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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Mar. 13, 2000
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    1,765

    Default Making a too-large saddle fit ?

    I'm riding a TB for just a few months, but none of my close-contact saddles fit. They are all too wide -- they sit too close to his withers.

    Any suggestions to make any of these saddles fit well enough? I am also looking to borrow, but in case that isn't a solution, either, I'll need to find someway with my current batch of saddles.

    I did try a Beval's wither-relief/keyhole, and altho not a bad fit on the left side of withers, it was snug on the right side.

    Any suggestions??



  2. #2
    Join Date
    Aug. 3, 2009
    Location
    Camp Creek, WV
    Posts
    316

    Default

    Fat fluffy sheepskin halfpad to suck up the extra volume? Or, even better, if you could get yours hands on one of the shimmable sheepskin pads (esp. a fluffy one) and then stuff shims in it, that might help. I think I've seen sets of shims on E-bay, etc for about $14, and you could use a thicker one up front on one side and a thinner one on the other. Stuffing some extra padding underneath it should work out ok as long as it doesn't make the saddle unstable. Good luck!

    ETA: Here's a nice one...no shims...when I checked just a minute ago there was also used quilted correction pad on there with no shims for cheap (around $50).
    http://www.ebay.com/itm/Mattes-Plati...item3f1ccf6008



  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jun. 17, 2001
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    down the road from bar.ka
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    30,688

    Default

    I luv my old Bevals half pad, it's the felt with thick sheepskin edges one. It hides a multitude of saddle fit sins TEMPORARILY without alot of bulk under the leg.

    In a perfect world you would not need something like that but in the real world of pick up/catch rides, short term leases and and sale horses? It's a worthy addition to a rider's tool kit.

    If you can't get your hands on one, try a donut type pommel pad or a riser pad.
    When opportunity knocks it's wearing overalls and looks like work.

    The horse world. Two people. Three opinions.



  4. #4
    Join Date
    Mar. 13, 2000
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    Default

    Findeight: I did try the Beval's (I think we're talking about the same style), but my freakout about it is that it fits him fine on the left side -- can wedge/slide fingers down along withers when sitting in saddle -- but can't even remotely do the same on the right side. It's tight as a tick on the right side.

    I did have a wild thought of using a 1/2 riser under the pommel (instead of normally under the cantle).

    T-storm chick: Will look into getting the shims to work. Maybe I could combine with another pad.

    This horse is such a good egg (they all are, aren't they?) and he so deserves to be comfortable so that he can, for once, do his training properly...



  5. #5
    Join Date
    Oct. 26, 2007
    Location
    San Jose, Ca
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    4,523



  6. #6
    Join Date
    Mar. 18, 2012
    Posts
    106

    Default

    first, be sure the saddle is actually too wide, rather than just not high enough clearance- it could be the right width and still be too close to the withers, in which case extra padding is a bad idea. if it's really too wide, you could try something like this http://www.doversaddlery.com/mattes-...4jqq55mvk0nu45, using shims in the front. there's a version that's just quilted, without the sheepskin, if you prefer.



  7. #7
    Join Date
    Aug. 3, 2009
    Location
    Camp Creek, WV
    Posts
    316

    Default

    Something else you might try--especially if you find the saddle is actually not that much too wide, just too close to the withers. (I have a Mt. Witherest and had to do this when he got a bit thin last year!) Make a pad to "lift" the whole saddle up out of a closed cell foam that will not compress--I used a bath mat that I bought at Sam's Club. It was a little fuzzy on one side; regular foam on the other; and as a bonus the edges were beveled. If you start with a rectangular mat, at the center on one short edge use a craft knife/box cutter and cut out a "U" for the withers. Then trim the excess off each side and the other end. Put it on the horse's back so the withers come out of the "U". In the wither area it shouldn't really be between the horse and the saddle at all, if that makes sense--you just want the saddle to sit ON it & lift the saddle up. This is on page 121 of Joyce Harman's Horse's Pain Free Back and Saddle Fit book. You can use this in conjunction with a pad with shims, etc or could glue/velcro shims to it. If you don't understand what I'm describing PM me and I'll text you a picture of mine. Good luck making the good egg comfy!



  8. #8
    Join Date
    Sep. 12, 2006
    Location
    Loudoun County, Virginia!
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    Default

    just adding that I'm having the same problem with our pony, saddle started out a little wide, helped with Mattes pads but now that the pony is in full work, her body has completely changed and it's wayyy too wide still and sitting nearly on the wither. Going to try that front riser pad from Acavallo, thanks for the link! Keep the suggestions coming...



  9. #9
    Join Date
    Jul. 1, 2003
    Location
    PA
    Posts
    560

    Default

    Look at the EcoGold Wither care pad. It may be an option



  10. #10
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    Sep. 12, 2006
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    Loudoun County, Virginia!
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    Have to say I tried the Acavallo front riser pad today and it worked wonders in giving us PLENTY of lift over the withers. The saddle fits MUCH better now. OP, I'd give it a try.



  11. #11
    Join Date
    Feb. 24, 1999
    Location
    MD
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    3,306

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by LTLFLDF View Post
    Look at the EcoGold Wither care pad. It may be an option
    I second this suggestion. This pad has saved me from having to buy a new saddle for my withery TB mare. It's not cheap, but it's certainly cheaper than a new saddle.



