • #6
            I'd go with a Butet or the Beval Salem- seen them in wee sizes and they are oh so cute. And nice.

            Comment


            • #7
              haha, I ride in a pessoa 15 3/4 I love it
              Moving at the Speed of Haflinger

              Comment

              • Original Poster

                #8
                Naming names

                Thanks for your suggestions so far.

                I think an Hermes will be too narrow for this horse or most modern ones. I'm buying for a grown man of a WB (16.1 1300#) but he's probably not the last horse I'll own.

                I have not sat in a Butet, but been skeered off by their fragile seats, price, curvy french trees, narrow gullets, foam panels, general hype. I'll pry open my little mind.

                Any of you tried a Crosby Centennial? I sat in a 16.5 wide tree, regular flap (I think) and I still felt like my knee was behind the pocket. I was surprised because this saddle looked like a good bet. It's foam panels were also too shallow for my horse and it rocked when I posted. Do these saddles really come flocked with wool as rumored? If so, how are the foam- and wool-flocked saddles named so we can tell them apart?

                Finally, are you Pessoa peeps happy with your 16 inchers? My trainer's 17" GenX doesn't hurt my horse. I'm not a Pessoa fan, but they do seem to fit many horses. Do I need to re-open my mind to these saddles too? In which case, which models do y'all like?

                If you have saddlers you especially like, I'm open to those ideas, too. Anyone had good luck with Kate Athanas?

                Thanks so much!
                The armchair saddler
                Politically Pro-Cat

                Comment


                • #9
                  Originally posted by Ready2Ride View Post
                  haha, I ride in a pessoa 15 3/4 I love it
                  Yeah, second best saddle I have! Besides my Crosby 15 3/4 saddle, that pessoa is my favorite. Perfect for the vertically challenged!

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    I tried an Antares Spooner and I quite liked it. It's reasonably priced, and you can order any seat/flap configuration - sounds like you could use a 17 seat and a 0 flap. I have also seen a lot of used Antares customs with a 16.5/0 combination.

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Originally posted by mvp View Post

                      Any of you tried a Crosby Centennial? I sat in a 16.5 wide tree, regular flap (I think) and I still felt like my knee was behind the pocket.
                      I rode my horse in one a few times. It wasn't nearly as bad as the other saddles, but my knee was still a little bit behind the pocket, too.

                      I did a little more looking around after what some other people said about riding in child's saddles and I found one made for children and petite riders. Not sure if it'll be wide enough for your horse, though. But if you're near a good tack shop, I'd give them a call and see if they have a saddle fitter that works with them.

                      http://www.doversaddlery.com/product...&ids=930467407

                      Comment

                      • Original Poster

                        #12
                        And I live in the Sticks!

                        Thanks for all your suggestions so far. I live in the Boonies and I have just about exhausted the supply of saddles near me. The issues just pile up, don't they?

                        One more question: I know that a wide tree ought to be a wide tree in any seat size. But do you guys riding in 16-inchers find that to be true? The saddle still needs to fit a horse-size horse. Also, do you worry about having a smaller total surface area for the panels that come from a smaller seat size? I'd like to spread my weight out as much as I can over my horse's back.

                        I know I'm getting a bit technical here. But I'd like to get this saddle so right that I don't have to go shopping again any time soon.

                        Anyone else have some off the beaten path suggestions or a favorite saddle company they work with?

                        I will call Trumball Mountain for sure.
                        The armchair saddler
                        Politically Pro-Cat

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          I have a short friend who rides in a Crosby Centennial and loves it.

                          I'm 4'10 1/2" and I have a child's saddle--a Stubben Rex. Since it's made for small children on fat ponies, it works well for me and my wide QH. I use it for some lessons as well; it fits the wider horses but I can't usually use it for a narrower horse. (Which is one of the many reasons I prefer ponies.) When I can't use my own saddle, I borrow an old Lancers from the barn, which I also actually like a lot. I'm not sure what size it is but it fits me very well and feels like my old Crosby PDN.
                          "Remain relentlessly cheerful."

