Horse Tack Review

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Close Contact Saddles

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Manufacturer: Hartley (View all products by Hartley)

Model: Galaxie (View all Galaxie reviews)

Category: Close Contact Saddles

Purchase: I was looking for an inexpensive, used, well balanced, spring tree saddle for my growing gelding because he changed shape and my Beval Natural quit fitting him for awhile. From what I have read, Harry Dabs made these saddles when he worked for Hartley a good 20 years ago. I bought it with my fingers crossed that I was not making a huge mistake. After it came and I rode in it, I am thrilled. This is an amazingly durable, impeccably balanced saddle that is a pleasure to ride in. I am so impressed! I bought it off EBay in very good condition for $160.00.

Likes: This is a close contact saddle with very little in the way of a knee roll so you have nothing interfering with your connection with your horse. The balance is superb, I can effortlessly two point and jump in this and never feel as though I am struggling to find or keep my position. This saddle has every bit as good of balance as my Beval. The spring tree is a real blessing, I put it on my 15.2 sensitive-backed mare and she is soft and round and happy as a clam - she prefers it to the Beval. It also fits my slab-sided, 16.2 and still growing gelding nicely and keeps him happy too.

Dislikes: There is nothing that I can think of, it is a beautifully designed saddle.

Quality: The leather is of very good quality and the workmanship is awesome. The flocking has probably been redone at some point but is excellent, and the seat is not rock hard like some saddles from that era. The saddle has a simple, timeless look that will still work fine in the show ring. I find the attention to detail quite cool - each of the billets is one inch longer than the other, going from front to back. Neat!

Summary: Excellent quality, durability, superb balance... If you find one, grab it! You will not be sorry.

Rating: 5

Author: Jean B.

Date: 2010-04-17

Usefulness Rating: 4 out of 5.
2 reader(s) voted.

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