Welcome, Guest. Please login or register.
December 14, 2017, 01:08:16 PM

Login with username, password and session length

Recent Topics

[Today at 01:02:38 PM]

[Today at 12:56:18 PM]

[Today at 12:44:40 PM]

[Today at 12:25:31 PM]

[Today at 11:57:37 AM]

[Today at 11:37:11 AM]

[Today at 11:35:16 AM]

[Today at 11:00:55 AM]

[Today at 10:56:03 AM]

[Today at 10:39:28 AM]

[Today at 10:38:33 AM]

[Today at 10:37:32 AM]

[Today at 10:04:33 AM]

[Today at 09:49:14 AM]

[Today at 09:23:05 AM]

[Today at 09:20:25 AM]

[Today at 09:17:17 AM]

[Today at 08:54:19 AM]

[Today at 08:23:06 AM]

by bmb
[Today at 07:43:35 AM]

[Today at 05:13:28 AM]

[Today at 01:34:45 AM]

[Today at 12:45:14 AM]

[December 13, 2017, 09:57:31 PM]

[December 13, 2017, 09:45:22 PM]

[December 13, 2017, 06:41:43 PM]

[December 13, 2017, 06:27:33 PM]

by Tote
[December 13, 2017, 05:25:53 PM]

by SOMA
[December 13, 2017, 04:02:33 PM]

[December 13, 2017, 03:53:02 PM]

Support NCKA

Support the site by making a donation.

2017 AOTY/DOTY Entry

Topic: Wetsuits....safety vs comfort  (Read 1724 times)

0 Members and 1 Guest are viewing this topic.

FishingAddict

  • Sea Lion
  • ****
  • View Profile
  • Location: Fremont
  • Date Registered: Nov 2007
  • Posts: 3633
I think it is worth having a farmer john with the wetsuit jacket AND a full surf wetsuit. Hell the more wetsuits you have the better and the best part is they are totally affordable! It's also nice to have a paddling jacket to throw on over the suit on rainy or thick-foggy days. If you get a wetsuit that fits you right there shouldn't be chaffing problems. Try them on. The technology in wetsuits these days is incredible and they are making the inside more and more comfortable they are practically lined with fur. I recommend a 4/3 full wetsuit. I've been wearing a wetsuit kayak fishing for 4 years now and surfing and SUPing for a few years prior to that so naturally I don't feel right being in the ocean without one.

For the most part no one plans to fall in the water when kayak fishing. When you fall in unexpectedly cold shock is the real deal, and the more of your body that is exposed to our cold water the more likely you'll experience that initial cold shock. Your body then takes the actions it needs to protect your vital organs etc. Having your arms covered with the 2mm+ wetsuit will make all the difference in the time you will last in the water. The amount of water that will be let in to your core area with a farmer john will be much more threatening than if you were wearing a full wetsuit which would just let a little bit of water in (assuming its properly fitted), and then the wetsuit will then act like insulation and your body heat will warm that water inside up. You get warm sitting high and dry in the kayak, but it's so nice to just take a quick dip to cool  down. On wet days I stay warm by moving, or I'll wear a paddling jacket/ goretex rain jacket shell.

The downside of the wetsuit is that they are not really breathable so what I say is- hydrate, hydrate, hydrate and take advantage of jumping in the water to cool off. Plus getting on and off your kayak is good practice for self rescue. A cool thing about the wetsuit is if you get a hole in it the overall performance will be barely affected. They get hot, but so do drysuits. A lot of people I see just keep their drysuit unzipped or wear it half way to cool down, but what good will that do when they fall in?

Drysuits are a huge investment, require much more care, and there are so many more things that can fail.  When the drysuit fails the consequences can literally be life threatening. You need to wax the zippers, take care of the latex or whatever the gaskets are made of, lube this and that, wash it after each use, be dressed properly underneath so you'll actually be warm when you fall in, actually wear the drysuit all the way even on warm days, store it carefully, be careful around knives, hooks, and pointy fish, and thats on top of spending all that money on one. With all that said I just bought a drysuit lol… BUT I don't trust it like I do my wetsuit. It is for calmer days for me, and when it's rough, I'll happily put on my wetsuit before I go out.

