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About HansB

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  1. I am certainly still on the fence with the BOA boots as well. First year for me using stocking foot waders and wading boots. Will use the lace up boots at the start of next season and then weigh the convenience/maintenance factor of BOA vs standard lace ups after using them for a while.
  2. Update on the Orvis BOA boot I wore all spring and summer in the salt. Used them twice a week anywhere from 4-8 hours from April through October. Worked them hard climbing trails and fishing primarily on sand. Washed them out after every trip. Went through 2 laces, one main gear and one dial. One lace broke when tightening up the dial on location, but I found I was still able to climb and fish all day with just the additional neoprene gravel guard I typically wrap over the upper boot. That was good to know. The other lace I changed out when I saw some fraying mid summer. Fortunately, the BOA folks provide parts for the mechanism as part of their lifetime guarantee. Changing the wire and gears just takes a few minutes once you figure out how to do it. Ordered the parts to have on hand so no problems with down time. Get the kit and spare laces. Other than that, as long as I used the Costco 10 gallon wastebasket bag and the additional gravel guard, I have had few problems with sand clogging the mechanism. I typically turn the dial a little and then pull to pop it up. I have had to use the mini pry bar a couple of times, not sure if slight corrosion or sand was part of the problem or I was just too tired to try harder. The mini pry bar pops the dial up very easily and is a MUST to have in your vehicle if you are using these boots. I’m using a 5 1/2 inch mini pry bar from Dasco (Dasco Pro 222) that came with a set. I started out using the Orvis Infinity Gravel Guards and then tried the cheaper Frogg Toggs neoprene gravel guards. Both worked fine, the Orvis have a thicker neoprene and heavier Velcro but cost twice as much. Boots and studs still good to go for next season. Picked up a pair of the lace up Orvis Access Boots to try next season as well.
  3. Great pics Matt!
  4. I actually caught and released a fresh out of the bay 43” fish that day on one of Dan's ¾ oz banana head jigs. I’ve got a picture of me with her but it shows exactly where I was fishing. Regarding the bucktails query, these are the same kind of questions I asked Dan last year as he makes a variety of types of heads and he could answer that type of question better. I would direct questions to him on his bucktail thread. I did ask him about the Spro from the beach and he said he prefers a more forward balance head where the pull point on the banana head and the shape of the head caused more resistance and makes the head want to ride up. On a bullet head with a similar pull point the round blunt surface makes it run a little deeper because it has less of a planning effect. He also mentioned that you can cast the bullet head further but can also keep it higher in the water if necessary by adding more hair than on a banana head jig. I’m still a noob as I’ve only been seriously doing this for a little over a year and learning a lot along the way from more experienced guys like Dan, Winch and BigNevadaBob. I got a real nice banana head jig that Bob made for me and I’ve caught a lot of fish on that one. I will still use Spro when it’s windy and rough and I want to fish the lower part of the zone as the shape of the head and the sparse hair on it makes it dig down a lot faster than some of the other bucktails. I also use it a lot when I’m fishing the beach lip. I don’t encounter the problem with it running sideways and there are a lot of deeper beaches where you are fishing from an elevated position and it seems to run true. I’ve caught quite a few fish with them.
