saddle fit - dry spots under saddle

saddle fit - dry spots under saddle

Post by Elizabeth A Arno » Fri, 27 Jun 1997 04:00:00


I have been trying to find a saddle to fit my horse.  The saddle
i am currently using leaves dry patches under the saddle pad on
her withers.  Does this always mean that the saddle doesn't fit?
I thought that these patches marked places where the saddle was
putting too much pressure, and that is why the horse wouldn't sweat
there.  The horse has never shown signs of being sore or lame from
this.  But here is my problem: every saddle I have taken home to
try on this horse leaves the same patches!  I am running out of
saddles to try!  So, I am wondering... am I being overly concerned
about these patches?  They do go away if the horse sweats enough.
ie, the horse will eventually sweat there if worked long enough
or on a hot enough day.
I am going to make an appointment to bring the horse to a tack shop
to try on saddles.  The problem is, that these saddles *seem* to fit.
it is not until I ride her, and she sweats, that it is apparent that
they may not fit.  The horse has high withers but a broad back.
I would love to hear other people's opinions on these dry patches,
thanks!
Beth

 
 
 

saddle fit - dry spots under saddle

Post by Adrienne Rega » Fri, 27 Jun 1997 04:00:00


Quote:
>I have been trying to find a saddle to fit my horse.

I believe I currently hold the record for saddle trials, having gone
through over 30 actual different saddles for my QH (who, from all
I can tell, has a fairly ordinary looking back, though a long wither.)

(1) yes, the dry spots indicates that the saddle you have tried does
not fit.
(2) in the opinion of most of the saddlers I talked to, most saddles
don't fit in some way or other.
(3) that leaves you with the conclusion that you are having to seek
the best poor-fit you can find, rather than the worst.

(One of the saddlers who was a friend of mine talked about a fit clinic
they had wherein virtually every single saddle in their extremely well-
stocked store was tried on a horse, and the device they were using to
measure saddle-to-back fit showed some slight problem with each one).

None the less, she had very good advice for me, and we were able to
discard over 3/4s of the 22 saddles she brought out to the barn without
riding in them, because we could see numerous things when they were
on the horse and girthed up:
        1.  that the saddle didn't sit 'square' -- that the deep
        part of the seat was not in the 'middle'.
        2.  that the girth straps were set too far back or too
        far forward to work well with his long wither and long
        shoulder
        3.  That the saddle didn't sit flat on his back, but
        'rocked'.
        4.  That some trees were too wide, and some too narrow.

I was relieved that the ultra expensive models didn't seem to fit
him any better than the mid-priced ones (-:, and ended up with about
6 candidates to try (both dressage and jumping saddles were fitted
that weekend).

One consideration I still feel strongly about, though she did not:
I favor wool flocked panels, because they do conform somewhat to a
horse's back over time.  Foam panels will not.  The bulk of jumping
saddles are foam panels, and it takes some looking to find wool
flocked, but it can be done.  The bulk of dressage models that I
know about are wool flocked, so there is more choice there.

Of course, wool flocked panels are also higher maintenance, because
they need to be reflocked occasionally....Oh well.

Good luck!!

ne
--

Adrienne Regard


 
 
 

saddle fit - dry spots under saddle

Post by Terry von Gea » Fri, 27 Jun 1997 04:00:00


Quote:
>I have been trying to find a saddle to fit my horse.  The saddle
>i am currently using leaves dry patches under the saddle pad on
>her withers.  Does this always mean that the saddle doesn't fit?
>I thought that these patches marked places where the saddle was
>putting too much pressure, and that is why the horse wouldn't sweat
>there.  The horse has never shown signs of being sore or lame from
>this.  But here is my problem: every saddle I have taken home to
>try on this horse leaves the same patches!  I am running out of
>saddles to try!  So, I am wondering... am I being overly concerned
>about these patches?  They do go away if the horse sweats enough.
>ie, the horse will eventually sweat there if worked long enough
>or on a hot enough day.
>I am going to make an appointment to bring the horse to a tack shop
>to try on saddles.  The problem is, that these saddles *seem* to fit.
>it is not until I ride her, and she sweats, that it is apparent that
>they may not fit.  The horse has high withers but a broad back.
>I would love to hear other people's opinions on these dry patches,
>thanks!
>Beth

A poor fitting saddle generally means dry spots BUT dry spots DO NOT
necessarily mean a poor fitting saddle.  You will find this contrary to
what the legions of folk in this sandbox will tell you but, all things
considered, most of them don't know any more about it than yourself.

