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For new saddles with interchangeable gullet systems
New saddles from both Bates and Wintec are delivered with a “Medium” fitting gullet plate installed. When your new saddle is delivered, you’ll need to find the correct gullet plate for your horse, and purchase either a Complete Gullet Kit or one or more individual gullet plates. You’ll also need to assess the balance of the saddle and determine which Risers may be needed for a secure and stable riding position. We offer the Pre-Fitting Service option to help our customers find the right gullet size and EASY-CHANGE Riser configuration based on wither tracings.* Then, we install the plate and risers before the saddle is shipped, so you’re ready to ride as soon as the saddle is delivered to you.
Even if you don’t choose the Pre-Fitting Service option, we strongly recommend that you work with a saddle fitting professional in your area who can correctly configure the features of your new saddle. An improperly adjusted saddle may cause injury to your horse, or interfere with comfort and performance for you and your horse.
What is included with the Pre-Fitting Service?
The $50 Pre-Fitting Service fee is non-refundable. This fee covers a saddle fitting consultation, wither tracing evaluation, one EASY-CHANGE gullet plate to fit your horse, any EASY-CHANGE Risers needed to balance your saddle, and installation of the gullet plate and risers before shipping. As an official Bates and Wintec fitter, we can offer a more thorough understanding of the factors that may affect the width of the right gullet plate beyond the gullet measuring tool.
How does the Pre-Fitting Service work?
- To choose the Pre-Fitting Service with your new Bates or Wintec saddle, select “Yes” for the Pre-Fitting Service before adding your saddle to the cart.
- When we receive the order, we’ll contact you to begin the fitting process.
- We’ll ask you to take a wither tracing and photos of your horse’s profile and back. To take the tracing, follow the instructions here.
- When we receive the tracings and photos, we’ll evaluate your horse’s size and shape, and install the correct gullet plate* and any risers that may be needed to balance your saddle. If we have any questions, or reservations about the shape of the saddle you’ve chosen for your horse, we’ll contact you during this process. When the installation is complete, we’ll ship your saddle to you. Please allow 1-2 weeks after we receive your wither tracings for delivery.
- When you receive your saddle, please try the saddle on your horse as soon as possible. To properly evaluate the fit, you’ll need to tighten the girth and ride normally. If you have any questions or concerns about the fit, please let us know right away—we’ll work with you if any adjustments need to be made.
- We hope the saddle will be a great match for you and your horse. We do, however, accept returns for new saddles within 10 business days. The Pre-Fitting Service fee is non-refundable. See our full returns and exchanges policy here.
*Saddle fitting is not an exact science, and we cannot guarantee a perfect fit. Our Pre-Fitting Service is based on our professional judgment and 20 years’ experience fitting saddles.