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Lifejacket or no lifejacket?

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Re: Lifejacket or no lifejacket?

Postby acctx » Fri Jun 01, 2012 10:22 pm

frankm1960 wrote:
dyyylan wrote:
frankm1960 wrote:
A LEI kite with it's LE in water will pull you hard down wind and there is zero upward force. You have to fight to keep your head above water until you can relaunch and this could take a while if your lines/bridals are tangled.
Really? because I crash my kite like this all the time with boots on and lie back while relaunching my kite. and i live in florida, so i'm only using the flotation from my boardshorts and harness.
Just for the hellofit ... at your local shallow water location... in 15kts, LE down on the water straight down wind... no board on your feet... let the kite drag you for a bit and see. As soon as you go to launch your kite from there the kite pretty much stops pulling... but until then it's pretty powered up and will drag you and you have to try pretty hard to keep your head above water. There is no upward pull at all. You'll need both hands to keep your head up. Try it.

This isn't a normal situation ... but it did happen to me once when starting out... couldn't launch the kite (tangles in lines), seperated from my board, winds picked and it was dragging me pretty hard downwind...I was having a hard time keeping my head out of the water whilst trying to untangle the mess and re-launch. It was about 2min worth of dragging and the whole time wishing I hadn't forgot my pfd.

You never know when you're gonna need it except for the times you forget it... then it's pretty much garanteed that you're gonna need it :)
I had this exact same situation. Wind was really light so I couldnt relaunch, lost my board, kite was straight downwind. The wind started to pick up, but not enough for an easy relaunch. because I didnt have my board I couldnt give enough resistance to the kite to launch. Started to get dragged underwater - have worn an impact vest since. It makes it much more relaxing when you have to sort out problems. You can focus on the problem and not worry about having to tread water.

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Re: Lifejacket or no lifejacket?

Postby Mr_Weetabix » Sat Jun 02, 2012 11:52 am

I own a Neil Pryde High Hook too, but I don't wear it all the time. It's reasonably comfortable, but has a tendency to ride up (not dangerously - just enough to be irritating) and gets quite hot in the summer. I never wear it in shallow water (5' or less) - I don't see the point. I always wear it if I'm flying a foil in deep water. If I'm flying a tube kite in deep water, it depends how I feel on the day - the sketchier the conditions, the more likely I am to wear it.

Has anyone used the attachments for a hydration pack?

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Re: Lifejacket or no lifejacket?

Postby H C » Sun Jan 20, 2013 10:16 pm

Manuel V wrote:I use Dakine Surface Vest it is and impact/flotation Vest, and is waist or seat harness compatible vest.

I'm 41 and have been surfing on/off for 25 years but only one year kitting
I feel a lot safer wearing the dakine surface vest when practice jumps
because I don't want to get injured, it have a lot of cushion.
When I'm kitting in deep waters or in the waves, if something goes wrong is a
lot safer to swim wearing a vest.
Hi I am wondering how this Dakine would compare (buoyancy and ability to fit a heavier bloke) to the Neil Pryde high hook .

(I have a Dakine Fusion xxl ( the one with the built in harness ) from when I used to windsurf but I just have grown too big for it - I can pull in my belly and get it on but I just can't take big breaths anymore )



Last edited by H C on Mon Feb 04, 2013 12:46 am, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: Lifejacket or no lifejacket?

Postby Bille » Mon Jan 21, 2013 4:20 pm

Seriously --- i Wish we had a choice at Mohave : "get caught without one and
it's a $75 fine" .

Kinda SUCKS when the government TELLS you what is safe
and what's Not ; there looking out for my own good. And i Need to wear one
anyway because both prosthetic(s) weigh 10Lb ; i sink like a stone without one.
Just Don't like being Told what to do !!!


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Re: Lifejacket or no lifejacket?

Postby unbob » Mon Jan 21, 2013 5:46 pm

frankm1960 wrote:A LEI kite with it's LE in water will pull you hard down wind and there is zero upward force. You have to fight to keep your head above water until you can relaunch and this could take a while if your lines/bridals are tangled. A PFD is really helpful in that scenario especially when you're starting out.
Totally agree. I decided to not wear my impact vest while kiting in the Gorge this past summer until I crashed my kite one day and found that as I was being dragged downwind (without the board on my feet) - I was really struggling to keep my head above water - I finally was forced to push my QR to relieve the pressure. Could not relaunch and the session was over. After that experience, I started wearing my impact vest again every session!

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Re: Lifejacket or no lifejacket?

Postby sarc » Mon Jan 21, 2013 6:31 pm

Kayak vests can be quite cheap and very comfortable!

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Re: Lifejacket or no lifejacket?

Postby Starsky » Mon Jan 21, 2013 6:38 pm

kayak vests typically have a thicker brick of flotation that is positioned high on the chest and back. While they allow good ROM, flotation and accommodate a waist harness. A thick brick of flotation can be a real whiplash risk. Personally I'd suggest the lower profile of the high hook and similar. There is still a small gap in the market here where there are only a couple of options designed for use with a waist harness.

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Re: Lifejacket or no lifejacket?

Postby bay surfer » Mon Jan 21, 2013 7:22 pm

Started wearing one in the Surf this year, Almost drowned the year before in the surf . That day Swam in about 3/4 of a mile, no problem till the last 100yrds were the White wash cause my floatation to go to, like a piece of lead with large waves breaking constantly. Had to swim all out just to keep my head above water, and in doing so breathing so hard and not getting enough O2 for the effort. Wash zone on the Great Lakes can be large due to fast wave period and you don't float like in salt water.
On the plus side when wearing a PFD and a Helmet people stay away from you! :thumb:
Started looking for people using PFDs on the big surf days , about 75% wear them.
Use a NPX vest, doesnt ride up and is warm on the cold days.

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Re: Lifejacket or no lifejacket?

Postby windyway » Mon Jan 21, 2013 8:28 pm

A full boating PFD is a hazard for wave riders.
Lots of things to catch on kite lines.
Too much flotation and too much bulk.
Can't dive under a breaking wave.
Swimming is very slow and more subject to wind and current.

Kite specific impact vests offer half the float and a better fit.
They save your ribs and keep you warm on a cold day.
Essentially they do everything better,
with no negatives except the money.
Last edited by windyway on Mon Jan 21, 2013 8:30 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: Lifejacket or no lifejacket?

Postby BXtreme » Mon Jan 21, 2013 8:29 pm

A def. YES for me. Dislocated left shoulder while kiting in big waves, and had an epic swim back to beach through monster swell after i had to ditch the kite with gusty ofshore wind and tell you what if it would not have been for my impact vest i do not think i would be writing this. It helps with crashes and shurely gives you that extra bit of floatation. Important to buy one according to your harness type and try them on before buying one. I use the ION impact vest 2013 and is made for a waist harness. Super happy with it and never kite with out it.

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