  12. #12
    Join Date
    Sep. 21, 2011
    Location
    Lambertville, MI
    Posts
    120

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Appsolute View Post
    What about a pad designed to lift the front / narrow the tree?

    http://www.doversaddlery.com/roma-wi...nt/p/X1-19456/
    I have the pad linked above, PM if you are interested in it, I'd sell for cheap as it's just sitting around. I used it for a little while, but it proved to be too thick for my issue.



  13. #13
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    Mar. 13, 2000
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    Default A tiny update...

    A real thanks to everyone who had suggestions, and they were all really good ones.

    So, since I didn't have a chance to pursue any of the great ideas by my ride yesterday, I pondered all the endless piles of crap piled around the tackrooms of this particular barn, and pulled from the heap an anti-slip pad, thinking this might 'thicken' the saddle area. I added it, folded in half, under the pommel, putting it between the Beval's and the saddle.

    It was a A+ in scrounging, and about a B+ in effectiveness. I'll use it again until I can try above ideas!

    Mayaty02: are you saying that as your pony got more fit, the saddle has started to sit even lower on the pony's back, almost on the wither?



  14. #14
    Join Date
    Sep. 12, 2006
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    Loudoun County, Virginia!
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    Quote Originally Posted by cyberbay View Post
    A real thanks to everyone who had suggestions, and they were all really good ones.

    So, since I didn't have a chance to pursue any of the great ideas by my ride yesterday, I pondered all the endless piles of crap piled around the tackrooms of this particular barn, and pulled from the heap an anti-slip pad, thinking this might 'thicken' the saddle area. I added it, folded in half, under the pommel, putting it between the Beval's and the saddle.

    It was a A+ in scrounging, and about a B+ in effectiveness. I'll use it again until I can try above ideas!

    Mayaty02: are you saying that as your pony got more fit, the saddle has started to sit even lower on the pony's back, almost on the wither?
    she has gotten more fit BUT she has also gained ALOT of weight and I think this is the contributing factor to the issues we're having, though I am struggling to understand it myself as we all expected as she developed a topline the saddle would fit BETTER, not worse. I have another thread going about the issues we're having but basically the saddle gives her very little clearance now, when it used to be ok.



  15. #15
    Join Date
    Dec. 13, 1999
    Location
    Greensboro, NC
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    35,194

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by emeraldcity View Post
    first, be sure the saddle is actually too wide, rather than just not high enough clearance- it could be the right width and still be too close to the withers, in which case extra padding is a bad idea. if it's really too wide, you could try something like this http://www.doversaddlery.com/mattes-...4jqq55mvk0nu45, using shims in the front. there's a version that's just quilted, without the sheepskin, if you prefer.
    This.

    Wither clearance doesn't tell you a thing about whether the saddle is too wide, narrow or just right. it only tells you how much wither clearance there is


    Look at the balance of the saddle. In general, if you lay a pen/pencil across the seat, when it settles to the lowest point, that should be roughly the middle of the saddle (front to back).

    On a saddle that's too wide, which is sitting pommel-low, the lowest point will be towards the front. If it's too narrow, sitting cantle-low, the lowest point will be closer to the cantle than the middle.

    If the saddle is indeed too wide, then how "too wide" it is will determine what sort of padding you use. It doesn't necessarily need to be padded up the whole length of it - it may well just need a shim up front. Or maybe a thinner pad the full length, and then a thin shim up front. You have to determine what setup works for that saddle at that point in time, and understand how to change it as time goes on.
    ______________________________
    The CoTH CYA - please consult w/your veterinarian under any and all circumstances. - ET



  16. #16
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    Mar. 13, 2000
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    Default

    Mayaty02 --
    That's what I was thinking, -- "... as we all expected as she developed a topline the saddle would fit BETTER, not worse." -- which is why I asked. Huh!

    JB --
    I think the saddle sits level, just very low (very little clearance). Not sure why that would be unimportant (clearance), as rider weight would crush the saddle onto the wither. Ouch. This is what I'm dealing with. Saddle feels level when I sit in it.



  17. #17
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    Dec. 13, 1999
    Location
    Greensboro, NC
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    Default

    I didn't say it wasn't important I said its wither clearance is not any indicator, in and of itself, of whether a saddle is too wide or too narrow

    A saddle can fit perfectly otherwise and not have enough wither clearance for a given horse's withers. if this particular saddle sits level and has too little wither clearance, you cannot fix this. A pad to raise it off the withers will make the fit too tight.

    This is a situation were FAR too many people use a front riser/pommel pad/etc to get the saddle off the withers, but instead just make the saddle tip back because they made it too narrow. Bad bad bad.

    So, if the saddle truly is level it is not ever going to work on this horse, sorry
    ______________________________
    The CoTH CYA - please consult w/your veterinarian under any and all circumstances. - ET



  18. #18
    Join Date
    Mar. 13, 2000
    Posts
    1,765

    Default

    JB - yeah... I suspect this, but hope springs eternal... will take another hard look at it today.

    If no go, then it's on to BBS (beg, borrow, steal) a saddle for the duration of my time with him.

    Thanks for the input. And my saddles have fit all the other TBs in my life. Sigh.



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