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Old 11-09-2013, 16:58   #31
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Re: 4 out of 5 Spinlock Deck Vests Failed in Fatal Accident

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Originally Posted by goboatingnow View Post
Don't know what the issue is with crotch straps , most inflatables are poor without them.

Kapok lifejackets went down with the titanic

Dave
Goboatingnow,
If you have no issue with crotch straps, I suggest you contact:

Mistress Ballschwanger
6969 Schwanzstrasse
Berlin, Deutschland

For the latest in style, design and function . . . tell her Rognvald sent you.
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Old 11-09-2013, 17:14   #32
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rognvald View Post

Goboatingnow,
If you have no issue with crotch straps, I suggest you contact:

Mistress Ballschwanger
6969 Schwanzstrasse
Berlin, Deutschland

For the latest in style, design and function . . . tell her Rognvald sent you.
Your mummy obviously didnt like it when you said " crotch" . Gets you all worked up does it.

Crotch being a description of clothing where the legs join together

Dave
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Old 11-09-2013, 17:22   #33
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Re: 4 out of 5 Spinlock Deck Vests Failed in Fatal Accident

Quote:
Originally Posted by goboatingnow View Post
Your mummy obviously didnt like it when you said " crotch" . Gets you all worked up does it.

Crotch being a description of clothing where the legs join together

Dave

Dave,

You obviously are a very serious man. Thanks for the clarification and the excellent description of the above naughty(?) word. In the future, I will be certain to employ its usage in only the strictest of terms. Good luck, good sailing and may my life ,and perhaps not yours, be once again blessed by the graces of Mistress Ballschwanger. Sincerely, Rognvald the Crude, excommunicated and contrite.
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Old 12-09-2013, 16:14   #34
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Re: 4 out of 5 Spinlock Deck Vests Failed in Fatal Accident

Quote:
Originally Posted by rognvald View Post
Goboatingnow,
If you have no issue with crotch straps, I suggest you contact:

Mistress Ballschwanger
6969 Schwanzstrasse
Berlin, Deutschland

For the latest in style, design and function . . . tell her Rognvald sent you.
I would never wear an inflatable PFD without some form of attachment of the lower part of the PFD to keep it from riding up and submerging my face, i.e., leg straps, crotch strap, or just a strap attaching it to my belt. I won't allow anyone on board my boat with their own inflatable PFD to go without one. I carry spares.

The water's cold here, and a person's survival time is more than doubled just by using that strap. Without it, once useful consciousness is lost, the survivor can't continue to hug the PFD bladder to keep their face out of the water... and they drown. The bladder riding up also makes swimming very difficult - as reported by the survivors of the Low Speed Chase accident.

I'm baffled by how inflatable PFDs are sold without the straps, and that the USCG approves that configuration. I'm also amazed by how many experienced sailors never noticed that extra buckle dangling at the bottom of many inflatable PFDs, and didn't know what it was for.

If you don't like buckling up leg straps, don't ever take up skydiving.
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Old 12-09-2013, 17:13   #35
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Re: 4 out of 5 Spinlock Deck Vests failed in fatal accident

I tried to avoid wearing the crotch straps on my SpinLok life vest. Everything I tried to keep them out of the way failed. They'd fall out of wherever I tucked them or get pulled out by stanchions, hardware, etc. Finally gave up and just used them. Found the vest to be very comfortable to wear with the crotch straps in place and easily donned with the clip fasteners. Wore it 24/15 on the sail to Hawaii. Very comfortable and no problems with riding up.

The SpinLok vest has a lot of ways to adjust it to fit various body types. Some time should be taken to adjust the vest for optimum fit.







