Making my saddle stickier?!

hello! A few months ago, I bought my saddle from a friend. It is a colligate diploma, and I absolutely love it! I’ve show/brought it everywhere (including wef) and I constantly get compliments on it! It fits every horse, but the only thing is that no matter what I do, I can’t get the leather to be that sticky/tacky fee that I want. maybe it’s because I am comparing my $1k saddle to my barn mates $5k cwd, but it drives me crazy! At least once a week, I condition it with stubben hamanol oil, followed by effax lederbalsm, and it still wont budge. Any suggestions on how to make the leather stickier? Thanks!:slight_smile:

I like to apply a thin layer of glycerine after the lederbalsm, and don’t rinse it off. This seals in the moisture and it makes it a bit tackier. Unfortunately, I don’t think you can replicate the feeling of sticky french calf skin on saddles with other types of leather.

Oh man, I just saw a product someone recommended on here (in 2011 :lol: ) I’ll try and find it again; it might interest you.

Okay so these were what I saw last night, but it appears that the business has stalled.

I’d recommend any sticky spray for a quick fix. Sister7’s idea sounds good.

Murphys Oil.

Sekur-Grip (used to be Saddle-Tite)

There are several wax based products out there that are very useful for situations like yours involving slippery saddle flaps or slippery new boots. They do not hurt the leather and can be used regularly. Sekur Grip is good stuff.

It’s out of fashion, but I’ve not found anything as effective as Lexol conditioner to put a bit of “tacky” on a saddle.

I buy this by the case. :wink:

Thanks everyone! I will try some of your recommendations and let you know:)

As TimelyImpulse posted, SportyHaft spray FTW.

There was an earlier thread on this (last year?), and one Cother recommended using ULTRA FINE grain sandpaper (think P3000, 6000, etc…), buffing the seat lightly with it, then wiping clean and conditioning it. She said a saddler recommended the process. I tried it, and it made a huge difference on my old pancake saddle. No more slipping. It was scary, but I was desperate. :wink:

The above post has a good idea as it puts texture back on to the surface that gets worn off with use. The cheaper saddles don’t have the same quality leather as the more expensive ones do so no matter what you won’t get the same feel. That said, doing a really thorough cleaning and conditioning of the saddle will make a huge difference! My Stubben I bought used and it was fairly slippery. I cleaned and oiled it a few times before it softened up and had better grip. It still doesn’t compare to the 2 Voltaire saddles I have, but it’s not a bad ride now in any sense of the word

Look at it this way, OP: your saddle doesn’t have the grip of fine calfskin, but it will last longer.

After years of slipping around my saddles I tried the sticky spray–it caused my skin to break out in serious deep pimples.

In desperation I got a tin of the old fashioned saddle soap (Fiebing’s saddle soap from Tractor & Supply). I clean with it, and before I get on the saddle I wipe some directly from the tin (no water) onto the saddle where my legs and seat go. It is not as sticky as the sticky sprays but it does not bother my skin and it is good for the leather. With really slippery breeches I also wipe some directly from the tin onto my breeches.

If I forget to do this I start slipping all over the saddle again.

Also how is the leather tanned? My old British made saddle, which I had for over 15 years never stayed sticky. A saddle fitter told me that it’s they way they tanned the leather (amazingly I was asking about their CWD oil to see if it would help and she said no just to keep using what I was using - colour me impressed at not trying to sell me her products!)

It was amazingly resilient to water and strong as all get out, which in turn made it it impossible to stay sticky! I just kept it clean and rubbed hammonol in weekly!