Latest on wetsuits.....

kooklife's picture
kooklife started the topic in Wednesday, 14 Apr 2021 at 5:12am

So its that time of the year again where the mornings are getting fresher and the offshores are starting to show. It looks like its been a couple of years since there was a discussion about it so I am looking for wetsuit recommendations.....

Whats everyone wearing/buying or not wearing/buying and why?

Nick Bone's picture
Nick Bone's picture
Nick Bone Monday, 19 Apr 2021 at 5:17pm

could be off topic but care of wetsuit?

im bad. off and into a board bag and hang up in the shade. thats about as far as the buck goes. never rinse with fresh water etc.

but they seem to last.

cheat for my cold water friends - the Xcel sleeveless vest with attached hood. no restriction in shoulders and the hood, which you can peel back, is taken off after those initial duckdives punching out. game changer

Nick Bone's picture
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Nick Bone Monday, 19 Apr 2021 at 5:18pm

we lost edit button.

i rock Xcel wetty. the SS comp or whatever it is

goofyfoot's picture
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goofyfoot Monday, 19 Apr 2021 at 5:35pm

How much is a 4/3 Isurus?

indo-dreaming's picture
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indo-dreaming Monday, 19 Apr 2021 at 6:08pm
seaslug's picture
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seaslug Monday, 19 Apr 2021 at 6:09pm

GF, Hooded AUD 899.95, unhooded AUD 849.95, https://surfisurus.com.au

indo-dreaming's picture
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indo-dreaming Monday, 19 Apr 2021 at 6:10pm

Weird how website catalogue hasn't been updated since 20219 though? not very professional.

seaslug's picture
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seaslug Monday, 19 Apr 2021 at 6:17pm

Agree ID, not when you are spending top dollar

goofyfoot's picture
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goofyfoot Monday, 19 Apr 2021 at 8:12pm

Lotta money for a wetty hey

billythekid's picture
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billythekid Tuesday, 20 Apr 2021 at 6:45am

$849.95 for isurus 4/3 I get latest oneill psycho tech 4/3 for $500 at local shop...plus they do the sending and pay postage if/when it needs warranty repair

udo's picture
udo's picture
udo Tuesday, 20 Apr 2021 at 12:21pm

Your warranty on materials gets halved if you buy a Ripcurl thru an outlet store.....
if you buy a Ripcurl at Urbnsurf onsite shop - 6 mths material warranty .....use it in the Chlorinated wave pool and its Prob Void..... ?

https://www.ripcurl.com/au/help/warranty-care.html

Mr Nobody's picture
Mr Nobody's picture
Mr Nobody Tuesday, 20 Apr 2021 at 1:07pm

Great topic.

I am a Victorian surfer and manage about 2 or so surfs per week over winter.

I have mostly used RC wetsuits. A few seasons ago I bought an Xcel Drylock 3/2 wetsuit which was warm and had a great flexible feel. Instead of using a 4/3, I added a thermal vest underneath which made quite a difference and got through the winters without the extra rubber of a 4/3.

Towards the end of last winter I bought a premium Need 3/2 and wore it a few times before parking it. I have recently started wearing it again and while I feels OK, I wonder if my arse is starting to feel the cold? The quality is pretty go so far.

Anyway, I have found myself getting ads on F/B for Sharkskin suits that claim to offer the warmth of a 3mm with what looks like a thinner material. I have my eye on their titanium-lined vest to replace my older thermal vest to where under my 3/2.

Has anyone tried these? Do they perform as advertised? They do get bonus points for being Aussie made.

Also interesting…I received an ad for The Wetsuit Factory who also do Aussie made suits. Currently offering a back-zip 3mm steamer for $269. It seems the Need equivalent is a 3/2 for $260, presumably made in Asia? I have no idea how the quality compares but perhaps gives some idea of the how much profit might be in wetsuits. I am not affiliated with any of the companies I have mentioned.

Peace.

udo's picture
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udo Tuesday, 20 Apr 2021 at 2:24pm

Wetsuit factory / Sharkskin are same mob
Claiming made in Aust .

Mr Nobody's picture
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Mr Nobody Tuesday, 20 Apr 2021 at 3:09pm

udo wrote: Wetsuit factory / Sharkskin are same mob
Claiming made in Aust .

