Fitting a western type saddle

Discussion in 'Tack & Equipment' started by Bakkir, Aug 11, 2017.

  1. Bakkir

    Bakkir Senior Member

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    I measured Charm for her Abetta saddle. But I'm not 100% on what size gullet to get.

    She measures 6 3/4 inches exactly.

    Arab tree is 6 3/4 inches
    QH tree or full bars is 7 inches

    I think I should go with the full QH bars with a thicker saddle pad, but I'm not sure.

    She has a medium wide, flat back, so she should be an easy fit. But she has a huge belly (think hippo). I'm a bit worried that my new saddle will rock, side to side once she looses the belly and tucks up.

    Any suggestions? I really want both of us to be as comfortable as possible for longer trail rides.
     
    Last edited: Aug 11, 2017
  2. froglander

    froglander Senior Member

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    How did you measure her?
     
  3. Bakkir

    Bakkir Senior Member

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    I used a bent coat hanger covered in vet wrap to get measure of her shoulder/wither.

    I'm an English rider. I know what I would need in a English saddle. But western is different. I made the mistake of buying the wrong size seat last time. So I'm a bit worried about buying the wrong size again.

    I have to order it from the US. Returning it will be a pita.
     
  4. Bakkir

    Bakkir Senior Member

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    I used to have a fancy gullet gage but it is basically the same idea.
     
  5. Rhythm 'n Blues

    Rhythm 'n Blues Senior Member

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    There is more to saddle for that simply the width at the front. I'm sure there is more different between the Arab & the QH trees than just the width.
     
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  6. BluemoonOKy

    BluemoonOKy Senior Member

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    What about contacting the company and sending them your tracings so they can assist you with choosing the appropriate tree and size? I use a conduit wire when I do tracings. I am thinking that the vet wrap may cause more bulk which will not lead to accurate tracings. I use a Manila folder, then cut it in half, so that I can scan and email in pdf form so there is not distortion and the receiver can just print out a page off the printer to see the exact tracings. Good luck. Saddle fitting is certainly an adventure!
     
  7. Bakkir

    Bakkir Senior Member

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    Yes, they both fit a bit differently. The QH tree is wider overall and the Arab tree is an inch longer in the skirt. I know how the QH bars fit because I had one. I used it on everything from Arabs to Clydesdales.

    It was big on Bakkir, he wasn't as wide as Charm is. But I was still able to ride him in it.

    Charm is making me second guess myself because she is medium wide through the shoulder, withers and back with a large belly.

    It would be nice if I could try them both but that's not possible.

    Same with my bits. I'm looking at my 4.5" copper roller with the side bars (training bit) vs the regular 5" snaffle. Can't decide which one will work for her.

    Can you tell i'm bored and over thinking everything, lol.
     
  8. Bakkir

    Bakkir Senior Member

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    Thank you. I don't know why I didn't think of the obvious and contact Abetta directly, lol.

    Hopefully they can help me find exactly what I want and need.

    Although a used one popped up on FB tonight near me for $125. It's old and ugly and has a horn, but it's a basically the same saddle with QH bars. So I could check fit and use it for awhile before committing to a new one.
     
  9. palogal

    palogal Senior Member

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    Albetta is junk in my experience. You and her would most likely be more comfortable in a leather, brand named saddle. Just my .02 I wouldn't ride anything in an Albetta.
     
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  10. Bakkir

    Bakkir Senior Member

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    Thanks. I would ideally get a lovely used leather saddle. But they just don't fit me. I have tried to find that one in a million that might work, but no such luck.

    First they are too heavy. I am unable to lift almost 30 lbs with my wrists.

    Second the fenders/stirrups are made for an average sized person. I have extra short legs.

    I looked a kids saddles and pony saddles. Most of them were cheap leather and they didn't fit my butt.

    So why Abetta? I get the western seat for trail riding and I can remove the fenders and put english stirrups and irons on it.

    I think the Abetta Endutance saddles are very well made. I rode in mine for years. I loved it. The only reason I don't have it now, is because it was too big for me. I bought a 16" when I needed a 15".

    I plan on getting a nice used leather english saddle to use for ring work.

    But I am planning on trail riding 99% of the time and prefer a western type seat for training a green horse.
     

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