Custom CWD Care?

EEEEK! I just took my brand new calfskin CWD SE02 out of the box, and it’s beautiful! Should I condition it right now or wait until I ride in it first? I’ve also heard of horror stories where people open the box to a custom CWD that doesn’t fit! Would it affect the value of it if it didn’t fit me if I go ahead and condition it right now? And yes, I do have the rep coming back out to check saddle fit and give me the thumbs up! And finally, when using the conditioner they supplied me with, should I use the sponge they included to distribute the condign onto it? I’m just extremely nervous because this saddle is gorgeous, and I really don’t want to mess it up accidentally!

And just for reference, what is the best way to keep my saddle looking new! I’m dreading the leather marks that will soon show up.:frowning:

Why not call the rep before you do anything and ask all of the questions about “care and feeding” and what happens if it does not fit? I might ride in my old tack and wait to do anything until the rep comes, if it is going to be only a few days. If longer that that, then call him or her to get care instructions, and assurances about adjusting the fit, if you have gone ahead and conditioned it.

As far as keeping it looking new…I say, embrace the stamp you’ll be putting on it over time and make it your own. You can avoid certain things like scratches from cheese-grater pads by putting socks over them before you run your stirrups up the leathers. Always have a pad or towel on the barn railing before you set your saddle down on it. Keep it clean, covered and out of the elements. For heaven’s sake do not dismount and slide down the side of your horse with your belt buckle; swing forward a bit and slide down next to the horse’s shoulder, in front of your saddle. But in the end, this leather covered a cow and the cow was outside in every kind of weather and survived; your saddle will, too. Happy trails.

As the other poster suggested talk to your rep. That said my rep said to condition mine before riding, roll the flaps to get them supple, and condition regularly during break in then on a more as needed basis. I used the black glove in my care kit to condition mine.

In addition - conditioning shouldn’t affect if the brand will stand by the saddle if it doesn’t fit. In fact I ordered a seat flap combo that I wasn’t sure would be perfect (between flap sizes) and when I got it and didn’t love it CWD made me a new saddle and let me keep riding in the first one so that my horses back wouldn’t suffer.

Happy breaking in :slight_smile:

Definitely talk to your rep. Mine strongly encouraged me to ride in it for a while before fully assessing fit, and he wanted me to ride right away and condition it after each ride for a while. My SE01 seemed to fit great right out of the box, and I’m very happy with it. Only after 2-3 months of riding in it can I see any settling, and that’s when he wanted to see it.

I know it’s been a bit, but curious to see how the break-in process has been?

I got my new full grain CWD saddle last week, and it has been just a beautiful fixture on my saddle stand as I did not receive the conditioner with it. That finally shipped Friday but it won’t be here until next Thursday. My rep told me to definitely wait for the conditioner to come before riding, so that I won’t have any sweat marks or stains set in the saddle. So I am sitting on my thumbs going crazy until then as I shipped off my Bates earlier this week. I guess I’ll go school my horse in a dressage saddle until then…

I find CWD is very good with customer service and have a great warranty… The conditioner is fabulous and use the sponge they give you. You should have received a print out sheet of care instructions. Mine said to condition it and ride in it.

If it doesn’t fit CWD should make it right for you. They are beautiful saddles for sure. Mine is four years old and looks great still. I dust it off after I ride with a sheepskin mitt and will condition it when it looks like it needs it.

Congrats on your new baby.

Wait, you got a sponge??

I got the conditioner and cleaner yesterday but no directions or anything.