Quote:
Originally Posted by rognvald View Post
We have never used inflatable vests while sailing, but do wear harnesses in rough weather and at night and always clip in. There have only been two times in the last 24 years that we have donned our offshore kapok vests: once when caught by an unavoidable waterspout and the other at anchor during a tornado that ran along the coast. Fortunately, we never hit the water. I have always considered inflatable life vests in the same category as a liferaft. It's a gamble, when they're needed, that they open. We are very safety conscious when sailing, but there is a point when the absurd trumps the practical and a sailboat and its crew start looking like astronauts in a space pod rather than sailors aboard a well found vessel. Crotch straps? No crotch straps? This is beginning to sound like a chapter in "The Delta of Venus." Good luck and safe sailing.
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Old 12-09-2013, 18:14   #36
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Re: 4 out of 5 Spinlock Deck Vests Failed in Fatal Accident

With all this negative feedback, who wants to buy mine off me =)
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Old 13-09-2013, 10:44   #37
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Re: 4 out of 5 Spinlock Deck Vests failed in fatal accident

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Originally Posted by roverhi View Post
I tried to avoid wearing the crotch straps on my SpinLok life vest. Everything I tried to keep them out of the way failed. They'd fall out of wherever I tucked them or get pulled out by stanchions, hardware, etc. Finally gave up and just used them. Found the vest to be very comfortable to wear with the crotch straps in place and easily donned with the clip fasteners. Wore it 24/15 on the sail to Hawaii. Very comfortable and no problems with riding up.

The SpinLok vest has a lot of ways to adjust it to fit various body types. Some time should be taken to adjust the vest for optimum fit.

Roverhi,
You are definitely one of my favorite contributors on Cruisersforum. You are, obviously, intelligent, very knowledgeable about boats and sailing and have a very impressive sailing resume. I have personally benefited from your sage advice on more than one ocassion. But,I have responded to this discussion because I believe it is a serious subject to be considered when sailing in less than perfect conditions. I have stated my opinion clearly and have attempted to lighten the discussion with some unavoidable humor based upon the terminology of the respondants-- the effect, of which to some, has been interesting. I do ,however, have a question for you based in all seriousness and respect that might shed further light on my position in re: offshore lifevests.
The question: you are solo sailing at dusk--fifteen hundred miles from mainland North America and 1500 miles from the Hawaiian Islands. You are wearing your Spinlock vest with crotch straps(no, not the ones recommended by the fabled Mistress) and a water activated EPIRB when your vessel hits a sleeping whale and you sink within three minutes. When you hit the water, you notice how comfortably your harness vest fits and how well it keeps your head above the water in the large waves. Since you are a well prepared sailor for all contingencies, you ponder your fate and are faced with three possibilities:
1. you are rescued by the Coast Guard from the mainland at night in the roily waters based upon your position given by your EPIRB,
2. you are rescued by a nearby passing freighter that has been given your
position by the CG
3. you become steak Tartar for aggressive Oceanic Whitetips who leave
only your floating EPIRB and a remant of your Spinlock life vest
with the aforementioned crotch straps as evidence of your existence.
Being of sound mind and certainly an intelligent person, which of the three is your most likely outcome?
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Old 13-09-2013, 11:12   #38
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Re: 4 out of 5 Spinlock Deck Vests Failed in Fatal Accident

If you are sailing solo in the middle of the ocean, you might reasonably choose to not wear a PFD. I know a few solo sailors who have made that choice -- but they have made a serious effort to never fall off the boat (harness / tether, mostly).

Once on a delivery a boat owner told me a story though. Many years ago, he and his father were racing in the Transpac, and they spotted something floating in front of them. It looked like a body. They slowed down and altered course to check. It was a body, wearing a PFD (probably kapoc, this was a long time ago). When they got close the body started moving -- he was alive, and they pulled him on board. Turns out that the victim had fallen off another racing boat, and by the time anyone noticed they were unable to find him. The guy had been in the water for about six hours.

