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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hi everyone,

I’m new on the forums and I am hoping someone might be able to help me find some more information about the Crewsaver Supersafe 150N Air lifejacket.

The current lifejacket we have is very close to being outgrown and we need to find a suitable replacement very soon. From the specifications, the Supersafe 150N Air looks ideal, but we cannot seem to find any detailed feedback or reviews. One member on another forum kindly translated the only review we could find from German to English, however the review was not that useful.

I have searched (and posted) on various forums, checked back issues of various magazines, looked for customer reviews through retailers, as well as used Google, however we can’t seem to find any information about how comfortable it is and if it is easy to use.

Would anyone please happen to know where I could find some user reviews or any other information about how comfortable and/or easy to use the lifejacket is? Does anyone have any experience with it?

Alternatively, could anyone possibly recommend an alternative lifejacket? Internet searches seem to indicate there is not really another lifejacket comparable to the Supersafe 150N Air, but I find this quite surprising, and thus I can’t help but feel I’m missing something!

Any help at all would be greatly appreciated.

Thanks very much in advance.:smile
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Mustang makes a solid line of kids life jackets. We've used them for several years now.

Josh
Thanks for the suggestion. I just searched for the Mustang lifejackets but I think they only go up to 90lbs and we’re looking for a lifejacket for a girl who is about 100lbs (I should have mentioned that before – sorry!).

New fangled fancy life jackets are not for Kids! Stick to old fashioned reliable. K.I.S.S......Dale
I’m really sorry but I’m not entirely sure I follow! Should we avoid the Crewsaver Supersafe? Please forgive my lack of understanding!

We like the Supersafe as it comes with a harness (among other reasons too), but if it means finding a better fitting, more comfortable, and easier to use lifejacket, we will accept buying a separate harness. So far we’ve looked at the other options available in the U.K. but have no knowledge of reputable manufacturers outside of Europe.

Any more suggestions or information would be a massive help. Thank you very much!:smile
 

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Thanks for the suggestion. I just searched for the Mustang lifejackets but I think they only go up to 90lbs and we’re looking for a lifejacket for a girl who is about 100lbs (I should have mentioned that before – sorry!).



I’m really sorry but I’m not entirely sure I follow! Should we avoid the Crewsaver Supersafe? Please forgive my lack of understanding!

We like the Supersafe as it comes with a harness (among other reasons too), but if it means finding a better fitting, more comfortable, and easier to use lifejacket, we will accept buying a separate harness. So far we’ve looked at the other options available in the U.K. but have no knowledge of reputable manufacturers outside of Europe.

Any more suggestions or information would be a massive help. Thank you very much!:smile
100 pounds is a small adult size in most brands. She is ready for an adult PFD.

This looks hideously uncomfortable. I would rather be left at home.

 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Thanks for the reply.

100 pounds is a small adult size in most brands. She is ready for an adult PFD.
As much as we would like to have the option of choosing from adult lifejackets – unfortunately we just don’t. We recently tried an adult lifejacket rated at >40kg (about 90lbs) assuming it would be the solution but the fit was really poor. After we started looking we found most children’s lifejackets now come in sizes up to 50kg which, given the bad fit of the adult lifejacket, naturally made sense.

We’ve known for a long time that buying a lifejacket because “they’ll grow into it” should be avoided at all costs, so even the smallest adult sizes are (somewhat frustratingly) not an option.

This looks hideously uncomfortable.
We really like the features of the Supersafe – the rear d-ring attachment, the larger collar, and the option to add extra buoyancy – and certainly believe they are worth paying for. Nonetheless, we are slightly reluctant to get it if these features would mean it is awkward for her to get it on and off, or if they would make it uncomfortable to wear.

In light of this we’re looking for any other lifejacket which has similar features and that people have experience with (or at least has been properly reviewed). We have no knowledge of non-European products, but if there is nothing really comparable to the Supersafe, then at least we know we’ve exhausted all the options!

Thanks very much again for the replies and for any further help – it is greatly appreciated!:smile
 

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I believe the statement about 'newfangled' jackets comes from the fact that in the US, children under 16 are not permitted to use an inflatable PFD.

I don't know about other areas....YMMV
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
I believe the statement about 'newfangled' jackets comes from the fact that in the US, children under 16 are not permitted to use an inflatable PFD.
Thanks for the explanation.:smile

Coincidently, we have the same rule (plus always using a harness and tether). She’s never known any differently and we don’t want to change things if we don’t have to. The Supersafe would definitely fit her for the next 18 months but we don’t want to overlook a better option if one exists!

We really appreciate all the help so far, and any other suggestions would be really helpful. Thanks very much again to anyone who can help!:smile
 

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Thanks for the explanation.:smile

Coincidently, we have the same rule (plus always using a harness and tether). She’s never known any differently and we don’t want to change things if we don’t have to. The Supersafe would definitely fit her for the next 18 months but we don’t want to overlook a better option if one exists!

