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sue
05-25-2006, 10:09 AM
Since this is my first high performance boat I need to buy some good lifevests that you can wear. I have heard that some of the most expensive ones are actually worthless. Any ideas would be appreciated. Thanks! Sue

Carl C
05-25-2006, 10:46 AM
Sue, some will say that only a high $ racing vest with a crotch strap is reliable. Costco sells a good quality neoprene vest for $40 that costs nearly $100 anywhere else. I have 3 of these in different sizes and two older style ski vests that I keep on board. I do avoid the old cheap orange vests.

roadtrip se
05-25-2006, 11:20 AM
are the way to go. A ski vest of any sort and the ribbon style, CO2 blow up style are worthless in an accident, because they don't offer any rib cage or torso protection.

Classic example was the Outerlimits that spun and flipped off the coast of Grand Haven here last summer during a high speed turn at a Poker Run. One of the people thrown from the boat was never found, the other died from his adominal injuries that he received on the way out of the boat. Both were wearing the ribbon style vests, which were found floating in the water with broken straps.

I looked at a Blackhawk a couple of years back with the man's widow. The theory put together by the local police was that the boat stuffed into a crusier wake at high speed. The end result was a dead man due to injuries sustained from hitting the steering wheel and windshield.

Not pretty stories, but it happens.

Jill and I both wear Lifeline Poker Run vests with carbon insert, flak jacket material. They are light, comfortable, and safe. Another brand to consider is Mustang, which others here really like.

Carl C
05-25-2006, 11:47 AM
RTSE, I don't really disagree with you but I am an avid slalom skier and I've read that slalom skiers reach speeds over 70 MPH on a hard cut. I've taken many hard falls and a snug fitting neoprene vest does give torso protection and I've never had one tear or come close to coming off. If you're going much over 75 MPH then I agree with you 100%.

gold-n-rod
05-25-2006, 01:19 PM
West Marine sells a nice auto-inflator for under a hundred bux.

BERTRAM BOY
05-25-2006, 02:46 PM
Roadtrip and 'Poodle are absolutely right. Get the Lifeline. You won't be disappointed.

It's also nice to be preparred when your friend gives you that 100+ mph ride in their certain X-18.

How much is your life worth? I'm guessin' WAAAAYYYY over 100 bux.


BERTRAM BOY :biggrin.: :biggrin.: :biggrin.:

sue
05-25-2006, 05:02 PM
Thanks for all of the information. Does anybody know where the best place is to get the lifeline poker run vest? Thanks! Sue

Dr. Dan
05-25-2006, 06:24 PM
Here ya Go Suzy Q.... www.lifelinejackets.com

I would suggest the "High Performance Pleasure Series"

http://www.lifelinejackets.com/catalog_jacketspants_perfjackets.html
The Standard Jacket shown in the Upper Left Pic, in Orange starts at $315.00
The Poker Run Edition Red Amer. Flag, which is like Poodles... is $415.00
The Baja Style Yellow,Checkered Lower is $415.00
The Merc Style (Black with Orange Stripes) is $365
The V Style lower left Pic is $390.00

Colors can be changed, there are alot of standard Colors & designs available.

Sizes Run as follows on Average based on Chest Size:
Small 30" - 36"
Medium 36" - 42"
Large 42" - 48"
X Large 48" +

Special Accomadations for Large Shoulders, Belly's and or Special requirements are available for Safe and Proper Fit.

FYI all of this Series comes with the "New Stand Up " Collar Design, not the Horse Shoe style shown in the pics...per Claudia at Lifeline.

I am going to be offering some standardized versions of these Jackets...with our Atlantic Coast New Donzi Logo as seen in Lake Cumberland... I am working out the specifics currently... essentially, you will design a Jacket to Match your Boat or whatever... and the Raw Design will be shipped to us...we will have it Custom Embroidered with our Large Griffin Logo on back and a small front left Breast Logo as our shirts show... these will be way cool. And they will make our Coolers look cheap in comparison...but they will Rock when they're done.

Average Build time is currently a month out from LIfe Line for their standard Jackets... I will let ya know when I am ready to move forward with this Option...all Jackets would be purchased through Lifeline, all Custom work on our end will be coordinated with Claudia at Lifeline or Ken. Again this is very raw right now...so as it comes together...for those that are really serious about their Life Jackets... The Atlantic Coast Group will be able to provide a really cool Donzi Lifeline Vest for you and your Family or Friends to wear.

Stay Tuned

Good Luck

Doc

blackhawk
05-25-2006, 08:48 PM
Sue, I am looking into the Stearns 4185 (http://www.rocknrescue.com/acatalog/Rescue_Catalog_Stearns_75.html). 100 mph impact rating and a set of four will cost you less than one standard lifeline!

sue
05-25-2006, 09:06 PM
Roadtrip and 'Poodle are absolutely right. Get the Lifeline. You won't be disappointed.
It's also nice to be preparred when your friend gives you that 100+ mph ride in their certain X-18.
How much is your life worth? I'm guessin' WAAAAYYYY over 100 bux.
BERTRAM BOY :biggrin.: :biggrin.: :biggrin.:

You bet my life is worth WAAAAAAAYYY over 100 bux, but before I spent that much money on lifevests, I wanted to make sure I was spending my money wisely (on the right type of vest). So when do I get a ride in a 100mph Donzi?

