Palm brought the FXr into production in January this year, and I’ve been using it almost every day since then. The cut is taken directly from the FX which has been my buoyancy aid of choice for the past three years with some extra features to help keep you safe on the river. I was stoked to put the FXr to the test …


The material

I kayak almost every day of the year and I’m a gear breaker, which makes the new material on the FXr a huge plus point for me, made from Cordura, this stuff is incredibly tough. It has taken a real beating this summer, sliding down cliffs, multi-day hike-ins through cactus feilds etc. It still hasn’t torn even though I was sure it would at some points during this summer and it still looks great despite being used and dried in the sun for the past couple of months


Failsafe shoulder straps

A standard on all Palm buoyancy aids that makes a world of difference in high pressure situations and increases the longevity of your BA. The straps are continuous loops from waistbelt to waistbelt, and tested beyond 5 kN breaking strain.

Removable chest harness

Not much to be said about the chest harness. An industry standard on all river safety vests. Allthough my original plan was to take advantage of being able to remove it and free up my buoyancy aid when freestyling, such is the cut of this vest that I didn’t notice it and left it on. Several months after and it’s still there, unobtrusive and useful as ever.


The colours

Asides from being undoubtedly cool, the colours also have a more practical use of highlighting your position when you’re on the river. They stand out well even when submerged and give me a little bit more confidence on tight pinny rivers.

Knife pocket

I love this little pocket, small, subtle and incredibly useful. Creeking it will always carry a knife but when freestyling or cruising an easer river it also fits a chocolate bar and my waterproof iPod really nicely …


Overall I am extremely happy with this buoyancy aid. A streamlined safety vest with everything you need that still maintains a smooth, unrestricted cut. Looking forward to a great winter season with the FXr!

See you on the water, Bren.