As we all felt it, especially the last couple of days (NSW), the winter is here to stay :(
and I need a new wet suit, something really worm and reliable. What brand do you guys recommend_ to be good value for money_
Nice local brand for your based out of Byron bay I believe is 'maddog'. Extremely reasonably priced and quality, have had quite a few good hits in my springy and it's still in one piece :)
Another suggestion only valid really if your close to the Queensland border is the billabong factory at helensvale, they sell brand new 2/3 full length steamers billabong for $99! Not going to find a better deal then that.
$99!!! What about 5/4 steamers?
Nothing but e-bomb for me, I surf aswell and love the stretch if them. They won't last more than two hard seasons and are also exy, but for comfort alone nothing's close.
I've had premium oneill , billabong wetsuits over a few years but on recommendation I've had a mystic star 5 3 double lined I've flogged it for a couple of years giving it no care ie cleaning and its as good as new apart from the stale smell of piss, go on admit it we all do it and it feels good
xCel Infinity Drylock 6-5 or 5-4 is your best bet. I had a mystic steamer before and after a year I already had a lot of rips and tears into it.
Now I bought an xCel infinity XZip2 5-4 Hooded and it is the best steamer I have seen. My dealer which sells NPX, Neil Pryde Xcel etc.. told me that xCel is the company that makes the most robust wetsuit out there.
You could check out www.wetsuitwarehouse.com.au
They have some good specials on.
E bomb! But can be a bit hard to get into for the first few sessions.
They go cheap at factory outlets if your lucky to find a size!
Also consider getting yourself a 'woollen' long sleeve rashy. Bought my ozone rashy before winter last year and have used it extensively, especially on a say 30 degrees day and below, when a wetty is too hot. Just the rashy and boardies.
In winter they saved out asses last year under the steamer.
Lol. Not sure if I have described it properly. But they work man so well.
I also recently bought a top of the line Xcel 4/3 to get me through Melbourne winters. It's taken a couple of sessions to really bed in and loosen up, but straight from day 1 it's been damn warm; even in the few icy southerlies we've had so far.
For mine I definitely recommend going as light as possible with ur wetty and match it with an under-shirt poly fleece rashy. (some may can them 'woollen' but if they bought the right brand they would know that 'polyfleece' is the best description).
This combo will cover for several mm's of extra uncomfortable neoprene.
For Perth last winter a 2/2 of neoprene & a polyfleece from West Suits gave me the warmest sessions ever.
AND - absolutely no wind chill when u strip off the top of ur wetty for ur apres kite chat session.
The poly fleece rashie gets my vote as THE ABSOLUTE BEST invention in aquatic sports of all kinds for years. The best thing since 'one pump'
And from having scoured the world for a replacement when West went down (temporarily) my research rates the West Suits polyfleece no.1 by a long way.
^^^^^^ and get a wetsuit hat. You lose 40-80% of heat through your head, especially when its cold. Count in evaporation, coldness, and the blood pumped to your brain when kitesurfing ( well most kitesurfers). a good hoody makes you cut 2mm of the wetsuit thickness to keep warm and most of all more flexible
xcel infinity dry lock 3/2 flexy and warm for winter Perth winter anyways.
So you can buy a 5/4 mystic len10 out of the UK for $303 ($326 inc postage) on ebay. Can any shops here match that???
I already have a 5/3 mystic wettie so not in the market for one (its really good!!)
My Advice is don't worry too much about Brand. All premium ones are good, some of the cheaper ones are not so good
It should be all about fit. Go to a shop that carry lots of brands and try on heaps.
You'll find one that fits your body shape. And budget
In NSW I'd recommend a 2/3mm wetsuit and a polar fleece top or metallic lined 1mm top to wear under the wetsuit on the colder days. I've worn this combo in CapeTowns cold 6 or 7degree water in October and was fine.
I've had most major brands in past. I would reccomend Rip Curl, X-Cel, and Oneil, and triple x. There are some other major brands I would avoid after seeing the return/failure rate. I now use 2mm wetties from triple x. They're an Aussie company. Lifetime guarantee. Free postage. Good prices and quick in house repairs to any brand. They also have good sizing. I find I can be in-between sizes in other brands
Bump to my comment on the West Suits 'poly fleece' rashy.
West are back in business & the poly fleece range is still in there.
Still rate them as no. 1 aqua product since the invention of the Kite.
Do yourself a favour - check them out.
I've got one of rip curls flash bombs 4/3, pretty sick suit, nice fit and super stretchy, dries fast enough, however, I think my O'Neill Pyro Freak which is identical to the Psycho 3 minus techno butter neoprene is warmer.
If your looking 4 a wetsuit king of watersports UK you pay pre vat and shipped free over 100 quid no imports or gst at this end as its under $ 1000, just ordered the lens 10 empire 2012 for 259
I reckon the Collaroy surf shop has amazing prices and really good quality service and products. I went there and got a great wetsuit. I haven't tried many, so can't comment much, but this one feels really good and it wasn't much. I think 275 with boots and rashie.
Anyway thanks for the advice with the Uk ebay stuff. However, I am trying to support the Australian business and buy whatever I can, as much as I can Aussie stuff. Eg. I'll be in Europe the next month and could've bought a new kite from there as is much cheaper. However, I preffered buying from here.
^^^^^ what happens to the dry suit saff??