I probably put way too much thought into it, but I also almost died in a car accident when I turned 18. I think of how do I want to go out? Do I want to die in the ocean from hypothermia because I didn't properly dress for immersion? Nope. That's just the way I see it. Safety should always win over comfort in my opinion. But that's based off my experience and a ton of people will disagree with me.  You and I may never ever fall in the water in our whole kayak fishing careers, but the risk if we do (around here) is too high to be testy. That's just my two cents!

Annie - I don't have the same experience as you mentioned with my drysuit.  I fish 2 to 3 times a month.  I recently upgraded to a Kokatat Goretex Angler suit, it's my 3rd drysuit having owned 2 Hydrus 3L suits. I sold my Hydrus drysuits because I wanted a new color that comes out.  I pulled the trigger on the Goretex suit because of its lifetime guaranty and excellent repair service Kokatat offers.  The maintance required that you mentioned is not the case.  They are very designed and can take the rigors and abuse of kayak fishing. I have never seen or experienced any of the potential failures you mentioned.

I use mine mainly for saltwater fishing.  The suit does not need to washed after every trip, just rinse with cold water, hang it dry and that's it.  Usually after several months when the smell is getting a bit too much then I wash it.  Lubricating the zippers and latex wrist gasket are suppose to be done monthly.  This takes seconds to perform and super easy.

My  3 closest fishing buddies all wear drysuits because of the superior comfort it provides.   None of then will ever go back to wetsuits.  We've been there and are not going back.  Perhaps when you've worn your new drysuit more, you will appreciate its merits.

Here is a review of happy drysuit owners and check out quality and customer service Kokatat offers: 

http://www.northwestkayakanglers.com/index.php?topic=18832.msg201275#msg201275

"The Kokatat Goretex Drysuits have a lifetime warrantee and they absolutely stand behind it. I purchased a Kokatat Goretex suit in 2008.  In 2016, I sent it in for repairs (I do this every couple years because I use it a lot).  Kokatat will patch all your little hook, scute, and tooth holes for $25 then pressure test it to be sure it no longer leaks.  They also inspect the Goretex for any other issues. Kokatat found the Goretex was delaminating so they sent me a brand new comparable dry suit for free.  Actually, they let me pay the difference and for $75 they upgraded the suit to the Meridian.  I know a few people that are on their second or third "cheaper" drysuit in the same time period. Cheaper isn't always better.

Unless you really screw up and fall out of a moving vehicle, or get run over by a boat, your drysuit should never end up in tatters if you get a quality one. Rinse off the salt and sand when you get home."
« Last Edit: May 15, 2017, 07:20:40 AM by FishingAddict »
2018 Hobie Revolution 13 Cheeesy Orange Papaya
2012 Hobie Adventure Island Red


Tinker

  • Salmon
  • ***
  • View Profile
  • Location: Oregon
  • Date Registered: Dec 2015
  • Posts: 371
I'm sorry, but I disagree with the dry suit v. wetsuit comparison, too.

My dry suit hasn't proven to require more care or maintenance than my wetsuits, since you should be rinsing both of them off each time you use them, and you should be lubricating the zippers on both of them, too.  Maintaining the latex gaskets is the real difference and it's a 20-second task.  I takes at least 20 more seconds to thoroughly rinse a wetsuit compared to rinsing a dry suit.

Neither are prone to catastrophic failures - although I've seen a couple of recent posts on NWKA about a dry suit latex wrist cuff having ripped while either putting it on or taking it off (the reports weren't clear about that).  I'd have said that's exceptional if two folks hadn't posted about it having happened to them.  One suit was a Gul sailing dry suit, the other was a Chinese knock off of a Stohlquist Amp.

You cool yourself off the same way.  And if you don't double-check the zippers on either of them, you're being foolish.

I've seen folks with their wetsuits open and peeled down but I haven't (yet) seen anyone with their dry suits open (who weren't taking a break, so-to-speak).

A lot has been said about the value of a relief zipper, but it seems to me that if you tumble off while doing that - and you're in an unstable position when taking advantage of that feature - you have more trouble than needing to pee.  A relief zipper is a fine idea, if you're in conditions where you can use it.

It's not easy to poke a hole through a Kokatat angler's dry suit with a fish hook because of the heavy reinforcements built into it.  Other brands?  Dunno.

My wetsuit isn't uncomfortable, but my dry suit is much more comfortable.

That said, I don't dislike my wetsuit and I don't like my dry suit significantly more than the wetsuit.  Each has it's own strengths and weaknesses.