  5. That degree of vertigo symptoms is really frightening to experience. If your symptoms are not resolving try to get a referral to an EENT doctor, start there. They are more likely to know about otolithiasis and can refer you to someone if they don’t know the maneuvers. You need to get with someone that can see the entire picture in case it isn’t BPV. I use the modified Epley and the Semont Manuevers. Both are effective if the problem is BPV. Typically a patient with BPV is going to have problems lying on the side of the problem and it will set it off. It will push you to the opposite side when you are trying to walk like a drunken sailor. When you do the maneuvers they are done side specific, ie. if the problem is on the left you do the modified Epley starting with the head turned to the left as you go back into the lying position. The angles are important, some of the youtube videos get it totally wrong. You can make yourself feel worse while doing them, that’s okay. Part of what I do is show the patient how to do the maneuver correctly, to empower them. So if they are in Hawaii on vacation they know how to manage the problem if they get an unfortunate BPV episode. Nick, sorry to hear about your experience with the GP. Doctors are good at naming things. You were told you have BPV. If you are having dizziness and a slight hearing loss you are often told that you have the onset of Meniere’s Disease. But classis Meniere’s disease is dizziness that is transient and is time limited. It’s one of those diseases that there is no cure for and I would hate to be told I have it for that reason. But what if the dizziness and hearing loss were from another problem? The reason that dizziness and hearing problems are often found together is that there is a cranial nerve in the head called the Vestibulocochlear Nerve that sends impulses to the brain for both balance and hearing. When I had my episode that got me for a month, I was really sensitive to loud noises. Yet I developed a slight hearing loss. So could a long standing problem with the inner ear affecting balance gradually affect hearing? I absolutely believe so. They are controlled by the same nerve. Not all this stuff is in the textbooks. Sometimes you have to think outside the box. Getting back to naming things, if you get dizziness that stays there after a cruise the doctors tell you have Mal de debarquement syndrome. If a doctor can’t find an obvious problem they are good at calling a joint problem “bursitis” or “tendinitis”. The one I like from chiropractors is when they can’t figure out a low back problem with radiating pain into the hip they call it “Piriformis Syndrome” or “Facet Syndrome”. It’s like if you can call it something, it makes it okay if they can’t figure it out………come on. It’s more the shortcoming of the doctor that is at fault here. I was teaching the other afternoon and was discussing torticollis, which is when you have a condition where you can’t move your neck and your head is off to one side. It’s painful, and the pain can be bad enough for a typical patient to go to urgent care where you are given Demerol, it can be that painful. Fairly common, I actually saw Winch’s son with the problem a few months ago. Anyway I asked the class what actually causes the pain. One of the students very close (weeks) to being in the outpatient clinic seeing real patients replied that he was taught it was from sleeping next to an open window…..needless to say I was not happy with that response considering he was that close to seeing real patients. Grrrrr. My mom had a partially torn supraspinatus muscle (rotator cuff muscle) in her right shoulder a few years back from a fall. Her doctor requested the MRI, and I had access to seeing the MRI beforehand. During the follow-up visit I asked the doctor what were the results of the shoulder MRI. His response was that if we didn’t hear from them after the MRI, everything was normal. Huh? I called him on it and he was very apologetic. Lesson here is if you have a test of some kind follow up yourself to make sure the results are normal. Doctor’s offices are overburdened with paperwork and things DO slip through the cracks. Don’t get me wrong, there are many, many great doctors out there that do amazing work on a day to day basis. You only hear about the bad stuff. Why? Because doctors are supposed to have all the healthcare answers and be trustworthy. Their word is gospel. A lot of the problems today stem from the fact that most doctors are overburdened and are required to see a set numbers of patients. Those numbers depend on the organization that they work for. That creates a problem with the effectiveness of care. I have friends that are MD’s and we talk about some of the shortcomings of both of our professions and in particular, the health care system. It doesn’t always reward thoroughness. There are studies out there that reflect the unhappiness of doctors in the present state of healthcare because of this. Why? Because they are not always allowed to practice medicine the way they feel they should and be rewarded for it. It’s become a numbers game. A few years back when my daughter was having lower abdominal pain, a slight fever and an elevated white count I could appreciate the thoroughness of the MD that sent her for an immediate abdominal CT, found her a surgeon and got her on the table the same day. Her white count spiked just prior to the surgery. This took place over a period of 24 hours. The MD who saw her and the surgeon did exactly what they were supposed to do. Bottom line here is not to be afraid to ask questions. Sorry for the rant. I’m done.
