Over 500 detailed photographs, matched with exact text, lead you through the process of designing and building saddles.
The science is in the design of a saddle to get the most performance from the materials available. This is the quest for strength and function.
Art is in the total shape and look of the saddle as a unit. It should never be seen by the observer as a collection of parts. A saddle does not need to be carved or stamped to look “right” if it is built with balance and eye appeal.
This shop manual is written with the intent of instructing a beginner in the basic design and assembly of a 58 Wade. The term basic does not mean simple. It means a thorough and complete foundation in pattern design, and the proper assembly of the leather parts.
The saddle built in this text was selected from orders currently on file in my shop. This is not a model that was put together or staged for this manual. The pictures and text are genuine and complete. There are flaws and problems shown and resolved that are not uncommon in the building of any saddle.
This saddle was chosen for this manual because it has a sweated fork cover and a flat plate rigging.
The sweated fork cover is a very common style and the most basic fork covering used.
A flat plate rigging is not as common as the Dee ring rigging. This rigging is an excellent training project for rigging positioning. As a beginner, the setting of this rigging is far easier to accomplish than the Dee ring or In-skirt rigging.
Carving and stamping designs are not included in this manual. Basic advice on border spacing is included.