Ah, thanks...that would explain why I got ads in F/B from both. I probably could have googled that....I can be a bit slow sometimes.

vicbloke's picture
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vicbloke Tuesday, 20 Apr 2021 at 3:20pm

double checked my O'Neill 4/3 and it is a Superfreak not Hyperfreak, my bad. still happy and wore it his week and stayed nice and toasty. in the middle of winter I also use the termal vest with hood and gloves when blowing a gale and freezing nd manage to stay warmish. in my 50's and definately feel it more. only started using a hood about 7 years ago when I lost my feathers and gloves in the last two winters. On the subject of gloves, haven't been overly happy with the RC brand. Got any recommendations.

billythekid's picture
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billythekid Tuesday, 20 Apr 2021 at 3:32pm

ditto had issue with RC gloves- issue being they soaked up so much water that this added a bit of weight to each paddle stroke which, over a 2-3 session involving a lot of paddling, accumulated and caused a level of fatigue that was v noticeable. If they went limestone might be worth a try...

vicbloke's picture
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vicbloke Wednesday, 21 Apr 2021 at 7:28am

Needs have a limestone 3mm glove for $40 which appears to be a good price. Will pick a pair this week.

Hazrus's picture
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Hazrus Wednesday, 21 Apr 2021 at 11:55am

Has anyone tried the Needs wetties that are made in Thailand? I've only had the ones which were made in China - not the best rubber and construction IMHO

batfink's picture
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batfink Wednesday, 21 Apr 2021 at 1:45pm

Bought a 2 mm long armed springy O’Neill hyperflex earlier this year, easily the most flexible suit I’ve owned (mainly I’ve had RC or Needs wetsuits).

It’s holding up well but I’ll as often go out in boardies and vest still, so it hasn’t got that much use.

But it did inspire me to buy a hyperflex steamer which I will take down the coast in May for its first go-around.

My Needs steamers have been good value, but I’ve found they get quite stiff after a season. I have worked out that I need to stretch them out a lot before using them the first few surfs. I really hate that Michelin tyre man experience of steamers early in the season. O’Neill hyperflex may have cracked that, but they are a bugger to get on when wet. Will have to employ the plastic bag trick to get into them easier.

And I do look after them with a fresh water rinse and hanging up in the shade treatment.

Hazrus's picture
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Hazrus Wednesday, 21 Apr 2021 at 6:24pm

Good old sheico.... that’s who I meant re. Needs. Taiwan not Thailand.

Mr Nobody's picture
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Mr Nobody Wednesday, 21 Apr 2021 at 7:12pm

Hi Hazrus,

The label on my Need 3/2 "Liquid Taped Thermal Chest Zip Wetsuit" I bought last year says "Made in Thailand".

Hazrus's picture
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Hazrus Thursday, 22 Apr 2021 at 4:21pm

Thanks Mr Nobody - good to hear.

FYI all a bit of googling found that Sheico has factories across SE asia and especially in Thailand - It's likely the Needs suits are Sheico as well.

indo-dreaming's picture
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indo-dreaming Thursday, 22 Apr 2021 at 6:41pm

@ udo

That was a real interacting read, i think a lot of the fins are made in the same factory too.

indo-dreaming's picture
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indo-dreaming Thursday, 22 Apr 2021 at 6:41pm

interesting read

udo's picture
udo's picture
udo Thursday, 22 Apr 2021 at 7:27pm
Pan_down's picture
Pan_down's picture
Pan_down Monday, 3 May 2021 at 8:11pm

I'm also on the hunt for a new 4/3, unfortunately my flashbomb lasted about 2 winters - neck and chest have lost all elasticity despite being very careful taking on / off and looking after it quite well.

Was great for first year or so, but was expecting much longer lifespan from a $750 suit.

Would be interested to hear any other feedback / comments on longevity of chest zip vs. zip free, also longevity of Yulex vs traditional neoprene.

Noticed Need Essentials doing Yulex now too - looks very comparable to the Patagonia [I've got a Pata 2mm short arm steamer which has been great] at half the price.

seaslug's picture
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seaslug Monday, 3 May 2021 at 8:30pm

If you have spent $750 on a RC, why not spend around $100 more and get a Isurus?

kooklife's picture
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kooklife Sunday, 9 May 2021 at 3:14pm

also keen to hear any reports on Yulex vs traditional, especially if anyone has used a NeedEssentials Yulex

zenagain's picture
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zenagain Sunday, 9 May 2021 at 3:26pm

See first page KL.

