Wednesday, June 25, 2014

PFD Gear

For me, the PFD is not just a life jacket but also a platform to keep handy tools close by and ready for action.  Here is a list of the gear I attach to my Kokatat Bahia Tour (full review here)

1) Safety Whistle- It's incredibly loud so should I need to quickly signal to someone near by it should do the job.  It's clipped to the main zipper of the PFD.  It also has a little compass on it and a thermometer on the other side.

2) Fixed Blade Knife - I had folding blades before but realized that if I need a knife in an emergency situation such as trying to cut rope quickly, you don't want to be fumbling with a folded knife.  This one is by Gerber and is very easy to take out of the sheath.  It's stainless but I still need to hit it with WD40 from time to time.  It has a section of the blade that is serrated which is good for cutting rope.  Also, most knives that clip to PFDs are blunt tip, but I prefer a sharp point because every once in a while I run into not-so-nice-toothy-bastards and I might need to get stabby. 

3) Watch - Between timing the currents or tides right, making it back in time for tournament weigh-ins, and keeping the wife happy by getting home when I said I would, I like to keep track of my minutes.  I never liked having something on my wrist but wanted something that I can peek at quickly.  I'm also not a fan of having to dig up my phone all the time to check the time.  So, I bought a cheap little waterproof Timex, took off the wrist straps and stuck it in the see through window of the radio/phone pouch cover.

Since I mentioned it, but it's not in the photo, sometimes I store my VHF radio in that pouch.  The one I have is the Standard Horizon HX300.  It fits perfectly and the adjustable snap buckle holds it in place with the antenna sticking up out of the side of the cover.  My LifeProof LifeJacket that fits over my phone does not fit in the pouch though, for those of you who might be wondering.

4) Ceramic Scissors - I love these things.  Check out my review here for more info.  They slide right in the slot and don't fall out.  Perfect.  If you prefer pliers, they would fit in that spot as well.  I keep my pliers in a sheath strapped to my kayak seat. 

5) GoPro Remote - In the above photo, the silver thing is what inserts into the GoPro remote as a quick release.  If you couldn't tell from my previous posts, I love getting video footage and having a remote really helps.

6) Microfiber cloth - To go right along with number 5, I pack a ziplock bag encased small microfiber cloth for wiping off water droplets and dried up salt from the GoPro lenses.  It's hard to keep it off all the time, but if I know the action is getting hot or a money shot is coming up, I make sure the lens is clean.

7) Finger Saver - It's essentially a ring with a concave rubber core to prevent line cuts when tying and cinching down knots.  I probably could have found something around the house that was similar, but I had a little extra allowance money left over and got this product.  And to be honestly, I like it a lot. I've cut myself countless times, especially when my hands have been wet most of the day.  Braided fishing line goes through saturated skin like butter.  Here's a video showing how to use it.

In the same pouch as the Finger Saver, I also keep an extra measuring tape just in case I forget or lose my main ruler.

That's about it.  A snack or two might find their way in to one of the pouches, but overall, that's what I carry on my PFD.  Hope it's helpful.

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