Manufacturer: King Series II
Model: King Series II King Golden Trail Western
Category: Trail Saddles
Purchase: I found this saddle on adamshorsesupplies.com. I've used the site before for small purchases (saddle racks, bucket hooks) when I can't find the time to drive to the local TSC. I run boarding stable in south Nebraska,but also lease out horses to trail riders in the area. The leased horses come with tack and one of my Appy mares needed a new saddle, so I was trying to find a nice saddle - not to pretty, but functional and long-lasting. And of course, I didn't want to spend too much money on it. I ended up paying about 280 for it, plus shipping.
Likes: I liked the comfort the saddle offers for the rider. The seat was cushy, although the cushion wore down pretty quickly and was soon deflated. The fenders were nice and wide, good for trail riding, and the suede seat was grippy for my mare's unpredictable spooks.
Dislikes: Overall, the saddle was a poor quality. The leather was cheap and wore down very quickly. It was also very stiff, which made it hard to maneuver your leg. The metal used to hold in the stirrups, as well as the D-Rings, was poor quality. It was barely more than a piece of tin foil. The decorative concho on the back of the saddle appeared to have fallen off during shipping; it left a little cosmetic flaw on the saddle. The latigo, although supple, was also very thin and I immediately replaced it due to safety concern. Overall, not so great.
Quality: The saddle's construction overall was mediocre. The tree may have been slightly crooked, but if so, very minor crooked-ness (crooked-ness, is that a word? Haha.) Of course, crooked-ness of the tree is not something to take lightly as it can offset your horses back in one ride if it is severe enough, and even minor crooked-ness can cause back pain for your horse, leading to misbehavior. As I mentioned before, the conchos and D-Rings seemed poorly attatched, which leads to questions about the stirrups' attatchment as well as the cinch/latigo. The quality was not so great either. The leather was flaky when it arrived, I assume that it had not been properly treated when it was manufactured (high quality saddles are usually cured in some sort of leather suppler before they are sold. I can tell that not much expense was spared in the making of the saddle, and the result was a poor quality one.
Summary: I definitely do not recommend this saddle. It raises potential problems with your horses back as well as the fact that it will not last you long due to the poor quality leather and "metal" bits. (Which were really probably tin.) The saddle is unsafe as well as uncomfortable for your horse.
Usefulness Rating: 2.5 out of 5.
6 reader(s) voted.
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