We really appreciate all the help so far, and any other suggestions would be really helpful. Thanks very much again to anyone who can help!:smile
The D-ring is in the back? I suggest that you clip your harness from the back for a few weeks, with a pillow behind your head, and try to work. Then try to release yourself, as though you were caught in the rigging and trying to keep from drowning.

There is zero chance I could actually use this. I'm sure others will feel differently, but try clipping the back and let us know what you think. This is for kids that will not be permitted to leave the cockpit, not for a young adult that is learning to be crew. There are good reasons no adult PFD is clipped in the back. I only used a clip-in-back harness with my daughter until she no longer required a full body harness.

I suggest looking for a paddling jacket that you can wear a harness under. That worked for my daughter when she was that age. Most of the time, only one or the other is needed.

IMHO
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
Thanks for the reply and suggestions.

The D-ring is in the back?
Yes - the D-ring is in the back and is part of the harness which is attached to her lifejacket.

I suggest that you clip your harness from the back for a few weeks, with a pillow behind your head, and try to work. Then try to release yourself, as though you were caught in the rigging and trying to keep from drowning.

There is zero chance I could actually use this. I'm sure others will feel differently, but try clipping the back and let us know what you think. This is for kids that will not be permitted to leave the cockpit, not for a young adult that is learning to be crew. There are good reasons no adult PFD is clipped in the back. I only used a clip-in-back harness with my daughter until she no longer required a full body harness.
I completely understand your point however she has never really been interested in learning to crew. She loves being on the boat but spends most of her time either talking, reading, or listening to music; we enjoy doing the legwork and are happy knowing she can relax and wants to spend time with us. As such she doesn’t move about as often as we do so having her tether in the back isn’t an inconvenience for her or us; she is completely ok with having us clip her in and out, and we feel better knowing she is always safe.

I suggest looking for a paddling jacket that you can wear a harness under. That worked for my daughter when she was that age.
Thanks very much for the suggestion.

We had a brief look at some paddling lifejackets today, but could not find any rated to 100N. Also, we could not find any with flotation collars (which I guess makes sense given their intended purpose). Ideally we want to avoid lifejackets without a collar as we feel much better knowing should the worst happen and she is unconscious, that her head would be supported out of the water.

Of course we have only looked briefly and we’ll continue to search for some paddling jackets with a collar and a higher buoyancy rating. Are there any brands we should specifically look at or avoid in terms of quality and reputation (so far we have looked at Salus Marine and Extrasport)?

Also, you mentioned that if we get a separate harness and lifejacket that the harness should be worn under the lifejacket. All her lifejackets have always had the harness either built-in or attached to the jacket itself so the D-ring has always been easily accessible. Please forgive my lack of understanding, but if the harness is under the lifejacket, how do you connect the tether (and ensure it is positioned safely)?

I can understand how it might be possible to clip the tether to the front of the harness and then put on the lifejacket, but I can’t see a way of being able to safely connect the tether in the back. Would it not be easier to wear the harness over the lifejacket?

I’m sorry for the lengthy message and if I’m missing something! We hugely appreciate the help – thanks very much again!:smile
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
I apologise if it’s bad form to reply to your own message! We’re really grateful for all the help and following the above advice we’ve done some more searching and found two paddling lifejackets which look very promising (the search was easier once we learned to search for ‘high floatation’ not ‘100N’ jackets!).

We managed to miss the Extrasport UT5 when we looked at their website before – which looks good (except for no crotch straps) and we’re also very interested in the NRS Big Water V.

Has anyone used either of these, and if so are they any good? Any information (about safety, comfort, easy of use, quality, etc.) would be hugely appreciated.

Also, we’ve also been looking at harnesses but haven’t yet found anything really suitable. Most of the harnesses we looked at either don’t have a crotch strap, or don’t come in a small enough size. So far the only two realistic options are the West Marine Child’s Harness – which has rather mixed reviews; and the Baltic Junior Harness – which is apparently not very comfortable.

We’re therefore thinking about getting an adult harness she could wear over the lifejacket as this would correct for the sizing issue. However, after searching the forums the consensus seems that harnesses should be worn under lifejackets.

Are there specific safety reasons behind this recommendation? Is it that the harness would slip off the lifejacket if under stress in a rescue situation? I understand that having the harness under the lifejacket makes it easier to take the lifejacket on and off without having to unclip, but by our rules the tether and lifejacket are always used together.

I’m sorry if I’m being dumb here, and for asking for more help, but we would really appreciate any advice or feedback people have – this is by far the most helpful forum!:)
 

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You can get add-on crotch straps. They're recommended for adult harnesses & inflatable life jackets. Here's one: Amazon.com : Stearns SoSpenders Crotch Strap (ACC, Universal) : Boating Safety Harnesses : Sports & [email protected]@[email protected]@http://ecx.images-amazon.com/images/I/[email protected]@[email protected]@21C9cHbQfSL

As for harness under lifejacket, I'd assume it's because the harness needs to fit snugly to be effective, even more so than the lifejacket. Once you put on a lifejacket you don't have a defined waist anymore so it's easy for the harness to slip up.
 

