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Wetsuit question
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Doug I.
(idester) - MLife

Locale: PNW
Wetsuit question on 12/06/2013 13:20:20 MST Print View

Wasn't sure where to put this, so this seems as good a place as any.

About 5 years ago I decided it would be fun to do a triathlon (either a sprint or a half, I'm no madman). When I decide to do something I generally go all in, and I did. Bought a nice tri bike (anyone interested in a Cervelo P2C?....), bought a nice wetsuit, etc.

Then I found out I'm a lousy swimmer. I mean, I can keep my head above water, and even move forward in some form or fashion, but I'd likely drown trying to swim a half mile in choppy, open water (trust me, I tried, it wasn't pretty).

So, the question part, I have this nice wetsuit that's been sitting in a closet for four years plus. Just sitting there. Haven't done anything to it, haven't used it, haven't really touched it.

Would it still be good? Do those things degrade when just sitting there unattended? I don't want to try to sell it if it's junk. It looks okay, but does seem to have a dull sheen to it. Anyone know?


Nico .
(NickB) - MLife

Locale: Los Padres National Forest
Wetsuit Question on 12/06/2013 13:31:00 MST Print View

Wetsuits can degrade over time from usage, sun exposure and even age. As a suit gets older, the general rule is that the material tends to be get stiffer and less supple. Glue used along seams can also dry out and begin to peal or delaminate.

Tri suits typically utilize a higher quality, but less durable neoprene than surfing wetsuits. Tri suits are more prone to tears, nicks, etc. because of this but are stretchier and more pliable. They also tend to be thicker, at least in places, to provide added buoyancy as compared to a surfing suit.

If the suit is 3 or 4 years old but has seen very little use and has been stored in a dry location out of the sun, chances are it's still in pretty good condition.

Doug I.
(idester) - MLife

Locale: PNW
Re: Wetsuit Question on 12/06/2013 13:37:14 MST Print View

Thanks Nico!

Rex Sanders
(Rex) - M

Locale: Central California Coast
Wetsuits will last a long time on 12/06/2013 18:04:37 MST Print View

I used my first wetsuit about 15 days per year for about 15 years before I bought a new one, because I "outgrew" the old one. The new one is over 10 years old and still works fine.

Rinse your wetsuit in fresh water frequently and dry before storing. Wash it in soap or Mirazyme or similar from time to time to reduce the funk. I threw mine in the washing machine, and let them drip dry after, but lots of people use dryers on low.

It's time to retire your wetsuit when you get too many holes or thin patches or seam blowouts.

The neoprene will last a long, long time with decent care. A friend has a 30-year-old neoprene raft still in great shape.

Sunlight and smog will eat neoprene. Store your wetsuit in the dark. If you live in smog, store your wetsuit in a sealed plastic bag. LA smog ate Ensolite brand sleeping pads pretty quickly in the 1970s.

Trivia: they used to measure LA smog using rubber bands stretched between two nails on a window sill. They would count the new cracks that showed up each day. The rubber bands lasted only a few days.

Your wetsuit is probably fine, if you don't live in LA or Bakersfield.

-- Rex

Edited by Rex on 12/06/2013 18:07:08 MST.

peter vacco

Locale: no. california
Re: Wetsuit question on 12/06/2013 20:07:56 MST Print View

" anyone interested in a Cervelo P2C? "

i looked that up .

good lord man, they're Gorgeous ... just hand it on the wall !
(hold on.. let me do the "right thing" . )

" so Doug :" asked peter "what size is this very fine wetsuit ? "

Doug I.
(idester) - MLife

Locale: PNW
Re: Re: Wetsuit question on 12/06/2013 20:13:15 MST Print View

" so Doug :" asked peter "what size is this very fine wetsuit ? "

Ah Peter, you're a fine gentleman, you are. :-)