Thursday, November 29, 2012

Larry Wilson Builds Molly A Saddle Part 2

Howdy Folks,

We're still in the saddle tree building mode here. It's a lot of fun watching this all happen, no matter how often I've seen it. And I am taking some pictures that I'll post on Monday's blog, can't do it today because there's more to come. I'm planing on a little picture story blog for Monday where we'll start with the first picture of the rough tree Larry builds at the beginning and then show a fitting, and shaping, more shaping then ending with Chris (who is getting the new saddle for her mule) riding her mule, Molly in the tree. I think even if your not a horse person you'll enjoy the journey.

Yesterday started with the first fitting at Chris' house, and lots of placing the tree on Molly and then Larry shaping and re-fitting. That took about 3 hours, then we came back here and Larry set up to start building the seat on the tree. Very detailed work and takes a bit of time to keep everything perfect. He ended the night with the first coat of fiberglass over the wood and wire frame.

Today there will be more fiberglass and seat building. Each application takes about an hour to dry. At this time he is also installing the stirrup bars, to hang the stirrup leathers. The size of the seat, height of the pommel and cantel, and placement of the stirrup bars are all determined by Chris' preference, and measurements and fittings Larry did yesterday when Chris sat on the tree. He'll hang stirrup leathers and riggings on the tree and it'll be ready for a test ride.
Putting the finishing touches on the tree for Chris & Molly's test ride
Sometime this afternoon, after all that is ready,  we'll go back to Chris' and she'll ride Molly in the tree so Larry can make sure everything is just perfect. That's one of the key differences in his saddles, because while tracings and molds are often done, that is a static fit and a lot of things change when a horse moves. Another neat difference with Larry's saddles is how he builds the seat to fit the rider for maximum comfort and freedom of movement.

I'm having a great time watching all this, and it is so interesting to see the change come over the horse, well in this case Molly the mule, as the tree begins to take shape and fit her and even caress her instead of hurt or annoy her. Everyone there yesterday saw the change in her eyes and demeanor. From worry to acceptance.

Have a fun day! ...  for Pt 3 CLICK HERE

Gitty Up,
Dutch Henry