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Whatís your ribcage worth to you?

 
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isobars



Joined: 12 Dec 1999
Posts: 19221

PostPosted: Sat Jul 09, 2011 6:51 pm    Post subject: Whatís your ribcage worth to you? Reply with quote

Kiters face 30-50-foot falls, and windsurfers face booms even if they do try to hang on in every crash. Both can injure ribs and internal organs, and the usual impact vests help but are often inadequate. Even if they donít puncture lungs, injured ribs incur sleepless nights, extensive pain, lost shred time, even serious personal risk if rescue is necessary but not available. One of our locals dragged his 3.0 ashore an hour from medical help just this week whispering, ďI think I punctured a lung.Ē Damaged organs such as a liver can become life-threatening overnight. Iím convinced my latest impact vest converted a broken-rib blow to a bruised-ribcage blow this spring, but that still cost me playtime, sleep, and pain, and made tying my shoes not worth the effort.

Screw that. I began Googling impact vests, and found some pretty serious products out there for kiters, water skiers, wake boarders, etc. Just before I ordered one of those, however, I stumbled across the vests worn by professional bull riders of the PBRA. Theyíre made not just to cushion impacts but to spread the impact of thrashing bull horns and crashing hooves over a larger area so blows that would crush a bare ribcage are almost funny -- at least after the rider leaps to his feet and runs away. Now thatís a serious vest!

But itís leather. which doesnít like daily water or sun, so I looked further and found a motocross vest made by the PBRA vest manufacturer of synthetic materals to withstand frequent washing and daily sun exposure without sacrificing the protection provided by the vestís ballistic Kevlar padding.

Argh, argh! Now weíre talking!

NO, it doesnít stop a bullet. ďBallisticĒ means it disperses impacts over large areas. And the ballistic fabric may not be the Kevlar brand, but itís at least a generic equivalent. The vest ramps up your confidence, adds just enough flotation to keep yer pie hole clear of the water when bobbing in the chopswell, weighs a piddling 26 ounces, fits like a glove over anything from a rash guard to a dry suit because itís adjustable, comes in many colors, offers zero swimming interference (itís less bulky and MUCH tougher than most WS vests), goes on and off easily, can easily be held down to minimize or prevent ride-up, and Ö most important Ö protects your ribs and internal organs like no other practical vest Iíve ever seen.

The downside: Itís spendy and it needs to be customized for our application. Itís $300 off the rack, and extensive mods can add a third to that. I think Iím done with rib injuries, though, and thatís priceless.

The PBRA leather vest and information are at
http://www.rideright.com/1100series.html . For info on the MX version, go to http://motoxvest.com/ . Then imagine the PBRA vest style made from the MX materials without its bulky MX neck brace. If the product interests you, ask here about the custom mods I had MotoXvest do for me during manufacture in Fort Worth, including shortening it and opening up the arm holes a bit. It was a gamble with no refunds, but it appears so far to exceed my expectations. One saved rib injury is well worth the cost to me; YRMV.

Mike \m/
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noshuzbluz



Joined: 18 May 2000
Posts: 791

PostPosted: Sat Jul 09, 2011 9:42 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

How 'bout this? Wink


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isobars



Joined: 12 Dec 1999
Posts: 19221

PostPosted: Sun Jul 10, 2011 7:59 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I tried that. It rode up.
Besides ... it's not long enough for propriety.

Mike \m/
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