Kokatat Maximus Centurion Rescue PFD Review

 

In the long running debate between which type V rescue PFD is the best, the Kokatat Maximus Centurion Rescue PFD has come along to try to de-throne all major contenders (you know who you are). Every paddler is different…they have different wants and needs, carry different gear, and have different body sizes. Here we’ll quickly run through some of the features of the Kokatat Maximus Centurion.

Kokatat Maximus Centurion:

Kokatat has added the Maxiums Centurion to their already popular and time tested river running/rescue Maximus PFD line. One the biggest and most notable new features on the Maximus Centurion is the Belly Pocket accessory for storage. The Maximus Centurion also features the Dynamic Suspension System (DSS), has the highest flotation on the market, and has multiple entry options and lots of points of adjustment for a comfortable fit. The Maximus Centurion fits the bill for the paddler or professional whitewater rescuer that wants a PFD that’s jam-packed with features, multiple adjustment points and lots of different storage options.

Storage Space:
The Kokatat Maximus Centurion Rescue PFD has the same framework as the Maximus.
The features that set it apart, and also differentiate it from the Ronin Pro, are the pockets.  The duplex chest pocket and the removable belly pocket accessory  provide the paddler with tons of storage space. Stuff your snacks, chap stick, sunscreen, ear plugs, and other personal gear the duplex chest pockets and keep all your rescue gear or med kit organized and easily accessible in the Belly Pocket. The Belly Pocket can even fit a VHF radio! The Kokatat River Tow Tether sits perfectly behind the chest pocket for easy access and storage while eliminating the snagging hazard of a traditional cow tail tow tether. Need more storage space? You can attach the Kokatat Tactic Pack or Tributary Hydration system to the back of the Centurion for even more storage!

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Duplex chest pockets, each with their own lanyard inside to attach, keys, or anything that you do not want to lose to the river.

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Another shot of the duplex chest  pockets. And these are not even the main storage pockets, there are more just below!

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The primary storage (Belly Pocket) for the Kokatat Maximus Centurion. This can fit a pin kit, nose and ear plugs, and lots of smaller river necessities.

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The Knife Garage.

 

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Wide padded shoulders (DSS) of the Kokatat Maximus Centurion.

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Another shot of the DSS system on the shoulders.

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More adjustment points. This is why Kokatat PFD’s fit so well. The more places that you can adjust a PFD, the better it will feel on you. Also, this PFD will fit on a wide range of body types due to the multitude of adjustment tabs.

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The rescue release point, as well as side entry fastex buckles. The Kokatat Maximus Centurion can be used as a pullover or side entry PFD.

Comfortable Fit:
The Maximus Centurion features Kokatat’s Dynamic Suspension System (DSS). The DSS has wide, padded, neoprene shoulder straps that allow an independently attached front flotation panel to move freely with the paddler. The webbing adjustment for the shoulder straps let you keep the top panel of the PFD as snug or loose as you want while keeping the inside panel of the Centurion securely attached to the lower torso of the paddler. The Centurion has buckles that allow the paddler to choose between both pull over and side entry.

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Lots of adjustment, and lots of storage – that pretty much sums it up.

Highest Flotation in the Industry:
Flotation is the name of the game and the Maximus Centurion has the highest flotation of any rescue vest on the market. The XS/S, M/L, and the XL/XXL have 16.05 lbs, 17.05 lbs and 18 lbs of flotation, respectively. When that beatdown-to-swim finally catches up to you on the NF Payette, the Maximus Centurion will not fail to keep you floating high in the water.

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The flotation of the Maximus Centurion is dispersed very evenly – there is quite a bit of float around your waist – this helps you sit higher out of the water (which can literally be a life saver).

Because of the shape of the Kokatat Maximus Centurion Rescue PFD, you will find yourself sitting up higher in the water.  A lot of the floatation is around the center of your torso, which in turns puts you out of the water a little bit more. In a world where a 1/2″ higher out of the river, could mean the difference of the water being at your chin and not above your nose, I’d say this is a pretty important feature!!
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Overall, we’re very excited to add the Kokatat Maximus Centurion to our lineup of rescue PFD’s. As with all Kokatat products, it is produced with the finest materials in the world, tested by the best paddlers out there and backed by Kokatat’s phenomenal, industry leading customer service and warranty. We’re really looking forward to getting out in the river with this vest, and reviewing it a little bit more.

Click here to purchase a 2015 Kokatat Maximus Centurion from CKS!

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