Hoop Trees and Other Saddles for Broad-backed Horses

Discussion in 'Tack & Equipment' started by RebeccaMI, Mar 12, 2018.

  1. RebeccaMI

    RebeccaMI Senior Member

    Joined:
    Nov 14, 2010
    Messages:
    389
    Likes Received:
    42
    My 17yo friend who is half-leasing my mare wanted to get an english saddle to use with her on occasion, so we did a wither tracing and sent it to Trumbull Mountain to get their opinion. After evaluating the tracing and pictures we submitted, one of the people from Trumbull said:

    Sierra is quite broad in the shoulder and mid back. I feel she would do best with a saddle that is laterally broad with a full front gusset and she is on the hoop tree cusp.

    I asked about hoop trees because I'm unfamiliar with them, and he said that a hoop tree saddle has a more rounded, broader pommel arch versus a more angular one and that they allow a saddle to drape more around a horse instead of perching. He mentioned Thorowgood as a brand that offers a saddle with a more rounded, broader pommel arch (it's their T4 line) but I am sure there are others. Does anyone have another brand or specific style of saddle they'd recommend for a horse with a broad shoulder and mid-back?
     
  2. Kristal H

    Kristal H Senior Member

    Joined:
    Jan 19, 2016
    Messages:
    2,372
    Likes Received:
    3,983
    I have owned the Black Country Eloquence, Lovatt and Ricketts Ellipse, Lovatt Ricketts Elan, and Albion on hoop trees. My favorite is the Lovatt and Ricketts....all of these are made in England by master Saddlers and will be more expensive than the Thourogood.

    Kent and Masters also has a hoop tree.
     
    Fancy That likes this.
  3. hamerface

    hamerface Senior Member

    Joined:
    Jun 30, 2009
    Messages:
    8,802
    Likes Received:
    10,331
    There are quite a few brands that will do hoop trees for clients.

    Most British brands do.

    Frank Baines, Ideal, Sankey, Bliss, Black Country, Flyde, Hastilow, Hastilow and Sons, Silhouette (Chunky Monkey) Fryso, Ryder, Lovatt & Ricketts, SOS, AH, AVA, Saddle Company, Barnsby, Minster, Albion, and so on.

    Finding one with front gussets used is harder but they are out there.
     
    Fancy That likes this.
  4. Rhythm 'n Blues

    Rhythm 'n Blues Senior Member

    Joined:
    Feb 23, 2007
    Messages:
    19,420
    Likes Received:
    16,045
    This image will help anyone to visually see the difference between a traditional A-framed tree & a hoop tree:

    [​IMG]

    If this horse is on the cusp of needing one, then I must ask if the horse is a little over weight? If yes, then I'd likely for-go the hoop tree and work to have the horse loose weight as then it's likely to fit in an A-frame. Now if the horse is at it's smallest (right before spring grass) then definitely go for the hoop tree. This is a discussion I have with clients all the time.

    Duett also has some saddles that are hoop trees (not all) and while the fit can be very wonky, they are typically in a good price point. The key will be if you can see which will fit wonky & which might actually work......or if you are working with a fitter who can assist with that.
     
    Fancy That and bellalou like this.
  5. RebeccaMI

    RebeccaMI Senior Member

    Joined:
    Nov 14, 2010
    Messages:
    389
    Likes Received:
    42
    To be honest, ANY and EVERY horse looks fat to me compared to my gelding! LOL. The barn owners are of the opinion that she could still stand to put on a little weight, so I don't know. I definitely don't think she looks skinny. These are the conformation pictures I sent to Trumbull:

    [​IMG]
    (Excuse the fact that she was ridden before this picture was taken!)

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    What do you think? The vet is coming in two weeks to do spring shots (etc.) for all the horses at the barn, so he will be able to lay eyes on her and let me know if she's doing well or if she's overweight.
     
  6. Circle C

    Circle C Senior Member

    Joined:
    Mar 9, 2005
    Messages:
    17,023
    Likes Received:
    9,533
    Def not over weight.
     
  7. Rhythm 'n Blues

    Rhythm 'n Blues Senior Member

    Joined:
    Feb 23, 2007
    Messages:
    19,420
    Likes Received:
    16,045
    How old is this mare? Definitely doesn’t look overweight to me at all, but I’m interested to know how old she is.
     
  8. bellalou

    bellalou Senior Member

    Joined:
    Dec 27, 2014
    Messages:
    7,208
    Likes Received:
    21,997
    All these years and I've never heard of a hoop tree. Very interesting stuff. I love this place. :)
     
  9. RebeccaMI

    RebeccaMI Senior Member

    Joined:
    Nov 14, 2010
    Messages:
    389
    Likes Received:
    42
    She will be 20 on May 8!
     
  10. Rhythm 'n Blues

    Rhythm 'n Blues Senior Member

    Joined:
    Feb 23, 2007
    Messages:
    19,420
    Likes Received:
    16,045
    That makes more sense then. She's not overweight but she definitely lacking muscle and doesn't have show the best stance in the photos. There's some muscle wastage long the top line and she just holds her self awkwardly. But she's 20, so she's not going to look or stand like a spring chicken.

    Honestly, I think the biggest issues you're going to run into with this horse is the length of the saddle, she has a very short saddle space, and she's going to need up swept panels as she's croup high. I don't think I'd be looking for a hoop tree for her, just find a more open headed A-frame saddle than the one that I posted above (in the 2 saddles stacked on top of each other pic - the top one is very very closed in the head plate)
     
    Fancy That likes this.

Share This Page