Drysuit Questions

I finally broke down and bought a drysuit- Kokatat’s Swift Entry model. I know it’s not goretex and I should have got the one with the socks and relief ziper, but the price was right so I went for more security and the extended season my 3mm farmer john/mysterioso Mtech combination could not provide.

I’m wondering about dressing under it: do the gaskets have to seal on my skin? does a top with a t-neck like mysteriosos’ invite a leak? polypro underwear extends beyond the ankles and wrists? neoprene sox ok? Care to share any other tips/tricks that work for you?



Gaskets must seal against skin!!!

– Last Updated: Sep-02-04 9:28 PM EST –

My buddies and I trim after 24 hours of easy stretching rather than heroically stretch. We live in boston so we have some base of experience. Use 303 monthly on gaskets. Learn to roll and rotocool. Or grab a friends bow and dip if you have paddling friends with you.

Learn to burp the suit. Air in your legs can hold you inverted and kill you.

Dress for immersion, drink a lot of water (use a hydration pack). Take care of the Zipper, but a cleaner/lubricant and use it.

Place seals directly against skin
Cloth in between latex and skin will wick moisture into the suit.

Make sure you always remove your watch before donning the drysuit, to prevent damage to the latex. As PeterK said, burp the air out of the suit before paddling but afterwards (or when you stop for a break) if you feel chilled, add air back in for more insulation. Keep the suit clean; I always rinse mine out after paddling and air-dry it.

I try and rinse mine out
after every use with fresh water, definetly if i am in the salt chuck. Also i use some sort of wax for the zipper and occassionally rub on some protective liquid for the seals - but not often enough.

Underlayer issues
As others have said, the seals must be against your skin. When choosing underlayers, make sure that the sleeves and legs aren’t too long. I’ve found that they will have a tendency to work their way under the seals and cause leaks. If need be, fold them back over themselves. I don’t recall having this problem with turtleneck underlayers working up through the neck seal.

Mysterioso mock turtlenecks
…should not cause any problems under a drysuit’s neck gasket. At least, my Stohlquist drysuit has a huge bulbous lower gasket area that would accommodate a Mysterioso mock turtle. It’s only the top part that tapers down tight, and you will most likely trim part of that anyway. I did, and I have a pencilneck. No leaks.