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Devoucoux vs CWD

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  • Devoucoux vs CWD

    Looking for a new custom saddle, any good/bad experiences with these companies?! Can't decide between the two. Thanks!!

  • #2
    what about Butet or Delgrange? Better leather quality, the cwd and esp. devoucoux tend to look old pretty quickly.


    • #3
      I love my Antares.


      • #4
        The first Devoucoux I bought (a Socoa) fit properly but did not hold up well at all. Yes, it was full calf - but so is my Butet and frankly, the Butet is still in good shape after 6 years whereas the Devoucoux looked trashed after 2 despite very attentive care. Tried to buy another Socoa to replace it, this time in full buffalo to deal with the wear issue. It was a NIGHTMARE. All they had to do was copy my existing Socoa - I wanted the same specs - but in buffalo. They could not produce one and the service S*CKED.

        They sent me 3 different saddles over the course of nearly a year, none of which came anywhere *close* to fitting my horse. Even their rep admitted they were screwed up, and was deeply embarrassed. I am convinced that they just sent me whatever they had lying around as none of the 3 bore any resemblance to the beat-up but good fitting original.

        At the time, I shared my experience here with their crummy service (for example, the "customer service" rep who had caller ID and who simply avoided my calls... answering immediately when I called from a friend's cell phone or the time that they suggested that I wait until they returned from WEF three months later to take a look at one of the bad-fitting saddles they sent me after missing two other delivery "deadlines.")

        After I posted, a lot of other COTHers chimed in that they had had similar bad experiences so I know I am not the only one who had a hard time with this company. Based on that experience, I will never spend another penny with them.

        I have a friend with a CWD that she absolutely loves and she raves about their great service. I've never ridden in one myself but would definitely check them out if I were in the market again. Right now I am riding in a Butet that fits my horse like a glove; I've also had good luck with Antares and will mention that their customer service is first class - so they might be a good option also.
        We move pretty fast for some rabid garden snails.


        • Original Poster

          Thanks for the posts so far everybody! I have had a Beval before and LOVED it and wish I could get another one. My problem is that both me and my horse are rather difficult fits so I've decided to go custom. Keep the comments coming!


          • #6
            Personally, I am a County fan, however, I do have a pair of CWD open fronts and they are lovely! My vote would be for CWD from those choices.
            "To do something that you feel in your heart that's great, you need to make a lot of mistakes. Anything that is successful is a series of mistakes." -B.J. Armstrong


            • #7
              I have had 3 Devoucouxs in the past, and they were great saddles, but wore out fairly quickly. Two of mine were custom made, and the service I had was great. The dealer/rep who came out to take measurements for me was extremely helpful and delivery was prompt.

              However, I have a Butet now and I think it is worth it's weight in gold. I wouldn't sell it for anything. I have not found a horse it has not fit well from ponies to slab-sided TBs to my thick, massive, Irish Sport Horses, and the leather has held up extremely well even though I have put it through hell and back. The Devoucouxs wore out after 2 years and did not hold up their resale value, even with diligent care, and did not fit everything I rode, although they did fit a majority of them.

              I did love my Devoucouxs and found them to be extremely comfortable. I picked them over CWDs and a slew of other saddles that I tried. However, my Butet is like my life. Best saddle I have ever had hands down.


              • #8
                The horse I've been riding goes in a custom CWD, and it's great. Fits him like a glove, even with his wonky shoulders and is really comfortable. Seems to be holding up well, it's a few years old but still looks really nice. Can't comment on their cust. service, since I wasn't involved with the ordering/fitting process, but from a saddle standpoint, would love to have my own!
                You can't fix stupid.... but you can breed it!


                • #9
                  I LOVE my butet too, I've never seen saddles age so well, and they fit my horses incredibly well. I like the fact that they aren't overly padded like certain other saddles, and are alot lighter. I also really like the close contact you have with the horse. For customer service I can't really say, since I'm in France, I do however know the person in charge of Butet in the US, he's great, in France the service is awesome


                  • #10
                    If its between those 2.... try them both and see what YOU like best. Both are nice higher end saddles. I have a Devoucoux, but have ridden in the CWD's.

