Spring is here! Are you ready for that first spring ride?
Start by taking out your leather horse tack and do a "spring check" on all your equipment. The "spring check" includes cleaning, oiling, and conditioning your leather horse tack. This is vital to ensure your first spring ride is safe and enjoyable for both you and your horse.
Spring Tack Check List
- Take everything apart and inspect all tack, including your saddle for wear. Especially at areas (picture 1) where your tack folds around the bits, buckles and saddle riggings. This is where there will be the most wear and stress. You need to replace any parts cracked or stretched. Chancing it is not worth the safety risk. Take your time; your peace of mind is worth it.
- Clean all your leather tack and saddle with a generous amount of water and glycerin saddle soap. Don't be afraid to get your leather tack wet. You have to get all the dirt and sweat out.
- Hang all tack to dry. BEFORE it is completely dry, oil with a good quality neatsfoot oil. The drying process will help carry the oil into the leather.
This "spring check" is a great habit to get into, not only for adults, but for children too. Teaching your children about leather tack and it's proper care, will ensure the safety of both your child and horse.
This springtime check is essential to keep your leather horse tack in good working order for the safety of both rider and horse. Not to mention, increasing the longevity of the leather. Cleaning is important but checking the durability of your leather horse tack is vital!
To stop the wear on your saddles billets, use wear leathers!
One of Buckaroo Leather's innovations is the wear leather, pictured above. They are used on all of our off side billets. The wear leather stops your saddle rigging dee rings from wearing into the billets, which can cause a stress point!
Another important thing to remember, is knowing you have quality leather horse tack to begin with!
A quality leather horse tack will be more durable and much less likely to crack or wear. The following will give some guidelines to follow when choosing quality leather tack.
The Four Key things to look for in Quality Leather:1. Feel...Is the leather soft and supple? If it feels “dry”, it’s probably not quality. Even though “harness” leather may seem roughed out, it still has a soft and pliable feel.
2. Smell...Quality leather has a fresh warm smell, whereas inferior leather can have a chemical or ammonia like smell. Off odors are the first hint of leathers that are tanned quickly and inexpensively.
3. Color...Even when dyed, quality leather will still be pliable and smell fresh, Inferior leather seems to be “dull”. Dark color dyes can hide lower quality and poorly matched leathers.
4. Check the Detail...Examine the fine stitching, which is less than 12 stitches per inch. All ends should be neatly finished and tucked in. Edges that have been burnished or rubbed, until they are round and hard, before dyeing are also a hallmark of quality. Look for durable hardware with strong steel tongue buckles and rounded edges that won’t cut into the leather.
Take a look at all of our fine AMERICAN made tack, on our BRAND NEW WEBSITE!