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  1. #21
    Join Date
    Oct. 12, 2012
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    32

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    The wintec pro with contourblocks is my favorite saddle of all time. It has such a well balanced seat and i absolutely love external blocks. Sadly, I bought a lipizzan who has a table back and needs an XXXW Duett, so i have mine up for sale

    On my kwpn mare in the wintec pro with contour block
    http://i67.photobucket.com/albums/h3...3/DSC_0245.jpg

    On my Haflinger mare in the wintec pro with contour block
    http://i67.photobucket.com/albums/h3...68822615_o.jpg



  2. #22
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    Jan. 12, 2000
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    Proud owner of one Lunar acre! (Campanus Crater, The Moon)
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    Love the old and to make it fit a flatter back, I got rid of the CAIR. Hate the new ones.
    "Relinquish your whip!!"



  3. #23
    Join Date
    Feb. 13, 2005
    Location
    Columbus, OH
    Posts
    6,800

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    skyedragon, let's talk about some corrections to your terms. This is important if you plan to talk about this horse with saddle fitters or compare across saddle brands:

    Your horse has what most fitters would call a moderately curvy back. It is neither very flat nor very curvy. No surprise, then, that she fits nicely in the Collegiate Convertible Diploma, which was basically built on a law of averages so it's moderate in every way: moderate wither clearance, moderate curvature, etc.

    When you say she "fluctuates between wide and extra wide," I assume you're talking about the Easy Change Gullet System. In brands that retail under about $1300, that is going to *tend* to be equivalent to an XW tree. In brands that retail above that, it's going to *tend* to be closer to a true wide.

    I will say this one more time, then I'll get off it because you don't seem interested in listening anyway: I don't understand why you're interested in buying a saddle before finding a dressage trainer or figuring out how you'll pay for winter board. If you don't know how much you're paying for winter board, you can't really know your saddle budget--and for that matter, you may find that your new trainer advises you to save your pennies and learn the basics of dressage in your jump saddle. Also, if you don't have a dressage trainer to advise on your saddle purchase, you are likely to choose a saddle that doesn't facilitate a good dressage position for YOUR body. It's one thing to fit the horse. It's another thing to fit you. And that's the sort of thing that's difficult to predict without having seen you ride or having a practiced eye that can see you sit in various saddles.

    But if you really insist, and it seems like you really do, here's my advice. The new-style Isabell and Pro tend to be much flatter in the tree than the old style. Try to find the old styles, which will be cheaper anyway and probably a decent fit on your mare. I seem to remember that you ride in an 18" Collegiate Convertible Diploma, so you may appreciate the extra seat room of a Wintec Pro (moderately deep seat) compared to a Wintec Isabell (quite deep seat). Also, on par, the Wintec Pro will be cheaper to buy than the Isabell unless you really luck into a deal.

    You could also look at the Collegiate Convertible Intellect dressage, which is unfortunately much harder to find on the used market. It retails around $1000 and will fit very similarly to your Collegiate Convertible Diploma (or a Wintec Pro, for that matter.)

    Another saddle to put on your list: the Tekna S line dressage, a very nice synthetic adjustable-gullet model with an incredibly friendly price tag of around $575 retail--and from some vendors, you will get the entire gullet set and free shipping at that price. Personally, I prefer the Tekna synthetics to the Wintec; they are both fine, but the Tekna molds a little better to the body. They make the Tekna S line dressage with and without synthetic suede coating. Just as Wintec has built an intelligent/cheap/balanced saddle by knocking off $2500 Bates dressage saddles, Tekna has built an intelligent/cheap/balanced saddle by knocking off some of the Prestige technology. Their S line with the adjustable gullets is not directly built on Prestige trees, but they certainly used a lot of design influences from their earlier A5 dressage saddle (which was built on a Prestige tree) in the S-line saddles. The Cheshire Horse in New Hampshire will send Teknas out for trial rides, and you could ask them to match Victorycanter.com's deal of throwing in the whole gullet set with saddle purchase. http://cheshirehorse.com/S-Line-Sued...le-P12371.aspx

    I've written all this assuming a budget well under $750. With a little more cash to spend, some of the Kieffers and Passiers in the appropriate tree sizes might have some merit. Heck, for that matter, I've got a Frank Baines Capriole sitting on my floor that would probably be an awesome fit for you and maresie. But again, I would not advise buying anything until you find a local dressage trainer to advise.
    ________________________
    Resident COTH saddle nerd. (CYA: Not a pro, just a long-time enthusiast!)
    http://twitter.com/jenlmichaels



