Not sure how BackTow works? Here is a quick 1 minute video showing it in action:
- 170N lifejacket harness, suitable for inshore and offshore sailing
- ISO12402-3 approved
- The only lifejacket harness on the market with BackTow Technology. Our patented BackTow technology functions in a manoverboard situation when the wearer is still tethered to a vessel.
- The jacket automatically inflates when water activated using the ProSensor firing head inside the cover.
- After inflation, the wearer manually pulls the large BackTow handle that is available on top of the right hand lung. The wearer is then turned in to a face-up seated position in the water and they are towed alongside the vessel safely.
- BackTow reduces the risk of injury during recovery by functioning as a strong point. A halyard can be clipped to any part of the BackTow strop and even a small person can then recover a MOB wearing a TeamO with the use of a winch.
- Integrated Deck Safety Harness
- Soft Loop attachment point to clip on to
- SOLAS approved water-activated light included (5 year warranty. 8 hour continuous operation once activated)
- Fully integrated Sprayhood included.
- Whistle included
- Suitable for adult chest sizes 68cm-144cm
- Double adjusters on the back for improved comfort and fit
UML ProSensor Firing Head
(TeamO lifejackets come with the ProSensor Firing Head fitted as standard and are our preferred inflation system for TeamO lifejackets.)
The Pro-sensor firing head works using a water activated system. A compressed paper capsule is contained within the firing head. When it becomes wet it dissolves and releases a spring which fires the CO2 cylinder and inflates your lifejacket.
The firing head is designed so that water must travel upwards inside the unit to dissolve the paper pellet. It is then also protected by the lifejacket cover. This means that spray and rain will not cause accidental inflation.
There are two colour tabs on the front of the unit to show the activation status. When both the firing head and the CO2 cylinder show as green marks the lifejacket is armed and ready for use. If one of the marks shows red this indicates that the jacket is not armed and needs to be checked. If the top tab shows red check that the CO2 cylinder is unpunctured and is screwed firmly in to the unit. If the bottom tab show red check that the paper pellet cup is screwed firmly on to the bottom of the firing head.
Hammar Firing Head
The Hammar inflation system works by using water pressure to release a spring and inflate the lifejacket. Unlike the Pro-Sensor described above, the Hammar firing head requires immersion in water to activate - the cap needs to be approximately 10cm underwater to achieve enough water pressure to activate the unit.
The Hammar system is intended for use in more extreme sailing conditions and is therefore often favored by sailors doing offshore sailing as it is less likely to inflate accidentally in weather when there is a lot of water and spray washing over the deck.
Manual Firing Head
UML Manual Only activated Inflations Systems have a Yellow Pull Toggle.
The lifejacket will only inflate after the toggle has been manually deployed by the wearer.
This system may be preferable for sailors who are expecting to sail in more extreme conditions where the wearer may experience more water across the deck than most boats.
I mostly sail single-handed. The most important safety procedure is to clip in and don't fall off the boat. However, if I do fall off the boat, I have a fighting chance to stay upright with a TeamO lifejacket. It's blindingly obvious when it's pointed out to you: Being towed by a harness that's in front of you will make you plow through the water face down. Face. Down. This is crazy. TeamO system fixes this fatal flaw. Note: The YouTube channel "Sailing UMA" has a demonstration video of the jacket in action, with a person being towed with a conventional harness and again with a TeamO jacket. Watching this is what convinced me that, short of not falling off the boat in the first place, the best safety gear is this jacket with back towing.
This is a solid, well constructed life jacket that delivers great peace of mind. I was looking for a new self-inflating jacket when I started see reviews for it on YouTube and was immediately impressed with the idea and purchased one. It's one of those "that's so obvious why didn't I think of that?" type products. It fits well and I hardly notice it after a few minutes, and it also comes with a good bag for storage when not in frequent use. Thank you TeamO!
The material quality seems to be excellent over all. There was some issues with the assembly on mine though. The tether attachement points and backtow release handle were not labeled like the sales photos indicates. I brought this up with Oscar at TeamO and he said to look at the manual. I didn’t get a manual with mine. So that was helpful.
Also, the Hammar valve isn’t visible through the little clear window. Either the valve or the window was installed in the wrong place. It is necessary to unpack and repack that side of the jacket just to verify the little green dot on the valve. I realize that none of these issues will likely affect performance in an emergency. But then again, for an unfamiliar user, they may not be able to activate the backtow feature without proper labeling or they may not realize that the valve is not functioning properly because they couldn’t see the green dot.
I brought these concerns up with TeamO in a follow up email and never received a response. There was no effort to even acknowledge these issues on their part. The customer service is lacking at TeamO in this particular case. Hopefully others have better experiences.
The fit of the jacket is excellent. I have worn it for hours at a time and forget its even there.
I want to give this jacket 5 stars, but with the construction issues and lack of customer service I can’t.
Of course the real test and final basis for a review of this jacket is in an emergency situation requiring deployment and pulling the backtow strap.
Thanks for your feedback, I am sorry to hear that we missed your email enquiry.
Every lifejacket should come with a User Manual included inside the TeamO bag, so we would like to send you a new one straight away, together with a new BackTow handle that includes branding. You are right, it does not change the performance of the jacket, but your point is a good one - it needs to be labelled.
In terms of the Hammar valve being out of alignment with the window, we agree with you that there is some tweaking needed here. We currently have one cover pattern we produce and the window fits beautifully for a Pro-sensor firing head but is a little low for a Hammar valve. This is something we are working to fix in upcoming production runs so that it is easier to check in future. As an immediate fix, we suggest you unzip the jacket and adjust the flake of the yellow lung so that the tucked end of the lung is lower down (towards the waist belt) This will bring the Hammar valve fully in to view of the window so you will not need to unzip it to check the green activation dot in future.
I will send you an email now to sort out getting a BackTow Handle and User Manual posted to you, but I hope this helps to address your main points immediately.
Thanks for your feedback, we appreciate the time you took to send us those points and we'll work to improve the cover fit for future customers.
Sales & Marketing at TeamO
Thanks Team O for a great fitting lifejacket that if I ever was in a position to be using it in ernest has a system which makes such good practical sense. Being such a smaller sailor, fit such that you don't really notice is really important.
Great personable team. Thanks from a very happy customer.