Dan, thanks again for the help. I know you mentioned lifeline vests to me before, but I really wanted some other opinions before I spent that much money. Let me know when you find out about having the vests done with the Donzi logo!
Sue

Carl C
05-25-2006, 09:12 PM
Do you guys always wear vests when running hard? I don't wear one. I used to in my outboards which were on the ragged edge but I feel OK in the Donzi. If I get caught up in some scary water in the big lakes I'll probably put one on.:confused:

MOP
05-25-2006, 09:52 PM
I need some advice also, I have some very nice Sterns with heavy straps etc. I am sure they are a really good vests but I find them very hot & uncomfortable having floatation in back. I had a Sterns a few years back with mesh in back and flotation only on the sides and front, to me it was a better design. You are sure to float face up in case of a miss hap and very comfortable and reasonably cool due to the mesh back. I would like to find the same quality & safety in that style vest.

Phil

blackhawk
05-25-2006, 09:58 PM
No offense to anyone but I don't buy into the "how much is your life worth" marketing. Yes, lifelines are great vests but why is their standard vest over $300? Yes my life is priceless but I fail to see any huge benefits with the standard lifeline over other high quality $100 impact vests. This isn't rocket science!

blackhawk
05-25-2006, 10:02 PM
Do you guys always wear vests when running hard? I don't wear one. I used to in my outboards which were on the ragged edge but I feel OK in the Donzi. If I get caught up in some scary water in the big lakes I'll probably put one on.:confused:

Carl I will admit I never wear a life jacket. But last year I got caught in some nasty 3'+ chop on Lake Michigan and my brother and I got the little Unlimited up on top of that stuff and ran wide-open for a 6-7 mile stretch. We should have had some good jackets on!

I want some jackets for those occasions when I feel I am really running "on the edge"! :D

BERTRAM BOY
05-25-2006, 10:08 PM
No offense to anyone but I don't buy into the "how much is your life worth" marketing. Yes, lifelines are great vests but why is their standard vest over $300? Yes my life is priceless but I fail to see any huge benefits with the standard lifeline over other high quality $100 impact vests. This isn't rocket science!

It's not the "marketing" I'm thinking of. It's buying the best protection you can get your hands on.

blackhawk
05-25-2006, 10:14 PM
It's not the "marketing" I'm thinking of. It's buying the best protection you can get your hands on.

That's my point. IMO the whole "what's your life worth" is nothing more than marketing to convince you that you need to buy the most expensive jacket out there. Even though there may be jackets just as good for less money. Just my $.02.

roadtrip se
05-25-2006, 10:49 PM
I didn't see the APBA and SBI offshore guys wearing Stearns jackets.
But, something is better than nothing, so buy and wear what you can justify.

I always wear mine, always. Nobody ever plans for an accident, they just happen. Stuff can happen fast, like that lumber I hit last weekend at AOTH... I never saw it and we are very careful.

The comfort factor shouldn't even be a consideration. We're not bass fishing here, are we? You get hot, stop, and jump in. Besides my jackets are not bad any way.

Danny, I am going to hold off on ordering new jackets, until you are ready to do the logos.

tiger lily
05-25-2006, 10:50 PM
Do you guys always wear vests when running hard? I don't wear one. I used to in my outboards which were on the ragged edge but I feel OK in the Donzi. If I get caught up in some scary water in the big lakes I'll probably put one on.:confused:

before i plane off everyone must have there jackets on and strapped, no exceptions in the donzi, our i can say that doesnt always stand true when we are in the proline or the big offshore.

Dr. Dan
05-25-2006, 10:58 PM
:smash: Hawk ...I think ya make some valid points ...but I really think in the Mustang Survival and the Lifeline Class of Performance and Quality... you are talking Top Knotch. The guys that hop into the Ocean to pick your ass up outta the water are gonna have the best equipt. So ... it could be argued that although these are very costly...thier build quality and reputation warrant the investment.

It should also be noted that it is likely with the exception of the serious Poker Runners, and a few other rare exceptions,Todd, Geo , Cliff and Poodle...most recreational boaters do not purchase this level of Vest.

Most of these are likely purchased by Groups, Teams or very well heeled Clientel...and as a result the price is higher because they can get it....you get what ya pay for. As any Coastie or Serious Performance Boater will attest...there is a difference. The Ribbon Vests and the "Self" Inflating...do not work worth a Sh#* just ask the Guys in the Smoke on the Water Run last year.... as Poodle pointed out... when you are contacting half the articles in the Boat ...on your way of "Exiting the Boat"...you are gonna wish you had more than a Band Aid Straped to your Torso. One of the guys in Michigan was disemboweled...by hitting the side of the boat...ya never hear that.

The guy in the Blackhawk died of a cracked Sternum...I can tell ya after running last weekend in Cumberland... we hooked our Transom coming around and out of a turn...we were wearing Basic Ski Vests.... which basically assist in helping to find the body...had we rolled at 75 mph which is the speed we were running at the time... it would not have been pretty... and it gave me pause... for at least a wake or two!:rolleyes:

There are good vests, that are rated...I do have a 100 mph rated vest... I seldom wear it....MOP's accurate... they are uncomfortable at best...and hot.