--
Terry                     You'll get further with a smile and a gun
                          than just a smile.

 
 
 

saddle fit - dry spots under saddle

Post by Elizabeth A Arno » Sat, 28 Jun 1997 04:00:00

: I'd wonder if perhaps you are trying saddles that just aren't wide
: enough.  I have an Arabian mare who needs a warm*** width tree.  Try
: to see if you can find a 34 cm tree.

: Sue

wow!  You may be right.  I didn't know saddles even came in a 34cm tree.
Every med. tree saddle I have tried has not fit.  I tried a Crosby
(olympia) wide tree, and it did not clear the withers enough.  I tried
a Collegiate eventer extra wide tree (maybe that was a 34?) and it fell
right onto her withers.  I tried a CTD (same tree as Stubben) 32cm,
and it had plenty of clearance, but seemed to cause the same pressure
as the other saddles.  I don't think Stubben makes a wider tree.  Do
you know of any companies that do make a 34cm tree?  I am looking
for an english all-purpose/eventing type saddle.
Thanks for the suggestion!
beth

 
 
 

saddle fit - dry spots under saddle

Post by JIM_HARDE » Sat, 28 Jun 1997 04:00:00

Hi Beth,
I did not see your original posting, therefore, I may be off base with my
reply...
Where are the dry spots???
When fitting your horse, you want to be able to fit no less than two finger
widths between the pomel and the withers and not to exceed three finger
widths.
If your saddle is dropping down on the withers, the tree is too wide.
Narrower trees make the saddle perch higher.

Something to think about...
When breaking a Stbben or any "wool stuffed" saddle, ride without a pad
for about 10 rides.  This allows the wool to mold to the conformation of
the horses back.  This is the advantage of wool stuffing.  If you contact
your local Stbben dealer and ask for the book that accompanies each
saddle, I am sure that he/she will allow you to read up on the break in
process.

As per your question about wider trees, Stbben, Keifer, and Courbette all
make wider trees.  Stbben and Keifer would be special orders and I believe
Courbette keeps them in stock (But, don't quote me on this).

Hopefully, this helps...

Ride safe,

Jim Harden
Sacramento Saddlery
2920 Auburn Blvd.
Sacramento, CA  95821-1885
916-489-6678

Quote:
> wow!  You may be right.  I didn't know saddles even came in a 34cm tree.
> Every med. tree saddle I have tried has not fit.  I tried a Crosby
> (olympia) wide tree, and it did not clear the withers enough.  I tried
> a Collegiate eventer extra wide tree (maybe that was a 34?) and it fell
> right onto her withers.  I tried a CTD (same tree as Stubben) 32cm,
> and it had plenty of clearance, but seemed to cause the same pressure
> as the other saddles.  I don't think Stubben makes a wider tree.  Do
> you know of any companies that do make a 34cm tree?  I am looking
> for an english all-purpose/eventing type saddle.
> Thanks for the suggestion!
> beth

 
 
 

saddle fit - dry spots under saddle

Post by Cynthia Atta » Mon, 30 Jun 1997 04:00:00

There is many, many saddles that do not fit horses exactly. Kinda like
making shoes to fit everyone's feet. Look how many shoe sizes there are,
and look how many sizes there are in saddles. Not many. If a saddle is
really ill-fitting, it will cause those dry spots to turn white. If you
have dry spots and sometimes wet spots it sounds like your saddle fits
as well as most. When you finish your ride, put some pressure with your
fingers on those spots and see if the horse flinches. Does he sway his
back? Does he swish his tail? Does he shake his skin? If he does none of
these things, he is probably fine.
Cynthia Attar