It's possible that if I had used a wetsuit as extensively as AnnieAreYouOk I may never have made the switch.  I think it's a matter of preference more than performance.

The only important thing to take away is that if you don't want to invest in a dry suit, investing in a wetsuit will also keep you safe, and safe is what's important.

Happy shopping!
« Last Edit: May 15, 2017, 03:49:19 PM by Tinker »
Wilderness Systems Tarpon 120
Ocean Kayak Trident 11 (2)
Ocean Kayak Trident 13


Eric B

  • Sea Lion
  • ****
  • View Profile
  • Location: Fremont
  • Date Registered: Jul 2007
  • Posts: 4167
You don't have to look very hard to find stories on here about gasket failures, but I have yet to read about a wetsuit failure.  That being said, I would very much enjoy adding a dry suit to my gear.


AnnieAreYouOk

  • Salmon
  • ***
  • View Profile
  • Location: Sonoma County
  • Date Registered: Aug 2014
  • Posts: 603
I'll admit my paragraph on drysuits comes off way more harsh than I intended. I know drysuits save lives- I mean the coast guard wears them. And I have only one experience wearing a drysuit on top of the kayak so I am by no means an expert on them. All my care stuff is based off the care instruction booklet and wax and patches I got with the drysuit but now I've learned from you guys that there's not much to it.

I've been in the water wearing a wetsuit many times so I mentally feel safe in it. I definitely think drysuits are a great tool but are also often abused because people don't dress properly underneath, and don't practice self rescue wearing their drysuits. I'm not saying you guys don't so don't take it personally but I have eyes and spend enough time on the ocean to see shit like unzipped drysuits and people wearing jeans and a t shirt underneath their suits. I see wetsuits abused too don't get me wrong.  I'm obviously no drysuit hater since I bought one myself . I guess since I spent so much money on it I do care more about how I treat it vs my wetsuit which I've never done anything to the zippers and i don't always rinse it after each use. Should it be better cared for- probably but the lack of care doesn't affect it's overall performance. And I still do believe that there is more margin of error with a drysuit.

Thank you for opening my eyes to a few things and I want to make it clear that drysuits are an amazing tool. They work and a wetsuit works. I wasn't trying to make it a drysuit vs wetsuit. I just condensed the drysuit too much and didn't focus much on its strengths like I should have. If anything its a FJ vs full wetsuit thing.
« Last Edit: May 15, 2017, 09:04:12 AM by AnnieAreYouOk »


crash

  • Sea Lion
  • ****
  • View Profile
  • Location: Eureka
  • Date Registered: Dec 2007
  • Posts: 4576
This is another one of those times where the answer is both.  Get both. 

No matter what gear you have, you need to take care of it.  Especially for ocean fishing, our sport is very unforgiving on gear if you don't care for it.  That goes for immersion gear, rods, reels, electronics, and everything else you take out on the water including the kayak itself.  Take care of your shit.


DG

  • Sea Lion
  • ****
  • First joined in 2013
  • View Profile
  • Location: Ft Bragg
  • Date Registered: Feb 2014
  • Posts: 3402
I have yet to read about a wetsuit failure.
Ok, it is now written.  I have had an epic wetsuit failure.  Self caused by jumping in my kayak and snagging the suit on something.  But still a failure.


I have many wetsuits and a dry suit.  I like having options. It's so hard for me to not wear a wetsuit but it's because I always seem to be jumping in the water. 

I guess the main thing folks will learn from this thread is it just depends.  If cost is not an issue get multiple configurations for different locations and conditions.  Either option is better than the folks I see kayaking out of Noyo with shorts and a T-shirt when the water is 48 degrees. 
-----------------------------------
DG = 1st name Duane / last name starts with G.  Not very creative, but InsaneDuane was already taken.


Crayon

  • Sand Dab
  • **
  • View Profile
  • Location: Rohnert Park
  • Date Registered: Jun 2015
  • Posts: 23
I have the Hydrus 3L suit and I have not had a problem other than the wrist gaskets are so tight. But all a drysuit does is keep your insulation layers dry. It is so easy to not layer up and all you need to do is go in the water without layers and you are just as cold as not having anything,
your just dry and cold.