If I am running in Events....since my Boat now goes faster than I have been able to take it...and I have taken it past 80 mph... I now were them...as do my passengers...I figure anything is better than nothing. I feel better with them on. When I was about 100 lbs lighter than I am now...I was a serious Hot Dog Skier... and when I went down...I hit hard...and I skipped over that concrete water like a rolling stone... but the Vests did help.

So shop around...I am not suggesting everyone needs a Mustang or a Lifeline, I am suggesting the Market keeps their price up becuase of the success of their products and who they have become.

Hell I sell Carpet...we manufacture every thing from Basic Builder Grade to Karastan. Basic goes for $10/yard Karastan about 8 to 10 times that...some where in between is where most people end up...actually...most go cheap...which for me is good...:bighug:

Shop around...do some research... hell I can't swing a $1000 for matching Jackets now either... but it's in my plan to get good performance based Safety Gear. I am gonna see what I can do...and if I can negotiate a better deal I will...but for now I was just posting some numbers she rattled off.

My guess is they can be had for less...but not half as much...maybe 5% to 10% at best...Speedwake has some negotiated prices...but they are close to what I posted. I was just giving the range of options for the sake of comparison.

Good Luck...Heads Up!

Doc of Crotch Straped Bouyancy Devices :eek:

blackhawk
05-25-2006, 11:05 PM
I didn't see the APBA and SBI offshore guys wearing Stearns jackets.
But, something is better than nothing, so buy and wear what you can justify.

I was waiting for that one! :D Yes, they run lifelines but they also wear the offshore jackets with the "flak" material. But I was comparing their standard jacket to other high impact jackets that cost 1/3 less. Maybe they are better but I haven't seen anything to prove that yet. Not trying to ruffle feathers just putting in my $.02. :D

MOP
05-25-2006, 11:16 PM
I feel the fast guys should have very good vests, but agree that the average guy can do well under $100 and get a decent quality vest.

TuxedoPk
05-26-2006, 12:47 AM
Top notch safety is always expensive, and like insurance a waste of money until you need it.

After a somewhat rough solo watch on a night sail in the Atlantic last month I decided it was time to break down and invest in some decent safety equipment. (Prior to that I wore nothing or those stupid orange jackets when it got bad)

Just for sailing where you're not dealing with the speed and impact it ran $229 for a Mustang Survival Hydrostatic inflatible w/harness and another $179 for an ORC Wichard tether. I didn't mind spending the bucks but it kills me that one's got to buy two quality PFDs if they are powerboating and sailing.

While we will hopefully never experience whatever difference may or may not exist between a top of the line product and a lesser recognized but still quality brand, I for one appreciate the fact that I've bought the best safety equipment that was available every time I put on my PFD- and the peace of mind alone, even if a cheaper comparable solution were available, is well worth every extra $ I invested.

BERTRAM BOY
05-26-2006, 09:31 AM
I was waiting for that one! :D Yes, they run lifelines but they also wear the offshore jackets with the "flak" material. But I was comparing their standard jacket to other high impact jackets that cost 1/3 less. Maybe they are better but I haven't seen anything to prove that yet. Not trying to ruffle feathers just putting in my $.02. :D


You are absolutley right. Just because someting cost 3 times as much, doesn't mean it's 3 times better. I could have bought a $79 helmet for when I ride my motorcycle too, but I opted for the $600 Arai.

It has to do with product development. I'm sure that Stearns makes a descent product, but I don't see Bob Teague or John Tomlinson wearing one.

The point is that Lineline benefits from product development, many years of continued improvement, so that when weekend warriors like us go out and, god forbid, do something stupid, it's not going to cost us our lives.

blackhawk
05-26-2006, 10:01 AM
IMO you are paying for the name here. All the racers wear them so they must be the best. All the big names wear them so they are the best. Maybe they are, maybe they aren't. I don't know. The lifeline website is very uninformative. But before I lay out $1600 compared to $320 for a set of four vests I would want to know that they are a superior jacket. I play a good devil's advocate don't I? :D

Carl C
05-26-2006, 10:09 AM
IMO you are paying for the name here. All the racers wear them so they must be the best. All the big names wear them so they are the best. Maybe they are, maybe they aren't. I don't know. The lifeline website is very uninformative. But before I lay out $1600 compared to $320 for a set of four vests I would want to know that they are a superior jacket. I play a good devil's advocate don't I? :D Maybe the racers get them for free for the publicity.

Ranman
05-26-2006, 10:54 AM
are lifelines USCG approved now?