Anyway, if I were singlehanding I might still wear the PFD. I'm in no particular hurry to die, and miracles do happen.
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Old 13-09-2013, 14:16   #39
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Re: 4 out of 5 Spinlock Deck Vests Failed in Fatal Accident

Here's the conversion document I previously tried to post.
Attached Files
File Type: pdf Deckvest Conversion.pdf (78.5 KB, 104 views)
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Old 13-09-2013, 14:40   #40
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Re: 4 out of 5 Spinlock Deck Vests failed in fatal accident

Quote:
Originally Posted by rognvald View Post
Roverhi,
You are definitely one of my favorite contributors on Cruisersforum. You are, obviously, intelligent, very knowledgeable about boats and sailing and have a very impressive sailing resume. I have personally benefited from your sage advice on more than one ocassion. But,I have responded to this discussion because I believe it is a serious subject to be considered when sailing in less than perfect conditions. I have stated my opinion clearly and have attempted to lighten the discussion with some unavoidable humor based upon the terminology of the respondants-- the effect, of which to some, has been interesting. I do ,however, have a question for you based in all seriousness and respect that might shed further light on my position in re: offshore lifevests.
The question: you are solo sailing at dusk--fifteen hundred miles from mainland North America and 1500 miles from the Hawaiian Islands. You are wearing your Spinlock vest with crotch straps(no, not the ones recommended by the fabled Mistress) and a water activated EPIRB when your vessel hits a sleeping whale and you sink within three minutes. When you hit the water, you notice how comfortably your harness vest fits and how well it keeps your head above the water in the large waves. Since you are a well prepared sailor for all contingencies, you ponder your fate and are faced with three possibilities:
1. you are rescued by the Coast Guard from the mainland at night in the roily waters based upon your position given by your EPIRB,
2. you are rescued by a nearby passing freighter that has been given your
position by the CG
3. you become steak Tartar for aggressive Oceanic Whitetips who leave
only your floating EPIRB and a remant of your Spinlock life vest
with the aforementioned crotch straps as evidence of your existence.
Being of sound mind and certainly an intelligent person, which of the three is your most likely outcome?
Don't know about RoverHi, but I would be hoping my 4 man life raft inflates automatically and I dry out on board. Thus putting a little distance between me and said hungry sharks.
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Old 13-09-2013, 15:56   #41
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Re: 4 out of 5 Spinlock Deck Vests failed in fatal accident

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Originally Posted by Khagan1227 View Post
Don't know about RoverHi, but I would be hoping my 4 man life raft inflates automatically and I dry out on board. Thus putting a little distance between me and said hungry sharks.

Khagan,
A liferaft was not one of the three options posed in the question . . . however, it falls into the same category as the Spinlock Life vest with its fallability and propensity to malfunction. Good luck and good sailing.
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Old 13-09-2013, 16:03   #42
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Re: 4 out of 5 Spinlock Deck Vests failed in fatal accident

I've had to go in the water in NorCal to clear a line wrapped around the prop. A real eye opener how fast you become incapacitated in water below 60 degrees. Taught me a lesson not to depend on being able to swim or survive without flotation and then not for very long.

The main reason I wear a vest with a PLB attached to it when sailing solo far from shore is so my wife maybe won't have to wait some interminable time for me to be declared deceased should I fall overboard. Most of our assets are in joint tenancy with a living trust. Don't want my wife have to wait some interminable length of time for a court to let her get on with her life. In waters north of Point Conception's latitude, wouldn't expect to last more than a few hours and definitely less than a day even with a survival suit, which I carry. Doubt anyone would find me in time if I was very far offshore. They hopefully would at least find my body and put the disappearance to rest.

Even in southern climes, the water isn't all that warm and survival for more than a few days is problematical. Especially so if you put the critter factor into it. So, no, don't wear a vest in the expectation of being rescued.

Do have a padeye with a short tether in the cockpit at the companionway. Hook up while still in the cabin and don't ever unhook while on deck. Have a two hook tether so I can hook onto the jack lines before disconnecting from the cockpit tether or change hookup from the jacklines to wherever. It gets mighty lonesome out there a 1,000 miles or even 50 miles away from anywhere or anyone. Figure the only chance for survival is to stay attached to the boat and somehow get back on board. If I don't make it back on board, it will be obvious what happened to me when the boat is found.

Have done the bulk of my at sea miles without any means of communication other than flares. Never have expected anyone to save me. Figure I'm the one who put myself in the barrel and it's my responsibility to get my butt out of trouble. Have a bit of an issue with the increasing prevalence of sailors who light off the epirb and expect to get rescued when the boat is still floating. Now do have several epirbs and a PLB, an HF and VHF radio and a liferaft should I step in S*** big time. But don't plan on using them until the mast disappears below the waves.





