CSST: Home of the Lite-Ride Tree®!


Chicago Stockyard Saddle Tree(CSST) is a company created with the intention of overcoming the traditional problems with saddle trees. We are dedicated to helping to ease the burden placed upon the saddle maker by standard wood-based trees.

As our name implies, we are a Chicago based company. Central location in the US is essential for our goal of changing the horse industry. As horse riders ourselves, we felt a need to better the riding experience for the entire equine industry. For over two hundred years the traditional saddle tree has been wood covered in rawhide. The process of building one of these wood/rawhide trees can take from 6-7 weeks to 1 year.

Quality wood is becoming increasingly hard to come by. Demands and restrictions on tanneries across the US have caused the price of rawhide to go up. Rawhide covered trees are prone to warping and breaking due to the nature of the materials used. The cost of these products will only increase, and, eventually, they will be unattainable. But with CSST’s remarkable applications to today’s technologies, the strongest saddle tree on the market has been created.

Our product, the Lite-Ride Tree
® is a revolutionary design in that it nullifies the issues of using wood and rawhide trees. The Lite-Ride Tree® is created out of a high-density urethane that is poured, not injected, into the molding. This eliminates any weak points from the injection sites, while still allowing for a consistent shape. The polyurethane that we use has a test strength of over 3000 PSI, guaranteeing plenty of strength. Even with all that durability the Lite-Ride Tree® is still a semi-rigid tree to help flex with the movement of the horse and unlike other “plastic” trees it is not prone to snapping.

The Lite-Ride Tree® comes with the ground seat built in to every model which can be covered comfortably with only a single layer of leather. This eliminates a large amount of time and money for the saddle maker and allows them to spend time on better customizing their saddles to their customers.

Speaking of customizing; the Lite-Ride Tree® is one of the most customizable tree on the market. It can be sanded, drilled, nailed, and imprinted upon without losing strength or requiring a new layer of fiberglass. Unlike other “plastic” trees the Lite-Ride Tree® also allows the saddle maker to rescrew the same hole twice without it stripping out. This allows the tree to be reworked is a saddle owner purchases a new horse the saddlemaker can then modify their Lite-Ride Tree® to accommodate the new horse's needs without requiring the purchase of a whole new tree. The Lite-Ride Tree® is such a great tree that you can actually just throw the rigging and stirrup leathers on it and ride away. It’s that solid and comfortable! The Lite-Ride Tree® is one of the best new ideas to come across the market in years. It allows for complete customization, high strength and durability, and the ability to be reworked and weighs around 8 to 10 pounds. So don’t hesitate. Go look at our tree styles page and choose the tree for your new saddle today!

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