I posted this question on another of my threads but decided it needed own.
Can gaited horse trees be used on non gaited horses?
Cayuse A lovely horse is always an experience...It is an emotional experience of the kind that is spoiled by words. Beryl Markham Riding is a complicated joy. You learn something each time. It is never quite the same, and you never know it all. Monica Dickens
Just because a saddle maker says the saddle is for a gaited horse does not mean that saddle is a one-size-fits all gaited horses.
I have three TWH's and they each have their own saddle because non of them are interchangeable.
One is lean and lanky, with sort of high withers.
The other two are "stout" and "really stout" with barely a wither to be found. Both of them have metabolic issues, too
I don't have a saddle for the "really stout" fella. If he were able to hard trail ride, I would have to have a custom saddle on a Draft Horse tree for him. And I can easily feel his ribs at the top but he is that raw-boned
TWH's (I don't know about other gaited breeds) make huge sweeping motions with their shoulders. Any saddle that allows that much freedom of movement in the withers, will work as long as it fits in other ways.
I have an old Orthoflex for my lanky fella that was made for a TWH/Arab cross built exactly like him; it's a perfect fit. I also have an ancient Big Horn roping saddle that fits him equally as well.