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Old 02 December 2008, 09:44   #31
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Originally Posted by Pete7 View Post
One thing to be aware of with a drysuit is you need to avoid getting hot and sweaty when launching boats, because you will be cold later on, especially at this time of year. That insulation under a drysuit isn't going to work if your wetter than a wet thing.

Pete
This is a really good point. The most unpleasant 'cold' experience I had was after spending a cold wet evening in a gale working as foredeck crew (on a raggy thing). I was wearing 'proper' 3 layers of synthetic fleece fully wicking and full gortex gear (added up to well over 1k's worth of sailing clothing!). While I didn't get much water inside the gear from the waves (bit damp in the neck area and up to the elbows) I was totally drenched with sweat after about 6+ sail changes and gybes in 3 hrs followed by an interesting tussle with a spinnaker in 35kts. As the outer gear was thoroughly wet on the outside from incessant rain, the breathability was much reduced and I got really chilled and really tired and just couldn't get warm. Normally, I never have a problem with the cold. Eventually, I realised I was about to get into big trouble and had to take to a bunk with sleeping bags and took about 6hrs to rewarm.

Made me think a lot more about hypothermia afterwards and I'm much more wary of my crew getting into similar trouble now.

A drysuit would have made no difference at all in that situation.
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Old 02 December 2008, 11:47   #32
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Have still to find a solution to the warm feet issue - currently using layered socks under the latex boots with neoprene outer boots. Any ideas anyone?
Make sure you're not too tight with the boots. Restricting blood flow to the feet causes them to go cold really fast.

Might try a few sprinkles of crushed red pepper in the socks, too. Mountaineers say it works wonders. Not sure about hypothermia effects though.

jky

Edit: sorry, quoted wrong post.
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Old 02 December 2008, 12:51   #33
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Jyaski

Great tip on the chilli powder. I'll give it a try at the weekend but it might turn my drysuit into a complete and balanced, nutritious meal!
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Old 02 December 2008, 16:16   #34
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Warm feet

Many thanks for the tips - will give it a go this weekend (if the gf doesn't mind me dragging her back out a cold Loch...)
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Old 02 December 2008, 19:10   #35
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Seems dry suits are really part of a WHOLE outfit! thanks all for feedback.

I want to get more winter boating in, id also like a few sets of crew outfits for those less prepared coming on my boat....... I always check out offshore jacket and salopet delas but recently considered getting dry suits instead... Biggest question is are they wearable over ordinary clothes or is it better to just get some waterproofs so people can hop off boat without 15 changes of clothing. To be honest with less experienced people aboard its only going to be local coastal cruising and the odd pub lunch
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Old 03 December 2008, 03:12   #36
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Seems dry suits are really part of a WHOLE outfit! thanks all for feedback.

I want to get more winter boating in, id also like a few sets of crew outfits for those less prepared coming on my boat....... I always check out offshore jacket and salopet delas but recently considered getting dry suits instead... Biggest question is are they wearable over ordinary clothes or is it better to just get some waterproofs so people can hop off boat without 15 changes of clothing. To be honest with less experienced people aboard its only going to be local coastal cruising and the odd pub lunch
Yes wearable over normal clothes. But for the sort of trip you are planning to take guests on I would say not necessary, and may be a bit off putting. Also think you'll find it easier to get waterproofs to "fit" random guests rather than dry suits. Bear in mind though that you might be drier and cosier than your guests if you are dry suited.
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Old 03 December 2008, 06:31   #37
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Yeah the problem with having spare drysuits for guests is with the neck and wrist seals. What will be too tight for some will be like a wizards sleeve to others. I'd go with Polwart's advice
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Old 04 December 2008, 11:53   #38
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DUI (a drysuit company in San Diego) makes what they call Zip Seals. The suit is modified with rings at wrists and neck that allow seals to be removed and replaced in the same manner as a ziplock bag. Not exactly cheap, though (the wrist seals are something like $65 a pair; neck seal is closer to $130), and as of now, they are not retrofitting other manufacturers suits.

Someone else has a system for temprorary wrist seal repair in which a large plastic ring is attached to what remains of the old seal, and a new seal is stretched over and held in place with large rubber band (similar to a vacuum cleaner belt.)

And, as far as a one-size-fits-most solution, going with dry gloves instead of seals would eliminate the wrist seal problem altogether. Won't do much for the neck, though.

jky
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Old 04 December 2008, 13:19   #39
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Tipton reminds us that "it has been known for many years that the buoyancy distributed throughout immersion suits can negate some of the beneficial characteristics of a lifejacket". In fact, the degree of variability of performance in the equipment tested was as much as 10-fold)

The recent investigation into the tragedy of the Ouzo found that although all three of the yachtsmen who died were wearing lifejackets, 2 were found drowned with their heads submerged, suspended by the armpits from the waiststrap of their LJs which were not fitted properly. In the 3rd victim the LJ fitted better but was still found floating nearly vertical with his airway submerged.
It doesn't matter in the slightest HOW their lifejackets were fitted - they had been in the water for 12 hours in one case. Far more important than incorrect fitting lifejackets was their total inability to summon help. Their bodies had been in the water for 36hrs before they were found!!!

As to lifejackets and drysuits/floatation suits etc I do wonder if they can cause more problems than the worth of it. You don't see many surfers wearing lifejackets do you?

I agree an unconcious person won't be righted but a concious one MAY be better off without a lifejacket if ther is enough air in their suit.
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Old 04 December 2008, 13:36   #40
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There are also a number of people who are alive today because they were not wearing a seat belt in an RTA! How many I don't know, but I would bet it's less than were saved by wearing one.

There's a rather chilly ash in the garden that needs a hug. I'm off !

(educate,....... don't legislate ......sorry to quote the RYA ,but it's the right idea)

Peace and Love to you all
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