Manufacturer: Cynron (View all products by Cynron)
Model: Caitlin Close Contact (View all Caitlin Close Contact reviews)
Category: Close Contact Saddles
Purchase: Awhile ago, this was my dream saddle. I searched all over the internet for it at a reasonable price and found one on ebay for $300.
Likes: The seat was very comfy! Maybe a bit hard, but still quite comfy and secure at the same time. Nothing to restrict my movement and although I only used it a few times on my 4 year old mare, it was very reassuring to be in that saddle while working with her. The leg flaps were also REALLY supple. Very soft high quality leather.
Dislikes: Most of all, the rear panels are at a terrible angle. Not only were they too angled for my horse, I don't think they would have enough surface area on any horse except a horse with a very narrow back. (not withers, back) Also, the leg flaps were actually TOO soft. Basically, it was two very soft pieces of leather sewn together with foam or something in between. Not just a sturdy piece of leather. They won't stand up to too much wear and most stirrup leathers will easily damage the leather. The same thing goes with the leather under the stirrup bars. It tore after just one or two times removing the stirrup leathers. My mare got nervous sometimes when I lunged her when the stirrups were on her saddle so I had to remove the leathers and put them back on after to ride her.
Quality: The saddle seems to be constructed nicely for the rider. Very comfy and secure. But the horse would not be so lucky. The awkward positioning of the rear panels creates uncomfortable pressure points because there is not enough of the saddle actually touching the horse's back to distribute weight evenly. Even 120 pounds was uncomfortable for my horse. After switching saddles she has been cooperating much better. The quality isn't all that great in my opinion. Sure, the leather is really soft and close contact, but there's a point when you get TOO soft and supple to use on a saddle. IF it fits your horse right, I can understand using this as a show saddle, but it won't stand up to everyday use.
Summary: I loved this saddle for myself, but when it comes down to it it really wasn't going to work for my girl. The saddle is not made to be ridden in all too often either if you want it to last at all. If you have a narrow horse with a narrow back, I can understand using this saddle for show. IT is GORGEOUS! But if you do pursue the Cynron Caitlin, make sure that you can test it out for a few days first. And always put your horse's comfort first! :) This was a big loss of money for me because I could have purchased a nice used saddle for the same price; probably less.
Usefulness Rating: 2.75 out of 5.
12 reader(s) voted.
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