  6. You are welcome Nick. Thank Winch….he steered me to this thread so I could perhaps offer up some insight. I’m glad you are going back to your GP. Please keep in mind that not all MD’s are aware of the alternative types of therapy for this problem. Perhaps the med schools think it’s just a little too “out of the box” for them to consider anything other than medication as a primary course of treatment. I have a patient who is a pediatrician at Stanford that recently developed a mild case of BPV and was intrigued by the results of her treatment. She mentioned that BPV was discussed in detail in her schooling but the maneuvers were not part of her training. When I saw her a few days later for her back related problems, she said she used the same protocols on her mom who had been having some balance issues and it really helped her. I shared an office with an internist and another MD who was an infectious disease specialist back in the early 2000’s and they had never heard of the maneuvers either. One of their office staff was having balance problems and even though it didn’t turn out to be BPV, they disappeared once we figured what the problem was. I also shared the same office a little later with another doctor who was a PsyD, and she developed a bad case of vertigo that lasted for weeks and had no idea what to do. So we are talking about experienced doctors and nurses who have limited experience with how to treat vertigo and dizziness first hand beyond prescribing meds for the symptoms. Last year, I had a patient who comes in on/off for back pain, have her first experience with bad vertigo and balance issues. Three weeks into her symptoms, she came to see me and she was really a mess. Missing work, really miserable. Did some testing to figure out what was causing her symptoms and the maneuvers were part of the treatment. On a follow up visit, the doctor who had been treating her (giving her Meclizine for the motion sickness) told her that the maneuvers were just a placebo and didn’t think they had anything to do with her sudden improvement. Seriously? Then there was another woman in her 40’s who has had balance issues and vertigo for seven years. SEVEN YEARS! When I asked her why she went that long with it, her answer was similar to Winch, that the doctors told her there was nothing else that could be done. Imagine walking around with motion sickness daily for 7 years. Her problem was a lot more complex, but the maneuvers were part of the treatment as well. Talk about life changing. I don’t want to single out the medical profession as I have seen patients who have gotten vertigo and dizziness from a chiropractic adjustment as well. I saw a patient a month ago who was casually given a neck adjustment at a soccer game because her neck was stiff. The next day her neck pain was worse and then the dizziness set in. What was he thinking, on a bench at a soccer game? I’ve got more stories, but I’ll stop here. I do teach part time at the clinical level at a chiropractic college and certainly speak about dizziness and vertigo in the classroom. In regards to the maneuvers, there is enough quality research out there to back up their effectiveness when BPV is diagnosed as part of the clinical picture. I believe as time goes by, they will be continue to be incorporated as part of the front line treatment for BPV in all health care professions. Hang in there and I hope your GP keeps an open mind towards your problem and is able to steer you in the right direction.
  7. I owe Dan Tinman a shout out too....one of my better days with spring schoolies was with his bucktails.......needless to say I ordered more.
  8. Nick, wish I was closer to you. I'm in the SF Bay Area and over a 30 year period have seen thousands of cases involving some form of dizziness. I see symptoms varying from feeling slightly off balance to vertigo in its worst form, where the patient is incapacitated and vomiting from the resulting motion sickness. You need to rule out the bad stuff like concussion, infection, tumor or stroke. Look for other causes like low blood pressure, drug reactions, dehydration, or dizziness secondary to migraine symptoms. Otherwise, most commonly, it comes down to either benign positional vertigo or dizziness related to neck pain. If it is benign positional vertigo from the debris floating in the fluid (called endolymph) over-stimulating the hair cells in the semicircular canals, the maneuvers are the ONLY way to clear them. I know this firsthand from my own experiences with debilitating vertigo in the 90’s when there wasn’t much information out there. All I got from my MD friends was antivert and valium and that it should go away eventually. I had a patient yesterday who was spinning very badly who tested positive for BPV. By the time I took her through the maneuvers the second time, she had no symptoms. If it just started recently like it did for her, then the symptoms can go away very quickly. If they have been there longer, it can take several weeks to fully recover, but you will feel a difference right away if you do the maneuver correctly. Don’t believe anyone that tells you the maneuvers are a placebo, they are the only way to manage this type of vertigo when it occurs. I’ve got so many stories, like Winch here on SOL, where you believe you there is nowhere else to get help. The other cause of dizziness I see is