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Thread: Floatation suit

  1. #1

    Default Floatation suit

    So we off to get our canoe tonight. My OH is going to be my teacher (hopefully wont end up with me having a hissy fi) As i am going to be doing a fair bit of my learning during a scottish winter (only on suitable water/weather) i was wondering how suitable my Fladen survival suit would be?
    I used them in my farming career for checking stock off the quad and loved them for cosiness. Compared with my thermatec one the fladen is far better to move about in and more breathable.
    Do any of you use one? How do you find them for paddling?
    Aware of opinions on using life jackets over them (OH's) sea survival courses)

  2. #2
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    I don't know anything about this sort of thing, but can't see why it wouldn't work well to keep you warm and dry.

    I'd be asking myself;

    Is it flexible and cut well enough to paddle in?
    If I went in, does it allow me to float in a way that means I can swim and recover myself? The video I saw suggested it would work, but might be a little harder to swim in than a buoyancy aid/dry suit combo. However I was concerned it might only allow you to float on your back, feet up, but the chap in said video was swimming on his front reasonably well, and could get his feet down to stand up. Floating legs can be a problem when recovering yourself!!

    You'll be nice and toasty, I'm sure!

  3. #3

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    I used to use a thermatec on the farm but found tackling sheep off the quad was a bit like a t-rex trying to scratch its bum! Nowhere near flexible enough. The fladen was far better.
    Its the swimming in it that intrigues me, i guess during our self rescue practise sessions im going to find out. We will never be so far from land that i cant reach it comfortably as im the weakest swimmer of us. Ill check out some videos thankyou.
    Im a creature of comforts so the thought of being cosy makes me smile

    Wonder how my local swimming pool would react to me rocking up in it to practise..hmmm

  4. #4
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    Unless your doing serious whitewater or practicing recoveries I think it is overkill. Most people, myself included are just wearing regular outdoor clothes and a PFD.

    I’ve taken lots of people out on their first canoe trip and none ended up in the water. That said if it gives you confidence on those early trips go for it but I wouldn’t spend money on a new one as I’m confident it will not get used after the first few trips.

  5. #5

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    Hi John. Ive got three already. 2 Thermatecs and a Fladen. I was always about comfort on the quad during winter haha. Weve bought a Coleman Explorer (i know some folks can be a bit sniffy about them) but as im led to believe its a pretty stable good beginners confidence canoe im hoping i dont manage to turn it over in my initial incompetence but so my confidence dosent get knocked at the start i was wanting to arm myself to the hilt safety and comfort wise. Hopefully as you say ill be able to hang the suit back up in no time!

  6. #6
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    I started in a Coleman Canoe and enjoyed it enough to start a forum about it. So not sure you’ll get many people being sniffy about it here

  7. #7

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    Id read reviews elsewhere and some folk called them slow and heavy. Maybe im weird but that in itself gave me confidence. Got all the emotions going on in anticipation of collecting it tonight..so excited mainly with a mix of nerves thrown in for good measure.

  8. #8

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    I'm with John - nothing wrong with a Coleman. I had one, many many years ago - got the job done and, next to an old Grumman I had (also decades ago...), it was the toughest boat I ever owned.

  9. #9

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    Found three keywords in reviews i loved. Tough, stable, beginners. Perfect for me. Well used to a bit of heavy lifting (i weigh 52kg average mule yow 75kg and i can just about coup a yow and drag still) so between the two of us a short portage and lifting onto landy shouldnt present too much grief.
    I like the fact its as stable as a can be so i can concentrate on my paddling lessons without too much worrying about stability in the boat itself.
    Was within our price range and reasonably close to home too. All good.

  10. #10
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    Great that you have a Landy. It is quite a height to lift a heavy canoe ( if it is a Defender/110/90/Series vehicle)
    But given you can lift a "mule yow" I am sure you will be fine. (Off to google what a "mule yow" is)

    Edit: No luck with google re "mule yow", let alone "couping" one

  11. #11

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    Quote Originally Posted by kmac View Post
    Great that you have a Landy. It is quite a height to lift a heavy canoe ( if it is a Defender/110/90/Series vehicle)
    But given you can lift a "mule yow" I am sure you will be fine. (Off to google what a "mule yow" is)

    Edit: No luck with google re "mule yow", let alone "couping" one

    Sorry
    Its a breed/type of sheep. Yow being a ewe. Coup as in rugby tackle to get her sat on her hip to shear/trim feet etc. Generally means a stroppy ewe that resents being rugby tackled. Part of my input into canoe choice was the reasoning if i can still do that i can assist getting canoe upto roof bars.
    Weve a 110 and discovery (and *sigh* many more 'retirement projects) As we age and my competence improves a lighter canoe will have to be got.

