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Old 10-19-2007, 05:53 AM  
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New Plantation Saddle for me(with pictures)

Ok well it's not new (not by any means) but it's new to me. First let me say to the folks who don't know, not only were some gaited horses engineered in America but some gaited horse saddles were too. So even though this saddle looks a little like an english saddle with western fenders and stirrups it's actually a gaited horse saddle or a plantation saddle.

My wife has had a buena vista saddle for a couple of months now but I have a custom wade tree saddle that she bought for me. She got it from the man who had it made for himself then decided he didn't want to ride anymore. It's a really nice saddle but it rubbed a sore on my walkers back, right in front of her hip bone on top of her spine. Well then she got my uncle to help her look and together they found me a buena vista saddle. Now it's not new but for a hundred forty bucks it's not bad either. It needs to be recovered, but my wife wants me to sell the wade to have this one fixed. I don't think so, I'm getting the wade fixed and I'll just have two saddles. So anyway, I just wanted to show everyone my new saddle.







And here is my wife's saddle. We were taking these to show her blanket's size. I had it custom made last year for Christmas but it's way bigger than we wanted and we just haven't gotten around to having it cut down to size until now.



I designed the emblem that is embroidered on both pockets of the blanket, plus we had her name embroidered across the top on the back. I also added the cell phone pockets on the front gullet of each pocket and the lady let us pick the material we wanted the blanket made from. This blanket cost under 100 dollars (including shipping), and now she is going to cut it down for free, almost a year later. The blanket can be better seen at http://www.r9chc.com/CowboyCloth.htm, she is using it to advertise.

This is how much we want cut off, everything in front of the saddle in these pictures.





So if there are any plantation saddle people out there, let me know what you think about our saddles, we have less than 160 in each saddle (including shipping) and they are both over 60yrs old and riding sound.
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Last edited by David : 10-19-2007 at 10:32 AM.
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Old 10-19-2007, 06:06 AM  
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That is so cool! I have never seen a saddle made specifically for a gaited horse. I love the saddle pad you had made, too! It is beautiful!
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Old 10-19-2007, 06:32 AM  
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I have seen saddles like that before, But to me they dont look very comfortable. I really like the pad though.
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Old 10-19-2007, 07:03 AM  
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Altho not familiar with plantation saddles, the common denominator in all saddles is the bars have to be a close fit. From what I can see of this saddle it is far too narrow and not properly setting down on the horse. Perhaps too much padding. Many of the older saddles fit smaller narrower horses when made. We see many wonderful old western saddles with the same problem of being too narrow for our bigger wider horses.
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Old 10-19-2007, 07:34 AM  
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Actually slim this saddle fits perfectly. It just doesn't appear to in the photo because it wasn't placed properly or tied down. In this photo it was simply sat on top of the blanket to demonstrate that the blanket was to large and needed to be cut down. If you look at the horses front leg you will notice that the cinch strap is hanging down along the leg, this will tell you that the saddle is neither properly placed nor cinched down on the horse.

I do appreciate your opinion though, I just pointed these things out so that no one thinks I'm riding my horses in equipment that hurts them. In fact that's the reason my wife got me the buena vista, because my other saddle did rub a bald spot on my horse.

Thunderz Gurlz--My wife had the same opinion until she rode one, one time was all it took and she had to have one. A lot of people think they look uncomfortable, but you can't judge a book by it's cover or a saddle by it's look I guess. Everyone I know who has tried one of these saddles on a walker loves it. If you run across one again try it out, I bet you'll like it too.
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Old 10-19-2007, 08:35 AM  
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Uhm, not ALL gaited horses were engineered in America.

My Peruvian Paso and my Paso Fino and the Mangalarga Marchador and the Bakshir and the Icelandic and the Pega (which is a mule, but I'm just sayin') would all beg to differ with you.

Nice blanket! And a good price too.

I've heard of the Plantation saddles, but honestly don't know much about them. Looks really similar to an English saddle though, doesn't it?
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Old 10-19-2007, 09:34 AM  
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I know they all weren't and I actually intended to type tennessee walking horses but(since I'm doing this at work) I got interrupted and forgot to correct myself. Thanks for pointing that out for anyone who didn't know.

Actually it looks a lot like an english saddle from the side, but the seat is very different to an english saddle, it sits more like a western saddle. they are uniquely comfortable because you have that nice big seat but the freedom of english type stirrup leathers and because there is so little between you and the horse you can feel the horse better, like if you were riding an english saddle.

They have a lot of the benefits of a McClellan or Australian saddle.
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Old 10-19-2007, 09:46 AM  
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Quote:
Originally Posted by shayla View Post
Uhm, not ALL gaited horses were engineered in America.

My Peruvian Paso and my Paso Fino and the Mangalarga Marchador and the Bakshir and the Icelandic and the Pega (which is a mule, but I'm just sayin') would all beg to differ with you.

Nice blanket! And a good price too.

I've heard of the Plantation saddles, but honestly don't know much about them. Looks really similar to an English saddle though, doesn't it?
Again I was interrupted and had to break my post into two... I have done a bit of research on this subject and appearantly most domesticated horses before 1700 were gaited horses. The exception being draft horses and war horses ( which were essentially specially trained draft horses). Even knights had an everyday horse that was gaited (called a palfrey) which they rode except when they had their armor on ready for battle. According to what I have read, around 1700 people began to prefer wagon travel over horseback and it seems that straight gaited (trotting) horses were better at pulling wagons, so gaited horses faded away. That's why when everyone got to the "new world" and had to travel horse back again ( due to there being no wagon roads) people began trying to breed gaited horses back into existance. That's the reason that almost every area of the new world has a type of gaited horse.

I know this wasn't very useful but I hope it was interesting.
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Old 10-19-2007, 10:14 AM  
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I have an Eli Miller plantation saddle, but with a horn. (I like that extra security when we are on rough trails.) I have had it for nearly six years, and love it. It fits my Paso Finos well, and I can comfortably ride in it for hours. I can't say that about the previous western saddles I had that were made specifically for gaited horses.

I do like the way the stirrup leathers are made as they don't cause nearly the stress on my knees as the other saddles did.

I paid $800 for mine that many years ago, and now the only ones I have seen are up around $1200. So I would say for the money you have invested, you did really well.
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Old 10-19-2007, 10:30 AM  
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pasodeb--My aunt rides an Eli Miller that she found and had recovered but it doesn't have a horn. That's the saddle that my wife took one 10 minute ride in and had to have one exactly like it. My uncle has one by a different maker but it has a horn on it, I like the idea of the horn because I do like to hang stuff from the horn when I ride and sometimes it's nice to have a horn you can use to drag a log up to the fire if your camping and what not. So when I get this one recovered I will probably have a horn added to it.

ETA: Also did you know that Eli's Brother and nephew are making saddles now? You can buy them in some KY tack stores. There is also an Amish saddlemaker in KY who makes very good buena vistas but at 800 and up those are out of my price range.
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Last edited by David : 10-19-2007 at 10:36 AM.
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