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How To Measure A Western Saddle Seat

Western saddle seat sizes are easy to measure accurately.

Below is an illustrated photo showing how to measure a Western saddle seat. Using a tape measure or ruler, measure from the center of the front of the saddle's cantle (shown in the photo as the left-hand end of the blue line) in a straight line to the front of the seat (shown in the photo as the right-hand end of the blue line).

Below: Measuring the seat of a Western saddle. This saddle has a 16 inch seat.

Measuring a Western saddle seat


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Here's another look at how to measure a Western saddle seat, this time with a saddle that has a different style of cantle. The same technique applies, though: Measure from the center of the front of the saddle's cantle (the left-hand end of the blue line) in a straight line to the front of the seat (the right-hand end of the blue line).

Below: Another Western saddle. After being measured, this one has 15 1/2 inch seat.

The line shows where to measure a Western saddle's seat

This Is Not The Only Way To Measure A Western Saddle Seat

There is not an industry-standard method of measuring the seat on a Western saddle. That means the method of measuring described above, while common, isn't the only way people measure Western seats.

For example, another common method of measuring is from the front of the cantle to the top of the hole in the gullet. With many saddles this will make little difference to the measurement when compared to the method described above, but with other saddles it could.

There are also other ways people measure Western saddle seats.

So, when seat size counts - such as when buying a saddle - it's ok to ask the seller how they measured the seat.

Also, when selling a saddle, you might give the seat size then briefly mention how you arrived at that measurement.

Measuring English Saddles

English saddles are measured differently than Western saddles. To measure the seat of an English saddle, place your tape measure or ruler at the center of the cantle, the same way you would with a Western saddle. However, instead of measuring straight forward to the front of the seat, with an English saddle you should run the measurement at an angle to the nail head or rivet visible at the front of the saddle skirt.


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