I am so sorry. I almost bought a prestige from him. He casually mentioned that he could put a Pegasus tree on a new prestige and it would fit any horse and I got spooked. The level of destruction your saddle suffered is hard to understand. How awful.
The original post was deleted, what on earth happened?
Before and after pictures?
So frustrating when all the information is removed.
Lawyers have answered this
I sure wish one would be able to represent me.
These are photos of the saddles when they first came back to me that December. (sorry for the dirty fuzzball ponies). They are so overstuffed that they no longer fit down on the ponies, but sat on top. The W with the remade panels is on the chestnut and the XW is on the leopard that looks dingy grey.
Please note that I did not hire Ron to do any fitting on my saddles. What I expected was for the same level of quality work using pure wool flocking to be returned to me. Instead I received two synthetic fleece over flocked sets of panels that the County fitter could not adjust. These are photos of the XW on my chestnut mare before and after. The lighter colored panels are the XW. The W panels are so poorly made that they would just need to be remade to work.
Photos with the white pony in the background are the XW before it left here from front and side.
Then there is a photo of
Fourth photo is the W when first returned to me with the panels that he made.
Wide before leaving here is on the saddle stand. After is the close up photo of the bloated panels that Ron made.
Photo of the pony facing left is a “fitting” that Ron requested with one of his shim pads.
The last photo of the W with that pad was from a series of texts that Ron requested to try to “fit” my mare that he blamed for the saddle not fitting. I felt stupid even putting his shim pad on her since it fit badly to begin with. Add the pad and it was horrible. He wanted me to ride in this. I refused to even sit on it on her back, not to mention that the stirrup leathers would not have stayed on anyhow. He keeps on insisting that the problem is that my pony needs fancy shims for the “dip” in her back. I did not have any problem before the saddles left here. She has filled out since the early photos were taken to the point where the XW would have fit her if I still had it.
Those photos uploaded out of the order that I expected. They are in order bottom to top instead of top to bottom. The XW is the lower two before
The W on the stand is before.
The top two are the W after.
Honestly this seems like a small matter that you don’t need a lawyer for. A lawyer’s fee is going to quickly eclipse the damages you’d get when you won.
The most likely sequence of events is that you file a complaint, he doesn’t respond, you get a default judgment, and then you have to enforce it. The odds that he full fledged litigates this in your home forum are frankly low.
How much are these saddles worth realistically? A couple thousand each? They were used when he ruined them, right? So probably at most your damages are around $6000-8000ish? That’s not really a big enough case to be worth a lawyer taking. It’s a shame because I think he did screw you but the reality is a couple hours of lawyer time is going to basically eat up your damages entirely even if you win.
Yes, lawyer fees will probably be higher than the saddles were worth. Looking at used prices online, I would say that the XW was in the 1800 range and the W was in the 2500-2800 range. Ron got 3994 more out of me.
Are you talking about filing a complaint in small claims up in CT?
Where you can file is going to depend, in part, on what you’re claiming as damages. Why don’t you DM me and we can chat. I will try to point you in the right direction. I’m really sorry this happened to you.
How long ago did he offer to do that? I would messge Prestige to let them know what he is offering to do to their saddles.
Pulled my emails from 2019. I can see where I vaguely allude but the actual offer was made by phone. I don’t feel like my memory is enough to warrant contacting prestige but if anyone seeing this got anything in writing from him, I’d definitely pass it along. He did write a response agreeing that I was accurate in saying that I could order a prestige with totally custom panels built off of measurements of my mares back, which does not sound accurate to me. Looking at the email I wrote trying to summarize the call reminded me how convoluted it all sounded at the time and even more in retrospect.
My initial conversation with him was also by phone call. For the most part after that it was emails and texts.
Do you mean that Prestige would build you custom panels?
Most of his email responses to me did not address my grievances, but instead went into tirades about my mare’s back and how saddles should be built like bridges, cars, and airplanes with screws and bolts rather than staples and nails.
What he did to your saddles was criminal. It’s like Frankenstein built a monster. Those screws and bolts. WTF? Your 2 horses made me think of the meme. Does this saddle make my butt look big lol? Chunky lovely horses. I truly hope you find a solution.
Looking back at the email I don’t really have a clear memory. On the phone I think he implied that if I ordered the prestige I was interested in, he could build Pegasus panels custom to my mares back based off of photographs. Perhaps if the conversation had continued he would have clarified I would be ordering a stock saddle and then he would be doing after market work. Our whole interaction start to finish was less than a week
That is similar to what he told me about my saddle when he said that he would have to remake the panels on the W. He actually glued his leather to the top portion of my old panels, then fashioned the underside. This is also something that I could not see until the saddle panels were removed.
I am glad that you did not go through with his idea to take your money and ruin a Prestige.
His aftermarket work is dangerous.
Several years ago, I considered buying a Jeffries JMX which had the Pegasus tree installed . . . so glad I didn’t. At the time, I didn’t know that it was his design.
In terms of legal costs, small claims court in CT will hear cases up to $5K. You don’t need a lawyer. The real issues with that are 1) You need to be there in person or have someone represent you and 2) winning wouldn’t guarantee that you could collect. However, winning would provide the opportunity to publicize and let other people know about his deceptive practice. (Some states will allow you to have a lawyer or even a relative/friend stand up for you in court. I don’t know if that’s the case here.)
In my limited experience, sometimes just filing the complaint can create a strong desire to settle. My daughter’s landlord in college owed them $2K in security deposits. He stopped responding to the girls, accurately guessing that they would be intimidated. After I shared the demand letter with him, he Venmo’d the money to me that night. Not saying you would get the same result here, but there are templates on line for the demand letters, so it’s a pretty straightforward action.
I know that traveling to CT is a hardship (and yes, you MUST file where the defendant works/live) but if the court would let you send someone in your place, I could probably drive down there. AT this point, I would like to see Mr. Friedson get what he deserves.
She may be able to file where she is located. I offered to figure this out for her, if I can. I am waiting for her to clarify her specific county/town within the state so I can look into this.
Message sent, thank you.
Thank you, too, Bogie. I will wait to hear from vxf111 and let you know. Sounds as if he likes to install his trees in other saddles. I find that quite odd.