Before "The Buckle"
Believe it or not, there was a time before the Blevins Buckle. Today you'll find a Blevins Buckle on almost every western saddle. Many have tried to duplicate the buckle (and succeeded), but "Blevins" is still the industry standard - and rightly so.
The Blevins Buckle is actually a product of frustration, ingenuity, and curiosity - developed during World War II by Earl Blevins in an attempt to calm his frustration with laced stirrup leathers.
Back in those days, fenders were adjusted with leather lacing. A time consuming task to change stirrup length when a number of soldiers were sharing the same saddle. But a cinch to fix if you broke a part in the field.
Earl couldn't take the time consuming process of adjusting the fenders any longer so he designed a simple, durable solution in the Blevins Buckle.
Blevins Becomes an Industry Standard
After the war, Earl brought his new buckle back to the states and began promoting it to the rodeo crowed. His simple pin design made adjusting stirrup leathers a simple task.
Earl settled in Wheatland, WY where he continued making his industry changing buckles that we still enjoy the convenience of today.
Using A Blevins Buckle
A Blevins Buckle makes use of a simple pin and sliding cover design. To adjust the stirrup height:
1) Simply slide the cover up
2) Remove the buckle pins
3) Reposition them in the appropriate holes
4) And slide the cover back over.
Reversing a Blevins Buckle
For information on how to reverse a Blevins Buckle to conceal additional stirrup leather length, see our article on Reversing Blevins Buckles COMING SOON
Some of the information in this article has been adapted from an American Horse Daily article written in July, 2014.