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Old 15 October 2006, 17:00   #11
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Get one of these as well, now reduced from £650 or so to £399, better to pull the pin and be found than to float around waiting to die as loads of poor souls have done on the past :-

http://www.jkmax.co.uk/60.html
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Old 15 October 2006, 17:10   #12
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Depends where you're going. Useful offshore, but not much call for it in the Solent.

On the "must have" list it's not exactly in the same league as a lifejacket!

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Old 15 October 2006, 17:30   #13
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Loads of people have died in the Solent, one was a great mate of mine who dies with two others on a yacht off Cowes, the yacht lost it's mast and VHF aerial, only the word Mayday was heard by the costguard so no rescue was commenced, all three died. I understand that the crew of the yacht that sank not so long ago with three on board, thought to have been hit by a larger vessel, were all found dead with their lifejackets on, two were manual and inflated so they must have activated them themselves before drowning, a terrible, terrible tragedy. You never know what a difference a fastfind plus may have made. see http://www.ybw.com/auto/newsdesk/200...bogeneral.html

The sea temperature in the UK gives very little time for survival in the winter and spring months, so a speedy rescue is essential, the EPIRB is a vital tool for that, and at that price a bit more affordable for some than it was.

Life jackets are vital but not a lot of use if not fitted properly, don't fool yourself and think you are invinceable, go on a course and check it out for yourself (not you John as I am sure you have done it, this is to others who have not), but as I said I have spent the whole day discussing survival and had the practical afternoon in the pool, I would hate to think what effect a freezing cold sea and waves would have on the excercises we did today, but it has certainly given me the heads up on what to expect and the way to go about it.
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Old 15 October 2006, 18:25   #14
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A few thoughts regarding the 275N lifejacket.
  • The 275N is heavy. Itís definitely noticeable when wearing it. Its also more bulky.
  • Moving around in the water and recovery into the boat/life raft is harder, when compared to a 150N, due to the extra volume of the buoyancy chamber.
  • Rearming kits cost more.

I use a 275N because I go out in rough weather, all throughout the year, day or night and itís more capable of keeping my head out of the water than a 150N. For normal boating I think the 275N is less desirable than the 150N.

Regardless - crotch straps are essential, as in my opinion are spray hoods and strobes.
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Old 15 October 2006, 18:30   #15
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Agreed; you certainly know your wearing the 275 especially when you take it and the heavy duty Musto coat off. Nice to have the peace of mind though.
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Old 15 October 2006, 18:39   #16
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That's got me thinking now.

I'm going to make up some crotch straps for my lifejackets.
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Old 15 October 2006, 18:41   #17
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I'm no skinny person at all, and had no problems whatsoever with the 150 today, funny thing was a few weeks ago someone told me I should get a 275, I went to the Chandlery and they told me the 150 would be fine, today proved it, even fully kitted up with wet weather gear.

How they can charge £19 or so for the crappy spray hood is beyond me, but it's not so crappy when it's saving you from drowning

Check the cheap and nasty plastic buckles and belts on some of the lifejackets, in a real life situation these will be tugged and pulled, the cheapo ones will snap, I saw some today, so get the best you can afford, when the time comes and you have to use it you will be ever so grateful you got what you did.

I guess if you are on a budget you could make up your own crutch straps but DO have one, as I said it's as good as a chocolate teapot without it on, I have not been wearing mine until today, I learnt the biggest lesson when I leapt in to test it without one on, scary indeed trust me. I fitted mine this evening.

I also learnt so much about liferafts today, but I guess that is for another thread, you WILL NEVER know what you need out of one until you do the training course, and have to right the liferaft with people inside, even getting in in the first place with crap rope ladders, it's a killer in a pool, never mind a freezing sea with waves and wind. If you have a life raft DO the course, without doing the course you will be in for a massive surprise and possibly die if you have to use it.
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Old 15 October 2006, 19:00   #18
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I just looked at the price of crotch straps. I'll buy some.


On another note, I've got a couple of big orange polythene marker buoys I got off ebay. They are folded up to the size of a fag packet and you blow them up yourself in an emergency. They stand nearly 5' out of the water when inflated and can be lit with a glowstick or torch inside if it's getting dark.

I can imagine they wouldn't be the easiest things to use in an emergency but better to be seen...
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Old 16 October 2006, 06:42   #19
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Nos4r2 View Post
....They stand nearly 5' out of the water when inflated ....
Nos, you might go skooting off at half the speed of the breeze.
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Old 16 October 2006, 07:08   #20
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What about the floatation suits you can buy for fishing? It seems to me cold is a far bigger killer than drowning. Some of the Norwegian and Finish RIB outfits issue them to their passengers instead of lifejackets.

I know they don't have the same amount of buoyency as a proper lifejacket but liefejackets can put you into strange positions when worn with drysuits or survival suits etc.
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