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Old 06 March 2011, 15:04   #1
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Automatic Lifejacket -> Manual Lifejacket

Hi,
I've just bought an automatic lifejacket (typhoon edge) from eBay, however there are times when its automaticness might get in the way.
Is there a way to turn the automatic lifejacket into a manual lifejacket.
I assume I either have to remove the auto firing headdy bit, or get a manual refiring pack?
Any advice would be really appreciated,
Tom
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Old 06 March 2011, 16:32   #2
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Which times are you worried about?
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Old 06 March 2011, 16:45   #3
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Buy two

Would you not buy two auto and manual?
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Old 06 March 2011, 16:55   #4
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Quote:
Which times are you worried about?
I'm thinking of safety boat work etc, or when I just want it sitting in a wet boat without going off, really.

Quote:
Would you not buy two auto and manual?
I'm afraid not; I'm a student.
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Old 06 March 2011, 16:59   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by tompaddock View Post
I'm thinking of safety boat work etc, or when I just want it sitting in a wet boat without going off, really.



I'm afraid not; I'm a student.
I have been using automatic lifejackets and never had any problem with them even in the wettest environments etc.. As long as the lifejacket does not submerge into the water it will be fine. If it rains etc..
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Old 06 March 2011, 17:15   #6
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I have been using automatic lifejackets and never had any problem with them even in the wettest environments etc.. As long as the lifejacket does not submerge into the water it will be fine. If it rains etc..
Thank you.
and yeah, I guess I might still struggle on safety boat tho :/
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Old 06 March 2011, 17:31   #7
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Quote:
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I have been using automatic lifejackets and never had any problem with them even in the wettest environments etc.. As long as the lifejacket does not submerge into the water it will be fine. If it rains etc..
I'm afraid I have. Granted, it had a Halkey Roberts mechanism, these are fired by continued exposure to water, rather than water pressure as per the Hammar mechanisms.

The situation in question involved myself and poor auld donegaldan getting a right soaking from water over the bows. My Hammar jacket didn't deploy, his H-R jacket did.

That reminds me, I think Hammar mechanisms can "fail" to deploy if the wearer is floundering around on the surface (as in holding a rope or lying flat), they need a foot or so of water to create enough pressure. I may be wrong, again...
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Old 06 March 2011, 19:15   #8
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That reminds me, I think Hammar mechanisms can "fail" to deploy if the wearer is floundering around on the surface (as in holding a rope or lying flat), they need a foot or so of water to create enough pressure. I may be wrong, again...
Just in the interests of science I fired an old Hammar unit the other day off one of the lifejackets that was being rearmed with new firing units at work. Held under a slow running tap it was fine, turn up the wick to full and hold it under (artificial pressure increase) and it popped straight away. Didn't try one in still water.
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Old 07 March 2011, 03:41   #9
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Originally Posted by tompaddock View Post
I'm thinking of safety boat work etc, or when I just want it sitting in a wet boat without going off, really.
I used to use a manual or an auto depending on how wet I thought the day was going to be, then when I started instructing I decided to stick to the auto and having got thoroughly doused many times it has not misfired.
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Old 07 March 2011, 03:48   #10
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i've had an auto go off while wearing it in bad weather and i've had one go off when washing them, now i just have manual one's, i can really wash the salt out of them.
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Old 07 March 2011, 04:01   #11
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I guess I might still struggle on safety boat tho :/
Personally I'd want a buoyancy aid for that.
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Old 07 March 2011, 04:05   #12
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Personally I'd want a buoyancy aid for that.
An excellent point Lt Cdr

If Tom is regularly getting into salt water then even a manual lifejacket is going to suffer pretty quickly.
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Old 07 March 2011, 04:15   #13
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An excellent point Lt Cdr

If Tom is regularly getting into salt water then even a manual lifejacket is going to suffer pretty quickly.
Well I'm assuming he doesn't actually need to get in the water very often - but when he does it really matters. At that point you don't want to be swimming around trying to keep yourself afloat, never mind your casualty. If someone is entangled in rigging you want your hands free to help etc.
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Old 07 March 2011, 05:30   #14
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Personally, for safety cover, I'd go with a BA. Also means you can then use it when you are sailing and it's someone else's job to rescue you!