I don't think so. Why? Do you see something that says they are now?

blackhawk
05-26-2006, 11:29 AM
if you can afford a 20, 30, 40, 50+k boat... and put 150+ bucks of fuel in it per weekend and have that duramax and powerstroke to tow it to the ramp with then there is no reason to bitch about price of a quality jacket... the lifelines are intended for a specific purpose... to keep you alive and afloat should something happen at high speeds and in a violent situation... a "sterns" is meant for those guys skiing at 35 mph... or falling overboard or playing on the jet skiis although those are getting pretty wild for a standard vest... hell there are different levels of bullet proof vests also.. which one would you want to have.. "should" your life depend on it.. i mean you never can tell what the bad guy is gonna shoot atcha with... a sterns vs a lifeline is apples to oranges... a lifeline is overkill for the average boater.. but many of us push the limits... many of us are runnin 75 - 80+ in small boats... and these things are not tanks in the water... they skip right along.. and aren;t the most stable things in the world... and at these speeds stuff can and will break.. eventually...and then there is no control and things get violent and out of hand in a real hurry...

fact is.. once the 18 is done and i get a bit of fundage back in the pot i'll probably buy a couple of lifelines...

Rootsy, you are missing my point. I am not saying I am cheap or my life isn't worth it. I am saying WHY is the lifeline better? Because it costs more? Because the name? Because racers wear them? Because Bob Teague wears one? Where is the superior technology? That is my point. WHY is it a superior jacket? I am not saying it isn't I am saying I want PROOF! Did you look at the link to the Stearns jacket? 100 mph impact rating, zippered closure along with THREE 2" cross body straps. Someone give me PROOF of the superiority of the standard lifeline then I will quit playing devil's advocate. :D

roadtrip se
05-26-2006, 11:31 AM
I pull with an Excursion 6.0, when I could probably get by with an Explorer or a SportTrak. Why? Because, I like the utility of the bigger vehicle and I want to be ready for the occassional need I have for something bigger.

Jamie hit it. The Lifelines and Mustang vests are the best. Carl, racers buy these vests and gladly, nobody is giving them away, because they save lives. As for the CG certification process, it is an ardous and expensive process. If you make three vests and don't change them much, it is probalby a good investment. If you make 30 varieties in low volume and the makeup is always changing to satisfy the needs of the market, I doubt the certification is really worth it.

So shooting holes at the best product available in this space isn't really about anything more than what you want to spend. Devil's advocate or not, just buy something that you can justify and wear the dang things!

Me? I'll be buying some of them really cool logo units from the Doctor as soon as he is ready, which means I'll have a couple of used units for those of you who want a break in the price.

MP, I vote for sticking this on the top of this forum. Good info and discussion.

blackhawk
05-26-2006, 11:31 AM
I don't think so. Why? Do you see something that says they are now?

Lifelines are not Coast Guard approved.

yeller
05-26-2006, 12:03 PM
Excellent thread! Couldn't come at a better time. I was about to buy an inflatable. Never even thought about impact protection..:bonk: I have to agree with BH though, I looked at both websites and I can't see why the lifeline is so much more. Only the lifeline offshore jacket says it has 'flak' in it. Based on the website info the poker run jacket doesn't appear to be any better than the stearns. As of yet, no one has given any real info as to why lifeline is better. The racers don't use the poker run jacket so the "because so and so uses it" explaination doesn't fly. I believe BH is comparing the poker run jacket to the stearns (not the full on offshore jacket).

blackhawk
05-26-2006, 12:11 PM
Excellent thread! Couldn't come at a better time. I was about to buy an inflatable. Never even thought about impact protection..:bonk: I have to agree with BH though, I looked at both websites and I can't see why the lifeline is so much more. Only the lifeline offshore jacket says it has 'flak' in it. Based on the website info the poker run jacket doesn't appear to be any better than the stearns. As of yet, no one has given any real info as to why lifeline is better. The racers don't use the poker run jacket so the "because so and so uses it" explaination doesn't fly. I believe BH is comparing the poker run jacket to the stearns (not the full on offshore jacket).

Yes, I am comparing the Stearns to the "standard" jacket with no flak protection.

Dr. Dan
05-26-2006, 12:48 PM
:beer: Just spoke to Kent Fauntleroy (son) of Lifeline... here's the deal:

1.)Floatation is fully sealed so it will not absorb water & mildew
2.)All Jackets are fully Custom made, not one of a 10,000 peice run, all sizing is specific to your specific body..
3.)All Fabric is 1000 Denier Nylon the toughest sewable fabric made,compared to standard"Packing Nylon" which will tear with your average scissors.
4.)All of their jackets are made with Ballistic Protection...they are all made the same now...no variations... so you will get impact protection whether you want it or not.
5.)All Buckles, Fasteners, Zippers are of Top Quality Polymers.
6.)All Jackets come with Leg Straps,Kill Switch Clips.

As to the Coast Gaurd Certification ...the requirements are kinda crazy....they strap a jacket to a Torso Dummy...toss it from a moving vesselgoing about 35 knots, if it stays intact it gets approved...also the volume duplication requirements(10,000units) do not fit the Company Model for Lifeline, their niche' is Custom Fit Safety Equipt, so an argument can be made...just because its USCG Certified doesn't make it as good of Quality as a Lifeline either? :spongebob

Just a little bit of facts from the guy that actually makes these things...

