Kokatat Supernova owners- how dry?

I am looking for a dry suit/ semi dry suit. I bought the IR semi dry top when it came out and love it. I’ve swam and rolled in it and never gotten water inside from the neck or wrists. How about the Supernova? Does anyone use one and what are their experiences with it? The issue for me is staying safe and yet still being comfortable around the neck.

I would like to hear from people that have actually used and tested this product. Thanks a lot.

And in whitewater Class III-IV?
Is it a liability in whitewater, dangerous? Or is it tight enough?

I have a Supernove
and have taken it swimming. The wrists are waterproof,and the neck did a better job then I thought. It did leak a slight amount in the front,but I was turning my head around a lot. I can’t stand nothing tight around my neck,and that’s why I got the Supernova. The neck seal may have not been tight enough,and the amount of water that leaked in would never fill the suit,and cause problems. I was wearing a polypro shirt underneath,and got the shirt wet down to mid chest in the front,after of swimming & trying to dive. {That’s nearly impossible because of some still trapped air}. The best way to burp is, wade in up to mid chest,and open zipper at the shoulder slightly. Don’t forget to close the zipper! I love mine,and it is very comfortable to wear. Only complaint,the booties are to long even for size 13 feet,and I have to fold them over to get into my Chotas,and that can cause discomfort after while.


Happy Paddling billinpa

re: comfort
have you tried a rubber gasket?

I hated them when I was new to paddling because my only experience was in a dressing room in the store. But, when I got mine Kokatat (unwillingly) cut it down a few rings so it fits, and now I never give it a second thought. Very comfortable. And extra insurance. (Does what a drysuit is supposed to do.) Even though K. was reluctant, it’s a standard procedure. People stretch it over a champagne bottle (preferrably Veueve Cliquot), get out a razor blade or exacto knife, and do it themselves all the time.

Semi-Dry means somewhat wet

– Last Updated: Nov-12-06 12:51 AM EST –

My Super-Nova leaks at the neck when rolling, wet back sculling, etc... It mostly trickles in, so it isn't shocking, but it gets wet.

A friend whose neck is bigger finds it barely leaks.

I use my Super-Nova mostly as the back-up to my dry suit.

Pretty wet for me
Esp’ly sculling full over - any situation where I am twisting my skinny neck around. No amount of tightening gets it tight enough not to leak some. For an evening paddle where I’ll go over a few times quickly just to cool off, no problem. As long as I roll up I’ll not get enough water in to get cold. But if I swim, or were to be in water with pressure behind it, I’d ve very wet.

The only way I can see using this in something like WW would be if you wore full neo underneath it, like a good wetsuit and hydroskin or neo layers as needed for colder water assuming the likelihood of capsize. At that point, you might as well just get a good drytop instead.

The latex is fairly easy to get used to once you resolve to do it, unless you truly have a latex allergy which isn’t all that common. And the confort of feeling like you really will be dry is well worth it.

Try the B-Pod
A step drier than the conical neoprene neck collar of the Super Nova. Try the Stohlquist Body Pod. Nicely tailored. Very dry neck seal, vapor/moisture one way permeable fabric. The neck seal is drier but keep in mind is a bit harder to put on than the Super Nova. Still far less constrictive than a latex seal.

There are some on eBay! I think.

See you on the water,



open the zipper?
my zipper zips from top (shoulder) to bottom. I burp my drysuit by squatting and hugging my knees, then get a finger in the neck and pull it away from the neck slightly. You will hear and feel the air leaving.

I have a question
Many of the above replies discuss how their suits perform while “swimming, diving, and rolling”. Are you planning on doing some or all of the above, or are you using your suit as a safety devise? If you are only worried about a wet exit, what if a few tablespoons of water does get in? After a wet exit you will be upright very quickly and the neck will be above the waterline anyway.

Two Seasons In…

– Last Updated: Nov-11-06 12:02 PM EST –

...we still like our SuperNovas.
The neck seal does indeed leak a little when swimming, but it's spoonfuls, not cupfuls - I usually have a damp ring arund the neck of my polypro shirt after 15-30 munutes of fooling around in the water.
We do a lot of 'alongshore' salt water paddling, and the SN provides more than adequate protection in an accidental dunking in that situation. The breathability is good - we have a lot of early season "warm air, cold water" situations here in Newfoundland, and I've seldom felt more than a light perspiration dampness in the suit.
Zippers have been fine, no fabric problems - my suit is going back to Kokatat when the water around here turns solid after Christmas, tho, as the neoprene neck is showing signs of deterioration, with small flakes of rubber peeling off the underlying mesh fabric. Our local paddle shop got in touch with Kokatat, who've said they'll have to see the suit before deciding whether the two year warranty will apply. Knowing Kokatat's reputation for excellent warranty service for their Goretex suits, I'm confident, as is our local paddling shop, that they'll sort the problem under warranty for me.
One last note - the issue of burping the suit. I can burp the suit before getting in the boat, and find after an hour's paddling that it's managed to "re-inflate" itself. Reckon the neoprene neck seal must allow some air to leak in. If it's enough to interfere with having free movement in the water, opening the neck or wrist seals for a second lets a fair bit of air out.

correction: semi-dry means semi-wet

Very few Kokatat owners abstain. Most
carry wineskins inside, and imbibe through a tube.

So I certainly wouldn’t call them dry.

question fo ryou marshall
are you having s put the relief zips in???or is that a s addition on their own???

i had them add one for me on mine (not a Ti-zip…one of the older designs)…and love that…but they kept pushing that one was not needed…yeah-i thought it was…


Relief is standard, now.
That could make a good slogan for someone. :wink:

All the new B-Pods now have the relief zip in them standard. Shorter T-Zip like the entry zipper.

See you on the water,