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#142535 - 08/01/08 07:27 PM Re: Sawyer Extractor Test [Re: Hikin_Jim]
Jay Offline
Stranger

Registered: 07/31/08
Posts: 4
Originally Posted By: Hikin_Jim
Good update. NOLS certainly has a lot of credibility.


According to link provided, NOLS seems to be saying that the unclear benefits and the 2004 study - the one I pointed out flaws in - are the reasons for their shift in advice. So they don't seem to be really adding anything to the debate and they failed to note what I would think would be obvious criticisms of the tests that were done.

http://www.nols.edu/wmi/curriculum_updates/archive/041105_sawyer.shtml

I find it a shame that we really don't have good solid information on whether the device is really useful. Seems like a coin toss to me. Probably best to wear snake gators.

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#142536 - 08/01/08 07:32 PM Re: Sawyer Extractor Test [Re: Jay]
Lono Offline
Old Hand

Registered: 10/19/06
Posts: 1013
Loc: Pacific NW, USA
Still I think its good to dispel myths on treating snake bites as they come up. I polled some Tenderfoot Scouts during a basic First Aid session a while ago, 75% thought they would surely die from any snake bite. One suggested the old cut cross-hatches into the bite and attempt to suck out the venom, the others basically were prepared to pray for the poor hiker to meet their maker. Now I realize this is very region-specific, the west side of the Cascades doesn't have any venomous snakes at all, but you have to work really hard to get the the Western and diamondback rattlers on the other side of the mountains to try to bite you at all, and even if they did, basic precautions should make the bite treatable and definitely survivable. NOLS advice works really well out here - supplement it with good sense advice, like making noise as you walk, carry a stick or pole to stir your surroundings, wear boots and gaiters in snake country, and don't put your hand where it doesn't belong. I have more often stepped over rattlers on a cold day than encountered ones that were excited enough to announce their presence.

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#142543 - 08/01/08 08:47 PM Re: Sawyer Extractor Test [Re: Lono]
Jay Offline
Stranger

Registered: 07/31/08
Posts: 4
Originally Posted By: Lono
Still I think its good to dispel myths on treating snake bites as they come up.


Absolutely. The problem is that it isn't clear whether or not the Sawyer device's effectiveness should be considered as a myth. Further, uncritically accepting studies like the one cited seems to work against the whole notion of fostering good information. That said, it hardly invalidates NOLS as a source of good information. For me it just drives home the point that you can't simply rely on one source. You need to investigate on your own. Fortunately, the internet is a great resource for that.

I have a Sawyer extraction kit, but I'm now uncertain as to whether or not I should use it should I get bit. I'm on the fence on this now. Given that I could apply it very quickly, I might still give it a go. If more time has elapsed, I'll be less inclined.

I do thin, however, that I'll add an ACE bandage to my kit so as to be able to make the loose compress described elsewhere. But mostly, I'll just continue to be careful and try to avoid the bite to begin with.

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#142548 - 08/01/08 09:44 PM Re: Sawyer Extractor Test [Re: Jay]
Hikin_Jim Offline
Sheriff
Pooh-Bah

Registered: 10/12/07
Posts: 1804
Loc: Southern California
Originally Posted By: Jay
Originally Posted By: Hikin_Jim
Good update. NOLS certainly has a lot of credibility.


According to link provided, NOLS seems to be saying that the unclear benefits and the 2004 study - the one I pointed out flaws in - are the reasons for their shift in advice. So they don't seem to be really adding anything to the debate and they failed to note what I would think would be obvious criticisms of the tests that were done.

http://www.nols.edu/wmi/curriculum_updates/archive/041105_sawyer.shtml

I find it a shame that we really don't have good solid information on whether the device is really useful. Seems like a coin toss to me. Probably best to wear snake gators.
and some gloves if you plan to be gathering firewood, moving duff to clear a sleep site, etc.