  12. #12
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    Thanks I stand educated. I also use a Defender 110 to transport my canoe - I quickly got a lighter canoe.

  13. #13

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    Although i said i can do it what i didnt say was it was accompanied by lots of very unladylike language.

  14. #14
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    You could always coup it in the coup....

    coup or cowp (kaʊp)


    Scottish
    verb
    1. to turn over or fall over
    noun
    2. a rubbish tip

    Cheers,

    Alan


  15. #15

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    For me being of slight stature couping a crabbit old yow generally involves running full pelt at her in the vain hope i catch her off guard. Hence the need for shoulder surgery ��Dont suppose that technique will work for lifting a canoe onto a Landy. It'll be me that ends up in the coup. ��

  16. #16
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    Might need a step/ ladder

  17. #17

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    Just getting ready to go pick up the canoe. Thats a great idea! Thankyou. I'll put my little steps i use in kitchen into Landy.

  18. #18
    Join Date
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    Not seen Fladen suits before, they look good value compared with a BA & drysuit, if the conditions are requiring that kind of protection. I suspect, Stumpweasel, that it will be fine for now, but you will find it much too warm once you have learnt enough about paddling to put some amount of effort into it (too much effort when you first start just makes you go faster in the wrong direction!). Except when paddling whitewater or in winter, I tend to wear walking clothes plus a BA, and have a shell jacket the fits over the BA ready to put on if it rains or gets serious windchill.

  19. #19
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    I have an immersion suit, it's not a Fladen, it's a lightweight flexible fabric, came with an internal, removable, toasty fleecy "wooly bear". It is designed to be put on over all clothes (shoes and all) before jumping into the sea and hoping to be rescued. Mine has neoprene wrist seals, a diagonal front entry zip and seals to the face. It is designed to keep all of you (except hands/eyes/nose/mouth) dry when in the water. I've cut away the soles of the feet leaving in place the fabric socks leaving the suit water tight but enabling me to get the (my) feet into external water boots. The temptation was always not to zip it fully up as it can be a bit "boil in the bag" in there but then if /when you fall/slip in to the water it will fill up and be more of a hazard than a help.
    These days I usually paddle wearing shorts and t-shirt a bit more if it's cold add a cag if it's likely to be wet and only if I know I'll be spending a fair bit of time in the water will I resort to wearing a dry suit.
    I'm intrigued by the Fladen survival suit, does it keep you dry and warm provided you don't fall in and keep you floating if you do fall in ... or will it keep you dry in the water too?
    DCUK
    Can't ytpe or roopf read

  20. #20

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    The Fladen is designed to let a small amount of water in. I think then it acts a bit like a wetsuit. Then keep you afloat. Wwhen i wore it on the quad in heavy rain i stayed dry but if i had to retrieve a sheep from the burn and stepped in i could feel it slowly letting water in. I know what you mean by wooley bear. OH has one that was used under a drysuit. Said its very toasty! Too toasty at times. Im going to give my beloved Fladen a go i think. Cant hurt in cold weather especially if we also carry a lifejacket for me if i get too hot we will be able to pull up for me to change attire.

    Canoe is home! Hoping for first lesson on Sunday.

  21. #21

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    Quote Originally Posted by Chris_B View Post
    Not seen Fladen suits before, they look good value compared with a BA & drysuit, if the conditions are requiring that kind of protection. I suspect, Stumpweasel, that it will be fine for now, but you will find it much too warm once you have learnt enough about paddling to put some amount of effort into it (too much effort when you first start just makes you go faster in the wrong direction!). Except when paddling whitewater or in winter, I tend to wear walking clothes plus a BA, and have a shell jacket the fits over the BA ready to put on if it rains or gets serious windchill.

    I found mine indispensable in the winter on the cold. All the proper hunting/shooting/farming couldnt hold a candle to it when up against a sudden blizzard or horizontal winter rain. My termatec was only good for being inactive ie riding the quad but the fladen was flexible enough that i could work a bit in it. Sustained paddling might be different however. As you say once i become more efficient it may be too warm.

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