  4. #24
    Join Date
    Jan. 26, 2010
    Posts
    5,628

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    Quote Originally Posted by Bethe Mounce View Post
    Maybe it depends on the material of the full seat? I just know if I ride in either of mine, not to wear the Conrad Schumacher full seat breeches, I stick like glue way too much. Now, mine are old Schumacher full seats. ;-) I prefer my Pro over the Isabel too. And...if it is raining and seat of saddle gets wet....you can slide around...just been my experience....
    Dunno. I have all kinds of brands--I pretty much buy anything on sale. I can attest to the wet seat, though. I don't have much of an issue in the rain, but . . . One show it it 105 degrees and people were dropping like flies. I literally hosed off myself from head to foot and the horse and went into the ring, which kept me cool, but I almost fell out of the saddle I was sliding around so much! (So, tip, DON'T soak your saddle and expect to sit in it well!)



  5. #25
    Join Date
    Aug. 13, 2011
    Location
    Michigan
    Posts
    1,029

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    Quote Originally Posted by jn4jenny View Post
    skyedragon, let's talk about some corrections to your terms. This is important if you plan to talk about this horse with saddle fitters or compare across saddle brands:

    Your horse has what most fitters would call a moderately curvy back. It is neither very flat nor very curvy. No surprise, then, that she fits nicely in the Collegiate Convertible Diploma, which was basically built on a law of averages so it's moderate in every way: moderate wither clearance, moderate curvature, etc.

    When you say she "fluctuates between wide and extra wide," I assume you're talking about the Easy Change Gullet System. In brands that retail under about $1300, that is going to *tend* to be equivalent to an XW tree. In brands that retail above that, it's going to *tend* to be closer to a true wide.

    I will say this one more time, then I'll get off it because you don't seem interested in listening anyway: I don't understand why you're interested in buying a saddle before finding a dressage trainer or figuring out how you'll pay for winter board. If you don't know how much you're paying for winter board, you can't really know your saddle budget--and for that matter, you may find that your new trainer advises you to save your pennies and learn the basics of dressage in your jump saddle. Also, if you don't have a dressage trainer to advise on your saddle purchase, you are likely to choose a saddle that doesn't facilitate a good dressage position for YOUR body. It's one thing to fit the horse. It's another thing to fit you. And that's the sort of thing that's difficult to predict without having seen you ride or having a practiced eye that can see you sit in various saddles.

    But if you really insist, and it seems like you really do, here's my advice. The new-style Isabell and Pro tend to be much flatter in the tree than the old style. Try to find the old styles, which will be cheaper anyway and probably a decent fit on your mare. I seem to remember that you ride in an 18" Collegiate Convertible Diploma, so you may appreciate the extra seat room of a Wintec Pro (moderately deep seat) compared to a Wintec Isabell (quite deep seat). Also, on par, the Wintec Pro will be cheaper to buy than the Isabell unless you really luck into a deal.

    You could also look at the Collegiate Convertible Intellect dressage, which is unfortunately much harder to find on the used market. It retails around $1000 and will fit very similarly to your Collegiate Convertible Diploma (or a Wintec Pro, for that matter.)

    Another saddle to put on your list: the Tekna S line dressage, a very nice synthetic adjustable-gullet model with an incredibly friendly price tag of around $575 retail--and from some vendors, you will get the entire gullet set and free shipping at that price. Personally, I prefer the Tekna synthetics to the Wintec; they are both fine, but the Tekna molds a little better to the body. They make the Tekna S line dressage with and without synthetic suede coating. Just as Wintec has built an intelligent/cheap/balanced saddle by knocking off $2500 Bates dressage saddles, Tekna has built an intelligent/cheap/balanced saddle by knocking off some of the Prestige technology. Their S line with the adjustable gullets is not directly built on Prestige trees, but they certainly used a lot of design influences from their earlier A5 dressage saddle (which was built on a Prestige tree) in the S-line saddles. The Cheshire Horse in New Hampshire will send Teknas out for trial rides, and you could ask them to match Victorycanter.com's deal of throwing in the whole gullet set with saddle purchase. http://cheshirehorse.com/S-Line-Sued...le-P12371.aspx

    I've written all this assuming a budget well under $750. With a little more cash to spend, some of the Kieffers and Passiers in the appropriate tree sizes might have some merit. Heck, for that matter, I've got a Frank Baines Capriole sitting on my floor that would probably be an awesome fit for you and maresie. But again, I would not advise buying anything until you find a local dressage trainer to advise.
    I am not sure where you get off saying I can't afford board, because there is no issue there. I do in fact have an event coach, though I am looking around for one that I can trailer too. When I say fluctuates between wide and extra wide, yes I am talking about gullet width. Last summer when she was on pasture 24/7 she was an extra wide, in the spring I moved her to a barn closer by and she was getting worked more at which point she was a wide, then towards the end of this summer she started to be more of an extra wide.

