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About rdl123

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    Learning, Saddle Construction, Horsemanship, Stockmanship, Roping

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  1. Hello Randy, I have dyed horn wraps in the past and had no issues. However, I personally use any decent chap leather or used old tie latigos for my horn wraps - Just put them on rough side out. If you cut a piece of burgundy latigo and thin it down to 6 or so oz it should work fine! Ropes run fast on latigo horn wraps if its a really firm leather! Soft chap leather grabs a rope a lot more, firm stuff will take more dally's to get something big stopped! I personally won't use latigo smooth side out. It can be tough for a rookie like me to get enough dallies on fast enough if things get western. Check out these guys: https://www.dhrss.com/hornwraps.html They stock latigo, regular and dyed wraps. I have heard good things about boar hide. Apparently it stands up well. https://www.dwdixonsaddles.com/store/p262/Boar__Hide_Horn_Wrap.html In my opinion most important thing is to have a nice funnel shape down to base of horn so your dallies stack nicely. Cheers, Ron L
  2. That saddle is a serious inspiration Ed - Beautifully clean work!
  3. Hello Dirty Dusty, I am a very amateur maker so take my thoughts with a grain or three of salt... I was taught that the dee rings should be set up to tear out on their own in the event of a major wreck. I always attach mine independently of any major components so that if something really gets westy they will break and not wreck something major like a rigging plate. I usually build mine of leather laced together with kangaroo lace. I have a saddle in for repair right now where the maker had attached the breast collar dees with tin loops riveted into the rigging plates. The owner had a decent wreck with a colt and by the time the saddle broke free of the horse the breast collar had pulled the dees out of the rigging plates making for a fairly major repair. The rigging plates were ripped nearly in half. Just my 2 cents. RDL
  4. Hello Dirty Dusty, Fender design, like a lot of saddle design, is fairly subjective. Goal of a fender is to protect your leg from the sweaty side of horse while working with your stirrup leathers to actually support your foot. I personally do not like the aesthetic of a fender than angles forward and then returns back. Here is a picture of they shape I prefer and it has never caused me any issues in the years I have road this saddle. RDL
  5. I use the same sewing machine make / model and have experienced the same thing - Basically as the leather thickness increases - The stitch length decreases. What I have done lately is start sewing with a lot of 'spare' thread hanging out creating a long 'tail'. I start sewing with the machine four or so stiches from the hardware or wherever the piece gets thick - I then go back and hand stitch to the end of the piece using the extra long tails I left when I started machine sewing. I get the best results this way. Takes a little longer - But if I really want it to turn out perfect that's what I do. I'd say your halter looks very tidy though! Ron L
  6. Looks good Randy, Your seat shape looks very comfortable. Swell fork saddles intimidate me as I have only built slick forks so far! The only thing I see is maybe that if the rear jockey was a little lower you could hide the leather that holds the rear D ring in place. That is minor though! Be nice to see some pictures of it strapped onto a horse... Good work Randy - Happy trails! Ron L
  7. That saddle is a thing of beauty! Very impressive. Really like your tooling and the smoothness of the lines and edges of your rig MLGilbert. Very nicely done! I agree with EdOdgers on ground seat and learned the exact same lesson on first saddle I built. I can also vouch for his advice on stitching cantle bindings - It is what I like to do and the technique he outlines has helped me a lot. Very good work MLGilbert - Look forward to seeing more!
  8. From the perspective of roping and tieing down larger animals I like the idea of the rear rigging ring attached further back just like it is shown on the two recent saddles you have pictured. In my mind it gives more leverage against the saddle lifting...Especially when you are taking a hard pull from off the front end of the horse. I've seen horses tied off to big animals where the back of the saddle had a 8" gap between the skirts and the horses back - I cant see that feeling good for the horse as the tree would be tipped up on the bar ends into the wither pocket... However, most of us are guilty of occasionally packing our rear cinch around hanging loose - At which point the rear rigging attachment location is a moot point as it is strictly 'decorative' in that case! Ron L
  9. Wow! That saddle is beautiful - Really like the clean lines and the combination of roughout vs tooled! Excellent work! Ron L
  10. Randy, very nice looking saddle - Your cantle binding looks great! Stitching looks really good. It's nice to see the progression from one saddle to the next! Nice work! Ron L
  11. Dirty Dusty, I am not an experienced maker but my 2 cents are: Either technique you mentioned above will work. The biggest factor is that there must be a clear 'tunnel' for your stirrup leather to slide through when the seat is complete and the shape must reflect what you want in a ground seat. I personally use plugs and risers. It is straightforward and eliminates having to cut tunnels after the fact (eliminates chance of scoring the rawhide). I then build up over that to get a seat shape I like. Do you have a photo of the Dusty Smith tree? That may help others chime in - Once we can see how he has shaped the bars near the handhole. Here are two pics on my last build for reference: Ron L
  12. here are some dimension photos if you need them howlback:
  13. I'll second oltoot - This is my favorite type. Easy to make and conserves leather usage.
  14. Looks good sir! Do you sew zipper in inside out to or sew that first and then the rest of the bag? Nice end result whatever you did!
  15. Previously I never understood the need for angled stirrups as I am long legged / very bow legged so my leg has always contoured nicely to the side of a horse... However, I shattered my left knee last year in a bad wreck and since then my left leg has been bolted back together / healed up almost straight...I would strongly consider angled stirrups now to take some of the tension off it as it does not sit nearly as nicely as it did before. (my saddles all have hamley twist) I guess it may all depend on the physiology of the individual rider...and as Ed pointed out I can definitely see where a short legged/straight legged/knock kneed rider would find this beneficial. Ron
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