Would someone please tell me which is THE ABSOLUTE BEST waterproof cellphone bag? Thanks. Lydia P.
I use a ziplock bag with one of those slide closures. Then I slide it in my front pfd pocket so it’s always close.
I like the Voyageur. It has a roll-down top and padded back that adds extra floatation as well as protection from shocks. This is the one I use for my GPS:
I also have an Aquapac, but the seal does not roll down and there is no way to put extra tension on the closure. For these reasons I haven’t tried it out yet. It seems like any little bit of sand/dirt etc., that gets between that seal might compromise the waterproofness. Anyone have experience with these?:
I prefer to "Boxit"
I’ve used one of these for two different phones. Works real nice in my experience.
Aquapac, by far.
Simple, but effective.
Just keep and eye on the seams (and condition of bag in general). If those open up and it gets down past the closure the seal is shot. I have one of their wallets this happened to (from my rough handling). It still keeps keys and cash dry. When/if it gets worse I’ll use some glue to repair or just replace it. It’s seen several hundred uses (every time I paddle).
Roll top type? maybe.
Box-it? Not with my phone.
FWIW - I’m in the case business - on the design end. We used to re-sell Aquapac - but don’t now. We had planned to develop our own waterproof cases, and evaluated most everything available in the process, but decided against it as the market’s quite small and has decent options now with Aquapac and their knock offs.
Never brought the cell phone
on the water with me. However, I would imagine that the basic Seal Line dry bag might keep it dry; my wallet, keys, camera never get wet.
still gets damp though
I use a dry bag for my keys, food, etc. but some condensation does build up inside the bag. For my cell phone, I put it in a ziplock bag and then into the dry bag to ensure that no moisture will get into the circuits. For my GPS, I’ll probably just get one of those GPS dry bags and not use any sort of ziplock bag as the GPS is water resistant.
Bags for GPS & VHF?
I don’t put mine in anything. I paid for waterproof - I expect waterproof. Both have been dunked, wave splashed, spray soaked, and tossed in a wet under deck bag for a few hours on many occasions.
My GPS is used a lot. The VHF not as much (but more than my cell), but it needs to be fully accessible (hard to work knobs through a bag) and audible right away.
VHF is to get help now! Cell is better for calling to let someone know you’ll be late or where to pick you up.
I would be more concerned about vapor penetration and condensation from moisture in the bag with the GPS (in sunlight=greenhouse). Not so much of an issue with my cell as it goes in the bag (usually in the AC) before it’s even near the water. It stays there, turned off, out of the sun, and is very rarely used (and used in the bag if needed on or around water).
I do try to remember to keep and eye on the battery and other connection areas after each paddle (particularly with the GPS). Had a few minor incursions - nothing major (if you check right away). Forget to check and leave just one drop of seawater in a battery compartment for a while and you’ve got a nice mess.
I don’t expect these things to last forever in a marine environment. A few years would be good, already have a couple on them…
gps vhf bags
Why not be real carefull with them and keep them in a bag? If you don’t you are taking a chance with your important gear that might not work when you need it. If you put a silica pack in them you will not get moisture in them of keep them in the cockpit and out of the direct sun you will be fine.
If I keep them in the cockpit…
... I'm not really using them, am I?
Cell stays in it's WP bag in cockpit (not used - safety backup only).
VHF inside sometimes but easily accessible - or on my PFD (sometimes off and along as backup, sometimes on and actively monitoring). Bag would muffle the sound and prevent full use (unless I buy a different knobless model - West Marine has an OK looking one out BTW). On days I would likely need it, the wind would interfere enough with my ability to hear it.
GPS is on deck in sight. (I'm not getting occasional fixes - I know where I am. I'm using it to continually monitor speed and distance, and sometimes ID shoreline features, channels/canals, etc.).
These devices are rated for FULL IMMERSION for up to 30 minutes. I expect them to handle the use they were designed for. It's why I selected the ones I did.
They are overkill for my needs for where and when I paddle. Either one or both conking out would not likely be a safety issue. If I were doing more extreme paddling I would still not be dependent on either for my safety. I'd also have charts, compass, flares, alternate routes, bailout options, first aid stuff, extra clothing, etc. - AND someone else along with redundant gear!
Like the Voyageur, too
I can operate the phone through the clear bag (don’t get a flip phone!-), The roll top stays dry, it floats with a phone in the bag, and clips easily to a deck line.
I think nothing of practicing rolls/wet exits with it on deck.
Adjust the knobs before you launch.
That way you don’t need to fiddle with them at all until it’s time to turn them off.
My VHF is always on and in a dry bag and fits in the pocket of my pfd. JIS 7 standers for submersible only mean that it can be put in a 3 foot deep tank of water for 30 minutes.
They don’t test if for the pressure of a breaking wave on you. I’ve seen too many radios quit working after the paddler got slammed by a wave that it’s a cheap insurance policy for having a radio that works when I need it.
Almost all of my paddling buddies have VHF’s with them when we paddle, but I still don’t want to depend on somebody else’s gear when I need it.
Secong the voyageur
Works for me and I am know to keep the cell phone on the front deck andc roll a bunch.
“Better to be out on the pond and available to your spouse, than to be on the office and available to your spouse.”
I don’t leave mine on all the time. More often than not it’s off. When on, I don’t mess with it a lot, but have found need to adjust volume & Squelch. Lots of chatter here, even on 16.
Like I said, I’ll take my chances. I’m completely OK if it (or the GPS) dies, as I’m sure both will do at some point. I’m not OK with messing with a protective bag like I need to do with my cell (and I can get one free). Personal preference.
The radio is backup/overkill for me anyway. Mostly a toy. I carry it because I paddle alone a lot - but also more as a courtesy in case another paddler, boater, or jet ski operator needs assistance and is without - or doesn’t have the cell number to call for a tow, etc. Never know what I’ll come across. Same reason I’ve taken to having my small tow rig handy, which I’ll also rarely need. Same for GPS - a toy. Not really using it for any serious navigation, nor would I rely on it for that. Useful, not required.
Warm water, mostly mild weather and onshore winds, fairly near shore paddling, and lots of other boaters. I can get away with few layers of defense here than in most coastal areas (but have a few extra anyway).