Take on the big rapids with the low-profile design and excellent flotation of the Stohlquist WEDGE-E Personal Flotation Device.
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Share your thoughts
does this have non slip panels, or what ever, to keep it from riding up?
- Gender: Female
- Familiarity: I've put it through the wringer
This has been a top-selling PFD for about 10 years now. It hits the sweet spot between being comfortable, functional, and economical.
I bought mine in 2002 and it has held up well over the past 11 years, even with some summers of heavy use and a lot of UV exposure, plus sand, silt, saltwater, etc.. The only wear and tear has been color fading due to sun exposure, which is to be expected after multiple seasons in high-altitude Colorado and the beaches in California. Even after 10 years, nothing has torn or broken. I also love the side pocket, which is big enough for an asthma inhaler, chapstik, Cliff bar, nose clips, and keys. The side zipper makes the vest easy to take on and off, and I have never had problems with either the pocket zipper or access zipper jamming or breaking.
This vest is fairly good for short people. I'm 5'0", and I originally bought this vest because its cut was lower, which meant I wouldn't get the dreaded "chin chafe" after a day on the river. The shoulder straps are adjustable, which further let me shorten the torso length. It never felt too big or bulky. I do have a fold in the straps because I had to shorten them so much.
I just bought a new vest this week, but the only reason is that I read that boaters should replace vests every 3-5 years because the foam gets a little less buoyant after awhile. But I'm still going to keep this vest as a back-up because even after 10 years it still is completely functional.
- Gender: Male
- Familiarity: I've used it several times
sweet vest, use it for mostly canoeing rivers and lakes. this is my first real pfd, it's so comfortable i no longer fuss with taking a vest on and off, leave it on for the whole day.
great fit and best of all keeps you floating without riding up and putting you into a wwf style headlock.
This PFD looks great and does the job for most whitewater. I have purposely jumped out of the raft many times in Big Kahuna and Lunch Counter and am under for a few seconds but come right back up most of the time. I have had a couple times where I was under for around 8 seconds (a long time in whitewater) when the undercurrent catches me and holds me under. I had to swim back to the top instead of float back to the top like most of the time. Like I said. This works great for most whitewater, but if you are going to be getting into some pretty nasty stuff I would suggest spending some more money and getting a higher end PFD.
This is an awesome vest! The only concern I have is that the buckle on the right side pinches a bit.
I dragonboat & this PFD is very comfortable & easy to manuever in while paddling. I like the location of the zippers (out of the way) & the design of the vest w/ the arm holes low in the ribs.
I Love this PFD. I just finished my raft guide training and used this pfd the whole time. I am a pretty big guy, 6'4 285lbs , and it floats me better than the patron vests that we use. it is very comfortable and it is very easy to move. swimming, paddling, rescuing and being rescued. i have no complaints what so ever.
is there a number to tell me how much floatation each pfd has? I'm new to kayaking, bought a whole set up minus a PFD. That in mind, I want one on the cheaper side and relatively more floaty than other more advanced jackets. I'll definitely be taking a few swims with my first PFD and I want to make sure it will keep me afloat through the sh*t. Thanks!
PFD floatation is measured in pounds. The Wedge-e has 16 lbs, 14 oz of buoyancy. That's the highest Stohlquist offers.
Got this for my girlfriend for xmas, but its too big for her in a medium. I used the sizing chart too, but unisex might be one sex in the case of Stolquist. I like it, and almost kept it for myself, its sweeet for the price. But I THINK THIS PFD IS BEST FOR MEN. Other than that it is comfortable, and basic, but never got it wet, its going back....
I want to order this item for my nephew. He's about 5' 7" and weighs about 135-145 lbs. What size Wedge-e PFD should I get?
Hey there, tough to tell without a chest measurement... depending on his age and build, I am going to assume a medium would work...
I picked up a new Stohlquist Wedge-e for competitive laser racing. Its a life jacket and I haven't needed it to save me from drowning, so I can't speculate on how it performs in its primary function. Here's what I can tell you (warning: nautical lingo ahead).