I've had both Patagonia R4's in Yulex and traditional neoprene. IMO traditional neoprene is more flexible and comfortable. I can't comment on longevity but I got five seasons out of the traditional R4 so that's outstanding I reckon. We'll see how the R4 Yulex goes. Very warm suit but I dunno, just feel more constricted than in the old one.

Can't comment on Needs but I'm sure someone out there can fill you in.

indo-dreaming's picture
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indo-dreaming Sunday, 9 May 2021 at 3:55pm

I bought a new 3/2 the other week, to get me through until winter really hits as my old 3/2 was getting thin under the arms, but my 5/4/3 was too hot and if i wear it now i will really feel the cold in winter.

Went in thinking id just grab my go to Rip Curl 3/2 E-bomb but they were all sold out and only had one top of the range RC 3/2 for like $700.

But the sales guy (whom I've know for years and often surf with, hence trust) convinced me it's not really worth the money compared to cheaper suits, that the difference these days is not all that big.

So i tried on half a dozen suits in all kinds of brands, but the cheapest suit actually felt the best fit, so i just went a Billabong 3/2 Graphene for $270 and will probably spend the $430 i saved on a a 4/3 latter, then just mix it up as needed and always have a day suit.

AndyM's picture
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AndyM Sunday, 9 May 2021 at 4:50pm

Saw a 3/2 Ripcurl Flashbomb for about $250 on Gumtree a while back, seemed pretty good considering they retail for north of $600.

Fits perfectly, warm as hell and didn't even smell like urine (then).

brownie48's picture
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brownie48 Tuesday, 11 May 2021 at 11:51am

I switched over almost all my wetties to Patagonia when I was working full time and have a rack full of them starting with the full woollen range that are over 12 years old so longevity is easy when you have multiple to wear, then properly wash and dry in the shade. Which usually takes a couple of days. Real process but its worth it. They are more restrictive than the big brands but you dont get cold and if I get cold my body tightens and it is all over and have to come in

I tried my first Needs in a springy which is pretty good for the money but like most of us old guys my shoulders cant deal with shoulder zips and need back zips so this is where my selection will be based on in the future

Dont mind spending the coin to be warm and being able to get into it without popping or injuring the shoulders!

Isurus sound good, hope they make a back zip

eat-your-vegies's picture
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eat-your-vegies Wednesday, 12 May 2021 at 12:01am

+1 on the back zip brownie

simba's picture
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simba Wednesday, 12 May 2021 at 5:29am

+ 2 Brownie.....had a needs essentials i pretty much had to dislocate both shoulders to get into it....and then it was leaking as well ......hope they have improved cause that was a couple years ago.

belly's picture
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belly Wednesday, 12 May 2021 at 7:03am

My 3/2 back zip needs itches the hell out of my neck. And sometimes the zip gets caught on the flap thingy and I can't do it up.
Quality has been ok and as mentioned above does seem above average stiff, not sure where it was made.

simba's picture
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simba Wednesday, 12 May 2021 at 7:24am

yeah i had a back zip from needs where the dam thing got stuck in the zipper half way up and it was the middle of winter and the first time i had used it .No one on the beach and one guy in the water so had to paddle out with the back half open and he had trouble with the fukin thing trying to zip it up.....so ended up leaving it for the back packers ...cunt of a design....notice now they have the dam so you put it over your head ....doh should have done that first up......so i dont buy needs anymore ......too much of a lottery

belly's picture
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belly Wednesday, 12 May 2021 at 8:04am

Yeah. I find you arch your back and do whatever moves you can it will work. Mine is about 3 years old, no problems with zip at first, then went through a real bad patch that left me cursing in the carpark (where I surf there is often no one around as well), now it seems to slide up most times.

I mentioned quality, the glue seal on the edge of the internal back flappy thing went straight away on mine. Not structural letting in water stuff but disappointing nonetheless. I've also got the relatively cheapo $40 vest, I've had to constantly glue the stitching that holds in the bottom cord, it also basically went straight away.

I really like what they try and do as a brand, but ultimately they are priced where they are and I doubt I'll buy again. I've basically been RC, O'Neill, Needs, Onyx (was a great special and its been a great suit but I believe it's a euro kiteboarding brand WTF), back to RC.

