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Dressage saddles - Your Fav's and why Please


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#11 maryjo

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Posted 17 April 2009 - 12:07 PM

I am very fond of my Frank Baines saddles. I have 2 Dressage saddles 'Elegance' and a cc jumping saddle. The leather is great. Stitching is excellent. He makes them up to 37 cm wide as stock. So I have a really wide one for Shade and a narrower one.
MaryJo

#12 goldylace

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Posted 17 April 2009 - 12:24 PM

I don't like to buy any saddle new- not because I am cheap, but I love a saddle that has been broken in. new saddles, no matter what the brand, always seem too stiff, even after oiling them. Bridles I will buy new, but leather boots, again, how actually enjoys breaking them in! A flopped over pair that is all soft and worn in is perfect for me. I am a stubben girl all the way, as long as it fits. Mine only fits my narrower arabs, although it is a med. tree. Good luck with your search!

#13 ferio

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Posted 17 April 2009 - 12:37 PM

I absolutly LOVE my Passier. Its fits all my horses very well, from arab, to appendix quarter, to quarter/appy and my welsh pony. It fits me like a glove which is hard to do because I am only five foot.. My dressage is used and my moms close contact is used. Both fit a wide range of horses and us very very well. Honestly, if I could afford it I would only ride in a Passier. They also stand up to wear and tear very well, my moms was used, has been riding trails, endurance and shows in it for years and it looks practically brand new. New they are very expensive, but I found my 18, wide tree, dressage Passier on ebay for $300 and it's in great condition. Also Passiers generally don't have knee rolls and they also tend to be close contact whether it is listed or not. They are the most confortable, most contact saddle I have ever ridden in and would like to ride in no other. Good luck finding a saddle! If your in NY your welcome to come try my passier to see if you like the brand.
Leah
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#14 mhtokay

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Posted 17 April 2009 - 01:11 PM

there's an orthoflex (or ortho flex) dressage saddle on ebay right now. A friend has 2 of them and swears by them. She has a boarder borrowing one now for a sore backed Arab mare and she's like a new horse. My friend has a couple wide half Arabian Oldenburgs.

#15 PalmettoEquestrian

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Posted 17 April 2009 - 07:06 PM

Have you looked at any of the Duetts yet? I recently purchased a used Duett Encore, and they're so affordable!! These saddles are designed for flatter backed horses too, and the Encore is more of a CC Dressage saddle (that's what I prefer). At any rate, I like the way they fit my Arabs! smile.gif
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#16 Runswithhorses

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Posted 17 April 2009 - 09:06 PM

http://www.reactorpanel.com/

The Reactor Panel saddles are expensive but worth every penny. I bought mine slightly used. It is completely adjustable, unlike the Wintecs which are only adjustable in the front of the gullet, but you are stuck with the width behind. The Reactor Panel saddle comes in different tree widths, and then the panels can be moved for a custom fit. Their customer service is unbelievably first rate. The fitter I used bent over backwards to get my saddle right, and I bought a used saddle from a private sale. The quality of the leather is excellent, as is the workmanship. They are heavy, for Dressage saddles, but so well constructed. My saddle can be adjusted as my horse's body changes, or when I put it on another horse.

I got rid of my other Dressage saddles after buying this.
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#17 Equi

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Posted 20 April 2009 - 04:24 AM

A word of advise about adjustable trees: They are NOT meant to be adjusted all the time, only from time to time! Otherwise the mechanism will wear out.
I also have an older Passier (the uncomfy kind) that fits just about any horse, but I really like my Rembrandt (Classic Saddlery), with a wide tree and cutback. I just use a thicker/ extra pad on a more narrow horse.

#18 Dawn JL

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Posted 20 April 2009 - 04:51 AM

I am absolutely delighted with my Black Country Eloquence X. I actually own two --one for my stallion at the training barn and one to use with my other horses at home. The hoop tree and customized upswept panels give the saddle the right shape for my wide bodied, short backed, big moving Arabians. I had the flaps made to fit my leg and other customized leather options. Not only did I get the saddles made to order, but they were completed and shipped from England in less than three weeks!! (the second one got here just over two weeks after I placed the order!) The balance of the saddle puts me in a correct seat/leg position that feels effortless. After ten years of riding in an Ansur because --even with the assistance of an expert saddle fitter-- I could not find a saddle that fit my horses without pushing into their shoulders, I have a saddle that truly fits both me and the horses!!