The problem I have with snake gaiters is that most of them are so stiff and heavy that they'd make walking unpleasant and laborious. The brand I've heard good things about, Turtleskin, look like good stuff but they're a tad pricey.
http://www.turtleskin.com/Hunting-Clothing.aspx


Edited by Hikin_Jim (08/01/08 09:50 PM)
Edit Reason: correct spelling error
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#142555 - 08/01/08 10:42 PM Re: Sawyer Extractor Test [Re: Hikin_Jim]
falcon5000 Offline
Addict

Registered: 09/08/05
Posts: 662
Hikin_Jim, I had bought a set of these from Cabelas and although I haven't field tested them yet, I do have them in my pack and walked around the yard with them but haven't really walked a trail with them but they do seem comfortable with me so far. Check them out and see what you think. I do always carry a Sawyer Extractor kit with me as well and will use it if I do get bit because I do not think any harm will happen if I do use it and even if it does or doesn't work at least if it gets even a trace of venom out, it's better than nothing at all. Either way I know I'm screwed unless I carry antivenin with me (which is impractical and expensive due to refrigeration) and I I having seen any true feedback on the stun gun shock therapy much less having the balls enough to shock the venom out. So to minimize the bite chances I went with the Gators and use a stick when walking around and hope they will warn me when near.

http://www.cabelas.com/cabelas/en/templa...s&noImage=0

_________________________
Failure is not an option!
USMC Jungle Environmental Survival Training PI 1985

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#142558 - 08/01/08 11:04 PM Re: Sawyer Extractor Test [Re: falcon5000]
Hikin_Jim Offline
Sheriff
Pooh-Bah

Registered: 10/12/07
Posts: 1804
Loc: Southern California
Originally Posted By: falcon5000
Hikin_Jim, I had bought a set of these from Cabelas and although I haven't field tested them yet, I do have them in my pack and walked around the yard with them but haven't really walked a trail with them but they do seem comfortable with me so far. Check them out and see what you think. I do always carry a Sawyer Extractor kit with me as well and will use it if I do get bit because I do not think any harm will happen if I do use it and even if it does or doesn't work at least if it gets even a trace of venom out, it's better than nothing at all. Either way I know I'm screwed unless I carry antivenin with me (which is impractical and expensive due to refrigeration) and I I having seen any true feedback on the stun gun shock therapy much less having the balls enough to shock the venom out. So to minimize the bite chances I went with the Gators and use a stick when walking around and hope they will warn me when near.

http://www.cabelas.com/cabelas/en/templa...s&noImage=0

Hmm. Now, these look interesting -- and they're about half the price. smile Are you going to post a "field report" after you've actually used them in the field? I'd be interested in how effectively they stay on, how they affect (if they do) your walking, and any comments on durability, weight, etc.
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#142563 - 08/01/08 11:32 PM Re: Sawyer Extractor Test [Re: Hikin_Jim]
falcon5000 Offline
Addict

Registered: 09/08/05
Posts: 662
I can if you want Jim, it may be a while though, I'm going on a trip next week out of country and when I get back I have to go straight back to work but as soon as I can get back on schedule when I get back, I'll head back out on the trail and give you feed back if you want. I'll try to get back out there as quickly as I can.
_________________________
Failure is not an option!
USMC Jungle Environmental Survival Training PI 1985

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#142580 - 08/02/08 02:09 AM Re: Sawyer Extractor Test [Re: falcon5000]
JohnE Offline
Addict

Registered: 06/10/08
Posts: 601
Loc: Southern Cal
Don't forget to get bitten by a rattlesnake to test the gaiters' effectiveness...

All in the name of science of course.

John E
_________________________
JohnE

"and all the lousy little poets
comin round
tryin' to sound like Charlie Manson"

The Future/Leonard Cohen


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#142584 - 08/02/08 02:42 AM Re: Sawyer Extractor Test [Re: falcon5000]
OldBaldGuy Offline
Geezer

Registered: 09/30/01
Posts: 5695
Loc: Former AFB in CA, recouping fr...
Those seem a little pricey to me. But then, I am cheap. I have a pair of el cheapo "cordura" (for lack of a better term) gaitors that I suspect would really slow down a snakes fangs. In my younger days I used to wear USGI WWII canvas leggings for snake protection when dove and quail hunting. Luckily, I have never had to test either of them...
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#142605 - 08/02/08 01:09 PM Re: Sawyer Extractor Test [Re: JohnE]
falcon5000 Offline
Addict

Registered: 09/08/05
Posts: 662
Ha, ha, it's always in the name of science, what better way to test them. No pain, no gain.
_________________________
Failure is not an option!
USMC Jungle Environmental Survival Training PI 1985

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