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The Superior Poley Australian Saddle from the Kimberly Series with riggings
From Down Under Saddle Supply
Kimberley Series Superior Poley from Down Under Saddle Supply
My first impression of the company was of fast service. Jan Bergin answered my emails quickly. If I had questions they were always addressed and not avoided.
When I faxed my Standard Donkey's trace outline and her measurements as well as my own (weight, height and pant size)one late afternoon, I was surprised to get an email from Jan that same evening. I was told that my saddle had been adjusted and would be sent out straight away. I was also told that if the saddle did not fit, they would take care of that too.
The saddle arrived a day earlier then expected...I would say that service is king at this company. The package was well packed and the saddle was well protected in bubble wrap from and "bumps or bruises" that may have incurred while shipping. Opening the box was an event much like a birthday gift, the smell of the leather and the beauty of the saddle as well as the extras in the package.
With the saddle came a catalog, a note from Mike and Jan Bergin, Consumer Terms of the Sale, pictures of how the saddle should fit the animal, contacts for/to the company and a DVD on "Discover the Aussie Difference". The DVD was informative and entertaining.
I was excited to try the saddle on and ride my donkey, Abby with it. I must say that I also received a saddle pad from Down Under (550L) with saddle bags sewn onto the pad (see upcoming review). It all fit well and looked divine!! When I mounted and sat down in the saddle on the donkey, it just all felt so right.
About the Product
The Superior Poley Saddle I received has a 17" seat with a horn. The saddle is hand-stuffed for a self adjusting panel that conforms to your equine's back over time. The riders seat is very comfortable, with a special suspended seat system.
While lifting the saddle out of the box one of the first things my husband commented on was the extensively hand-engraved hardware, very nice detailing. The brass stirrups are both attractive and large enough, I believe, for winter boots. They attach to the saddle in a very safe matter and yet are easy to adjust.
Remember I said that they saddle is to be used on a Standard Sized Donkey? I was very pleased that the girth, sent with the saddle, worked out well for her. It fit correct is well made, with soft fleece near the animal. I really like the way the girth attaches to this aussie saddle with an addition ring for sliding adjustment (much like a western saddle would cinch, but with a buckle).
Overall, a very beautiful and comfortable saddle that seems to be well made with attention to details. To see more details on this saddle visit Down Under Saddle Supply's website, address above.
After 30 Days Use
This will be a work in progress. I have much to say. Wink I must tell you, after 30 days I would recommend this type Aussie Saddle to anyone. I would highly recommend this saddle to anyone with knee or back problems. This is a comfortable saddle that does not over work your knees and legs. You can ride further and have a better time in this new saddle then in a type with heavy, thick, wide fenders...and this saddle's fenders, correctly called leathers, are as safe and well built as any a person riding in any saddle would need. The stirrups that came with the saddle, Brass 4 Bar Stirrups STIR 328, at 5" wide, are wide enough for any boot my husband and I might ride in, heavy enough to be safe, and the polished brass is beautiful. Adjusting the stirrups is an easy task, unlike some saddles I have worked with. Correctly adjusted stirrups equals a safer ride, so for me, this is an important feature.
My saddle was custom fit for my Standard Sized Donkey's back. It fit when we took it out of the box and we have never had reason to believe that our donkey was anything but comfortable wearing this saddle. Donkeys are not always easy to fit so this makes a donkey owner very happy.
On Going Notes
I have used this saddle for over two years now. I am very pleased with the quality leather and how it is not wearing or scaring with use. I store this saddle on a fold out saddle stand in our home. This is one nicely made and comfortable saddle for both my animal and I. Yes. I would love to have more of these saddles for our other horses. I highly recommend this saddle.
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