Let’s start with a few facts about lifejackets in general. When looking into what type of lifejacket you might need, you may be wondering how much buoyancy you’ll need. Some people think the higher the buoyancy the better, but this is not strictly true. Most fully-grown adults only need 20-30N of buoyancy to float, but if you’d like to be turned from facing the front to being on your back, a higher newton lifejacket can help this.
There are also a few different types of inflation systems. The UML Mk5 Inflator is a water sensitive activation system that uses a compressed paper capsule which dissolves when wet, which then releases a spring to puncture the CO2 cylinder. This inflator includes green safety clips that helps retain the UML. These types of lifejackets are ideal for leisure swimmers.
The UML pro sensor inflation system is a water sensitive activation system which uses a compressed paper capsule that dissolves when wet, resulting in the release of a spring that punctures the cylinder to inflate the jacket. Only water flowing upwards through the unit will activate the device, meaning water running down the jacket from sea spray or rain will not cause activation. The UML Pro Sensor Inflator also has indicators that show you whether the cylinder or firing head need replacing, boosting your safety further.
Hammar lifejackets are suitable for anyone who often sails in extreme weather conditions and often gets wet whilst onboard. Hammar hydrostatic inflator systems are activated by water pressure and will not inflate until they are under around 10cm of water, and therefore will not be activated by rain and sea spray.
Another factor to bare in mind is harness/ non-harness options, along with auto or manual lifejackets. Harnesses are designed to minimise the potential of a person’s torso becoming fully immersed in water when outside the boat. Automatically inflated lifejackets inflate as soon as they hit the water, whereas a chord must be pulled with manual lifejackets.
Now you know the most fundamental bits about lifejackets, let’s try find one that suits you.
One of our most affordable lifejackets is the Seago Seaguard 165N, which comes in the options; manual, auto and auto harness. These jackets include a crotch strap, Velcro fastening and have a 165N buoyancy, perfect if you have a low budget, and aren’t travelling too far from shore.
One of our most popular, mid-range lifejackets is our very own Suffolk Marine Safety Argus Pro 165N, which is a high quality, comfortable jacket with a clear window on the side to show when it needs to be recharged. The jacket has a stylish design, along with all of the necessary attributes you would expect a mid-range lifejacket to have, such as a wide crotch strap, a zipped pocket and comes as either an automatic, or an automatic with harness.
Another popular lifejacket within our more premium range of lifejackets is the Spinlock Deckvest 5D Pro Sensor 170N. This award winning jacket is not only attractive to the eye but is also very light, and includes a fleece neck line in order to sit on your neck more comfortably. It also includes a high intensity pylon light, and water activated flashing LED light, making you easier to locate if you were to fall overboard. Double crotch straps, a mesh pocket and sprayhood are also fitted into the jacket, along with a unique shoulder fit system which flexes and locates ensuring correct fit on shoulders every time. This lifejacket is also one of the only ones to come in 3 different sizes, ranging from size 1-3 depending on your chest measurements, and MOB1’s can also be fitted within them.
Finally, we will finish with the Seago Dynamic 300N Lifejacket with pro sensor or hammar options. This lifejacket is one of the most stylish on the market, as well as one of the most technologically advanced. The jacket includes a harness, an S type lung design for reduced wash in the water, neoprene collar, cylinder safe to keep the cylinder tightly screwed in, double crotch strap, pocket, spray hood, flash light, zip fastening, and a 60g CO2 cylinder. The 300N means the bladder of the lifejacket is much larger, and is ideal for someone wearing a huge amount of waterproof clothing that can trap air.
These are just a small selection of the lifejackets we have on offer, take a look on our website to explore more options!