Black Country
(scroll down to the Eloquence X ---different model from the Eloquence)

scroll down for info on fitting wide-bodied horses like many Arabians:
saddle fitting info

It is important to remember that individual riders will have different preferences in saddles due to factors like pelvic structure, leg length, body shape, etc. The preferred twist, seat depth, flap alignment, etc. will vary from rider to rider.
Dawn Jones-Low
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#19 windridge

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Posted 20 April 2009 - 08:37 AM

I have an extra wide ASC dressage saddle that I really like. I have used it on several horses and it has always seemed to fit well. I think it is very comfortable however I got a great deal on it (ebay) looks brand new but I think with the deep seat I probably needed to go a half size bigger, sometimes the buckles on the stirrup leathers bother me.
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#20 No Fear

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Posted 23 April 2009 - 08:16 PM

Greetings all! WOW! Thanks for all the responses and good advice. It' so difficult to find that " perfect saddle " that fits the sweet spot for both horse and rider. hehehe... After 18 + years of riding in my old cloth Wintec which fits me like a glove and more importantly, fits nearly every type of back configuration imaginable. The quest to find a suitable replacement to show in has become a nightmare. There is so much to consider when the comfort of the horse is paramont to any discipline. I have quite a collection of saddles - Pessoa, Coubette, Crosby, Wintec, Bates, Jeffries, Stubben and now a new one that I just purchased on ebay. It is a Cliff Barnsby Hunt seat. Lovely older near excellant condition with a Full cut back head, close contact and short flaps. Fits me like a glove.. BUT, it is not a Dressage saddle. So the search continues. Every one who responded has added to my knowledge of what brands may suit me or not.
Kelly - Glad you like your Albion the only one I ever sat in hurt like ######. Was stiff and forced me into a weird position. I hated it! Couldn't have gave it to me for free. Could be just that particular model...seems like they are the kind of love or hate saddle, heheheh I agree about the Barnsb and Subben saddles being high quality.
Beth - Thanks for the info on Middleberg Tack exchange. I too love the Crosby.
Danielle - I'm currently " watching " a few Kieffer's on ebay. Thanks for the heads up on that .
Tam Cam - I've considered the HDR saddle. Still undecided...
Shana - Thanks for the great advice about Tack review. I refer to them a lot.
Baslet - also watching Klimke -Miller on ebay. Thanks
Mary Jo - Frank Baines more than I can afford until I sell some saddles I've been collecting hehehe
Goldlace - You are a girl after my own heart. I do prefer to buy used. It's something about getting a bargain that excites me...
Leah- Another girl after my own heart - EVERY saddle I like ends up being the Passier!!! Probably because of the sleek close contact classic design that I covet. If you ever want to sell yours let me know ASAP. Afraid to come visit, probably be tempted to steal that saddle for ya. heheh Love upper state NY even considered buying a farm there, but can't deal with snow. I'm a native Floridian, but big thanks for the offer.
mhtokay - Orthoflex I'm watching that one too. Sounds like a good saddle.Thanks
Cold Spring farm - Thanks for the great info and links. The Ansur is a hard and cold looking design. In theory it sounds likea real solution to many fitting problems. I heard a lot of endurance people are finding problems with heat build up? I have always wanted to try one though. I do like the Torsion saddle my friend has.
Dawn JL - Heya, you're on the Arab Conform group right? I've heard great raves on the Black County saddles, but again way out of my price range.
Kirsten - are you also the poster on Arab Conform? Are you happy with the construction and leather quality of the Laser? I didn't realize that adjustable saddles had a limited number of times adjustments could be made. I thought about making my own treeless saddle. I have a very unique design in mind.
Again, thanks for all the comments and I'll keep you posted on my quest. If you know of any thing that might suit my needs please email me privately at sportponiescom@aol.com Thanks Yvonne