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  • Survival suit????

    Of those that boat in cold water...

    How many have either a full immersion suit, or a cold water work suit?

    I have full immersion suits onboard, but you cannot do anything functional once you don a immersion suit,

    Because of this I’m getting a Mustang Survival suit which is not a full immersion suit, it’s a cold weather work suit with decent immersion survival capabilities.

    What do you have, or is it something you, in your climate have not addressed????
    Kevin Sanders
    Bayliner 4788 Seward, Alaska
    Map where I am right now
    https://share.findmespot.com/shared/...j23OquWOj2N3Xe

  • #2
    If I am doing a coastal run we have a 6 man life raft and an immersion suit for every one on board. For doing inside passage travel we have the dingy, the life raft and one dry suit should I need to dive the boat.
    Azzurra
    Seattle, WA
    Ocean Alexander 54

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    • #3
      I have the Mustang exposure coveralls that I kept from fishing days.

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      • #4
        I just bought the Mustang, waiting for it to arrive.

        Im going to make it my “ditch bag”, Ill clip on a two way radio, PLB, etc... That way if tge unthinkable happens, I put on the suit, and deploy the liferaft.
        Kevin Sanders
        Bayliner 4788 Seward, Alaska
        Map where I am right now
        https://share.findmespot.com/shared/...j23OquWOj2N3Xe

        Comment


        • #5
          I've got a couple helly hansens full work suit. Mind you, got those for running the zodiac hurricane in foul weather all year round for me and my grand daughter. they are truly great at keeping you warm out in the elements. think February, below freezing or worse, just above with driving rain going 28 knots fully exposed to the elements. I also clip on the ACR and portable vhs. I haven't tried it in the water, as I know it would truly suck. They should keep you alive for a bit, personally i would say if less than a knot away from land, and you are not injured and you have a very cool head in disaster situation, you'll live.

          For the big boat, I've been thinking about this as we'll. First, those things are very bulky. I've managed to put two of them in the new dinghy and they take real space in there. Second, they are pricey. For my needs I didn't mind 800 bucks or so if i recall, but would i get 4 more for guess? The full imersion suits are about 350, again all cnd but the scope is about 3 to 1. My thinking currently is stay with the 2 I already have and still use on the dingy in the winter to travel back and forth and get a few immersion suits for when i have more souls on board. In a bad scenario, all souls will end up on the dingy or liferaft (don't have one, not sure i will), and not in the water. Two people in a work suit can move around and get things done, and be we'll protected, the others having less mobility is less of a problem.

          So a mix bag of both. if i was alone, and felt threatened, I would certainly go for the work suit AND throw the imersion suit in the dingy to changed into later. I've spent some serious time in the water floating a few miles from shore in the winter during a storm in dry suit. Nothing compares for security and comfort in that survival condition. if I only had a work suit, I'm sure i would of been crying after the first couple hours...

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          • #6
            Originally posted by michel View Post
            I've got a couple helly hansens full work suit. Mind you, got those for running the zodiac hurricane in foul weather all year round for me and my grand daughter. they are truly great at keeping you warm out in the elements. think February, below freezing or worse, just above with driving rain going 28 knots fully exposed to the elements. I also clip on the ACR and portable vhs. I haven't tried it in the water, as I know it would truly suck. They should keep you alive for a bit, personally i would say if less than a knot away from land, and you are not injured and you have a very cool head in disaster situation, you'll live.

            For the big boat, I've been thinking about this as we'll. First, those things are very bulky. I've managed to put two of them in the new dinghy and they take real space in there. Second, they are pricey. For my needs I didn't mind 800 bucks or so if i recall, but would i get 4 more for guess? The full imersion suits are about 350, again all cnd but the scope is about 3 to 1. My thinking currently is stay with the 2 I already have and still use on the dingy in the winter to travel back and forth and get a few immersion suits for when i have more souls on board. In a bad scenario, all souls will end up on the dingy or liferaft (don't have one, not sure i will), and not in the water. Two people in a work suit can move around and get things done, and be we'll protected, the others having less mobility is less of a problem.