Just the Facts Mam! :cool!:

Doc of Ever Expanding Product Lines :p

Dr. Dan
05-26-2006, 02:32 PM
Double D, thanks for typing that, I was getting set to fire up the old word processor and drop the same info :) :)
I'm in for two jackets. I want them to match what I have now, but with the logo done to compliment the flag, so put on your thinking cap.. Can I get my old ones done to match?
I have 100 MPH ski vests galore, always bought the best when I skied regardless of cost. I've also blown out the 100 MPH ones while skiing, doesnt give me a real warm fuzzy feeling about them in the event of a boating mishap. Now, I have better jackets. Do I need em? IMO, yes. I've drug bodies out of the water, I've dove for bodies, I've had people die in my boat after we recovered them, I've held a 7 year old girl in my ams as she bled to death in the boat.
Guys n Gals, buy what you think will keep you alive. But, buy something. Me, I'll spend the extra bucks on something I have examined very carefully, discussed at length with the pro's, and am convinced will help save me, my loved ones and my friends. Hopefully I never have the opportunity to find out if they work.


I have to work out a few details with Life Line, but I will inquire on repairs or resews to existing Jackets...my guess is that will be a no go... they seem to have a way of doing things so they get the Job Done, they are not interested in taking on work that becomes so encumbering that the units never get finished, so I will find out.

This is not gonna be an over night thing.. we literally just began dicussion directly this week. I am treating this with Kit Gloves like I do anything we are involved in.. so bear with me. When it's ready it will be done right.

Doc :spongebob

blackhawk
05-26-2006, 02:46 PM
:beer: Just spoke to Kent Fauntleroy (son) of Lifeline... here's the deal:
1.)Floatation is fully sealed so it will not absorb water & mildew
2.)All Jackets are fully Custom made, not one of a 10,000 peice run, all sizing is specific to your specific body..
3.)All Fabric is 1000 Denier Nylon the toughest sewable fabric made,compared to standard"Packing Nylon" which will tear with your average scissors.
4.)All of their jackets are made with Ballistic Protection...they are all made the same now...no variations... so you will get impact protection whether you want it or not.
5.)All Buckles, Fasteners, Zippers are of Top Quality Polymers.
6.)All Jackets come with Leg Straps,Kill Switch Clips.
As to the Coast Gaurd Certification ...the requirements are kinda crazy....they strap a jacket to a Torso Dummy...toss it from a moving vesselgoing about 35 knots, if it stays intact it gets approved...also the volume duplication requirements(10,000units) do not fit the Company Model for Lifeline, their niche' is Custom Fit Safety Equipt, so an argument can be made...just because its USCG Certified doesn't make it as good of Quality as a Lifeline either? :spongebob
Just a little bit of facts from the guy that actually makes these things...
Just the Facts Mam! :cool!:
Doc of Ever Expanding Product Lines :p

I wasn't implying that them not being USCG apoproved had anything to do with quality, I was just answering the question. :D

Good info on the lifelines. But what is "ballistic" protection? I assume this means that all of their jackets now have "flak" material in them?

Dr. Dan
05-26-2006, 02:56 PM
:wavey: Ballistic Protection is a reference to Projectile Protection...your body against the Steering Wheel,Windshield...and or another object like a Rock you may be heading towards as you are ejected from your boat because you own a Donzi with way too damn much horsepower for your own good (or other boat) and always liked Rocks! :D

As in Ballistic Missile-The Study of the Dynamics of the Flight Characteristics of Projectiles...Bullets...etc.

Doc of Prefunctitory Introspection & Slavic Gonads of Steel or Other Non Ferous Metals..Maybe? :D

blackhawk
05-26-2006, 03:06 PM
:wavey: Ballistic Protection is a reference to Projectile Protection...your body against the Steering Wheel,Windshield...and or another object like a Rock you may be heading towards as you are ejected from your boat because you own a Donzi with way too damn much horsepower for your own good (or other boat) and always liked Rocks! :D
As in Ballistic Missile-The Study of the Dynamics of the Flight Characteristics of Projectiles...Bullets...etc.
Doc of Prefunctitory Introspection & Slavic Gonads of Steel or Other Non Ferous Metals..Maybe? :D

Right but HOW are they doing this? With flak material?

boxy
05-26-2006, 03:07 PM
Did you look at the link to the Stearns jacket? 100 mph impact rating, zippered closure along with THREE 2" cross body straps. Someone give me PROOF of the superiority of the standard lifeline then I will quit playing devil's advocate. :D

To be clear..... the 100 MPH impact rating on the Stearns jacket is a rating that speaks to the jacket staying on, not the jacket protecting you at that speed...

McGary911
05-26-2006, 03:09 PM
.
i honestly do NOT understand how a vest can be 100 mph rated without anti submarine straps.... i also do not understand how a vest can be 100 mph impact rated without some kind of ballistic internal material... if the internal material is ......

The jackets you see that are rated for 100mph, mean that the jacket will stay together for that kind of impact. They are not talking about protecting the wearer, or even staying on your body.

Do some searches, and it's pretty easy to find footage of 200mph drag boat crashes where the driver pulls through. They're not wearing stearns....Lifelines.......I'd like to get a couple in the future, but for now, I'll have to make due with my Mustangs.

Moot point, since my boat hasn't been wet in 1 1/2 years. Soon to change :)

yeller
05-27-2006, 11:58 AM
Good info Doc. That's more informative than what's on the website. On the website they say flak is only in the offshore jacket and an option on all the others. Without flak, I don't know if the lifeline would protect much better than the stearns, but with it....well that's another story. Maybe I'll get myself a lifeline and let the wife wear the ski vest.. :rlol: :biggrin.:

...and the stearns 100mph rating...I figured it's rated to hold together at 100, not protect you against impact.

