Model: Wintec 500 A/P
Category: All Purpose Saddles
Purchase: I purchased this saddle in February 2005 via internet from Four Winds Saddle Tack Store at fourwindstack.com. The sale price for the Wintec 500 A/P with CAIR was $499 including a complete gullet kit and free ground shipping (U.S. only). It was shipped to me from the Colorado store to Boise, Idaho within the estimated 7-10 days. This saddle was selected over others for its low cost and because the fit could be adjusted to accommodate different horses.
Likes: The saddle lives up to its "easy care" reputation. After a few rides I wipe it down with a damp cloth and do nothing else to maintain it. It adjusts to fit my two horses comfortably. One of my horses has high withers (Appendix Quarterhorse) and the other has low withers (Arabian) and both are made comfortable with a simple gullet change. I have used it for gentle trail riding, English riding lessons and hours of personal practice.
Dislikes: This saddle is stiff. The synthetic material does not break in like a leather saddle so can be a bit uncomfortable. Also, the gullet is not as easy to change as advertised. Some hand and arm strength is needed to unscrew the gullet, pull the old gullet out and fit the new gullet in.
Quality: The costruction and quality appear to be very good. The synthetic material has not faded, curled or cracked and is without a scratch after falling off the saddle stand and fence several times. The hardware appears to be steel and it has not bent, broken or lost its shiny finish. After repeated gullet changes (some not so skillfully performed) the saddle has not lost its strength or broken down at the flex points.
Summary: This is really a nice saddle for the beginning rider or an intermediate rider to use for practice. It is also a cost- effective saddle for horse owners with more than one horse. I liked it well enough that I just bought a second, larger, Wintec 500 A/P saddle for my boyfriend.
Author: Susan Clark
Usefulness Rating: 0 out of 5.
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