Manufacturer: Southern Cross Australian Stock Saddle (View all products by Southern Cross Saddlery)
Model: Combo Poley (View all Combo Poley reviews)
Category: Trail Saddles
Purchase: I purchased this saddle new from The Australian Stock Saddle Co in 2004 for $2500.00.
Likes: A simple, well built saddle that will last a lifetime.
Dislikes: What I didn't like about the saddle is purchasing it through The Australian Stock Saddle Co. I have a hard to fit horse, and was told by the owner that he had fit over 75,000 horses and there was never a horse he couldn't fit. I did the wither and back tracings as they asked and got a saddle that didn't fit. I sent it back, and they adjusted it (apparently the steel tree can be changed by using force to bend it). When the saddle returned I took it out on one ride and the horn flopped over. We checked it over and it looked like they had added another layer of steel underneath, which explained my horse's discomfort. Anyhow, they took the saddle back, made another saddle, that also didn't fit (wasn't even close this time), took that one back, made another one which also did not fit (this time I used an Equimeasure form and sent it to them). It did, however, fit my husband's horse ok (and he is built totally opposite of my horse) so I gave it to him. He loves it, although he had some problems with it during hunting season where it rubbed his horse (never had that happen before with it). I did try to sell the third saddle for quite awhile, but it seems people are only willing to pay more for Syd Hills since they have the name recognition.
Quality: Overall it is a very nice saddle. My husband is especially hard on stuff and it has survived with no mechanical failures. It's an attractive saddle and fairly lightweight, as compared to the typical Western Saddle. Even though I had the issue with the horn breaking on the first saddle, this one has a very sturdy horn that has been used to pull logs.
Summary: Most people have a positive experience with The Australian Stock Saddle Co. I am one of the few that didn't. I found the owner to be arrogant and he didn't listen well as he felt he already knew everything there was to know about my horse's back. I would not buy from them again, nor would I recommend them. But, like I said, I am in the minority of those having a bad experience with them. They will try to make things right, I just wish they would have listened to me, and paid more attention to the fit with the Equimeasure sheet I sent. At least my husband came out of it well, with his fancy new saddle :)
Usefulness Rating: 3 out of 5.
1 reader(s) voted.
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