typically related to the spine. Problem is finding the right doctor that can tell the difference between this and benign positional vertigo and knows where the problem is and how to treat it. It’s hard trying to find a decent chiropractor. One can fix it, another can cause it. In your case, surf casting, like some other repetitive activities, can involve quick sudden movements that vary depending on casting style. A gradual to sudden acceleration mixed with abrupt deceleration with a load. As the rod unloads, that energy is transmitted to your upper body through the arm and shoulder. It is similar to some other repetitive activities which involves similar forces (though casting doesn’t involve the force of striking an object), such as the golf swing, tennis volley, the use of a hammer in carpentry. All can lead to dislodging some of the particulate matter into the canals. I see this type of causation all time. The literature suggests that BPV is usually as a result of trauma such as a fall or MVA, but microtrauma from repetitive activity can certainly set it off. Driving with a lot of vibration, using heavy machinery, running, a rocking motion on a boat, getting beat up all day by wave action? Absolutely, folks on this thread can attest to that. At the same time, the casting motion certainly puts a lot of torsional and asymmetric stress on the structures of the spine and can cause neck pain. In talking to Winch, his first symptoms appeared when he was fishing the beaches back east grinding non-stop. Does reaching beyond that last breaker with a heavier rod and 4-5 oz of metal or a 7” pencil increase the likelihood of flaring things up? Yes it can. What’s the bottom line? Get the right testing done to rule out something really bad (stroke, infection, concussion if a head injury is involved, tumor, etc.). I know Winch would tell you to keep an open mind when seeking treatment. Help is out there. If you aren’t getting anywhere, don’t be afraid to ask questions of your physician or even go outside of your medical network to get help.
  9. BOA Laces breaking? Is this something that actually happened to you, if so, that’s a real bummer. Or something you read or heard anecdotally somewhere that occurs at a high rate? Please provide the reference or the shop you talked to. To be honest, I’m still on the fence about the BOA systems, but the laces are not what I am concerned about. Managing the sand issue is a big step in liking these boots. I talked to BOA before I bought these boots and they claimed less than 1% failure rate and most of those failures they tracked are secondary to impact such as bike crashes. The reason they offer a lifetime “no question asked” warranty where they will provide you parts at no cost is because of the robustness of their systems. The wire is supposedly a 49 strand aircraft grade stainless wire cable. They were kind enough to send me a 100mm wire kit to have as a spare just in case, which included a T6 driver used to open the mechanism. I was told that for this application (wading boot) I should worry less about the wire breaking and more about the materials of the boot itself breaking down before that would likely happen. Cleaning and maintaining the mechanism would go a long ways to prevent failure as would changing the wire should you see a fray or klnk develop. But for tensile strength failure, unlikely. I spoke to the customer service desk at Orvis about the BOA Pivots boot and they said to look at the reviews and to date, there is one mention of a wire problem out of 118 reviews. (4.7/5) Orvis fan boys? Don’t know but mostly positive things are said. I also received firsthand positive feedback from the customer service folks at REI who sell BOA-equipped snowboard, ski and cycling models. All the feedback I got from them was positive, and none of them had any problems with wires snapping without user error. The only precaution they gave as an example was not to let the snowboard edge rest on the wire and possibly fray it. I mentioned fishing and the reply was that snowboarding involves a lot more physical stress on a BOA mechanism than climbing a hill, walking a stream or the surf. Guessing time will tell and I’m hoping others with firsthand experience will drop in and share them, and I will do the same at the end of the season.
  10. I wanted to add that the only thing you have to watch for is that the better neoprene gravel guards have a Velcro strip that runs the entire length of the attachment side of the gravel guard. There is a sharp edge on the upper edge of the strip once it’s attached that can cause abrasions and tear into the inner fabric of the gravel guard built into my silver sonic waders. When you fold your gravel guards down to attach to the D ring on the boot, the inner fabric of the gravel guard is resting on that sharp edge and can damage it. Just be careful with this when wrapping the neoprene gravel guard or modify that edge by removing some of the outer edge of the Velcro. I have been able to use the Orvis Infinity Gravel Guards and the Frogg Troggs Gravel Guards with success. I removed the outside edge of the guards and tacked them down with a couple of stitches. If you are careful how you wrap the neoprene gravel guards it likely isn’t necessary to remove the edge. Here is a close up of the upper edge that abrades the lining of the built in gravel guard.