TuxedoPk
05-27-2006, 02:07 PM
Matty is 100% right- things can happen really fast at 50, 60, 70...

Now just imagine you didn't take your stern line off and it fouled your prop at speed :)
(Flying stern line enactment in 2nd thumbnail by professional driver- don't try this at home)

fasttrucker
05-27-2006, 03:28 PM
How about those side strap life vest? that the sailboaters :boat: use.It inflates when you hit the water.Maybe I could get my wife to wear one.:starfish:

Carl C
05-27-2006, 06:37 PM
[QUOTE=MadPoodle I've drug bodies out of the water, I've dove for bodies, I've had people die in my boat after we recovered them, I've held a 7 year old girl in my ams as she bled to death in the boat.
[/QUOTE] Geeeez........what do you do? Others, I'm almost convinced to order up a pair. I do run my boat hard and I know that there will be a time when I launch it badly or stuff it. I still have a lot of confidence in my driving ability and experience. It's kind of like a motorcycle helmet. Some risks are so small that they're worth taking.:confused:

TuxedoPk
05-28-2006, 08:08 PM
I guess that's not really a problem with the blow boat crowd but I can see the need for them to have a 100 mph impact life vest I mean getting smacked in the head by the boom or slipping on some liver patte on the poopdeck and falling on their martini glass ;) :p :)
-- Gotta get you out to some ocean coastal/offshore sailing... or some heavy weather sailing in a performance oriented boat and you'll loose that Caddy-Shack impression of blowboaters :)
Rich are we gonna see you run in one of your Donzi's this year???

-- Yes, I plan on running the GT this summer.

Formula Jr
07-05-2006, 08:38 PM
I've hit the water at 80. No vest is gonna save you at 100. Free fall out of a plane is 120 mph. At 80 water is concrete. You will skip at least six times, and if you don't pull your arms in they will be yanked out of the sockets, and if you don't protect you eyes they will be pulled out. You can't swim after this, you can't even breathe after this cause you just got the wind knocked out of you. And you are in water. A vest will not save you at this point no matter its cost or what people say. So just wear what you Will Wear, and what you like to wear. Anything is better than nothing. There isn't any protection at 100.

BaldEagle
07-09-2006, 10:58 AM
Great thread. Thanks everyone for thier input. I run with my 10 year old son who wears a decent stearns style vest. After reading this his will be the first Lifeline or Mustang I purchase. The vest is a protection insurance most will hopefully never need. I sky dived for 20 years before boating and always wore a reserve parachute. Saved my life 12 times. Some of them cost more than others but each time I found myself in freefall again with only one shot left, I never thought I paid too much for any of them. Something is likely better than nothing.
I really like ACD's thongs but Ill probably go for the vests.

ospreyproduction
07-28-2006, 05:59 PM
Do you guys always wear vests when running hard? I don't wear one. I used to in my outboards which were on the ragged edge but I feel OK in the Donzi. If I get caught up in some scary water in the big lakes I'll probably put one on.:confused:

I have to agree with you. 100 MPH plus in the Talon was one thing, but 65-70 in this 22 Classic seems to be ok with auto inflatable, plus they're not hot which makes you not mind wearing it. Just my .02

John W
09-05-2006, 09:26 AM
I am down for two of the AC Life line vest, I just need size info , the admiral, my wife is very well endowed!!!!!:O)
JW

BaldEagle
09-07-2006, 06:40 PM
All of this logic works, except that there are so many variables. Injuries on the way out of the boat etc. The ratings of PFDs also consider the ability to keep an unconscious person's head above water. This is a complex subject similar to helmit laws for motorcycles. Safety devices can create a false sense of security in some operators. We are talking about high performance equipment. The composite of equipment, reactions, experiance, and conditions all determine the outcome of a malfuction. In some ways I almost feel safer without all of the safety bells and whistles, thats sometimes called old school, because I know I'm out there on my own and I know I'm volnerable. This is nothing new. Helmit restraint systems in auto racing, as an example, were fought at first. What ever the combination is for each person to allow them to reach their highest performance level in the safest manner is good. Dont make the mistake of discounting new technology, and dont make the mistake of thinking safety equipment will save your ass if you FU. Anyone that doesnt think even 50 Mph is a critical speed in regards to safety is naive. IMO

BaldEagle
09-07-2006, 09:11 PM
Bravo!

roadtrip se
09-10-2006, 04:40 PM
From lakecumberland.com....



Rescue squad searching for missing boater



Since late last night, water patrol and rescue squad members have been on the scene of a boating incident, at the mouth of Beaver and Otter creeks, the widest spot on Lake Cumberland.

Reliable reports are that the operator of a 23' Baja registered in Indiana was missing after hitting a wave wrong at speed. The boat apparently spun out, ejecting the driver, who was not wearing a floatation device. A passenger in the boat survived.