Not sure what I'll get next, need a 3/2 short or long arm steamer. Have really enjoyed an Excel wetty top, my RC 4/3 chest Dawnie has been awesome and well priced as well. Only had O'Neill back zip Psycho's so might look back there for a chesty as well based on some of the comments in this thread.

udo's picture
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udo Sunday, 23 May 2021 at 10:04pm
Doublems111's picture
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Doublems111 Monday, 31 May 2021 at 9:21pm

Very much in agreeance that Isurus is in its own league. The whole "second skin, silkier feel, less water absortion" is all but true. Its a different material so essentially a different/quality experience... If you know your size, are comfortable buying online and timing(eofys, summer, sign up email discounts,etc) you really shouldnt pay retail.

Pan_down's picture
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Pan_down Friday, 4 Jun 2021 at 7:28pm

kooklife wrote: also keen to hear any reports on Yulex vs traditional, especially if anyone has used a NeedEssentials Yulex

I ended up getting the NE Yulex 4/3, pretty happy with it so far. As expected more rigid and not quite as toasty as the RC FB but feels like great value so far.

Also got the NE hood with thermal vest, best investment yet for the really cold days in the pool.

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RichieMac Sunday, 6 Jun 2021 at 8:50pm

I just purchased a 3/2 needs liquid taped steamer and was surprised how stiff and heavy it felt and that was before I even tried it on. Had one before this in standard neoprene which was pretty good and has lasted well but am pretty dubious that this new one will be more flexible once it’s wet and the dry weight factor is scary. I heard Patagonia had weight issues with its Yulex and needs used it too. I’m seriously considering just using it for kiting and getting a hyperfreak for surfing.Also had a xcel that has been excellent for 4 winters with minimal care, only just starting to break down on warmth

wbat's picture
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wbat Sunday, 6 Jun 2021 at 9:28pm

I have an xcel as well and it is fantastic. This will be it's third season and it is starting to break down but lots of use.

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evosurfer Monday, 7 Jun 2021 at 2:52pm

Hard to go past Needessentials when you consider price. I used a 4/3 last year and it was way too warm for Sydneys winter, now using a NE 3/2 and
so far very happy with it. Fits very nicely reasonably flexible and warm.
Just received a Quicksilver syncro off ebay for $140 will see how it performs
it feels a lot more flexible couldnt resist it for winter dry backup at the price.

udo's picture
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udo Monday, 7 Jun 2021 at 2:59pm

Synchros are untaped seams ..GBS only ?

stanfrance's picture
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stanfrance Monday, 7 Jun 2021 at 3:52pm

Im starting to like my Vissla North Seas. Never been so warm in a 3/2. It takes a bit of acrobatics to get in and out of and it feels a bit thicker than my previous Need Essentials. Not sure why that is, but if it goes the distance I would be recommending it.

Ash's picture
Ash's picture
Ash Tuesday, 8 Jun 2021 at 11:54am

For some reason every time I try to look at the Isurus Aust. site it gets barred on my computer, so where where did you Isurus owners buy yours?
And a quick check on the cost of a 7thwave suit had me reeling, no doubt they're good even better than good, but #[email protected]!!! a little pricey.

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garyg1412 Tuesday, 8 Jun 2021 at 1:35pm

Ash
Keep an eye on this site as every now and then they have a combo special where you get an Isurus and a heated rashie. I got a hooded 4/3 and a thermolution vest a few years back for about AU$700.
https://www.heatedwetsuits.com/
Failing that just flick through their retailers list (US or Canada) or buy direct and cop a bit of postage.
https://surfisurus.com/pages/retailers

Ash's picture
Ash's picture
Ash Tuesday, 8 Jun 2021 at 2:02pm

Cheers
Didn't know you could buy battery powered heated rashies, fortunately it doesn't get that cold here as a good 4/3 does the job.
Even on the Isurus list of dealers page the Aust. link failed to load. Thanks any rate Garry.

simba's picture
simba's picture
simba Tuesday, 8 Jun 2021 at 5:31pm

had a heated quicksilver rashie years ago that worked pretty good for a couple years .......battery life died cause it wasn't being charged over summer.......you could certainly feel it warm up for about 30 mins or so ...

morg's picture
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morg Tuesday, 8 Jun 2021 at 10:57pm

I’ve got a quicksilver heater rashly too. Has low and high setting and is actually too warm for where I surf. I used to just turn it on intermittently to warm me up a bit. I haven’t used it surfing for a couple of years since I got a needs 4/3 thermal lined wetty. It is fantastic for snowboarding.