    I have wondered about the techna saddles, they are certainly more eye appealing than the wintecs, especially the new wintecs. The reason I was looking into them was because I was under the impression that wintec/collegiate/bates are now all built on the same tree.
    Maggie Bright, lovingly known as Skye and deeply missed (1994 - 2013)
    The Blog



  6. #26
    Join Date
    Aug. 13, 2011
    Location
    Michigan
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    Looking at the tekna saddles, there are a couple on saddle at action rider tack for $350. It says the tree can be adjusted by a prestige dealer, but could any dealer with the a tree adjusting machine do it?
    Maggie Bright, lovingly known as Skye and deeply missed (1994 - 2013)
    The Blog



  7. #27
    Join Date
    Feb. 13, 2005
    Location
    Columbus, OH
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    6,800

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    Quote Originally Posted by Skyedragon View Post
    I am not sure where you get off saying I can't afford board, because there is no issue there. I do in fact have an event coach, though I am looking around for one that I can trailer too.
    I apologize if you took offense. I was referring your other thread in which you talk about trying to figure out what to do about winter boarding for your mare, including ranting about the high cost of board this winter. If you've managed to resolve that situation in a satisfactory way and are rolling in extra dough for riding lessons and saddles, then more power to you.

    The reason I was looking into them was because I was under the impression that wintec/collegiate/bates are now all built on the same tree.
    No, not quite. While there are redudancies in the Bates/Wintec/Collegiate lineup--for example, the old-style Wintec CC and the current Collegiate Convertible Diploma--Bates Australia still builds on a variety of trees with a variety of panel options. A horse that fits into one of their saddles may fit into certain other saddles in the Bates/Wintec/Collegiate lineup, but that horse will not automatically fit into all of them. Above, I've tried to suggest certain saddles in the B/W/C lineup that may fit a horse that's already a good fit in the Collegiate Convertible Diploma. I would not, for example, try a new-style Wintec Isabell or Wintec Pro on a horse that fit well in an old-style Collegiate Convertible Diploma.
    ________________________
    Resident COTH saddle nerd. (CYA: Not a pro, just a long-time enthusiast!)
    http://twitter.com/jenlmichaels



  8. #28
    Join Date
    Feb. 13, 2005
    Location
    Columbus, OH
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    6,800

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    Quote Originally Posted by Skyedragon View Post
    Looking at the tekna saddles, there are a couple on saddle at action rider tack for $350. It says the tree can be adjusted by a prestige dealer, but could any dealer with the a tree adjusting machine do it?
    I really shouldn't bother answering this since you just pissed in my cornflakes, but I'm in a good mood today.

    The saddles you're seeing on clearance are the Tekna A8 dressage saddles, which are built on a synthetic Prestige tree. That means you need a Prestige-authorized saddle adjuster with a very specific saddle-adjustment machine to do it. Long story short, the bars of the saddle are solid metal, not the birchwood/steel plate combo that can be adjusted on a typical tree press. It is literally impossible to adjust them without super-heating the metal, which is what the Prestige tree-adjusting machine does.

    The Tekna A8 isn't a practical option compared to buying the Tekna S dressage. Best case scenario, you spend $350 + $35 shipping at ART to buy the saddle and have it shipped direct to a Prestige dealer, then pay $150 to have the Tekna adjusted to match your mare and sent back to you in Michigan. That's $534 already, and you'll be hoping and praying that it actually fits your horse because you still won't have seen it by then. If you have to resell it, you'll never get the cost of the adjustment back from your buyers, meaning you're out at least $150 + $34 shipping. I don't see why you'd bother when for $562 you can have the user-adjustable gullet on the Tekna S dressage AND get a trial ride before buying.
    ________________________
    Resident COTH saddle nerd. (CYA: Not a pro, just a long-time enthusiast!)
    http://twitter.com/jenlmichaels



  9. #29
    Join Date
    Sep. 7, 2012
    Posts
    33

    Default Tekna S Line

    I have a Tekna S-line dressage saddle that I got in August when I got my *first* horse -- a 5 yo OTTB. She has absolutely no topline, and I didn't want to invest in a saddle that fit her when she wasn't fit. But I wanted it to be somewhat adjustable. Interestingly, she had been ridden in one of the old Wintec dressage saddles in a medium narrow, and she has taken a MW in Tekna. I caution you about Tekna in that it can be difficult to find the gullets and fittings in stock, and the gullet change tool is junk (use an allen wrench instead). I ordered stirrup leathers through my local tack store (try to shop local) and they still haven't arrived because the back order keeps, er, backing up. I got the gullets from actionrider.

