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Topic: Pfd's....warm weather!< Next Oldest | Next Newest >
chefmik Offline
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Posted: Feb. 02 2004,19:32

When I paddle my SIK...gotta wear a pfd. I have a Extrasport Retroglide which is a an excellent pfd however a bit on the bulky side and in the summer this thing is going to be a bear!
any recommendations on other pfds for warm weather and one that is not so bulky. It is also annoying while fishing.  Anyone use SOSPENDERS?
Thanks for any input..Chef Mike


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Chef Mike
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super_fly Offline
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Posted: Feb. 02 2004,20:44

I've heard good things about SOSpenders but I haven't tried them. I have a pfd from Bass Pro. The flotation is around the ribs and the top/yoke is mesh. I wear it when I'm in uncertain surroundings (deep water, chop, current, powerboats) and it's pretty comfortable.

Ken
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Posted: Feb. 07 2004,13:44

I use the smallest Sospenders pfd simply because it isn't hot.  It has no pockets and does not do any fishing vest duties but it is relatively unnoticeable.  It can be inflated by both the CO2 cartridge or manually with a valve you can blow into.

Of course, unlike other pfd's, if you were to be knocked unconscious when you were knocked out of the kayak the vest does not self-inflate.  My thoughts:  this is a concern but fairly remote.  Also, you can partially inflate it without it being too much of a bother and it will give some floatation.

Also, it is important to remember that you CANNOT wear anything over the vest as the sudden expansion when the cord is pulled can cause serious injury if the outer garment doesn't allow for the vest to expand out!  Guess who suddenly can't breathe!  Think "boa constrictor."

Nevertheless, this is my vest of choice and I am working on a vest-like covering that is safe to take advantage of that extra gear space.

Jim and Mike may remember a sudden squall at Rattlesnake Key when their pfd's gave them some warmth and mine was useless.

But they are almost not there while you paddle.

Pros and cons.

Don
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chefmik Offline
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Posted: Feb. 07 2004,14:31

Hey Don...Appreciate the input on the Sospender jacket...thanks SuperFly Ken also.
I think the sospenders sounds a little scary if pulled by accident while being inside the kayak...im kinda clutzy. :p
Still curious as to what else is out there.


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Posted: Feb. 07 2004,15:40

Sorry to make it sound so scary.  Actually I usually don't even wear the pfd most of the time.  I know I should. But on the scale of dangerous things, seakayaking has to be WAY down the list.  

I always tell friends who don't know the wilderness that the most dangerous part of my trip is the drive out there.  I-95 is many times more dangerous than any mangrove pass or flats bay yet we accept the danger without thought because it is a necessity of life.  

I have BPS pfd's that I never wear as they are too uncomfortable.  I have a very useful fishing vest I may wear without the pfd and hope that, in the event of an accident I can get to my pfd and use it as a float.  

This is not a risky sport if you are a good, solid swimmer.  My worst-case scenerio is losing everything ($$$) and living with bug-bites until I get home.  I NEVER think I can't get home.

Thoughts and ruminations.

Don
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super_fly Offline
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Posted: Feb. 08 2004,18:09

I'm pretty sure SOSpenders has on option or a model where it does auto-inflate, you might want to look into it.

My BPS vest is pretty comfortable, I've used it in August. The mesh top really helps. It met multiple criteria for me: reasonably cool in hot weather; inexpensive; it works; and it fit! (big criteria for a guy like me).

this is close to what I have:

http://www.basspro-shops.com/servlet....=browse

Ken
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joebh Offline
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Posted: June 02 2007,07:13

I'm  a Yankee and even after 25 years in Florida I still overheat kayaking in the summer, so I have tried various inflatable PFDs. I  have a west marine inflatable Paddling model PFD that fits better and works better  than the suspender  type inflatables when inflated. I own  both types and have tested them in the pool and deep water.  The Paddler inflatable model looks like a real PFD and fits much more securely than the suspender type inflatable. However during kayak rescues with my club, my inflatable pull cord caught when I was climbing on my kayak for a cowboy scramble  rescue and my PFD inflated as I was trying to climb in the cockpit ( a sit inside Gulfstream). Beside amusing the other club members ( who all wore real PFDs) I had to paddle around with a big  inflated ballon on my chest for a few hours with  everyone laughing at me. It also costs $25  to mount a new CO2 cartridge.    Neither inflatable  is as secure in the water as a good real PFD.  My last  attempt to find a compact real PFD is the Kokatat Orbit which I just ordered online and  sale. It arrived yesterday and I will try it out tomorrow in the pool and  on my surfski after Barry goes by and  the weather is better.
I paddle in the ocean and and I would feel more confident  floating in the ocean 3 miles out in any real PFD than an inflatable PFD.
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