Storing saddles properly will help keep them in good condition. Proper storage will extend the life of the tree, the part of the saddle designed to spread the rider's weight along the horse's back without straining the horse's spine. Saddle stands should be sturdy and built to fit Western, English, and Australian saddles with varying tree widths. Some saddle stands even have a bottom storage area for supplies. Hooks can easily be attached to the front or back panels to allow hanging storage of bridles and halters as well, maximising the amount of tack that can be stored in a small space.
Cut the 1-inch x 12-inch x 12-foot board into six 24-inch panels.
Select two of the panels. Cut the panels into seven 2-inch x 24-inch slats for the top of the saddle stand.
Select another two panels. Cut the panels into two 9 1/2-inch x 24-inch side pieces.
Measure the two remaining panels from the bottom, making a mark at 19 3/4 inches on each side. Draw a template to round the top; make a half circle starting at the mark on one side, continuing to the centre of the top, and ending at the mark on the opposite edge. Make sure both panels will be the same. Cut the rounded top on both panels. Sand the rounded surfaces. These will be the front and back of the saddle stand.
Drill holes in the side panels. Starting 1 inch from the bottom, drill four holes every 2 1/2 inches along the short side of each side panel. The last hole should be 1 inch from the top.
Cut the plywood to 12 inches x 21 3/4 inches. This will be the bottom panel. Drill evenly spaced holes in the edges of the bottom panel, three along each long side and two along each short side.
Attach each side panel to the bottom panel with screws. Attach the front and back panels to the bottom panel with screws.
Screw the side panels into the front and back panels, using the predrilled holes.
Mark each slat in the centre, 1/2 inch from the edge. Drill one hole at each mark. Sand every side of each slat except the edge facings.
Mark the centre top of the rounded edges on the front and back panels. Place one slat across the top of the rounded edges, carefully matching the centre hole on each side of the slat with the centre marks on the front and back panels. Screw the slat to the front and back panels.
Using a 5/16-inch spacer, place and attach the remaining slats, three on either side of the centre slat, each 5/16-inch apart.
Use a dab of glue and a hammer to insert plugs into the screw holes so they are flush with the surface of the wood.
Sand any rough edges and pencil marks.
Always use care with power tools. Wear eye protection and keep fingers, hands and loose clothing out of the way of saw blades and drill bits.
Tips and warnings
- Always use care with power tools. Wear eye protection and keep fingers, hands and loose clothing out of the way of saw blades and drill bits.