Model: Orican Freestyle Medium Turnout Blanket
Purchase: I purchased this blanket from Smartpak about two years ago and paid about $140 - I can't remember the exact price. I was purchasing blankets for a new horse and had always had good luck with Weatherbeetas.
Likes: I love the blackwatch plaid, the freestyle gusset system, which seems to work really well for eliminating rubs. There is a cupped shoulder dart right at the point of the shoulder and a gusset under that which works really well. I also like the thoughtful details: shock elastic at the surcingles, keepers on the chest straps, etc. The fit is quite good.
Dislikes: If it were not for the label and the style I would almost be willing to swear it's not really a Weatherbeeta! This blanket is not holding up the way my older ones have. I have a nine year old Weatherbeeta turnout without a tear on it (the elastic is getting worn but of course that will happen) and it's still waterproof! That's why I bought the same brand, but this blanket got a tear the first year it was in use, and I had to patch it. It's also got threadbare wear marks all over it. It doesn't stay in place quite as well as my older Weatherbeetas; I keep having to shift it so it's centered. What's more, the two turnout sheets I bought at about the same time are showing signs of wear with small tears already and one of them needed re-proofing after only two seasons. I am wondering what is going on with Weatherbeeta? Are they cheating out? I also noticed in the ad copy, they do not specify whether these blankets have a nylon or polyester shell - it only gives the denire. I can't help but wonder about that too.
Quality: See above. I suspect they are no longer using the wonderful almost indestructible 1200 denire nylon but instead are using polyester. The waterproofing doesn't last as long as my older Weatherbeetas either.
Summary: There was a time when I would have recommended these blankets to anyone for value, fit, durability as the the best buy you can make in turnout blankets, but not so much any more. It's sad because they used to be terrific. And when I tried to contact the manufacturer, guess what? There is no way you can. You click on "contact us" and all you get is a link to FAQs. You can't contact them directly.
Author: Shagya enthusiast
Usefulness Rating: 2.5 out of 5.
4 reader(s) voted.
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