    Also, the Tekna is foam flocked, but can be re-flocked or adjusted with wool by a fitter.

    I'm going to be having a fitter out in early November to pressure map and build a custom pad that I hope will customize the fit a bit and the pad will be built in a way that will accommodate for her back becoming more muscular. Saddle was $550. Pad and pressure mapping will probably be about $300-$400. I'm a re-rider, and I just don't trust myself to know how to efficiently build her topline despite reading everything on the planet and having a trainer out, plus taking lessons elsewhere on a great school horse. I really believe in some of the Parelli fitting philosophy about have space for the muscle to move to encourage it to develop, and didn't want a bunch of layers little shim pads, so I'm getting the custom built pad. And I think pressure mapping sounds so fascinating.

    My friend is looking into getting an OTTB too (we are chasing teenage dreams and I happen to have barns and six acres, no ring) ... she is looking at the Wintecs. I think the new riser system looks interesting. The Tekna balances a bit forward for me, and I kinda wish it had a riser system.

    The Tekna itself is crazy comfortable. I'm 5'4 and the flap is a bit long. I took the knee blocks out.



  10. #30
    Join Date
    Aug. 13, 2011
    Location
    Michigan
    Posts
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    I wasn't pissing in your corn flakes, I just saw the saddle while looking at the s-line ones, and was curious. I am most certainly not rolling in dough, and like to save it when I can. I was hoping that they could be adjusted by a non-brand specific fitter that has the machine. There is one near me that does adjustments and fittings very reasonably.

    I am for sure looking at the old Isabelle and Pro, I tried the new style Pro on her last summer and for one the extra wide gullet was not wide enough, and it bridged badly. A friend of mine use to have a Pro and that fit her just fine. There are a couple collegiate dressage saddles that I am eye-balling on eBay. I just wish I could try them on to make sure. Sadly, my local tack shop that use to have an awesome selection of used saddles has taken a major dive recently. Now they are carrying mostly junk.

    I really like this saddle: http://www.ebay.com/itm/300801912699...=p5197.c0.m619 but since my only experience with Kieffer was fitting a narrow TB, I am wary of how they will fit a much wider horse.

    I am also not just looking for a dressage saddle for dressage, I am wanting something that I can be more comfortable trail riding in, as I will be doing a lot of that since I will be boarding right next to my family's property.
    Maggie Bright, lovingly known as Skye and deeply missed (1994 - 2013)
    The Blog



  11. #31
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    Aug. 13, 2011
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    Michigan
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    Quote Originally Posted by lisa327 View Post
    I caution you about Tekna in that it can be difficult to find the gullets and fittings in stock, and the gullet change tool is junk (use an allen wrench instead). I ordered stirrup leathers through my local tack store (try to shop local) and they still haven't arrived because the back order keeps, er, backing up. I got the gullets from actionrider.
    This is one thing that concerns me, that because the brand hasn't gone "big" like wintec, that finding the stuff for it could be hard, plus if something went wrong, finding help could be hard too.

    By the way, I love this saddle too: http://www.ebay.com/itm/140824771116...84.m1423.l2649 just wish it were wide and not medium wide.
    Maggie Bright, lovingly known as Skye and deeply missed (1994 - 2013)
    The Blog



  12. #32
    Join Date
    Jan. 12, 2000
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    Proud owner of one Lunar acre! (Campanus Crater, The Moon)
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    Peeing in cornflakes? Blech!
    "Relinquish your whip!!"