                          Graphite/Pastel Portraits

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            I'm short - 5'2" as well although I needed a bigger seat than you. After trying MANY saddles - I wound up with the new Bates Next Generation Elevation - FABULOUS saddle - can't say enough good things about it!!
                            http://www.backontrackdocumentary.com/albie/

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              I am 5'2" on a good day. My horse is 16.3h. I currently ride in a 16" Beval Devon and like it a lot. It fits my horse just fine. It is also significantly less expensive than the Butet. The 5'8" eq riders still giggle (in good humor) at my "pony saddle" Good luck in your search

                              Comment


                              • #16
                                Originally posted by mvp View Post
                                One more question: I know that a wide tree ought to be a wide tree in any seat size.
                                Well, you have to understand that "wide" in Brand A can be a medium in Brand B and an XW in Brand C. It all depends on where they take their measurement on the raw tree, how long the points are, and how much padding/flocking ends up on the underside.

                                But do you guys riding in 16-inchers find that to be true? The saddle still needs to fit a horse-size horse.
                                This may be a problem. However, I've seen many pony saddles that are made for the tub-a-lubs so *seem* to be wider than you'd think.

                                Also, do you worry about having a smaller total surface area for the panels that come from a smaller seat size? I'd like to spread my weight out as much as I can over my horse's back.
                                Good for you Yes, you would need to worry about surface area. No matter if a pony is wide, he's still got less back than many horses.

                                I know I'm getting a bit technical here. But I'd like to get this saddle so right that I don't have to go shopping again any time soon.
                                IMHO, it's hard to get too too technical Your horse will thank you 1000 times for taking the time now

                                I will call Trumball Mountain for sure.
                                Yay! Stupendous people. I see no reason why a Black Country can't be made in a 16
                                ______________________________
                                The CoTH CYA - please consult w/your veterinarian under any and all circumstances. - ET

                                Comment


                                • #17
                                  I am a little taller but have VERY short legs (have to have custom leathers!) My PJ fits me great.
                                  www.signaturesporthorses.com

                                  Comment


                                  • #18
                                    Another vote of encouragement for you to try the Beval saddles. If you don't want to spend a fortune, I'd try the Devon or the Salem first, although I have to admit that my Butet is the most comfortable saddle I've ever ridden in.

                                    I am 5'3" and relatively short from hip to knee (and to make things more challenging, I am *long* from knee to ankle, *sigh*...) I bought an Antares for my (big) horse's sake and it's lovely, but every once in a while I ride in the old Butet just to indulge myself. My leg just naturally wraps around the horse, I can *feel* the horse underneath me... it's fabulous Happy shopping!
                                    **********
                                    We move pretty fast for some rabid garden snails.
                                    -PaulaEdwina

                                    Comment

                                    • Original Poster

                                      #19
                                      More on fit....

                                      I know I'm bordering on high maintenance here, but...

                                      To fit this horse or any legitimately horse-sized animal, the gullet needs to be wide enough. The panels also need to be the right shape and material, hence my paranoia about foam flocked Pessoas, Bevals, and even Bates saddles.

                                      But I will look into kiddie-sized Butets and Devons. For the latter, I think I'll have to get some callouses going in the nether regions. Sorry for the TMI, but you Devons fans might have to reassure me. While I love flat, pig-skin covered seats in theory, they aren't as comfy as modern calf-skin (and often wider) seats.

                                      This horse needs a wide-waisted saddle-- one where the narrowest part of the "hour glass" in the panels isn't too narrow. He's losing some muscle on his top line.

                                      For those of you riding in French-treed saddles, do you find that wides tend to roll from front to back? Also can you shorties riding in Anteres or CWDs actually get out of the seat. I bump into the pommel when I post or two-point in almost any saddle modeled after the Delgrange.

                                      I think part of my problem is that my heels drop like a mother, my horse is a Wide Load so I ride with longer stirrups and my thigh is pretty vertical when I'm "up" in even a soft two point or modest post.

                                      Thanks for listening at least. If anyone can make sense of all these requirements, I'm all ears.
                                      The armchair saddler
                                      Politically Pro-Cat

                                      Comment


                                      • #20
                                        Take a look on http://www.saddlesource.com/cc.asp

                                        You might find something that will work or at least get some more ideas
                                        Horse Show Names Free name website with over 6200 names. Want to add? PM me!

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