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Posted by TDI_2 on May 16, 2002 at 11:18:58:

In Reply to: Re: Right on posted by Kendall Raine on May 16, 2002 at 09:05:18:

The evolution of exposure suits in the history of scuba was first (1) woolens, long johns & boots to (2) drysuits to (3) wetsuits to (4) semidry suits.

The wetsuit works really well for surfing in California and for freediving. But it really was never a good solution for cold water scuba diving.

You bake in a wetsuit as youre donning your gear. You freeze in them after awhile in the water. You have to wear a lot of lead weight with them if you want to be neutrally buoyant near the surface. They lose all their buoyancy at depth, becoming a hazard for overweighting on deeper dives. People have been killed that way. Leg cramps are almost inevitable with them from the heat loss as well. You shiver between dives as you stand soaking wet in the wind in a wetsuit after a dive. Life is truly miserable in a wetsuit when scuba diving on the West Coast.

I almost cant believe that people actually dive with wetsuits here in California. Florida, fine. Hawaii, fine. But not here.

Why take the joy out of scuba diving by wearing a wetsuit? Cant you save your pennies for a economy trilaminate shell drysuit? I have seen them on sale for around $500 bucks.

And if you cant afford woolies either, then longjohns and sweatpants/shirt works almost as well with a trilaminate shell drysuit. And still better than a wetsuit!

By semidry, I suppose you mean the crushed neoprene drysuits. I would imagine they are not worth the extra money that you have to pay over and above a wetsuit. Might as well go the whole nine yards and get a trilaminate shell drysuit that you can afford, with long johns, woolen sox, sweatpants, and a sweatshirt to wear inside of it.

Save your pennies in the meantime. Or rent a drysuit instead.

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