Sunday I woke up feeling better, but then it was time to go get some running done. Horse feed to buy, human feed to buy, and a trip to home depot for a misting system for the dogs.
It was wicked hot yesterday with no breeze what so ever, so once the running was done I sat down and relaxed and soaked up some AC. About 6 pm, I headed outside and decided to see just how well I had done on my saddles.
In some ways I was pleasantly surprised, and in others I thought something more like "Whoops, should have thought about that!"
I took each horse and tried each saddle on them to see who could wear what. And of course I took lots of photos.
I started with Killian (please keep in mind that none of these saddles are cinched down)
|This is my old Circle Y- It is my favorite saddle.|
However when I cleaned it , I really soaked the heck out of it.
The stand I had it on when I was drying it,
allowed it to fold in some.
|Still it is pretty wide and seems to fit him ok.|
It is a 1999 model with SQHB
|While it is in much better shape than when I started|
It still needed another round of
Next up on Killian was the New Circle Y- This is a 2000 model also with SQHB However this one is shorter in length and I am guessing it might be a flex tree because it is so much lighter than the 99 model.
|It actually does sit on him ok, but looks so tiny on him.|
|However I am super happy with how this one turned out.|
|This fender was completely bubbled out.|
By wetting it, then oiling well and clamping between
2 pieces of ply wood I was able to get it to
go back into shape. But the lines are where
the had been stretched.
|A view on his shoulder|
|I love that my breast collar matches- especially once I oiled it too.|
|This was what it looked like before I bought it.|
Next up was the old Colorado Saddlery. This one is quite old, but in good shape. However it is also pretty narrow. Would be good for a TB or perhaps and Arabian.
|Much too narrow for this big boy|
|Look at the beautiful red this saddle used to be.|
|I removed the Easy Up stirrups and added regular ones|
|For as old as it is, this saddle is in pretty decent shape.|
The leather is soft and supple.
Last but not least is the one I have not worked on yet. The 200 dollar cutting saddle. At least I believe that is what it is. I could be wrong, and if someone has a different opinion, please speak up. As you can see from the pictures it needs a lot of work, but is a nice size for this big old guy.
|I am hoping that I can fix this one.|
|This seems to be the problem area|
|It is quite wide in the front though|
7" gullet, which is nice.
Also the seat is probably 17" so TC can ride in it.
Then I tried everything on Melody
|The old CS- She actually could wear this in a pinch|
|She is slightly narrower than the rest of my ponies|
|I did notice that when this saddle was drying|
It had been pushed up against the wall
causing that back to roll under a tad.
It is currently soaking again with a brace to
Then came the old Circle Y- I don't know if it is because it is longer, or better broke in or what, but it has the same bars and gullet as the new one- and the one I just got rid of, yes this saddle fits all my horses so much better. The only down side is that I have the latigo and cinch on the rear ring in order to keep from rubbing Trax's pink skin. That particular set up doesn't work so well on the rest of the horses. But fit wise- it is the best. (IMO)
|If you biggify you can see the drywall screw|
holding it together. :(
Last but not least- the New Circle Y. I actually rode her in this after I was done with the pictures, and she was not unhappy with it. She likes it much better than the old cutter. It was comfy for me, although it feels kind of small, but I think that is just because I am used to my old saddle. Plus she is narrower so when I look down at her shoulders, everything looks smaller. LOL
|I am not unhappy with how this fits her shoulders|
|However, I think it is awfully short for such a long horse|
|I realize my breast collar is too long. I need to add some holes.|
Next up the old CS- I'm sure you guess how well that worked.
|You can see where the back of saddle is folding under|
|He has fat shoulders.|
|It seems to sit a little high on his shoulders.|
|What do you guys think?|
|This side seems to fold in a bit|
|This shot really shows the wonkiness in the back end of it|
|This shoulder isn't too bad.|
The old cutter will get a make over. But because I think it needs some serious reshaping I will not attempt this until a have a really solid saddle stand made which is formed closer to the shape of a horses back. It won't be perfect but at least a little rounder. That will give me the ability to add some shape to my saddle. Then I will go to work on it. Once I am done with it, I will make the decision on if it is a keeper or a seller. Knowing that I paid so little for it, I'm sure I can at least make a little bit off of it, if I decide not to keep it. Well I guess I should say, as long as there isn't anything seriously wrong with it.
The New Circle Y- turned out beautifully, but I don't love love love it like I had hoped I was going to. While it does work on Melody, I really want a saddle that works on more than one horse. I think that with the real silver breast collar and headstall I have a very nice set up there. The breast collar and headstall are also Circle Y made, and the concho's on those are real silver. At the very least I know that I can get my money back on the entire set up, hopefully I can get just a little extra for my labor. I'd be curious to hear what you folks think I could ask for it, without being over the top.
I keep going back in my mind to the older Circle Y which I saw in Camp Verde. It is a large saddle like mine, not a show saddle, but a working saddle. (I wish I had taken a picture of it) It is not the $1200.00 trail saddle that was so gorgeous it made my mouth water, but it is a very nice saddle just the same. I really want to find something with FQHB and since I now know how to read those Circle Y serial numbers a lot better, I think I can make a smarter decision when buying next time.
I do have another Circle Y coming to me from CO to try out in a couple of weeks. It is actually a cutting saddle too, and I am excited to see it, and try it out and hopefully TC will want to buy it to replace his roping saddle he sold. If not then maybe that will be the one I buy out of my own saddle fund. We will just have to see.
So goes the continuing saga of the saddle trading escapade. Who knows where it is going to end up? LOL
In other news, the last few times I rode Killian I spent a lot of time just pushing his shoulders back and forth, and I found that he really has some nice moves. I may have mentioned this before. I made the decision recently that in the fall when all the sorting and penning practices start up again, I am actually going to start taking all three of my riders for some of these practices. I think Killian will do well, and I know Melly will. Trax will remain to be seen. My hope is that once he grasps the concept of why I am asking for his feet to move like that, he will do better. I know that is a pretty far reach, but it can't hurt to try.
When I mentioned all of this in front of Simon, he said that it is something he would like to try. I am super excited about that. TC said that he might even want to give it a shot. Finally something we can all do together that involves horses!
Okay...NOW I am done with this post. I hit publish and update 3 different times while trying to type it out, so it has been sitting out there all morning half finished! Sorry for those of you who only got the first half.