                    I "personally" liked the devoucoux better for my horses (it fits both my horses quite well, they are both TB's and have different builds) and I liked it better for jumping (I do the 3'6 hunters so didnt need a TON of blocks...seemed to have the perfect amount of support).

                    However, I tried a CWD on my old warmblood, and it fit him great. Maybe it was just this particular saddle, but it felt a little "wider or bulkier" to me, not quite as narrow as the devoucoux. Wasnt the perfect fit for me (flaps too forward and blocks too big) but if the saddle fit me better, I would have probably bought it when I did the jumpers, felt like it would have really locked you in well.

                    No comment so far on the wear of the devoucoux's as its still relatively new, but havent had problems yet. The customer service has been quite varied from people on this board, but I have only had positive experiences. I have heard CWD service is also good.


                    • #11
                      If your horse is hard to fit, I strongly recommend that you do NOT go with Devoucoux. They are notoriously unbalanced which is why you almost always see one with a lifter pad. They tend to rock and also be on the narrow side. I'm sure there are plenty of horses that they do fit, but 9 times out of 10 I've seen them not fit. It's a shame, because they are very comfortable to ride in... for the humans that is...

                      You have a better chance at getting the right fit with a wool flocked CWD or County. The wool flocked saddles are adjustable on the spot for fine tuning fit, which imo is paramount with hard to fit horses.

                      As for Butet, while I can see that a lot of people on this board like them, my personal experience has been that their trees are very narrow and cause many horses back soreness over time.

                      If you can find one, try an Amerigo Cervia. I have rarely seen one not fit a horse, and they are wool flocked which is a bonus. Not too deep, not too flat, very balanced too.
                      "I have never let my schooling interfere with my education." - Mark Twain


                      • #12
                        Iride, the Butets now offer a variety of trees. Mine is the older style and fits my current horse like a glove, but I recently tried one of the new FB2's and liked it very much also. It is definitely wider.
                        We move pretty fast for some rabid garden snails.


                        • #13
                          I have a devoucoux and am a HUGE fan of this saddle !!! i think i'm hoooked for life. that being said, i am also never planning to buy directly from the Devoucoux company because I've heard nightmares! (and way too many of them) I bought mine used from a saddle guy, who sells all devoucoux, at a horse show. I'm not sure if he is directly associated with them, though. The service was way too good for him to be one of their workers, I think, though. Plus his name was in bigger letters on his trailer than devoucoux His name is Jean-Michael. (at all the big east coast shows!)

                          I plan on always buying used (cheaper and no breaking in!)

                          So, if you NEED custom and new, go for CWD--if you try to go through the process with Devoucoux you're more likely than not to have a costly disaster. If you can deal with a great used saddle or a new non-custom, go ahead and get a Dev

                          I like CWD enough too, a friend has one and really likes it. Hers wasn't custom, though.

                          Blitz <3 & Leap of Faith <3


                          • #14
                            Originally posted by Lucassb View Post
                            The first Devoucoux I bought (a Socoa) fit properly but did not hold up well at all. Yes, it was full calf - but so is my Butet and frankly, the Butet is still in good shape after 6 years whereas the Devoucoux looked trashed after 2 despite very attentive care. Tried to buy another Socoa to replace it, this time in full buffalo to deal with the wear issue. It was a NIGHTMARE. All they had to do was copy my existing Socoa - I wanted the same specs - but in buffalo. They could not produce one and the service S*CKED.
                            That's very strange (the wear of your saddle part, not the nightmare of customer service)! I bought a used Socoa (full calfskin) 3 ago, and it's 10 yrs old according to the numbers on the flap. It's in awesome condition and has never been repaired or had the seat redone or anything, even with the past owner. and I haven't been the kindest to my saddle, i admit. It's been through multiple downpours. I dont clean it every day. I've gone weeks without cleaning it, too.
                            Last edited by superpony123; Aug. 22, 2009, 10:43 PM.