            So a mix bag of both. if i was alone, and felt threatened, I would certainly go for the work suit AND throw the imersion suit in the dingy to changed into later. I've spent some serious time in the water floating a few miles from shore in the winter during a storm in dry suit. Nothing compares for security and comfort in that survival condition. if I only had a work suit, I'm sure i would of been crying after the first couple hours...
            We think alike

            I have four full immersion suits. The challenge with them is that they are 100% useless if you are trying to also do things like deploy a liferaft, use a two way radio, deploy a beacon, etc... Once you put on an immersion suit your only action is to hop in the water, or into a liferaft.

            I bought the work suit, (and I suspect your Helly Hansens are pretty much the same as the Mustang version ) because that I need something to protect that also allows me to do all the things necessary to abandon ship, and also post abandon ship, manage tasks in a liferaft while awaiting rescue.

            I bought the survival suit after discussing water rescue with my son who worked for several years as a crew member on a USCG motor lifeboat in Oregon. The Mustang was his daily work suit while aboard his boat, and performing rescue and training tasks. He told me that it was good for about an hour of full immersion in our cold waters, while also allowing for work to be done.

            My thought is that if I have a onboard event after a quick initial assessment I would don the suit, and start the mitigation phase, transitioning to the abandon ship phase if necessary. If time allowed I would toss a immersion suit into the liferaft in case it became necessary.
            Kevin Sanders
            Bayliner 4788 Seward, Alaska
            Map where I am right now
            https://share.findmespot.com/shared/...j23OquWOj2N3Xe

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            • #7
              While interesting, I wonder about the possibilities of having to abandon ship? Is it because of the debris in the water or something else entirely? Here, the waters are warm so that's not an issue. I know lots of sailors have ditch bags and life-rafts. Except for those scary books (Survive the Savage Sea for instance) I don't know that I recall meeting anyone who has had to abandon ship (except Daddy and a couple he was delivering for, -- their trimaran, sank offshore/long time ago)

              Is this gear a precautionary item or a real Problem for those of us who have the liberty to time our trips?
              Not trying to "know it all" -- curious. Is the time between safe spots such that this is a necessity?

              The Mustang suit does sound legit/needed for working outside in terrible weather.

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              • #8
                I carry immersion suits and a raft. I have a wood boat and probably more prone to a possible sinking than other hulls. In the past, commercial fishing, I saw how fast conditions can change and how poor the weather forecasting is. But fire is probably a bigger risk than most people think and can drive you from your boat. I've seen one boat fire from a poor stove pipe install and 3 ship fires in the USN.

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                • #9
                  Thanks Lepke. I had not even considered fires. Neptune takes no prisoners.

                  Thank you for the education. Here, with a shallow draft almost every place is within a few hours of safe harbor.

                  Weather forecasting though? Forget about it! Still after nearly seven years on the Gulf coast I have yet to figure out patterns. It is frustrating as all get out. Heck, back up near Panama City there are places where occasionally there is ONE tide per day, while other days have three. It's odd, and I could not wrap my head around the whole scenario.


                  Stay safe Cap'n.

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                  • #10
                    Something they teach in the navy is you have to fight fires, stop flooding, etc., or go in the water. From what I've seen, many boaters don't prepare for fire. Even commercial operators. I've seen fires take over other vessels I could have stopped. As to weather, I forecast better than the people paid to forecast. Wind is my concern. I don't care about rain or clouds and fog is what I have radar for. Windy (https://www.windy.com) is more helpful than most marine forecasts. It's easy to step ahead several days and see what's coming. It also shows sea surface temps if you're chasing tuna.

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                    • #11
                      I am a nut about fire extinguishers. Currently I have six aboard my 23' boat. It's not just the fire extinguishers though, at least for women! I've got small hands and admittedly am not as strong as you fellows. The problem I have had is that I cannot open the plastic strap that attaches the fire extinguisher in place!

                      And another problem I have is with the bigger units, I am not able to maneuver them. A friend likes his big fire extinguishers (and I agree that they are better able to fight a fire/last longer) HOWEVER I can't pick the dang thing up easily and aiming it would be problematic too.

                      A while back I wrote about fire extinguishers in this article:
                      http://janice142.com/Articles/OutOfTheBox.html (title: Out of the Box (Fire Extinguisher hint)

                      Click image for larger version

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                      I use a simple string in lieu of that plastic strap. It works.

                      As Lepke says, fire is dangerous. The small extinguishers are just $20. It's insurance.

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