Halkey Roberts Inflators
Halkey-Roberts, is a US manufacturer formed in 1941. It is now part of the Atrion Corp a specialist medical part supplier. Its patented lifejacket inflator is fired by a 'bobbin'. The bobbin chemically reacts with water by dissolving and allowing the mechanism to fire the Co2.
United Moulders Inflators
United Moulders, is a UK manufacturer based in Hampshire England. Its patented firing mechanism works by a paper dissolving in water to fire the Co2 and is widely used throughout the world.
Hammar Automatic Inflator
Hammar, is a Swedish company who manufacture an automatic inflator that has a hydrostatic valve in place of the bobbin as used by the other makers. The Hammar Hydrostatic valve fires the Co2 only when submerged in 10cm of water. The makers claim this gives better protection from random activation caused by moisture, rain or wave splash when compared with bobbin type firing system.
Automatic inflators for lifejacket
An automatic lifejacket basically works by a device detecting water and that triggering a firing mechanism to allow the Co2 canister to inflate the bladder within the lifejacket, creating bouyancy.
One of the biggest differentiators between the various lifejackets on offer from any supplier will be its inflator type. All inflators are built to standards, however there are subtle differences between the various types.
Lifejacket Automatic Inflators Safety Warnings
Notice to all Lifejacket users
A lifejackets ability to operate is completely dependent upon the Automatic Inflation device being in a ready state. There are numerous cases widely reported in the press of lifejackets failing to inflate. This affects all makers regardless of price, quality and firing mechanism.
In order for an automatic inflator to work, three conditions must be met: Firstly the Co2 cylinder must be correctly inserted and tightened. (This is a daily check in all manuals) Secondly the Co2 cylinder must be full and of the correct type. (All Co2 cylinders are not the same, there are instances where certain co2 canisters with the correct thread will not fire on certain inflators, always check with your supplier, your life may depend upon it.) Lastly A bobbin pill must be inserted into the inflator as per the manufacturers instructions. Bobbins should be replaced according to age and use.
All lifejacket inflators need regular daily checks, see your user guide for details.
Who uses which inflator?
Crewsaver lifejackets, XM lifejackets, Baltic lifejackets, Seago lifejackets, Marinepool lifejackets and many others all use these types of inflator. There are obviously older types and some manufacturers of lifejackets make their own. Being Lifejacket specialists we are very knowledgeable with regards suitablity. Plus we have the contacts to ensure the information we provide is accurate and up to date.
Remember our advice is free, and if we don't know the answer to your question we will endeavour to find out for you..
Safety is all about education - hopefully the information provided within these pages has helped you understand the technical side of a lifejacket. This will in turn help you to be safer when boating.
Always check your lifejacket before you wear it, your life may depend on it.
Lifejacket rearming kits
The Marine Warehouse stock lifejackets with three types of inflator, Halkey-Roberts, United Moulders and Hammar. These are the common types of inflators for most lifejackets on sale in the UK. Chances are if you need a rearming kit or Co2 cylinder we will have the right model for you.
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