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Ocean Rodeo drysuit

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by Mike » Sun Jan 12, 2020 8:47 am

Thought I'd share my thoughts on my new Ocean Rodeo Soul drysuit after 5 sessions starting Dec 31. Seems appropriate timing given the time of year.

For me, it's been a winter session game changer. I was almost ready to give up winter sailing as I'm always ending up cold. Probably a combination of age, kiting (less physical, mind you I still notice cold more than I used to windsurfing if I stand around) and maybe not getting the right wetsuit.

The BIG thing with the drysuit is not getting cold when out of the water taking a break and/.or standing around for a bit. By end of session I can take off hoddie and gloves and be feeling good. Muscles stay warmer which keeps me sailing happy longer and I expect less risk to injury.

The one thing I found in my 1st session was that in the water it was cold on the legs. I would not want to be swimming for 1-2 hours. I had a thin base layer and the ocean rodeo full body under layer. This was too thin as the water pressure pushes in and you feel the radiant cold. An old pair of track pants (thicker) over these 2 layers fixed this. I've since ordered a proper merino wool blend layer that will not absorb water. Upper body was fine but I still put on a impact vest for a layer plus a little floatation. At around 6 deg air I'm easily fine with the hands being the limit when the wind is really strong. I wonder if I put another upper body layer on it would help the hands. If a bit warm, dipping in the cold water does the trick. The suit is supposed to breath.

The other thing I noticed is the old track pants are damp around the ankles (track pants soak up water and thus will be replaced). I called ocean rodeo and customer service was great. I still have to test the area by filling the inside with water to see if any leaks out. I note that I do not feel any cold from this and only notice it after taking the suit off.

Access is great - you can easily zipper it up yourself (not that awkward back zip).

Also, it looks like rain gear (the "jacket top" is integrated). So it's comfortable enough for driving in to and from from your session and maybe picking up coffee or snack on the way. No cold changing process. You can unzip the top for "stand-by" mode to stay a bit cooler if needed.

This suit is not cheap and I was lucky to hit black Friday sales. However, so far, it's been worth it. Talking to another user, he's had his for 10+ years but has replaced the seals. Mind you it is not a version that breathes and he did suggest he may replace soon. I hope that with proper care, to get alot of years out of it.
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by ShonanDB » Sun Jan 12, 2020 10:47 am

I thought you were wearing some overalls yesterday when I first arrived. Hard to tell it was a dry suit. Good to hear that it's working out and keeping you warm. I bought a new 6/5 Body Glove wetsuit on sale last Spring and am loving it. Very little water comes in and it is warm. Spent some time in the water yesterday and last week when the wind died and was warm.
Being warm makes a big difference as well as piece of mind in case of having to self rescue.
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