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  1. #1
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    Default compact life vests

    I need to buy 8 lifevests. One for each person on the boat. This is for lake boating only and only really needed to stay in compliance with the law. The plan is to buy two regular ski type vests. One man size and one woman size for tubing etc.

    The other 6 I want to buy the most compact available. Place is at a premium and storing 8 normal size vests would take up almost all available stoage space. In all likelyhood these will never be used.

    I have been looking at these inflatable vests and belts. They look very compact, the only thing I don't like is the cartridge has to be replace every year or two. They all have an oral inflation tube too. I'm wondering would they still be 'legal' if the cartridge is expired but you can still fill orally?

    What have others done or used for PFDs where space is at a premium?

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  3. #2
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    I wander if you could use a couple of them large vacume bags and suck all the air out. I am not sure if it would work but who knows. I can see where 8 vest would take up a lot of room. lucky my boat only holds 4 people and I do have a large storage compartment on mine. I would need 2 large storage compartments if I had 8 people and all of there stuff. Good luck Robin

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  4. #3
    kustomkarl's Avatar
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    I guess I'll never go boating with you than!...life jackets are an essential part of boating...every year people drown...not wearing life jackets. It's like wearing a cheap helmet while riding a morotcycle...what's you head worth. Life jackets aren't just to look good. They are there to save your life in a panic situation. I have never heard anyone planing on having a boat wreck or a boat sink, and put on there life jacket in advance. It happens, and if you don't have the proper equipment your dead, or a member of your family is dead. Could you live with that if something happened and you had expired life jackets that couldn't be blown up orally in a panic situation and drown? At least get good life jackets. Cheating on safety equipment is just stupid...The cemetery is full of stupid people...all dead too.
    Don't skimp on safety equipment.

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  5. #4
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    Default

    Who said anything about cheating on anything? I wrote the email to find out if inflatable life jackets are still in compliance if the co2 cartridge is expired but can still be filled orally? Wasn't expecting to be accused of being stupid.

    Anyway, I was also looking for suggestions for very compact PFDs. Anybody?

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  6. #5
    kustomkarl's Avatar
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    I never accused you of being stupid. Just the only type of "compact" PFD's don't meet standards. Here in Florida people don't take life jackets seriously...I read about people drowning all the time. The ones with the co2 cartridge must be worn all the time with a good co2 cartridge to be " legal".

    I'm sorry you misunderstood my point. No offense intended.

    Karl

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  7. #6
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    I bought all my life jackets at academy sports. They have the best prices. Even better than walmart. I bought me, my wife, and my daughter some nice connely life jackets. And then i bought the 4-pack of traditional orange life jackets for the guests. The 4-pack is neatly packed in its own squared plastic package and fits perfect in the ski storage. I also bought the small red squared throwable.

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  8. #7
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    Took the boat out again when we got back in town last night. Have I mentioned this thing is fast? I mean its boarderline what in the hell am I doing going this quick over water!

    Anyways, I bought one of those cheap orange lifevests from West Marine to try out in the lower hold. It fits perfect so I think I'll get a bunch of those as the spares.

    I looked at the inflatable belt things but they are pretty complicated and there is no way someone is figuring them out in a panic sitution. Plus the orange ones I can get 6 of for the price of one belt! They fit great in the ski compartment so problem solved!

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  9. #8
    kustomkarl's Avatar
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    Those are a good choice of life jackets.

    Karl

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  10. #9
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    I have the same boat and I can fit all but 2 jackets in the rear storage above the motor. the other 2 i throw in one of the front compartments. I still have room for a 4 person tube, 2 coolers, an anchor, 2 fenders, 4 ropes, 1st aid kit, fire exstinguisher, and at least a few towels. the only thing that isn't in a compartment is the wakeboard and i usually sit on one of my throwable pfds cause i'm short and can't see over the windshield

    ps. mine are just normal ski vests that i got at the dealer

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  11. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by markj602 View Post
    I have the same boat and I can fit all but 2 jackets in the rear storage above the motor. the other 2 i throw in one of the front compartments. I still have room for a 4 person tube, 2 coolers, an anchor, 2 fenders, 4 ropes, 1st aid kit, fire exstinguisher, and at least a few towels. the only thing that isn't in a compartment is the wakeboard and i usually sit on one of my throwable pfds cause i'm short and can't see over the windshield

    ps. mine are just normal ski vests that i got at the dealer
    Its crazy how much space there is on this boat. I was out in it last night and 'discovered' the space under the front seats. I think we will be fine with the regular lifevests, there is just so much space.