Also if you're sitting around waiting for something to happen the BA will keep you warmer.


As to the original Q- any auto firing Jacket I've had has had the auto mechanism screw off & on, so it could be used either way.
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Old 10 March 2011, 15:20   #15
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Personally, for safety cover, I'd go with a BA. Also means you can then use it when you are sailing and it's someone else's job to rescue you!

Also if you're sitting around waiting for something to happen the BA will keep you warmer.


As to the original Q- any auto firing Jacket I've had has had the auto mechanism screw off & on, so it could be used either way.
Thank you.
I was more thinking I could use it in conjunction with a Bouyancy Aid, rather than replace it, but I might kjust sling it over the back of the seat, etc.

and thank you; I'll try an unscrew it. :nervousnewbieface! :P
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Old 05 July 2011, 21:21   #16
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Try Baltic RIB lifejacket. It's like RNLI ones. Buoyancy aid combined with inflatable (auto and man avaialble). As far as I remember they are bit cheaper than RNLI crewsavers and excellent quality too. We've got Baltic Rescue (like RIB LJ but twin chamber auto and SOLAS approved) at my Lifeboat station. I'm just thinking about Baltic RIB for myself now.
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Old 06 July 2011, 06:08   #17
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My current jacket has one auto and one manual, I think Halkey Roberts do make a kit that can turn your auto into a manual only release if you wish.

As said, a BA is possibly better, but I have never done safety boat cover in that type of boats used or had to be in and out of the water whilst wearing a lifejacket. You do see the RNLI boys chucking themselves in, so they have found something that works, will you be in a drysuit?
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Old 06 July 2011, 11:28   #18
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If you're not working far offshore (I believe in harbour or near coast) conditions BA should be enough. That's the set I'd prefer. If further off the shore, I'd chose LJ. Prefferably sth like RNLI's Crewsaver RIB 150N but they are about 450-500 quid. Baltic RIB LJ is priced more reasonably - cheapest I've found was 330, but it's still quite a lot.
And yes, I'd be in drysuit (unless there is 25 C air and at least sth like 20 C water) athough I've done safety boat thingies without one in the early ages as well (Tee and shorts in summer, fladen-like suit in winter, foul jacket in between).
Personally I'm currently thinking about those Baltics... I'd need 3... so the total at the end of invoice will be about thousand with shipping. :/
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Old 17 July 2011, 12:23   #19
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Life Jackets

Quote:
Originally Posted by Channel Ribs View Post
Which times are you worried about?
Auto Life Jackets can be converted to manual by unscrewing the spring
loaded attachment ; but then you have removed a important safety
element if you go overboard and become unconscious as you hit the water.
Automatics can be a problem in a Rib or any conditions where they get
wet or damp , as the automatic action is only held back by a cartridge
which dissolves when wet . The alternative is the hydro static version
where you have to be submerged before it activates , and the Co2
Cylinder is inside the bladder and does not rust ; but occasionally check it
has not partly unscrewed > I would be a bit weary of a second hand
one purchased on e-bay , is your life worth the cash saved on a new one.
You can check its condition by blowing it up with the manual mouth piece
leaving it for 24 hours , there should only be a slight air loss . also
check the cylinder is ok. Unscrew and visual check no tiny hole , or signs
that it may have leaked. A chemist can weigh it to see if it is still the
filled weight stamped on the cylinder
Tiffy Venturers Search and Rescue
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Old 17 July 2011, 12:41   #20
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I believe he is worried about moments eg. when someone is trapped under dinghys sail and he may need to jump into water to assist in getting out. Inflted 150N wont help when you need to move in yhe water.
The other moment is launching /embarking / disembarking from the beach. When you can get hit and been splashed by incoming wave or... the most funny - when you jump out and its just a bit deeper than you thought
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