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Madame Wheelie-Bin
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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I went diving at Vobster on Friday. The water temp was a steady 8 degrees on the surface and the same at 25 metres.

I own a Polar Bear membrane dry suit. I got it second hand a few years ago, but it's a nice suit. I had new cuffs fitted, along with a new neck seal, and I also had it pressure tested. However, I've always come out damp. Most I've spoken with have put it down to "sweat", however I'm not convinced. My buddy on Friday, who's an instructor, felt my undersuit and said it was a tad more than sweat. It's not localised, as in my cuffs and neck aren't leaking, and neither are any of the valves.

When I got the suit it was as if it was MTM, it's a great fit and I'm happy with it generally, but I'm not happy about getting wet because at 8 degrees I got very cold on Friday. The suit itself wasn't that old or used when I got it and it had been looked after.

Is it worth me sending the suit to be repaired or tested, or have I got to bite the bullit and hold a funeral for it and go plead with my bank manager to allow me to go and spend lots of money on a new dry suit? Do membrane suits suffer from seepage? If so, is that repairable?

I bow to your superior advice, if that's ok? Please?
 

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Personally, I would do a 'free' pressure check first.

Grab a friend, fill your bath, connect up your low pressure inflator, blow yourself up, jump in bath and ask friend to look for any bubbles.

Hopefully this will tell you whether your suit has any leaks or not.

HTH's,
Lou
 

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Atomic Blonde and Midjit Idjit
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Good tip Silvafish. Wear light coloured (not white) cotton clothing underneath if you do this and you should be able to see there the leaks are by the wet patches on the clothing.

You can also pressure test it my sticking a melon or a child's small plastic football in the neckseal and some tins or jars in the wrists and connecting the feet til it's blown up like the Michelin Man. Use a plastic spray bottle with soapy water to lightly spray the suit and any leaks will cause the soap solution to bubble.

Good luck.

I think they should call them 'dampsuits' :rolleyes:

Helen xxx
 

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Good tip Bouyant Babe, for achieving the same results, yet saving water!

Mine's only ever leaked once - when I forgot to take my watch off and came out with a wet forearm. It was at the Farnes and the excitement of seeing seals got to me! :redface: (Mine's a Northern Diver too and love the suit!)
 

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Madame Wheelie-Bin
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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Wow!

Thanks for the tips! Unfortunately my bath isn't big enough to fully submerge, however I could go along to a pool session with my club and do the same sort of thing!

I've done the blow up like a balloon thing and it it was a tight seal but it went down in about 4 hours. It does appear to be more of an all over seepage. But will do what you suggest and do a pool test of it!

And thanks for the Northern Diver recommendation. Got quotes for Typhoon, Namron, O'Three etc but undecided yet. Would rather NOT spend copious amounts of money!

IF it isn't a leak through a seal or valve and it is just membrane seepage can that be repaired or is it FUBAR'd???
 

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Try Aquasure. My OW Instructor's suit was COVERED in the stuff to repair leaks over the years, and it worked out for him.

Other than that, if it's widespread and the suit isn't that old or used, I would consider contacting the manufacturer.

Bath tub not big enough? House built 1980's or later? :frown:
 

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Atomic Blonde and Midjit Idjit
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Bath tub not big enough? House built 1980's or later? :frown:
Fat barstard? :D





I've got and ND 4mm Neo suit too and love it. It might have been made for me even though it was off the peg. If I ever changed I might consider a Seaskin 3mm hyper compressed MTM though.
 

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Only joshing :embarassed: :)
I know :)

Mine's a ND membrane and although I love my suit, I am leaning towards getting a neoprene suit (compressed or not, don't know yet), when I am ok to dive again. I feel the cold too much, hence wear a Weezle 1000 tog-rating thing which traps air, and doing safety stops clinging onto wrecks/buddy/etc is no fun!
 

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Madame Wheelie-Bin
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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
Only joshing :embarassed: :)
LOL this DID make me laugh! You're both right! New house AND fat! But not obese, I hasten to add! So to the pool I head!

Another option, perhaps? Until I can afford the new dry suit - if that's the line I'm going down - would wearing a 3mm wet suit UNDER my dry suit and undersuit help? The water isn't gushing in, and it's more like a very heavy all over sweat, so thought perhaps a wet suit 'may' help. Or am I going from the sublime to the ridiculous??!!?
 

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Atomic Blonde and Midjit Idjit
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LOL this DID make me laugh! You're both right! New house AND fat! But not obese, I hasten to add! So to the pool I head!

Another option, perhaps? Until I can afford the new dry suit - if that's the line I'm going down - would wearing a 3mm wet suit UNDER my dry suit and undersuit help? The water isn't gushing in, and it's more like a very heavy all over sweat, so thought perhaps a wet suit 'may' help. Or am I going from the sublime to the ridiculous??!!?
I should imagine a wetsuit might play havoc with your weighting and buoyancy, although I haven't tried it myself. Not whicking sweat away it might be quite uncomfortable for prolonged periods too. IIRC a few people have tried this, so someone will no doubt be along soon to advise.

I'd be more inclined to invest in a good undersuit such as 4th Element Xerotherm Arctics - these feel warm and dry even after a huge suit flood (trust me, I know this to be true :redface: ).
 

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Founder of the S.F.T.D
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Seaskin also have great customer service, the wife had some problems with the wrist seals on her's, and they were replaced Free Of Charge no problem. Very tough suit, it's the 3mm Neo MTM she has, excellent value for money.
 

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Proud to be "small minded" in the face of credulit
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Before you do anything rash, try simply wearing your suit for a few hours without immersion. I thought my suit leaked until I spent the day on a boat, suited, but for one reason or another wasn't able to dive.

My suit was sopping inside.

Regards,

Mark
 

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I provide much-needed sarcasm.
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Most I've spoken with have put it down to "sweat", however I'm not convinced. My buddy on Friday, who's an instructor, felt my undersuit and said it was a tad more than sweat. It's not localised, as in my cuffs and neck aren't leaking, and neither are any of the valves.
Are you a sweaty individual in general? :D

Seriously, it might be sweat. Friday was quite warm in the UK, wasn't it? I went somewhere cold, so I'm not sure. On a warm day, and with still very cold water, the condensation is going to be bad. You'll especially get it on the inside of the seams. Was this a problem earlier in the year when the air temp was much the same as the water temp?

What's your undersuit? I wear a Weezle. These wick so well, they're renowned for being very damp on the outside just from sweat. You can tell when you've got salt water coming in as it will leave salty marks on the undersuit when it dries.

Are you wearing any cotton underneath the undersuit? Cotton is cold when it's damp, stops the undersuit wicking properly and is a bad idea. Go for microfibre stuff or similar.

Whenever I've had a leak, and it's not been very often, it's obvious as you get localised cold, wet feelings. The worst one was a dodgy dump valve. The water running down my side as I ascended the shot was lovely. And unmistakeable.

Jason
 
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