Manufacturer: Collegiate (View all products by Collegiate)
Model: Connoisseur (View all Connoisseur reviews)
Category: Close Contact Saddles
Purchase: I was given this saddle for Christmas of 2006. It was purchased for $699 with a free bridle. It was a good price and the saddle looked pretty enough with a rich dark color.
Likes: The color and price were amazing, and that is about it.
Dislikes: I've had some back issues and the seat doesn't help me; it is too wide and flat, which makes it hard to find my center of balance. The saddle gets ruined in the rain, even with regular oiling/cleaning. The stirrup leathers rub, and within a year of having it they completely rubbed off the tanning in one ride, all that was left was rough grey leather. After keeping oil on the rubs for about 3 days straight, I decided it was time to see if it would hold. When I cleaned and conditioned it all the oil came off. I continued oiling for about 4 more days and it finally held. The rubs turned almost black. I can't clean the saddle there or the rubs will turn grey again. When I ride now, I can see where my leathers have touched the saddle. The knee rolls are all wrong. They don't suit someone with a long thigh. The seat is like sitting on a fence.
Quality: The leather isn't the best, it takes forever to break in and even then it isn't very comfortable. The underside of the flap is terrible leather and Collegiate should be ashamed.
Summary: Well I guess I got what I paid for. It would be ok for someone who wanted a cheap saddle, but I would definitely advise you to try it before you buy. I just can't wait to sell it and get a new saddle.
Usefulness Rating: 2.83333 out of 5.
12 reader(s) voted.
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