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The "Trinket"

Good customers are good friends too... Thank you!
Subscribe to RSS Feed Rod got all fancied up for a Christmas banquet this year. He even waxed his mustache for the first time in years! And it was the first time he was… https://www.rodnikkel.com/content/saddle-tree-blog-from-shop-and-desk/trinket/

Are you still building trees?

Still building, for another couple of months. And doing some fun things with them too...
Subscribe to RSS Feed We had a question a few days ago from an old customer. He was wondering if we were still building trees as he knew we were shutting things down.… https://www.rodnikkel.com/content/saddle-tree-blog-from-shop-and-desk/are-you-still-building-trees/

There are still firsts...

The thing about real hand made, custom trees is that we are always doing something different and while we have been at this for twenty years now, there are still firsts...
You would think that after twenty years of building trees, we’d be running short of different things to do. Nope… While we have built a fair number of exposed wood horn caps… https://www.rodnikkel.com/content/saddle-tree-blog-from-shop-and-desk/there-are-still-firsts/

Visiting, visitors and what we've been doing in between

Family, friends and professors - wood, trees and rawhide - it's all here...
Shortly after “the student” left, we took a week away. (I told you it was an intensive course! We needed a break…) Actually, we had been planning for a while to go visit Rod’s… https://www.rodnikkel.com/content/saddle-tree-blog-from-shop-and-desk/visiting-visitors-and-what-weve-been-doing-between/

The five for five challenge

Pictures we put up in response to the challenge to post 5 pictures of our work for 5 days in a row on Facebook.
Subscribe to RSS Feed There’s been a 5 for 5 challenge going around Facebook lately asking people to post five pictures of their work a day for five days in a row. We were… https://www.rodnikkel.com/content/saddle-tree-blog-from-shop-and-desk/five-five-challenge/

Just because it's PUURRRDDYYY!

Here's a tree we just shipped out with a polished exposed bronze horn. Very nice!!
Subscribe to RSS Feed Here is a picture of the tree we mentioned in a blog post a while ago - in all its glory... The horn is an exposed, polished bronze # 1 horn… https://www.rodnikkel.com/content/saddle-tree-blog-from-shop-and-desk/just-because-its-puurrrddyyy/

A Pony Express reproduction tree

It is fun to do something different now and then, and this tree had some challenges that made it interesting to build.
Subscribe to RSS Feed The customer sent us some pictures of other reproductions and a drawing of other options on how they may have been built.… https://www.rodnikkel.com/content/saddle-tree-blog-from-shop-and-desk/pony-express-reproduction-tree/

Another Charro tree

Not all charro trees are created the same...
Subscribe to RSS Feed Last week I posted this picture without an explanation of what type of fork this was. From the back, it may be hard to tell, though the horn could… https://www.rodnikkel.com/content/saddle-tree-blog-from-shop-and-desk/another-charro-tree/

Mickey Mouse!!

One of Rod's first Western Stock (Australian) saddle trees.
Subscribe to RSS Feed OK, so it isn’t quite the same, but I must admit it reminds me of Mickey… Yup, Rod decided to take up the challenge and try a… https://www.rodnikkel.com/content/saddle-tree-blog-from-shop-and-desk/mickey-mouse/

A study in contrasts

Comparing some measurements between a tree for a larger rider and a small child. Interesting the variety we can build in one week...
Subscribe to RSS Feed Or - The long and the short of it. I couldn’t decide on the best title… Here’s a couple trees we built in the same group of four. Funny how… https://www.rodnikkel.com/content/saddle-tree-blog-from-shop-and-desk/a-study-in-contrasts/

What's new at the Nikkel's?

Regular summer stuff and another first in Rod's tree making...
Subscribe to RSS Feed Well, the garden is growing.  Potatoes are blooming, as are some of the peas still.  You can also see some new rails up on the fence in the… https://www.rodnikkel.com/content/saddle-tree-blog-from-shop-and-desk/what-s-new-at-the-nikkel-s/

Some more saddle trees

Pictures of a Meana style tree, and unusual fork on an endurance tree, and a tree built by copying pictures of and old saddle.
Subscribe to RSS Feed Here’s some pictures of some of the more unusual trees we have shipped out over the past few weeks amidst all the “normal” trees we have been… https://www.rodnikkel.com/content/saddle-tree-blog-from-shop-and-desk/some-more-saddle-trees/

Charro saddle

Pictures and description of the finished charro saddle we built a while back.
Subscribe to RSS Feed A while back we posted pictures of a Charro tree we had built.  That post has had more inquiries than any other on our website.  So today, we can… https://www.rodnikkel.com/content/saddle-tree-blog-from-shop-and-desk/charro-saddle/

The "twins" are on their way...

Pictures of the exposed wood horn cap trees finished.
Subscribe to RSS Feed Well, it took longer than normal for these trees to get out the door due to our time away, but I thought maybe you would like to see pictures of… https://www.rodnikkel.com/content/saddle-tree-blog-from-shop-and-desk/the-twins-are-on-their-way/

Twins!!

A couple of identical fancy trees! Well, almost identical...
Subscribe to RSS Feed See!!!  We have twin trees in the shop right now.  Aren't they CUTE!!!  (Well, everyone says that about newborn human twins.  Why not about… https://www.rodnikkel.com/content/saddle-tree-blog-from-shop-and-desk/twins/

Some more pictures

Got some better pictures of the fully exposed Jarrah wood horn today, so I thought I would share them.
Subscribe to RSS Feed With some different light today, I got some better the pictures of the exposed Jarrah wood horn I wrote about yesterday.  So I thought I would… https://www.rodnikkel.com/content/saddle-tree-blog-from-shop-and-desk/some-more-pictures/

Haven't made one like this in a long time

Fully exposed Jarrah wood horn. When you start out with God's handiwork as a base, it is pretty easy to make something look good...
Subscribe to RSS Feed We've been doing a fair number of exposed wood cap horns, but haven't done a whole exposed horn for a few years.  This one is Jarrah wood, and the… https://www.rodnikkel.com/content/saddle-tree-blog-from-shop-and-desk/havent-made-one-like-this-in-a-long-time/

Just some shots around the shop

Another normal day in the shop, and this is what the camera found to photograph...
Subscribe to RSS Feed Just another normal work day around here, so I took the camera to the shop to see what I could see.  So, here's Rod rawhiding another Wade tree. … https://www.rodnikkel.com/content/saddle-tree-blog-from-shop-and-desk/just-some-shots-around-the-shop/

Saddle trees and gravitational pull

Whenever we do a trade show, there is a certain tree or style of tree we bring that always attracts the most attention, and which one or style it is can vary...
Subscribe to RSS Feed We don't do a lot of trade shows, but we have done a few in different places.  We usually try to take a variety of trees with us - a finished… https://www.rodnikkel.com/content/saddle-tree-blog-from-shop-and-desk/saddle-trees-and-gravitational-pull/

Of cantle width and dish

When deciding about ordering cantle specs, you usually don't have to think about cantle width when figuring out dish. But when a cantle is really narrow, it is a consideration.
Subscribe to RSS Feed On our page about cantles in the Understanding Tree Measurements section, I discuss dish, how it is measured (as demonstrated in the picture… https://www.rodnikkel.com/content/saddle-tree-blog-from-shop-and-desk/of-cantle-width-and-dish/

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