Manufacturer: BdH (View all products by Bruno De Heusch)
Model: BdH Special (View all BdH Special reviews)
Category: Close Contact Saddles
Purchase: I was looking for a new close contact saddle for my warmblood who had recently outgrown my $3500 custom Antares saddle. I called the customer service people at Dover Saddlery and told them what I was looking for, a high quality saddle that would be suitable for Big Equitation/Hunters. The lady suggested to me that I try the BDH Special. It was on close out for $799.00. I was hesitant because I am used to paying ALOT more for saddles but since it was available for their "test ride" and I could return it if I didn't like it, I went ahead and purchased it.
Likes: The leather is very high quality. I love the depth of the seat. It feels very secure without being restrictive. The seat itself is very comfortable, nice and wide with some cushion. The padded flaps are very nice and the knee and thigh blocks give great security both on the flat and over the larger fences.
Dislikes: The billets were very stiff when it arrived but after a little oil and a few rides they have softened considerably. I do think that they will last longer than most as they are a little thicker.
Quality: The first thing I noticed was how nice the leather was. This saddle is extremely well made. The calfskin seat and padded flaps give you an immediate broken in feeling. The flaps themselves are made from high quality french leather and are very soft yet seem very durable. The leather took oil beautifully. I didn't use much because it really didn't need it, but it darkened to a beautiful deep mahogany color. I am using the M. Tolouse leathers and sheepskin lined girth in "cognac" and they match perfectly. It is so comfortable to sit in and it really places you in the perfect position and keeps you there with very little effort. The stirrup bars are recessed so they don't interfere when you are riding. The inside flap that lays next to the horse is cut out so that there is no extra layer where your leg makes contact with the horse. I find it very helpful for getting better contact with the horse. It has very nice stitching detail and the nail heads are what you would expect to see in a saddle three times the price. The cover is very nice, beautifully embroidered with the BDH logo and padded and sheepskin lined.
Summary: I am VERY pleased with this saddle. I am amazed that I got it for $799.00, and I will never ride in anything else ever again and I would have gladly paid the retail of $2,400.00. This saddle is worth every bit of that and more. If I had known about BDH saddles earlier I would have saved myself ALOT of money. This is way better than my Anteres or Devoucoux which were both upwards of $3,000.00
Usefulness Rating: 3.375 out of 5.
16 reader(s) voted.
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