Thursday, May 24, 2012

Saddle Fitting Saga- my tale of woe FINALLY ENDS

One of the most popular posts on this blog is “I need to vent. Now, either people are attracted to negativity and want to hear a good rant or horse people share a common issue- saddle fitting sucks.
Throughout the 2.5 years I have owned Moose we have battled the saddle demon- never really finding the illusive “one” (or “two” –I’m an eventer and need a dressage and jump).
We have tried:
Saddle fit horse. Not Moose.
  • Thornhill
  • Prestige
  • Baines
  • Devoucoux
  • Bates
  • Wintec
  • Stubben
to name a few.

Incessant googling led me to a new product line –Kent & Masters. I read their spiel. I watched their video. I liked how easily adjustable they seemed.

Features:
  • Wool flocked (with flocking slots!)
  • Adjustable gullet
  • Moveable billets
Perhaps with all of these features they could be made to fit a Moose?

I email Trumbull Mountain tack for a trial.

First up the Kent & Masters S Series Jump.
 
It fit well statically.









But moved around during the ride :(
…ahh but remember the adjustable billets?

http://www.kentandmasters.co.uk/Changeable_girth_straps.html

I re-watched the fitting video and moved the billet configuration rearward. Success! It fits! It does not move! And I LOVE it! If you want a comparison, the balance feels just like the older Albion XC saddle.

Kent & Masters give us wings!

Next was the Fairfax Monoflap Dressage. Very pretty. I petted it.

Ooh it seems to fit Mooses.
 Humpf it does not fit Amys

Fat Ass

I tried to make it work. I really did. But it seems I need an 18.5 (which they do not make) to avoid fighting the blocks. So…NEXT!

We then try the Kent & Masters dressage model. I asked for the same gullet I had in the s-series jump saddle (medium-wide)…but it was too narrow (Moose definitely let me know). The very helpful Nancy from Trumbull immediately mailed the wide gullet. After having a Bates I was dreading putting that thing in…but it was actually easy! Wow! An adjustable gullet saddle you can adjust without cursing, crying and finally begging the gods for that last centimeter of space!

But it moved when I rode and I was not comfortable 100%...but with adjustable billets (I changed them to the ‘point’ configuration’ and velcro knee blocks (took them off) the saddle stayed in place and I was comfortable.


Don't be jealous. I have TWO saddles that fit! (neener-neener).

They also come at a good price point (~$1500).  And if you buy from Trumbull you get free shipping and $85 towards the first flocking adjustment (WINNING!). I have to plug them -Nancy was a huge help looking at 100,000,001 photos (does this fit? is it in the right place? isn't my pony cute!?) and answering just as many emails.

Off to ride!


4 comments:

  1. Congrats on the end of your saddle saga!

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  2. you are the 4th person to get a K&M saddle (or saddles!) and be totally satisfied. It seems they are really awesome! I will check them out next time I'm in the market, god forbid ;)

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  3. Yay! Saddle fitting is a royal pain, I'm soooo glad you finally found something that works!

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  4. I went through the same thing with my horse- western saddles did not fit him (wide shoulders, narrow back) so i went english. found Collegiates fit him really well. Tried a million options. I have to say its a really good feeling when you finally find something that works!

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