Good saddle choice

Choosing The Right Saddle

Toowoomba Saddlery has a number of saddles in its range, you may be wondering which one is best suited for you and your horse.

The information below will give you a good starting point in helping you choose your saddle.
We recommend sitting in the saddle prior to purchase where possible.

Step 1. Decide which saddle tree is most suitable.

The saddle tree is a key component, its size and shape are important to determine how the saddle will fit your horse. A Toowoomba Saddlery saddle will be made on one of four Equi-fit trees, with a 10 year conditional warranty on the saddle tree. #3 trees are wider than #2 trees, while the widest is the #3 Quarter Horse tree. The shape of the pommel area and kneepads also differs between the number #2 and #3 trees.

Specifications of each tree type are listed below, use these to assist you in determining which tree is most suited to your horse. Need further help with this? Contact Toowoomba Saddlery or your local saddlery store. It can be helpful to see photos of your horse from different angles, and/or a wither tracing.

We are frequently asked what is the difference between the #2 and the #3 saddle trees: The #2 is narrower through the gullet, with smaller knee pads that lean back towards the rider and a differently shaped pommel.

#2 Youth Equifit saddle tree

#2 Youth Saddle Tree
Bar-type: Semi Quarter Horse
Gullet Width: 5.5″
Kneepad Height: 3″

#2 Equifit Youth saddle tree front
#2 Equifit saddle tree

#2 Saddle Tree (Adult)
Bar-type: Semi Quarter Horse
Gullet Width: 5.75″
Kneepad Height: 3″

#2 Equifit saddle tree front
#2 Equi-fit saddle tree
#3 Equifit saddle tree

#3 Saddle Tree
Bar-type: Semi Quarter Horse
Gullet Width: 6″
Kneepad Height: 3.25″

#3 Equifit saddle tree front
#3 Equi-fit saddle tree
#3 Quarter horse Equifit saddle tree

#3QH Saddle Tree
Bar-type: Quarter Horse
Gullet Width: 6.5″
Kneepad Height: 3.25″

#3 Quarter horse tree - front
#3QH saddle tree
Ramtough Logo

Bar-type: Semi Quarter Horse
Gullet Width: 6″
Kneepad Height: 3.25″

Ramtough Youth saddle tree - front view
Ramtough Youth saddle tree - angle view

Step 2. Compare saddles  made with that tree and choose the one which best meets your needs.

Points to check can include:

  • Configuration of hardware and girth rigging
  • Seat style and padding
  • Is the saddle available in the right size?
  • Do you want extra features like edge dyed leather
  • Price / budget

Saddles made with the #2 Youth tree

Condamine Junior Drafter saddle - DN/Chestnut - Side view
Condamine Junior Drafter
Youth Fender Saddle - 2020
Youth Fender Saddle

Saddles made with the #2 Tree

Stock Fender 2019 Model - Brown
Stock Fender
Cloncurry Fender 2019 model - DN, smooth-out
Cloncurry Fender

Saddles made with the #3 or #3QH tree

Mareeba Drafter Saddle - 2020 model - Havana
Mareeba Drafter
Sunset Drafter Saddle - Brown - 16" full quarter horse - 2022 - with leather conchos
Dubbo Fender
Sunset Drafter Saddle - 2023 Model - DN - Smooth Out
Sunset Drafter
Stanley Fender saddle - 2019 model
Stanley Fender

Saddles made with the Australian Made Ramtough® Saddle Tree

Ranger Fender Saddle with pre-turned fenders
Ranger Fender
Moonie Drafter Saddle
Moonie Drafter

Step 3. Select your options

You will notice that most saddles are available with different options. Once you have decided which saddle has the features you need and meets your budget, check which options are available with that saddle and decide which ones match your personal preferences. Options may include:

Leather Finish (e.g. smooth-out or rough-out)
Some riders prefer a rough-out leather saddle for the extra grip it offers and reduced visibility of scratches, however many prefer the sleek look of smooth-out leather.

Most saddles (except the Stanley Fender and Youth Fender) are available in different colours. Not all saddles are available in all colours.
Please note: Appearance may be affected by lighting conditions and other factors. Leather can darken after oiling. The colour of suede seats may vary according to the colour in stock.

Saddle leather colour swatches

All Toowoomba Saddlery saddles are supplied with low-maintenance felt lining as standard, it is possible to have a saddle made with a wool fleece lining. This option may cost extra, and require some lead time as the saddle would be made-to-order.

Which size is right for you will depend on your height, leg length, and body proportions. For this reason we recommend where possible, sitting in a saddle to confirm the style and size fits comfortably.

The most common saddle size sold is 16″. Note that seat size is a different measurement to saddle size. 

Fender length. The fenders supplied with adult saddles are adjustable, approximately 19″ – 26″ in length. If required, it is possible to order shortened fenders (approximately 17.5″ – 24.5″) instead.

Saddle Size Seat Size
15″ (38cm)12.5″(31cm)
16″ (40.5cm)13.5″(34cm)
17″ (43cm)14.5″(37cm)
18″ (45.5cm) 15.5″ (39cm)

Not sure what is meant by saddle size or seat size? See ‘How to measure a Toowoomba Saddlery saddle’.

Step 4. Contact one of Toowoomba Saddlery’s many distributors to confirm a price and place your order.

See our map of distributors or contact Toowoomba Saddlery for further information.