Sidesaddles are used for everyday recreational riding and for showing, parades, historical reenactments and even jumping. Some restored antique sidesaddles that have been in a family for many years have great sentimental value. They are often used as decorative pieces in the home.
There are two kinds of side saddles-the new, modern sidesaddles and antique sidesaddles that under go a full or partial restoration. All of the modern sidesaddles built in Pete's Custom Saddlery are made exclusively for Hundred Oaks, Inc. and are ordered through that company. However, I do full restorations on sidesaddles for all concerned, which do not go through Hundred Oaks. I also make matching bridles, chest straps, purses and sandwich bags for all of the above. For western sidesaddles, I make saddlebags. For the English style saddles, I make offside pommel bags for carrying necessities on the trail. More...
All of the trees (framework) of the sidesaddles are fully fiberglass covered including the trees for the antique saddles. This insures strength and longevity of use. Each saddle is built with great care and attention to detail. Insuring proper fit for horse and rider is very important. Top of the line Wickett & Craig cowhide is used. Occasionally, on the antique saddle, the owner will want to have a leaping head attached, which is possible although the leaping head was not standard on early sidesaddles.
On modern sidesaddles, it is standard for the upright horn and the leaping head to be on the near side. The Steele sidesaddle trees used in saddles sold by Hundred Oaks, Inc. also have a special edition available with the upright horn and leaping head on the far side to allow the stirrup to be on the far side. The leaping head is built to be adjustable.
Because of the way that a sidesaddle sits, only your left foot is in the stirrup. There have been some saddles built that have a natural tendency to slide the rider to the left. I have worked with individuals with medical problems, such as hip replacement, that are uncomfortable on this type of saddle. I can modify the tree before the leather is fitted on to eliminate pressure points and sliding. On a special note, I have built a couple of side- saddles for men who had hip replacements and could no longer ride astride.
You may want to visit this web site often for updates about a new style tree. It is my goal with sidesaddles and western saddles to never remain static, but to be constantly improving my designs.