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Robert Aviles

Zephyr Vest Vs Exovest?

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Hey! I am looking into building my first system. I can definitely see the Exovest is the upgrade to the zephyr vest, I was just wondering if someone can explain to me how the Exovest is exactly better and how I can benefit from it. Thanks guys! 
 

Robert Aviles

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Hi Robert,

Having used both a Zephyr vest and an Exovest, I can speak to both. I started out on a Zephyr vest, and now own an Exovest. They are both very different styles, and one is not better than the other - it's simply what works best for you. If you're able to try both out before making a purchase decision, that would benefit you greatly. All the videos Chris shared are brilliant for Exovest explanations. The biggest differences I found between the two vests were (and keep in mind this is me, not everyone):

- My stamina increased in the Exovest due to the torque being higher up on my back and distributing the weight of the rig differently across my body.

- (This is true for everyone) I walk differently in the Exovest, as Chris explains very well in this video. Summarized - you must let your pelvic bones rise and fall in an Exovest so the vest is working with you, not against you. In a normal vest, you must hold your pelvis level.

- I can breathe diaphragmatically (versus accessory breathing, which is not wise in any vest - shallow breathing where your shoulders rise and fall, which can cause all sorts of neck and shoulder problems etc.) much easier in the Exovest, as it does not sit on my lungs whatsoever. I also very much like that it doesn't sit on any organs (no feeling your sandwich right after lunch!) or your spine. 

- The Exovest is very unforgiving if you are out of form; you want the sled on your centerline, or else you'll feel the vest "collapsing" in one direction due to the weight of the sled pulling too much against the pivot points. Personally I see this as a good thing, because you want to be in good form anyway! On the Zephyr vest, it's easier to get away with being out of form, though because there are no cross-back straps, I found this was easy to feel in that vest as well. 

Again, try both and see what works for you! 

Happy flying.

Lisa

 

Edited by Lisa Sene
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Hi,

I'm also building out my first rig and I'd like some opinions on vests.  I've been looking at GPI Pro's vest, Tiffen's Exovest, Zephyr, and the Compact Ultra.  If there are any other vests that warrant mentioning please let me know.  I'd like to hear your opinions on what works best for you.  

Has anyone had much luck trying to negotiate a lower price or package deals with Tiffen or GPI?  Ideally I'd like to match a Pro Titan Arm with a M-2 Sled, I don't know if by doing this I'm setting myself up to pay more for a full rig.  I am just now reaching out to both companies for a variety of quotes,  & I am certainly open to buying used but also have questions about where that leaves you with a warranty.  Any advise on first time purchases would be much appreciated.  

Thank you,

Kelley

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Kelly- read Lisa's note carefully, especially the first paragraph. Try a vest first. What works for anyone else might not work so well for you. Try each one you can on. Have you taken a workshop? If not, I'd suggest you hold off on all purchases until you do.

Buying used gear leaves you generally with no warranty other than what the seller offers, but top-rated gear usually works fine and most sellers in this community of operators are reliable and trustworthy about their gear.

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I appreciate the response Jerry.  I am signed up for a workshop in July, assuming it doesn't get cancelled.  I will be waiting until after the workshop to make any major purchases.  I just like to gather as much info as possible and to hear from those who with experience.

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