In 1952, Arthur A. Callister began trading wool with his father in a little shop on Redwood Road in Salt Lake City, Utah. Noticing how many customers were in need of quality tack to outfit themselves and their horses, AA Callister's Western Wear and Tack was born! Over 50 years and many satisfied customers we are still a family owned tack shop still located on the original site. We are proud to represent the traditions and lifestyles that made the West famous. We are also proud to feature some of the finest tack, clothing, and equipment made. Come live part of the American West today!

Thursday, April 22, 2010

Buying a Saddle

A saddle is the most expensive part of your riding outfit. A huge part of what your ride is like depends on your saddle. This makes a saddle not only expensive, but most important. Here are some things keep in mind when you are ready to purchase a saddle.

The first thing you want to do is begin researching. Saddle research involves knowing exactly what you want in a saddle and then finding what’s available Pricing will surely also be a big part of your research process. Researching the best venue for buying is also important.

In researching venues, let’s first think about brick and mortar stores. You may prefer to do business and research by shopping inside a store where you can physically touch products. But maybe you then, when research is done, like to buy online to find the best pricing and selection. Or maybe you prefer to do the opposite. You may like to research online then go to local stores for final purchase. However, you may be someone who has no access to good horse supply stores at all, in which case the internet would be the only research and purchase forum.

Ok, let’s say you have researched where you want to buy, now let’s take a closer look at pricing. Because saddles are pricey, consider purchasing one as an investment. As most investments, you will get what you pay for. This means that the more expensive a saddle is, the longer it is likely to last. To understand this further, read consumer reviews of saddle brands of interest to you. Find out how saddles have been rated by real consumers.

The next part of pricing research is to decide if you want to purchase a new or used saddle. Obviously a used saddle will be less expensive, so if your budget is tight give used saddles a second look. Purchasing a used saddle will require a lot of physical research. This means that buying a used saddle will involve a thorough inspection to make sure the equipment won’t hurt you or your horse. Inspect the status of the saddle’s exterior, interior and foundation before buying. If you expect your western wear saddle to last it will need to be in good physical shape.

Now if you are sure you’re ready to buy used, decide if you are going to purchase from a retailer (online or otherwise) or from an individual saddle owner. If you chose to purchase from a used selection in a supply store, you will notice right away some benefits in doing so.

Retailers are going to naturally do most of the inspection work in testing the wear and tear of a used saddle, thus, making it easier for you to buy. A retailer will scrutinize used merchandise for pricing. They should also know what kind of shape a saddle is in.

But with this benefit comes the down side: a resell shop has to make a profit so they will add in a price markup. This mark up that you pay as the consumer may be worth the money. Take for instance if you bought directly from a saddle owner. In this case, you would have to do all saddle inspections yourself. Missing any big blemishes or foundational problems, would end up costing you more money in the end.

Last of all, and now that you’ve researched, selected, and purchased your saddle, you can think about adding the finishing touches to your saddle. Just like all western wear can be accessorized, so can the saddle. And with so many accessories to choose from, you can balance any western wear with the perfect saddle accessories and complete your western outfit. Just as each rider has his or her own unique western wear preferences, you too can modify your saddle to make it truly yours.

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