How to buy and fit a saddle over here (India)

Vindaloo

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30 June 2005
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Greenwich, London.
I've had Casper over a month now and so far so good, he is an absolute darling. At the moment I am riding him in a jumping saddle which belongs to the YO (in fact all his tack does since all mine is in storage back at home).

I was thinking that I would really like to kit him out in his own tack, bridle etc no problem and will be shopping like mad on my next trip home BUT how on earth do I get a saddle? The YO has offered one to me which his sadller (ahem) has made and looking at it, well it's nice but I don't trust the stitching, actually I don't trust much about tack made over here at all.

I am no saddler and have always had the professionals in to do the job for me at home but I know a lot of people do buy saddles from ebay etc and fit them themselves.

If any of you wonderful people could give me some advice I would be eternally grateful. YO reckons he needs a narrow fit but I've never come across anything needing a narrow and in any case, he's muscling up and will only get wider.

Initally i'll get him a dressage saddle but then will need a jumping one (for when I get the B*lls to do any more than baby jumps).

Hints/tips recommendations very welcome.

Many thanks.
 

georgiegirl

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4 August 2004
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hmmm i guess one way would be to buy one of those flexi curve things and do your own templates and then when you get home take them to the saddlers who will get a pretty good idea of what you need, also plenty pictures of your horse from all angles would help too. There will be websites on the web detailing what templates/info you need if you do a search.

Lucky you living in india though! whats it like horse wise over there? I went to goa years ago and loved it although i cant imagine riding in that heat! Im going again in november when hopefully the heat at night time wont be quite as oppressive!
 

PonyIAmNotFood

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saddlefitter.blogspot.com

Read the earlier posts of this that have a great guide for taking templates, doing basic fit checks and taking photos to send off for a second opinion. Brilliant advice on there.
 

Serenity087

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1 February 2008
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Now would I be a Kentish lass, or a lass of Kent?
I normally fit my own saddles.

It's all pretty easy to work out length and width wise. If you're expecting muscle I'd buy slightly wider and pad out with saddle pads (ooh, scandal!).

Dorey's saddle is an old one we bought for another cob. It needs a thick saddle pad but it fits her fine, no pinching, no pressing on her shoulders and actually has contact on her entire back, not just the two points where ill-fitted saddles sit.

As you have a saddle already, use the measurements you have to find another and hit ebay. Worst comes if it doesn't fit then talk to the seller about a return or put back on ebay!
You learn a fair bit when you fit your own saddles. Like how saddlers will often try selling you the most unsuitable tat because then they get their commisions!!!
 

Vindaloo

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30 June 2005
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729
Location
Greenwich, London.
Hi GG, Great minds think alike, only probelm I have with that is getting a flexi curve thing. Ha, it's hard enough getting simple things like groceries but i'm home in 3 weeks (hoorah) and will be able to pick one up then. I'll take the camera up this evening and take a load of shots.

Living over here is, well interesting to say the least and yep at the moment is ROASTING. Not as hot as it can get today mind you, it's only 45 degrees. There is not a riding scene at all really out here, as far as I know I am the only person in Jaipur who has a horse just for the pure enjoyment of riding. Most have to do a job and do it well or they end up who knows where.

You are restricted on breed too, it's TB's off the track, retired polo ponies (also all TB's) or the Marwari horses. There are hundreds of ponies of all types pulling carts and of course donkeys. Apparently the cavalry have warmbloods etc but they are not sold to outsiders (not cavalry) as far as I know.

Have fun in Goa, November is a great time of year down there. I was there in Oct last year just as Monsoon ended. Bagga beach was a lot of fun although the hangovers were not...
 

Vindaloo

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Joined
30 June 2005
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729
Location
Greenwich, London.
Hi Serenity,

To be honest I am not at all sure that the saddle he has fits him well at all, it sits on top of a lot of padding and I am positive I can feel it lifting at the back.

I don't mind padding a bit if it's needed but currently I feel a bit like the princess and the pea (not that I am in any way a princess I hasten to add) I just feel that there is too much between me and his back. He has an enormous foam pad on top of...well I'm not sure what the hell it is to be honest. It's a big white square of something that looks a bit like polystyrene.

Since the post in India is non existent, ebaying is not an option out here. I'll just have to get to grips with fitting myself and hope to goodness I don't get it too wrong since I only get home max twice a year.

It really is about time I learned to fit my own. I have been there with the being sold something unsuitable and it wasn't blooming cheap either.
 
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