What is the best saddle cleaners...

Discussion in 'Tack & Equipment' started by Greta Mars, Jun 9, 2018.

  1. Greta Mars

    Greta Mars Full Member

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    I have multiple saddles which vary in needs from needing a light clean to complete restoration. What are yalls favorite products for heavy duty and everyday cleaning? Also looking for conditioners. Btw this if for english saddles from brands: as county, antares, tad coffin ,stubben, beval, as well as an amerigo. Just listing brands so i can get a better reccomendation
     
  2. hamerface

    hamerface Senior Member

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    Higher Standards Leather Care makes nice soap and conditioners.

    plain ol glycerine soap works too. Oil if very dry.
     
  3. Greta Mars

    Greta Mars Full Member

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    How long does the hslc soap last before it needs to be cleaned again? I have noticed with some cleaners they just attract dirt. I almost ordered a jar but I hated how it told me shipping after I had cleared the PayPal amount so I didn't end up ordering which I now regret.
     
  4. hamerface

    hamerface Senior Member

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    well...

    I'm kind of old school. I don't really like conditioners because they DO attract dirt and dust. Saddle soap has always been my go to because it does give some of the sheen and protection back without attracting dirt and dust.

    In my experience it lasts over a month but you should be at least wiping weekly, cleaning every couple of weeks or at least monthly.

    Shipping is a killer for sure, and I can appreciate the irritation of having to pay extra.
     
  5. Rhythm 'n Blues

    Rhythm 'n Blues Senior Member

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    @Greta Mars - unless your located outside of the US & buying higher standards, you aren't allowed to gripe about shipping costs to Hamer & I. We're both in Canada and I guarantee you the shipping is more to us! ;)

    I do like the Higher Standars soap. Haven't tried their conditioner yet though. I do like the Equipe soap that is in a spray bottle - it's the only liquid soap I have ever liked. I also like a good glycerine soap too. For conditioners any good Leather Balm is likely to do a good job - Passier makes a good one that many people really like.

    For really tough jobs, Leather New I've heard is really good. I have never needed something like that, but I'm told it is really good.

    Stay away from things that are "all in ones" like Horseman's One Step. It really isn't good for your leather. You don't ever want to leave soap ON the leather, so apply soap, then use a damp sponge/rag to remove the soap. Most people use a leather balm to condition afterwards, but some people don't. Depends on the leather & your routine & how you want your leather to feel.

    If you constantly have streaks in your leather, then it could be that the products you're using aren't meant for that *type* of leather. For example you'll always end up with minor streaks using a glycerine soap on sedgewick leather or calf skin. You'll need a product that meant for those leathers to ensure no streaks. I've seen some buffalo leather & other "textured leathers" have little white bits in all the crevasses. I have no clue what people are using on these leathers, but it is definitely the products being left behind. It's a nightmare to fix too! So you always want to use something that is going to work with the type of leather that you are using. :D

    OILING saddles should happen 1-2 x/year after they are broken in. You can do it a bit more often when the saddle is brand new, to help with the break in process, but you don't want to saturate them. Oil breaks down the collagen fibers in the leather making the leather weaker, so oil sparingly if you have a used saddle. I know some people oil very very often to get the color they want - I'm not a fan of this. A few coats to start the process, but then let the patina come on it's own.

    Honestly, if you wipe your tack down after each ride with a damp cloth/rag/sponge and then condition once a week, you are doing the best you can do for your tack. Or course if you have some really terribly dirty or dry leather, you may need to do some more thorough cleaning/oiling prior to adopting that regime. Be sure you do NOT put your dirty girths on top of the saddles (directly on the seats) as that is one of the worse things you can do for your leather. Have something between the girth & the saddle, so all the salt from the horses sweat doesn't end up on your saddle's seat to dry....which is then followed by you sitting in the saddle & grinding that salt into the leather with your next ride. It's a sure fire way to end up with tears in your seat! :mad::eek2::faint::no:
     
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  6. Greta Mars

    Greta Mars Full Member

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    Thank you so much for the info! wasn't trying to gripe about shipping just didnt like the checkout process thats all but "I will give it a try. Also thank you for the info on oiling i usually oil about 12 times a year so I will definatley cut down on that!
     
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  7. Alsosusieq2

    Alsosusieq2 Senior Member

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    Great advice. Yep, Canada shipping costs are a tad nuts.
     
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  8. Mayelix

    Mayelix Senior Member

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    I love the Effax products. Effax leder-combi is by far the best to getting the really nasty sweat & grime off, particularly with sweat caked on bridles, comes right off. It leaves the leather nice but not too sticky. If the leather is dry I like their leder-balsam.
    Their cream soap is good too as a quick clean after you ride, between thorough cleans.
     
  9. Greta Mars

    Greta Mars Full Member

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    thank you!
     
  10. hamerface

    hamerface Senior Member

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    Careful with Effax it can really remove beneficial oils and tannins. :)
     

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