  13. #33
    Join Date
    Aug. 28, 2007
    Location
    Triangle Area, NC
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    6,707

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    both those saddles look like good buys.
    While it sucks that buying through ebay means you don't get trials (generally), you can usually resell it on ebay within a few weeks for the same price you paid.

    i've bought and sold many saddles on ebay with great experiences.
    www.destinationconsensusequus.com
    chaque pas est fait ensemble



  14. #34
    Join Date
    Feb. 25, 1999
    Location
    San Ramon/Castro Valley/Brentwood, California
    Posts
    1,664

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    Quote Originally Posted by Beentheredonethat View Post
    Dunno. I have all kinds of brands--I pretty much buy anything on sale. I can attest to the wet seat, though. I don't have much of an issue in the rain, but . . . One show it it 105 degrees and people were dropping like flies. I literally hosed off myself from head to foot and the horse and went into the ring, which kept me cool, but I almost fell out of the saddle I was sliding around so much! (So, tip, DON'T soak your saddle and expect to sit in it well!)
    Yup to the rain and sliding. ;-) Have done that a few times, sigh....I never learn! LOL!



  15. #35
    Join Date
    Feb. 25, 1999
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    San Ramon/Castro Valley/Brentwood, California
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    And on my two Wintecs, I took off the blocks...never ride with them. They "held" me too much. My old Pro is my favorite; I usually back youngsters with a western saddle because it distributes rider's weight more favorably, then go to my jumping saddle and then to my dressage saddle. When you're riding the babies, it always add a notch of comfort and security when you're in your own saddle when the airs above the ground commences....and at some point in baby's career, the airs above the ground will happen! LOL!!!! :-)



  16. #36
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    Jan. 26, 2010
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    5,628

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    Oh yeah, I forgot the blocks. I took them off so long ago I didn't remember they had them. I hate that stuff.



  17. #37
    Join Date
    Oct. 8, 2012
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    189

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    I've owned three Wintec Saddles. My first one was an all purpose without Cair and it was bought in probably 1999 or 2000. It was probably the best in terms of comfort and fit for the horse. Used it on quite a few horses successfully.

    More recently, I owned a Wintec CC and a Wintec Isabel, each made in maybe 2006 or 2007 with the Cair system. Both saddles were fairly flat front to back, the Isabel very much so. The Isabel bridged on my current horse and the big gusseted panels poked him in his loins as he began changing shape and outgrowing the XW gullet. I think that is something you will have to watch for with your horse - her back slopes up toward her backend and many dressage saddles are made with big honkin gusseted panels in the back for these big flat backed warmbloods.

    When Wintecs and cheap saddles were all I rode in, I thought they were fantastic. Once you begin riding in higher end saddles though, you'll be able to feel a huge difference. However when I owned them, they served my purposes well and I always felt good in the Isabel. I will say though that the Cair system is terrible in that it cuts off fine communication between your seat and your horse's back.

    Your horse also has quite a long sloping wither, my horse does as well. I'd suggest moving the saddle back a bit and getting an anatomic girth. When I was using the Wintec CC, especially as my horse outgrew it, it would move back several inches during a ride, even just a hack. I had the Wintec contour girth which I loved being able to just hose off when I was done but I couldn't even think about cantering or jumping without a breastplate. I have a new saddle now that fits, an anatomic girth, and I place the saddle back farther probably a good 2-3 inches and the saddle hasn't budged, even during XC schooling. During my recent long saddle search experience I learned that most people (myself included) put saddles too far forward. It takes a little time to get used to putting it farther back, but it makes a big difference.

    All that said, if I was to purchase another synthetic saddle now, I'd probably go with a Thorowgood. The fit options are better - they have different tree shapes available and other ways to adjust the saddles for a better fit. The Tekna saddles look nice in pictures but I don't know anything about them.



  18. #38
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    Jun. 30, 2009
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    Quote Originally Posted by Skyedragon View Post
    This is one thing that concerns me, that because the brand hasn't gone "big" like wintec, that finding the stuff for it could be hard, plus if something went wrong, finding help could be hard too.
    Which is why you buy the saddle from this tack shop:
    Comes with Medium Gullet Installed. We ship all Teknas with a complete set of gullets at no additional cost!

    If something goes wrong with the saddle, it's under warranty & you contact the sale shop (or am I missing some context here )

    As for the Kieffer, contact Kieffer with identifying marks (serial #or model # & tree size etc) - they are usually very quick to respond



  19. #39
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    Aug. 13, 2011
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    Michigan
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    I contacted Kieffer about the saddle on eBay, hope to hear back!
    Maggie Bright, lovingly known as Skye and deeply missed (1994 - 2013)
    The Blog



  20. #40
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    Aug. 13, 2011
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    Michigan
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    Well I am glad that I contacted keiffer! The saddle was actually a 16 inch not a 17.5! They said that the tree could be adjusted on keiffers. Is that only by a keiffer rep or can it be done by any saddler with the machine?
    Maggie Bright, lovingly known as Skye and deeply missed (1994 - 2013)
    The Blog



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