Manufacturer: Frank Baines (View all products by Frank Baines)
Model: Elan (View all Elan reviews)
Category: Jumping Saddles
Purchase: I bought this saddle used on eBay for $725. It needs a new seat panel as it has come loose over the pommel. Whoever owned it never oiled or fed the leather and it dried out. New the Elan sells for $2500 and for that price it will be custom made to fit both you and your horse.
Likes: I have a GP saddle for everyday use that I love - The Wintec GP w/CAIR is a perfect everyday/trail saddle - but I needed a good jumping saddle that I could show in and this is it! It has a narrow twist that sits you in the perfect place for jumping, a comfortable seat and both knee and thigh blocks to keep your legs steady. The quality of this saddle is first class and my horse seems to like the fit.
Dislikes: Other than the fact that I have to replace the seat leather there is nothing else I would change about this saddle. If it was the only saddle I owned I probably wouldn't like it as much but for jumping and cross country it's a dream to ride.
Quality: Our barn just had a saddle try-on where everyone put their saddles in the arena and we all tried each others saddles. This included the Butet, Hampton, Stuebben, Bates and others. After trying them all I decided to invest in new leather for my saddle seat. The construction is as good or better than all of the above and only the Hampton came close to putting me in good jumping position.
Summary: I am more than pleased with this saddle. Frank Baines' saddles aren't seen very often in the U.S. and I don't understand why. Jump in one once and you'll be sold.
Usefulness Rating: 2.625 out of 5.
8 reader(s) voted.
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