Quote:
Originally Posted by rognvald View Post
Roverhi,
You are definitely one of my favorite contributors on Cruisersforum. You are, obviously, intelligent, very knowledgeable about boats and sailing and have a very impressive sailing resume. I have personally benefited from your sage advice on more than one ocassion. But,I have responded to this discussion because I believe it is a serious subject to be considered when sailing in less than perfect conditions. I have stated my opinion clearly and have attempted to lighten the discussion with some unavoidable humor based upon the terminology of the respondants-- the effect, of which to some, has been interesting. I do ,however, have a question for you based in all seriousness and respect that might shed further light on my position in re: offshore lifevests.
The question: you are solo sailing at dusk--fifteen hundred miles from mainland North America and 1500 miles from the Hawaiian Islands. You are wearing your Spinlock vest with crotch straps(no, not the ones recommended by the fabled Mistress) and a water activated EPIRB when your vessel hits a sleeping whale and you sink within three minutes. When you hit the water, you notice how comfortably your harness vest fits and how well it keeps your head above the water in the large waves. Since you are a well prepared sailor for all contingencies, you ponder your fate and are faced with three possibilities:
1. you are rescued by the Coast Guard from the mainland at night in the roily waters based upon your position given by your EPIRB,
2. you are rescued by a nearby passing freighter that has been given your
position by the CG
3. you become steak Tartar for aggressive Oceanic Whitetips who leave
only your floating EPIRB and a remant of your Spinlock life vest
with the aforementioned crotch straps as evidence of your existence.
Being of sound mind and certainly an intelligent person, which of the three is your most likely outcome?
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Old 13-09-2013, 17:49   #43
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Quote:
Originally Posted by roverhi View Post

The main reason I wear a vest with a PLB attached to it when sailing solo far from shore is so my wife maybe won't have to wait some interminable time for me to be declared deceased should I fall overboard. Most of our assets are in joint tenancy with a living trust. Don't want my wife have to wait some interminable length of time for a court to let her get on with her life.
Agreed, many years ago I had a dog tag made up with name, blood type, driver license number/state and social security number. It is attached to my old kayaking PFD. After reading this thread if I have to abandon ship, I'm going to put it on.... If they don't want to take the remains on board, I hope they see the dog tag attached to the PFD and take it with them. Would suck if they needed to use it, but the wife deserves closure.

Okay now back to the fun stuff.... Rocna, Bruce or Danforth anchor for the remains????
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Old 13-09-2013, 18:22   #44
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Three days ago a guy went missing off the beach near here in San Diego, his dog was found on the beach after swimming ashore, his boat was recovered the next day with the motor still idling. A search for him has reveled nothing. Maybe if he had been wearing a PFD he might have been found. As a side note. The USCG does not conduct helo searches at night. So a badly fitting PFD is better than no PFD

Let's keep this thread on track and not digress into stupidity with respect to the gentleman that drowned as a result of this accident.
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Old 13-09-2013, 18:39   #45
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If you don't like buckling up leg straps, don't ever take up skydiving.
Yeah.

A Possibility-
If you are in weather, consider tightening the straps even once you are in the water.
One tip for tightening crotch straps is to do arch the back and, then tighten from that bent position.
--This gets another 4-6 inches of slack for the straps.
--Returning to normal posture provides added tightness.

Then (maybe?) add 2-3 half hitches of the straps on themselves so you are not depending on a friction buckle alone to maintain tension.
Imagine the ring in picture is the buckle. There may be reasons not to do this. You have to do what's best for you and your crew- I'm offering, not endorsing, concepts above and I'm interested in the forum's diverse opinions.

Respect to the crew for the teaching their findings created. They honored Craig Williams' memory with their candor and hard-gained wisdom. Hopefully they are featured speakers the Annapolis boat show. This is a lot more important than "a historical perspective on two part hull paints.

Time to go print out that SAR decision matrix..
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