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I apologise if it’s bad form to reply to your own message! We’re really grateful for all the help and following the above advice we’ve done some more searching and found two paddling lifejackets which look very promising (the search was easier once we learned to search for ‘high floatation’ not ‘100N’ jackets!).

We managed to miss the Extrasport UT5 when we looked at their website before – which looks good (except for no crotch straps) and we’re also very interested in the NRS Big Water V.

Has anyone used either of these, and if so are they any good? Any information (about safety, comfort, easy of use, quality, etc.) would be hugely appreciated.

Also, we’ve also been looking at harnesses but haven’t yet found anything really suitable. Most of the harnesses we looked at either don’t have a crotch strap, or don’t come in a small enough size. So far the only two realistic options are the West Marine Child’s Harness – which has rather mixed reviews; and the Baltic Junior Harness – which is apparently not very comfortable.

We’re therefore thinking about getting an adult harness she could wear over the lifejacket as this would correct for the sizing issue. However, after searching the forums the consensus seems that harnesses should be worn under lifejackets.

Are there specific safety reasons behind this recommendation? Is it that the harness would slip off the lifejacket if under stress in a rescue situation? I understand that having the harness under the lifejacket makes it easier to take the lifejacket on and off without having to unclip, but by our rules the tether and lifejacket are always used together.

I’m sorry if I’m being dumb here, and for asking for more help, but we would really appreciate any advice or feedback people have – this is by far the most helpful forum!:)
Crotch straps are NOT needed with paddling jackets. The shape and fit insure they stay on in the most violent water. White water kayakers test this.

If you have questions about harness fit over a PFD that tells me you have not performed an MOB drill where the victim is lifted from the water. You should do this with every crew member. Have you inflated your inflatables and tried to swim or board the boat (without the ladder, of course)?

It is FAR better to practice than to presume you can buy safety in the form of gear you do not understand in actual use. An afternoon in the water will make you safer than the most expensive gear. It will also allow you to ask the right questions and understand the answers.

Have the smallest crew member hoist the largest.
 

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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
Thank you very much again for all the replies – we really appreciate the help and hope we’re not being annoying with all our questions!

Crotch straps are NOT needed with paddling jackets. The shape and fit insure they stay on in the most violent water. White water kayakers test this.
Thanks very much for the information – this certainly opens up our options for finding a suitable lifejacket and we’ll be sure to search again.

Given this, should we also consider harnesses without a crotch strap? If the lifejacket will stay in position by fit, and the harness is worn under the lifejacket – assuming the tether can be attached in a safe position, is there any requirement for a harness to have a crotch strap? I’m just trying to imagine if a correctly fitting PFD would be enough to ensure the harness can remain safely positioned under it, even if the harness and the PFD didn’t have crotch straps…

If you have questions about harness fit over a PFD that tells me you have not performed an MOB drill where the victim is lifted from the water. You should do this with every crew member. Have you inflated your inflatables and tried to swim or board the boat (without the ladder, of course)?
We have done MOB drills, but only with our own inflatable lifejackets or her lifejacket with a built-in harness. The reason I asked about this is that we have never done an MOB drill with a lifejacket and a separate harness, and were wondering if it would work well or not. After giving it some thought I figured – as ChristinaM pointed out – it would not work well as the harness could slip. We will be sure to plan an MOB drill within the next few trips as our previous drills were also on a different boat.

Have the smallest crew member hoist the largest.
This is a great point and has certainly made us think about reconsidering our rule of clipping her in the back.

We have maintained the rule only because we believed it to be the safest option. We have always understood that should someone end up overboard, it is better they be pulled face-up on their back and higher out of the water to maximize their ability to breathe before the boat can be stopped – clipping in the back surely provides for this much more effectively than clipping in front.

Please could you tell me if I have this right?

We clip in in the front because we do the legwork on the boat which (as previously mentioned) would be near impossible if clipped in the back. Nonetheless, I will readily admit that we had not considered the scenario of only her being left onboard and left to do the leg work – we always assumed (we now realise naively) one of us would be on board. We will definitely consider dropping the rule if it means she is safer overall once all the risks and practicalities are considered together. She is very responsible and mature (puts her lifejacket on before the jetty, checks with us before coming above, etc.) and so definitely wouldn’t have a problem with learning the procedure if we wanted her to.

We really appreciate all the help people are providing; we posted here looking for advice and we’re very grateful for all the replies. We’re certainly not trying to buy safety, just maximise it - and we’re happy to consider changing our rules in light of what we’ve learned so far!

Thanks again for any help at all with our questions!
 

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With families Dad most often does the deck work, Dad is most likely to fall in, and thus any system that requires Dad's help is invalid. The internet is full of stories of wives that could not get their husbands back on board. So yes, as soon as a child is able they should learn how to do simple boat handling, even if it is just stopping the boat and dropping sails.

The fit questions you will need to resolve. Yes, being towed on the back is safer, but I think the odds of going over are much greater, as is the difficulty in reboarding. On the balance, I think back clips are for very small children.
 
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