                            Blitz <3 & Leap of Faith <3


                            • #15
                              I have a CWD and absolutely adore it. Every Devoucoux that I have sat in puts me in a chair seat, which I obviously am not overly fond of. My saddle has been on just about any build you can think of - medium ponies to nearly 18 hand horses, wide horses, narrow horses, etc., and it fits all of them great. It's been through rain (think HITS Saugerties-style downpour) and looks just as good as it did when I bought it 3 years ago.
                              Proudly blogging for The Chronicle of the Horse!


                              • #16
                                I LOVE LOVE LOVE my devoucoux biarritz. I bought it used from the rep, and I only have good things to say about the service. She brought several different models/leathers out for me to try, and even lowered the price for me once I decided
                                That being said, if you have the money I'd go for a buffalo. They feel great...just a little out of my price range
                                However, mine is in great condition and I'm not really the most diligent caretaker. I think it's grain with calf seat and knee rolls.


                                • #17
                                  Love my Devoucoux Oldara. It's worn well. The customer service has been excellent. I needed it re-fit for a new horse. They had it done in 2-weeks and gave me a loaner to use while it was gone.


                                  • #18
                                    Originally posted by Iride View Post
                                    If your horse is hard to fit, I strongly recommend that you do NOT go with Devoucoux. They are notoriously unbalanced which is why you almost always see one with a lifter pad. They tend to rock and also be on the narrow side. I'm sure there are plenty of horses that they do fit, but 9 times out of 10 I've seen them not fit. It's a shame, because they are very comfortable to ride in... for the humans that is...
                                    You make an intersting point... I also noticed these problems with my Dev saddles. I LOVED my Devoucouxs because they were so darn comfortable (for me, not necessarily the horses), but once I started incorporating dressage in my work and my trainer noted I had some serious balance issues going on in my seat and legs... I realized that my saddle was wearing more on one side than on the other. It was either reflock or get a different saddle. That's when I tried everything from Antares to Countys to CWDs and ended up with my Butet. First time I rode in it felt like coming home, and that's the way it's felt ever since. No more balance issues, and the horses who I rode then who seemed to be sensitive in the back (most likely from the saddles) seemed much more comfortable and able to lift their backs.

                                    I disagree with you on the Butets, though. I have a medium tree and they fit all the types of horses and ponies I ride very well. The only horse/pony it hasn't fit on so far was a pot bellied 14.2 hh pony who had no wither. I don't think there was a saddle that would really fit him well. Had a saddle fitter check the fit on my current horses (they are both on the bulky side and 16.3 hh and 17.1 HH) and they fit pretty much perfectly.

                                    Also, as far as wear goes, I have to add that my first Devoucoux held up very well (it was used and I think about 3-5 years old when I got it... it was so long ago I can't remember). The two newer customs wore out very quickly. Then again, the older one didn't take quite as much of a beating as my newer ones.

                                    The CWDs I've ridden in felt kind of blocky and locked me into a certain position, but otherwise very comfortable. I'm sure you could make adjustments based on what blocks you have and such.


                                    • #19
                                      I LOVE my CWD. The most comfortable saddle I've ever sat in, even more than Devoucoux. It puts me in a fantastic position and fits my horse beautifully. The reps were delightful to work with all along the process.

                                      Can't say enough good things about the company or saddle!

                                      I loff my Quarter horse clique

                                      I kill threads dead!


                                      • #20
                                        I had a Devoucoux. Loved the leather (buffalo) and it was a beautiful saddle.
                                        I liked it fine.
                                        Then, after buying a new horse that the Devoucoux didn't fit, I switched to a CWD.
                                        LOVE IT. It puts me in a much better position - the moment I sat it in it I no longer felt like I was constantly fighting to keep myself in the correct position.

                                        I tried Antares, Butets, and a ton of other saddles and the CWD was just a better fit.

                                        My suggestion is to try out as many saddles as you can before deciding. Especially if you are going to get it custom fit for your horse.