Q&A Questions and Answers:
I have recently bought a Tucker endurance saddle and I have found it very squeaky. I am also concerned about the quality of the leather. I have waited my whole life to have a Tucker saddle and I don't know now if I should keep it because of the loudness of the squeaking. I feel like I couldn't even carry on a conversation while on a trail ride. Any suggestions would be helpful as I am thinking about returning it.
I haven't owned a Tucker, but have had a variety of saddles over the years, plus having done saddle repair for a few folks. Here's my take on the situation:
Saddle squeak comes from the leather parts rubbing against each other and/or against the saddle tree. The noise will tend to become less over time as the saddle gets broken in and the leather parts get worn smooth. In the meantime, anything you can do to reduce the friction between those parts will reduce the noise. Just using a good leather treatment like Lexol will help the parts move over each other more easily. I've also used Saddle-lac spray, which makes the leather smoother and reduces friction.
I've never had to resort to this method, but some folks use talcum powder (not the corn starch based variety) under the fender, skirt, stirrup leathers, etc., to help things slide better. The downside to this technique is that you may have to repeat the treatment from time to time.
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