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PostPosted: Sun Mar 24, 2013 9:53 am 
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Joined: Mon Aug 20, 2012 9:17 am
Posts: 20
I did a quick look around but didn't see anything that could answer my question, I suspect it's already been asked so sorry for the redundancy.

I'm looking to purchase a new PFD, and I'm fairly new to sailing so I'd like to hear suggestion on getting the best one. I plan to wear it the whole time, so what makes a comfy PFD? Where should the bulk be located? Front, back high, low, all over? It might be pertinent to know that I'm tall and skinny.

Or just post your vote for your favorite PFD.

Thanks


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PostPosted: Sun Mar 24, 2013 2:59 pm 
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Location: Sarasota Sailing Squadron
You want a sailing or kayaking lifejacket so it's more comfortable when trapping . Zhik gill or Baltic buoyancy aids would be the most comfortable but if you want a coast guard.approved one the stolquest wedge or hobie sidezip ones are nice.

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Last edited by optikid on Thu Jul 04, 2013 9:03 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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PostPosted: Sun Mar 24, 2013 3:34 pm 
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Joined: Thu Jun 07, 2012 9:32 pm
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Location: Birmingham Al
I bought a stohlquist wedge, bought 2 for my brother and I. The website says about $89 found them else where for about $50. We love these PFDs. They have this rubbery material on the inside of the front of it that helps it not ride up on you. these are really comforable sitting down, witch was suprising. we were in the water with them last weekend, when we pitchpoled and as far as them riding up in the water, i didnt even notice it. (of course it was really cold and all i was concerened about we getting the boat flipped back over.) Also the zipper pocket on the front of it is great.

I looked at the zhik PFDs but 120 was to much money.

Stewart


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PostPosted: Sun Mar 24, 2013 3:40 pm 
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Joined: Sat Nov 06, 2010 8:10 am
Posts: 732
Location: Indianapolis, IN
I really like my kokatat PFD. I bought it about 8 years ago for a canoeing trip to the Boundary Waters and have been using it ever since for sailing as well. The pockets are great for carrying my knife, multitool, phone, and VHF radio. The most important feature is that it is cut very high so that it isn't uncomfortable to sit.

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PostPosted: Sun Mar 24, 2013 5:55 pm 
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Joined: Wed Aug 10, 2011 6:28 pm
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Location: Raleigh, North Carolina
The West Marine Medalist is a good choice that's not too pricey. I think they sell for $69 and west marine coupons are easy to come by.

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PostPosted: Tue Mar 26, 2013 3:32 pm 
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Joined: Sat Mar 09, 2013 8:59 pm
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Location: Raleigh, NC
The Astral Camino is great, useful air vents in the front and back, not too bulky anywhere, plus it looks different than most PFDs.

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PostPosted: Tue Mar 26, 2013 8:48 pm 
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Joined: Sat Jul 02, 2005 9:47 pm
Posts: 579
Location: San Diego
Buy local, not just to support the local dealer, but because you will want to try the lifejacket on with you harness too. Put it on and sit down on the floor like you would on your boat. Does the jacket push up or ride up? Does it cover your harness hook when sitting? If so, it may be too long. If you are in the water, will it keep you from climbing on the boat? will it get in the way? Depending on your shape and size, you may want a different vest from others. Best wishes.


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PostPosted: Thu Mar 28, 2013 5:06 pm 
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Joined: Mon Sep 20, 2004 12:36 pm
Posts: 758
Location: Tri-Cities, WA
Hammond has it right. Get one you are confortable in, that you can wear ALL day with the features you want (pockets, adjustments, how it feels hiking out/trapping, heck even color, etc.). Don't scrimp, it could save your life.


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PostPosted: Thu Jun 27, 2013 11:50 pm 
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Joined: Thu Mar 13, 2008 11:16 am
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Location: Minneapolis, MN
I use a West Marine Medalist. Works great! Good pockets. I strap a dive knife to left shoulder strap for easy access.


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PostPosted: Fri Jun 28, 2013 7:36 am 
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Location: Saratoga Springs, NY
fastcat wrote:
Hammond has it right. Get one you are confortable in, that you can wear ALL day with the features you want (pockets, adjustments, how it feels hiking out/trapping, heck even color, etc.). Don't scrimp, it could save your life.

THIS.

There's a saying I hear a lot in response to this question: "the best life jacket is whatever one you'll actually wear". life jackets do you no good strapped to the trampoline.

Like others have said, go to a local store and try them on with all your gear (if you sail in a drysuit, bring that too). While you're wearing it, raise your arms over your head and have someone try to pick you up by the shoulder straps. Not only will this ensure that it's not going to ride up in the water, this is how someone would haul you back onto a boat, so you need to make sure they're not going to just pull the life jacket off you.

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PostPosted: Sat Jun 29, 2013 7:02 am 
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REI has a good selection and you can try them on if ther is a store close by.

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PostPosted: Sat Jun 29, 2013 7:04 am 
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Location: Indianapolis, IN
lakejumper wrote:
REI has a good selection and you can try them on if ther is a store close by.

REI is an awesome store. I recommend it if you have one close by.

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PostPosted: Sun Jun 30, 2013 9:40 am 
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I use West Marine's Action Reflex vest, a fully adjustable Type III vest that can be had for $40 - $50....



If I was in the market for a new vest, I'd consider the Neil Pryde High Hook vest even though it isn't coast guard approved. It's similar to the Zhik and Gill buoyancy aids but can be found online for half the price....

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PostPosted: Mon Jul 01, 2013 2:22 pm 
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Joined: Sun Aug 26, 2007 5:40 am
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Location: Metuchen NJ
I'm happy with a MTI vest. It's short so there's no issues with sitting down. You can get it with either a zip front or triple clasps. I like the zip front. It also has a cinch at the bottom to adjust room for clothing or a harness.

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'88 H18SE Arís


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PostPosted: Thu Jul 04, 2013 10:07 am 
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Joined: Tue Apr 14, 2009 4:47 pm
Posts: 39
Location: Odense, Denmark
I have a Hobie Team Rider that I like very much. There's an opening for the trapeze hook and a lot of pockets and its not restricting.

http://www.nauticexpo.com/prod/hobie-ca ... 08748.html

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Last edited by pbekkerh on Thu Jul 04, 2013 11:51 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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