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Old    Kyle Gillen (generalkyle)      Join Date: Dec 2011       12-19-2011, 6:23 PM Reply   
I'm looking for a thin mens, medium-sized life jacket. Does anyone know where to get one or stores that sell life jackets? I've seen people wear them before and they look comfortable because they're so thin, they're kind of as thick as a sweatshirt or so. I believe they are wakeboard competition vests. But I guess they aren't coast guard approved? Why would they be wakeboard competition vests if they aren't coast guard approved? Does that mean that we probably shouldn't wakeboard with them on? I know how dangerous wakeboarding can be and we should probably wear coast guard approved jackets for it. If that's the case, we can use it for wakesurfing I suppose. Thanks everyone!
Old     (simplej)      Join Date: Sep 2011       12-19-2011, 11:07 PM Reply   
Uh wut?

comp vests are designed for impact not really flotation because during competition you want a thin vest to pull your best moves and there is safety crews on duty in boats. They're probably illegal in your state for noncompetitive wakeboarding. Wearing one probably isn't the smartest especially if you're s beginner, if you get knocked out you might sink and die. I don't tow any nonprofessionals without a uscga vest, too much liability.

And if you pass out from the surf fumes you might drown too. Get a ronix capella or jetpilot Murray, 2 comfy uscga vests. Not worth the risk unless youre sponosored/competing..... My .02

ps next time put this in wakeboarding
Old    Art (rallyart)      Join Date: Nov 2006       12-19-2011, 11:31 PM Reply   
A life jacket will keep you afloat, head up, when unconscious. A PDF like a USCGA vest will keep you afloat when you are unconscious but maybe not with your head up. Everything else is a guess because they have not taken the time or effort to pass the standards. Long ago we used ski belts because a life jacket was uncomfortable. They were dangerous. You can find stories on this site of comp vests that left someone unconscious upside down in the water. That seems dangerous to me.
A certified vest keeps you afloat. Makes it easier for the boat driver to find you than when you are not afloat. Everyone behind my boat for anything wears an approved vest.
Old    Nick Tomsyck (sidekicknicholas)      Join Date: Mar 2007       12-20-2011, 4:00 AM Reply   
My all time favorite impact vest was the original Oneill boost, was tiny and have zero weight to it.... hard to find them anymore though.... I currently use the "new" Oneill boost and it is certainly more bulky than the old Boost.

Like others have said, thin/small/tiny = NON-cga approved.... if you fall, get knocked out and have the wind knocked out of you... you're toast unless your driver is on his game.... my original boost I could swim underwater just as easily as without a lifejacket, was only really there to protect my ribs/back from falling hard on them.
Old    Kyle Gillen (generalkyle)      Join Date: Dec 2011       12-20-2011, 5:03 AM Reply   
Ok, thanks guys. I really had no idea going into this. Ok now I think the ones I've seen are CGA approved. I just researched it right before I posted it and got all mixed up. Sorry about that.
Old    Kyle Gillen (generalkyle)      Join Date: Dec 2011       12-27-2011, 10:12 PM Reply   
Does anyone recommend the Hyperlite Hatch? It's CGA-approved, yet looks thin and it's made out of neoprene, another thing I am looking for in a life jacket. I'm just wondering how thin it really is?
Old    Ben Sampson (816)      Join Date: Dec 2011       12-28-2011, 6:42 PM Reply   
The hatch is a really nice CGA vest, very flexible and the side entry is a must. I have alot of vests sitting in the garage and the hatch is my favorite. The comp. vests are lighter but a pain to get off after a good set when your exhausted.
Old    Mikeski (mikeski)      Join Date: Aug 2003       12-28-2011, 8:59 PM Reply   
I use a RipCurl comp vest and like it. I also use an Eagle 1 comp vest for slalom skiing over a 1mm short sleeve wetsuit shirt. This combo is very flexible, reasonable padding, and floats me pretty well. I have pulled a couple guys out of the water after they have been knocked out crashing in water ski jumping, very very scary. If you don't know what you are getting yourself into I suggest you stick with a CGA vest.

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