    You said you have two coolers. Did you get a second one like the one that came with the boat and stick it on the other side? If so were did ya get it from?

    I just bought a 3 man tube, btw. Can't wait to try it out this weekend!!

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  12. #11
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    I have a self inflating musting type pfd that I wear when boating of sailing by my self. They are not uncomfortable at all.
    Some problems with having your boat stocked with them would be.
    The take a little thinking to put on compared to a slip you arms in jacket (may be confusing to a panicking person)
    Expensive to have a boat full of them. (I payed over 100 bucks for mine)
    Advantages
    You will were it.
    Good to put on someone that has a deathly fear of the water. But doesn't want to look like a fool in the big orange thing. (my grandmother)
    I keep my waterproof hand held VHF radio clipped on also. (handy if you go overboard) Or need it in a pinch.

    Federal Requirements and Safety Tips for Recreational Boats

    Personal Flotation Devices (PFD)

    All recreational boats must carry one wearable PFD (Type I, II, III or Type V PFD) for each person aboard. A Type V PFD provides performance of either a Type I, II, or III PFD (as marked on its label) and must be used according to the label requirements. Any boat 16ft and longer (except canoes and kayaks) must also carry one throwable PFD (Type IV PFD).

    PFDs must be

    * Coast Guard approved,
    * in good and serviceable condition, and
    * the appropriate size for the intended user.

    Accessibility

    * Wearable PFDs must be readily accessible.
    * You must be able to put them on in a reasonable amount of time in an emergency (vessel sinking, on fire, etc.).
    * They should not be stowed in plastic bags, in locked or closed compartments or have other gear stowed on top of them.
    * The best PFD is the one you will wear.
    * Though not required, a PFD should be worn at all times when the vessel is underway. A wearable PFD can save your life, but only if you wear it.
    * Throwable devices must be immediately available for use.

    Inflatable PFDs

    * Inflatable PFDs may be more comfortable to wear.
    * The best PFD is the one you will wear.
    * Inflatable PFDs require the user to pay careful attention to the condition of the device.
    * Inflatable PFDs must have a full cylinder and all status indicators on the inflator must be green, or the device is NOT serviceable, and does NOT satisfy the requirement to carry PFDs.
    * Coast Guard Approved Inflatable PFD's are authorized for use on recreational boats by person at least 16 years of age.

    Child PFD Requirements

    Some states require that children wear PFDs

    * applies to children of specific ages
    * applies to certain sizes of boats
    * applies to specific boating operations

    Check with your state boating safety officials.

    Child PFD approvals are based on the child's weight. Check the "User Weight" on the label, or the approval statement that will read something like "Approved for use on recreational boats and uninspected commercial vessels not carrying passengers for hire, by persons weighing __ lbs". They can be marked "less than 30", "30 to 50", "less than 50", or "50 to 90".

    PFD requirements for certain boating activities under state laws

    The Coast Guard recommends and many states require wearing PFDs:

    * For water skiing and other towed activities (use a PFD marked for water skiing).
    * While operating personal watercraft (PWC) (use a PFD marked for water skiing or PWC use).
    * During white water boating activities.
    * While sailboarding (under Federal law, sailboards are not "boats").

    Check with your state boating safety officials.

    Federal law does not require PFDs on racing shells, rowing sculls, racing canoes, and racing kayaks; state laws vary. Check with your state boating safety officials.

    If you are boating in an area under the jurisdiction of the Army Corps of Engineers, or a federal, state, or local park authority, other rules may apply.

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  13. #12
    rexsteiner's Avatar
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    For inland lakes in michigan you have to have a life jacket for every head in your boat. Inflatables don't count and neither do throw ables. And if you get caught being short on pfd's its a mistermener (I suck at spelling) on your record and a hefty fine. Trust me it ruins your weekend.

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