The area in which the search is located is in water 135 feet deep.

http://lakecumberland.com/forum/viewthread.php?tid=10370

zimm17
09-11-2006, 05:27 AM
I have to admit, this thread is going to make me wear a vest.

I did my first poker run last May in the Chesapeake. We were warned that the "small" 28' boats should take it easy due to the high sea state. Of course I was in my 22' and the smallest boat out of 40. Well we got the "brass balls" award for coming in mid-pack and even passing a 40' Hustler in 4' waves.

All without me wearing a vest. I had three ski-type vests, and all my passengers had 'em on. I wasn't going to wear the big orange cheeseball vest I had left over. I haven't worn one since I was a kid on my dad's boat unless I was waterskiing, but now I'm going to be ordering a lifeline for next season.

Did anyone here in the news about the poker run accident? I'll post it in a new thread.

Dredgeking
09-15-2006, 06:58 AM
When I raced F1 offshore, I had only the best safety equipment. I agree with the question, "How much is your life worth?" I do the same thing for any activity I do intensely ( ATV racing, Motorcycle riding, snowmobiling.) Now that I'm a family man, I spend a lot of money on safety gear for my kids. So, I'm a believer in spending the money as good insurance, but I doubt I go over 45 much in my Donzi and I don't see it necessary to have the Life lines for how I drive now. My wife and kids are usually with me so I take even more precautions than I would if I was racing. I see two levels of safety gear: competition and recreation. There is a reason lifelines are better and more expensive. They are made to handle a much more intense situation. If your situation doesn't necessitate the Lifeline jacket, then buy the best recreation gear you can. You get what you pay for. It's up to you to determine what you need.

Dredgeking
09-15-2006, 07:12 AM
If you feel you will put yourself in a situation where you could be thrown from the boat ( high speed and sloppy water), then you need a Lifeline and a lot of good luck. High speed boating is my favorite of all the things I do (even more than flying) since it is the most unpredictable, but also the most dangerous. Watch some offshore videos of people getting thrown from a boat. Seems there are a lot more incidents or at least good video of it with the new stepped hulls. It happens faster than you can comprehend. A Lifeline will at least stay on you and keep you afloat if you become unconscience during this. After seeing someone die on the race course and watching enough videos of people being thrown, I quit racing F1 and rented Bat Boats due to the enclosed canopy (some people question the safety in those, but I feel they are safer.)

I'd tell people to use their best judgement, but it doesn't seem that the general boating public ( not hacking on anyone here) has much common sense today. Most "experienced boaters" today are no where near the "old sea dogs" of yesterday. I don't think people comprehend the difficulty level of boating or complexity of it.

My wife got some pool float jackets for my baby and she thought they were life jackets. We went to get in the boat and I said we can't go with her in this. She didn't know that a life jacket needed to be coast guard approved. The pool jacket looked similar to the life jacket. Education and experience will save you and your family 1st, then you have to rely on your gear as insurance.

Just ranting a bit. Sorry to yap so much. It's a good topic.

DonCig
09-20-2006, 02:15 AM
I decided that it was time to step up to the plate and bite the bullet.
I initially purchased Lifelines full race jacket, but I could immediately tell that I would not wear it all the time because of the bulk, so I ordered 2 of their High Performance jackets for my son and I. They arrived today with our new company logo and they both fit perfectly.
I have no desire to get pitched out of my boat at 50, 60, 70, 80, or higher.
I once jumped from a boat at 55mph without a vest on and just about drowned due to taking the impact in my chest.
And I knew that I was jumping into the water so I was expecting it.
I made the decision to go with Safety Orange or Safety Yellow because if I am floating in the water like a cheap bobber, I would hate to be run over by another boat because he could not see me.
Anyway, I am a happy Lifeline customer. Probably one of the few things that Roadtrip, Madpoodle and I all agree on.
Don

farmer tx
09-21-2006, 02:32 AM
Very nice looking jackets Don!

DonCig
09-21-2006, 10:29 PM
Very nice looking jackets Don!
Mark, thank you!

I wish I could show them off at PK, but life has thrown me a curve ball recently, and I must go into seclusion until October 15th at Lake of the Ozarks in MO.

Don

yeller
09-22-2006, 02:11 AM
Nice Don.... good choice of color too. No sense in paying for a top vest if nobody can see you in the water. Do those jackets have the 'flak'?

DonCig
09-23-2006, 10:36 AM
Nice Don.... good choice of color too. No sense in paying for a top vest if nobody can see you in the water. Do those jackets have the 'flak'?
I was told by Lifeline that they were now putting it in all of their jackets, but I can not tell by feeling the front of the jacket.

My personal opinion is the their High Performance jacket is a nice normal jacket with decent leg straps and good construction.
Their Race Jackets are the real McCoy and would be the ones that I would trust my life with if I was in serious conditions most of the time.

I do not feel that the High Perf. jacket is "that" much better than some other products out there, but I feel a jacket without good legstraps is like a condom with a hole in the end; it might look like protection but it is pretty inefective when needed.

