Palm Stikine-Drysuit -- First Impression

i think is what manufacturers recommend…to prevent rusting…of course, they also recommend that they be rinsed after each use and then it doesn’t hurt that the zips get waxed fairly often.

it’s the only piece of gear i do actually take care of pretty religiously.

here’s something else…the latex gaskets on these things? when you hang it up, use a wooden hanger. the polyethylene that plastic hangers are made out of will eat away and destroy the latex in the neck.

or so i am told…i am sure some chem student/buff out there will have something to say on whether that’s accurate.

happy holidays

You Can Test It Now…
Just fill your tub and get in. Of course, being shorter, my whole body can fit in. You may need to sit and see if the relief zip works. The get your legs out of the tub and slide down with your upper body, up to your neck.

If you find a leak, you can take care of it before you really need/intend to use it.


Whadaya think about…
…sticking a garden hose down the neck and watching for spurts. :slight_smile: Just kidding.

Thanks for the tub idea. I’m pretty sure it’s ok but you’re right, I’ll be kicking myself if it needs fixin and I wait too long to find out.

For right now though the suit is in hiding, shhhh…

Dry suit? What dry suit?


Uh oh…
I have been doing the “which drysuit to get?” dance myself lately. I broke down though and ordered the new Kokatat Tropos Meridian suit. I called one online dealer and they told me it had a neoprene neck seal (like no seal at all) and when I contacted the Kayak Academy on the west coast they assured me it had gaskets on neck and wrists to go with the breathable booties and relief zip.

I was really leaning towards the Palm Stikine suit such as you got before I saw the Tropos Meridian and now I am wondering if I made the right choice!

As to taking the suit off, I was told by another 'yakker that he uses a 16 inch piece of line with a caribiner to pull the zip after a day of paddling. So instead of 4 extra inches of reach you get more than 12 inches. You might try that, Sing!

Don’t worry though, I will keep my suit review writeup shorter!!

It Could Have Been Longer…

– Last Updated: Dec-24-05 5:48 AM EST –

but I refrained from including in the post many of the colorful terms I was freely tossing about while trying on the suit. As appropos those terms at the time, I think very few here would appreciate them, except perhaps a notable exception here and there. :)

Well, this morning is first in-the-surf test, follow by another on the day after Christmas. Will report back then.


Final Impression

– Last Updated: Dec-26-05 4:54 PM EST –

Attaching the 'biner with a short piece of paracord, I was able to zip the suit on and off fairly easy. The trick is to shrink the offside hand into the sleeve, grab hold, stretch it out to give some tension to the zip while the other hand pulls the zipper open or shut.

I like the fit of this suit much better than the kokatat, i.e. it's got little more width to it. The double tunnel seals the skirt top pretty tightly.

Two things that did come up. One, my Astral pullover PFD can get caught on the horizontal back zipper if I not careful. Two, I definitely have a pinhole leak on my left sleeve somewhere. Two days of surfing in the suit and both times my left arm was damper than my right. Considering how much rolling I do in the waves, I think the leak has got to be minute since my sleeve was moist but not soaking wet. I'll not sent it back. I'll find the leak and put a dap of aquaseal on it instead.

Do I recommend the suit? A qualified Yes, so far based on the construction and breathability, fit (if you tend on the stockier side) and that it's $300 less than a Kokatat Goretex Meridian. Only time will tell how it's going to hold up.


dry suits and Bomber Gear

– Last Updated: Dec-31-05 12:14 AM EST –

sing et al....i'm new to this list, and found it while googling Bomber Gear. In early November I spoke with one of the owners at Bomber Gear who told me to send him my Radiator drysuit (which I did) for repair of a small leak. When I didn't hear from him for about 3 weeks, I called - and their number is out of service!! It seems that Bomber Gear has gone out of business, and I'm without a dry suit that I bought about a year ago. Damn! I have filed a report with the Durango, Colorado Police Department, where Bomber Gear was located, that they stole my drysuit.

Today I went shopping for a new drysuit - what a pain. I looked at O.S. Systems (located here in Oregon), Stohlquist, and Palm. The Palm Torrent suit had all the features I want, but I'm a bit intimidated by the rear zip. By the way, I got stuck pretty badly trying on the Stohlquist - almost had to rip my head off to get out of it!

I sure liked my Bomber Gear Radiator drysuit! It was roomy, not too bad to get into (yes, the head-neck to the side move was a bit tricky), got lots of comments about how good it looked, and the upper sleeve wet pocket was perfect for my GPS.

I'm happy to hear the good reports about the Palm suit - I might go back and buy the one I saw for $480 (USD). Then I'm going to bug my homeowners insurance company to cover the stolen Bomber Gear drysuit.


I really checked the sleeve. There was a section on the tape for the gasket that seem to have the smallest worn spot. I put a dap of Aquaseal on it. Seemed to have done the trick. Three hours in good surf this AM and no extraordinary dampness on the left sleeve. I was, of course, damp (or perhaps slightly more) on all my layers as I would have been in my Goretex Meridian.

I am liking this suit more and more, just because it’s a more comfortable fit than my Meridian. The ‘biner with a 12’ section of rope and ball on the end really makes zipping on/off much easier. The other thing that helped was applying zipper wax.