Lots of room for arm motion. I never catch the back of the PFD on my boom blocks when tacking and gybing. Rides a little bit high on my torso, and allows for good flexibility as I reach in to adjust control lines while straight legging in big breeze. Torso straps allow for fine tuning fit and feel. Mesh pocket is good for storing a rigging knife and some electrical tape to use in minor repairs on the water.
I ordered this PFD after my last one (Astral) disappeared or was stolen. I am 5'8", 119 pounds, a 34B. I ordered a small and it is a snug fit, which is what I wanted. It doesn't seem to ride up as much as my last one (although not yet river-tested). I can't imagine this jacket would be comfortable for someone with a big bust, but it works well for me. It also seems to give a nice range of motion and, with adjustments, fits over a long-sleeved shirt and light jacket.
I haven't been able to test it on a river yet --- which may be a different story, but so far I'm pleased with the way it adjusts and fits. It is also less bulky in the front than my last PFD and seems to work well with a spray skirt on my Dagger Zydeco. This one I might actually wear.
the Wedge-e's low profile allows full range of motion, handy when you're playing paddle-baseball with pieces of watermelon.
Overall Stohlquist has made a good product. Extremely low profile means this jacket will not inhibit your range of motion, great for paddlers and especially kayakers. You get a decent amount of float considering the minimal cut, and I had no problems with the jacket riding up. I am about 6' and 175 lbs and the Large was perfect. With this particular model I'd say it's safe to err up a bit on sizing and cinch down rather than get something too small and constricting.
My only real complaint with the jacket is that the pocket doesn't hold much. I wanted to carry my camera and a relatively small knife and had to cram them in there.
Ultimately a high-value product; a good jacket at a great price.
I had the rescue version, which is the same cut. I really liked the freedom of movement and it allowed me to tuck way forward on the deck of my kayak. It fits nice and snug around the core when properly adjusted but isn't great for anyone over a B cup in the chest. Downside - you go freaking deep when you take a big swim, which can be a good thing sometimes but it usually just sucks. Its low profile with minimal floatation and doesn't provide much back protection.
Good pfd for dinghy sailing. Also use it windsurfing. Low cut allows great arm movement and the bulk is in the front and back down low so it doesnt restrict movement either. 1 million Fully adjustable straps keep it snug and in place, doesnt ride up and floats my 225# body well but the plastic tensioner clips have gotten snagged on lines before so I adjusted the straps where i wanted and put a bit of tape to hold the tensioners down and smooth them over...problem solved.
I wish there was a little more than just the piece of cordura that the zipper flap is made out of so its more rigid...then it would be easier to thread the zipper with one hand. Nothing wrong with it perfect strong, solid, and easy to use...just not like my old one. The mesh pocket seems pretty durable but is pretty tight so it wont hold more than a knife and a powerbar...
Overall very satisfied with product quality and price. This is a paddling pfd that works well for dinghy sailing...just those little things that annoyed me but Im over it now.
What is the main difference between the Brik and the Wedge? Any women that have bought this, any comments about the jacket? Does it run big or small? I've tried on the BeaSea and i fit a L/XL, but not sure of the Brik/Wedge since they are unisex sizing.
The Brik has an extra strap that goes across the front and diagonally down the sides for added fit adjustments. It also sits lower on the body than the Wedge. The Wedge comes up much higher on the chest and back, which helps hold in "the twins". I find this to be much more comfortable than the Brik, which ends in the middle of my chest, squeezing me in all sorts of directions (picture someone wearing a corset that is too small on them). I've never tried the BeaSea, so I can't compare these to it, but these two are specifically whitewater jackets, while the Bea is not. All that said, I'm a size 6 (with a medium-sized chest) and wear a Medium in the Wedge and love it. I recommend it!
I use this whitewater kayaking, and I love it (and its price)! I first thought it would be too long on me, but it does not conflict with my skirt at all. Being a female with a larger chest, I still find this jacket to be extremely comfortable. By the end of the day, I've forgotten I have it on. I'd recommend it to anyone!
Is this where the lotus design went?
Philip Curry started and I believe is still CEO of Astral Buoyancy. He was an originator of Lotus, which he sold to Patagonia in 1999. Patagonia has since discontinued the Lotus paddlesport brand.