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 Post subject: self inflatable pfd
PostPosted: Sat Oct 26, 2013 2:41 am 
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Joined: Tue Jul 30, 2013 2:33 pm
Posts: 25
What are the advantages of the self inflatable pfd ? I realize they are lighter.

Do they have to be fully immersed to expand vs the manual feature ?

Are they worth the added cost ? Does anyone have any brand recommendations ?


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 Post subject: Re: self inflatable pfd
PostPosted: Fri Nov 08, 2013 4:42 pm 
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Joined: Wed Sep 07, 2011 9:48 am
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Location: Portland, OR
I have no direct knowledge but I have read about a couple of folks who have them. In several cases where folks went overboard the PFDs inflated nicely, but once inflated were so bulky that the people could not get back into their yaks without either cutting or taking off the PFDs. Also, once case of an accidental inflation that required the PFD to be cut off because it was so tight and constricting. They are light ans comfortable. I might consider using one in the summer, but I would not use one in cold or dangerous waters.

FYI, I always felt that having a cheap general boating PFD was plenty good enough. This fall I received a Kokatat Bahia Tour PFD from my kids for my birthday and I have to say that it is a big step up in quality and comfort. I won't go back to my general boating PFD now :)

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 Post subject: Re: self inflatable pfd
PostPosted: Sat Nov 09, 2013 2:10 pm 
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My friends and I launch at the beach, sometimes into some 2ft surf, and I have a friend that had his auto-inflatable inflate on him when he got hit in the chest by an errant wave. Based on that, I'm not a fan.

The manual inflatables, on the other hand, I have one for my guests to wear when they go fishing with me. Its quite comfy and light. I bought a basspro inflatable on sale. I didnt really overthink it.

I personally prefer traditional PFDs for the pockets :wink: I have a Kokatat Bahia Tour as well. Great PFD.


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 Post subject: Re: self inflatable pfd
PostPosted: Fri Nov 15, 2013 3:17 pm 
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Joined: Thu Apr 05, 2012 11:35 am
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Location: Ogden, Utah
I bought a manual inflator model on eBay. Love it. I wanted the option to deploy it or not, as circumstances dictate. I accept the risk that if I go in and get knocked unconscious, I'm likely a goner. But as a former fighter pilot, I want to make my own decisions in an emergency.

The only modification I made to mine was to add a good whistle on a short tether. It's folded inside when worn but would be right there with the PFD inflated.

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 Post subject: Re: self inflatable pfd
PostPosted: Thu Jan 23, 2014 10:44 am 
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Joined: Thu Apr 19, 2012 6:38 pm
Posts: 43
I read here that pockets are a consideration when looking for a manual inflatable life jacket. Might I suggest the use of the Onyx AM 24 a Deluxe Automatic/Manual Inflatable Life Jacket that has pockets on both lower sides. It must be stated however that all these jackets are Type V vests that have Type III performance which means, in my home state of Massachusetts, they do not meet the regulatory requirements from September 15th to May 15th when a true type I,II or III must be worn when kayaking. Having said that, I use mine in warm weather as it is less bulky and uncomfortable. I have tested it fully inflated and it is not more difficult or restricting that a non inflatable life jacket when re-entering your kayak from the water. Just my two cents. :)


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