Don

MOP
11-08-2006, 01:02 PM
I posted my 2c awhile back, many view points non right or wrong mostly depends on usage. Since my post I have been looking over a wide of vests, no names mentioned. We have some monsters show up here with twin turbines and on down to dinks with 2hp Johnsons, much like any large boating area. I paid very paticular attention to the ultra perf boats with high collrs and helmuts etc, but looked at the varied attributes of all types all the way down the spectrum. One very glaring fact jumps out if you take a good look every single high quality vest had excellent floatation all around, now think of that all the way around "back & front"! One of the things I would think should be thought of most is floating face up, a few minutes face down you are a goner that may only have had a bad head ache. No matter how badly I was broken up I want to float face up, I do not want to drown before they pluck me out of the drink.

Phil

JimG
11-09-2006, 07:40 AM
Has anyone ever seen a Stearns 4185 SAR vest?

JimG
11-11-2006, 07:31 AM
I didn't think so. You can't buy the 4185 at Walmart. It's usually only sold to police and fire search and rescue departments. (I've also spotted these on some of our coasties.) Very high quality, built to last. Has heavy duty crotch straps. Tons of SOLAS refective tape, (I do a lot of night boating, this is very important to me). BIG zipper and BIG buckles, very secure.

Not your father's Stearns, it doesn't have the bling factor of a Lifeline (great jackets, btw), but a very safe lower-cost alternative. All my friends have bought the 4185, and are very happy with them. I think they are still around $70-80.

JimG

JimG
11-11-2006, 07:36 AM
Here's pic of the girls on the pace boat in Biloxi wearing their 4185's...

Jerry Eisele
11-21-2006, 08:31 AM
Poodle, I've been wearing the Mustang for a couple years and I'm satisfied, but I would really like to get my hands on the Mustangs that the C.G./C.G.A.wear. They have the mesh shoulders and don't ride up on your ears like most. I've tried to purchase them, but I've been tolt they only sell them to the CG and CGA? They are safe and comfortable.

Mr X
02-27-2007, 08:26 PM
I've hit the water at 80. No vest is gonna save you at 100. Free fall out of a plane is 120 mph. At 80 water is concrete. You will skip at least six times, and if you don't pull your arms in they will be yanked out of the sockets, and if you don't protect you eyes they will be pulled out. You can't swim after this, you can't even breathe after this cause you just got the wind knocked out of you. And you are in water. A vest will not save you at this point no matter its cost or what people say. So just wear what you Will Wear, and what you like to wear. Anything is better than nothing. There isn't any protection at 100.

Thats absurd. I have seen MANY drivers get thrown out at well over 100 MPH
and several in drag boat competition at 200+ MPH. They would have been killed instantly without their life vest on. Many have been completely un-injured thanks to their life vest!

zimm17
03-21-2007, 10:02 PM
I'll be sporting my new red lifeline poker run jacket at the Lake Cumberland event. I'm not supposed to know it's getting made for me for my birthday... $279 from Trick Marine.

martin22zx
08-15-2007, 02:27 PM
I really appreciate this question.. My daughter is 7 and my boat does 70.hence the problem.. I have tried "off the shelf" and the arm holes are far to big and her chin dissapears into the water.. Granted I don't drive crazy with her on board but I can't control the whole lake. I would spend anything to protect my baby gurl.. Please let me know what you find..The local marine outfitters have been less than helpfull..Ps she is fifty pounds and most jackets cut off at 25-50 vs 50-90..

handfulz28
08-21-2007, 03:56 PM
Has anyone ever seen a Stearns 4185 SAR vest?

I finally have read this thread. West Marine has a Stearns "Competition" I think it is, goes for ~$70 or so and looks like it has the same features as the 4185 as far as zipper, buckles, etc. Anyone else seen this one? Care to comment?

Sam
10-17-2007, 04:55 PM
I really appreciate this question.. My daughter is 7 and my boat does 70.hence the problem.. I have tried "off the shelf" and the arm holes are far to big and her chin dissapears into the water.. Granted I don't drive crazy with her on board but I can't control the whole lake. I would spend anything to protect my baby gurl.. Please let me know what you find..The local marine outfitters have been less than helpfull..Ps she is fifty pounds and most jackets cut off at 25-50 vs 50-90..


Martin, try to find one with leg straps, if you can't have then added. I have had the non pleasure of being tossed out of a boat and I can say that the leg straps are a huge help.

Good Luck

Last Tango
11-16-2007, 09:16 PM
Not sure why the "sticky" was removed from this thread, but it seems like one that needs to be recycled to the top considering the other sticky in this area.
I bought two Lifeline Jackets and a number of other Lifeline items a few years ago and have used them frequently.
I just bought two more Lifelines from the sale offer. I'm already happy and they aren't even here yet. I have been mighty proud of the first two.
This summer I was stopped by the Coast Guard for a random safety check. When they saw the two Lifelines, I got this: "Nice vests! Have a good day, sir." And that was that.

Air 22
11-16-2007, 10:27 PM
In the US Coast Guard we use Mustang Products....:wink: Here is the HIGH IMPACT 100mph SAR VEST....Riding in Geo's 100+ 18 it was a comfort knowing that they might find my unfortunate ass if needed...lol
http://www.mustangsurvival.com/products/product.php?id=460

Last Tango
12-17-2007, 06:07 PM
Recent article in Extreme Boats Magazine
http://www.lifelinejackets.com/images/ebmlifeline.pdf