I wear cold gear base layer, merino wool socks to the knee then Fleece wader pants then cold gear top and a fleece vest as a minimum. on cold days I use under wader jump suit also. I do get hot but not uncomfortable but it beats going into the water and not being able to get out before the cold sets in.


ryang85

  • Salmon
  • ***
  • View Profile
  • Location: Point Reyes
  • Date Registered: May 2016
  • Posts: 100
I have yet to read about a wetsuit failure.
Ok, it is now written.  I have had an epic wetsuit failure.  Self caused by jumping in my kayak and snagging the suit on something.  But still a failure.


I have many wetsuits and a dry suit.  I like having options. It's so hard for me to not wear a wetsuit but it's because I always seem to be jumping in the water. 

I guess the main thing folks will learn from this thread is it just depends.  If cost is not an issue get multiple configurations for different locations and conditions.  Either option is better than the folks I see kayaking out of Noyo with shorts and a T-shirt when the water is 48 degrees.
I kayak tomales in shorts all the time, you make it sound like its not normal. Haha


scottymeboy

  • Salmon
  • ***
  • View Profile
  • Location: Santa Rosa
  • Date Registered: Oct 2013
  • Posts: 733
It's simple for me, 
I can't afford a drysuit!!!!


Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
2014 Crabfest - 1st Place -Rock Crab Division
2014 Fall Classic - 1st Place


2008 Malibu X-Factor
2014 RTM Abaco 420


Fisherman X

  • Sea Lion
  • ****
  • Going to the ocean is going home
  • View Profile
  • Location: Mendo Locos
  • Date Registered: Sep 2007
  • Posts: 3697
Darwinism is a theory of biological evolution, stating that all species of organisms arise and develop through the natural selection of small, inherited variations that increase the individual's ability to compete, survive, and reproduce.
-Success is living the life you want-
Joel ><>


crash

  • Sea Lion
  • ****
  • View Profile
  • Location: Eureka
  • Date Registered: Dec 2007
  • Posts: 4576
Darwinism is a theory of biological evolution, stating that all species of organisms arise and develop through the natural selection of small, inherited variations that increase the individual's ability to compete, survive, and reproduce.

That's a pretty low bar and most of these people have long ago reached sexual maturity. I'm not impressed.


Fisherman X

  • Sea Lion
  • ****
  • Going to the ocean is going home
  • View Profile
  • Location: Mendo Locos
  • Date Registered: Sep 2007
  • Posts: 3697
Darwinism is a theory of biological evolution, stating that all species of organisms arise and develop through the natural selection of small, inherited variations that increase the individual's ability to compete, survive, and reproduce.

That's a pretty low bar and most of these people have long ago reached sexual maturity. I'm not impressed.

"tomales in shorts all the time".  :smt009
« Last Edit: May 15, 2017, 04:27:09 PM by Fisherman X »
-Success is living the life you want-
Joel ><>


Tinker

  • Salmon
  • ***
  • View Profile
  • Location: Oregon
  • Date Registered: Dec 2015
  • Posts: 371
Annie, I wasn't the least bit alarmed about your comparison of wet- and dry-suits.  You were telling us about your real-life experience and stating the opinion you've based on that experience.

I'm definitely in favor of folks doing that!
Wilderness Systems Tarpon 120
Ocean Kayak Trident 11 (2)
Ocean Kayak Trident 13


AnnieAreYouOk

  • Salmon
  • ***
  • View Profile
  • Location: Sonoma County
  • Date Registered: Aug 2014
  • Posts: 603
Annie, I wasn't the least bit alarmed about your comparison of wet- and dry-suits.  You were telling us about your real-life experience and stating the opinion you've based on that experience.

I'm definitely in favor of folks doing that!

I appreciate that Tinker! And thanks for sharing your thoughts and experiences. Hope to report on my drysuit experience after this weekend at shelter cove.

Thanks for all the advice guys and gals. Still haven't purchased the wetsuit (or maybe dry suit) yet....but have a lot of food for thought now. I'm leaning toward 5 mm farmer John plus a top. I'd love a dry suit, but could totally see myself doing something dumb and hooking/tearing it....


Where are you planning on shopping??


Widgeon

  • Salmon
  • ***
  • View Profile
  • Location: Sac area
  • Date Registered: Jan 2017
  • Posts: 104
Annie, I'm in the Sacramento area so probably from one of the kayak shops in the area...apparently there's also a scuba shop here in town that sells wetsuits. But if you have any recommendations on a good shop, I'm all ears...
3rd--- 2017 Albion Open