5mm wetsuit plus 5mm shorty oversuit

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Disco King

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Hi,

I'm searching for a wetsuit option for diving in cold water (60F). I am pretty comfortable with 5mm, a lavacore vest and a hoodie in 75F water.

Would it keep me warm if I layer a 5mm wetsuit + lavecore vest with a 5mm shorty oversuit? I saw pinnacle escape 5mm short sleeve shorty. It has full zip making me think it is easy to put on and off. I am not sure how much warmth it provides.

Another option would be buying a 7mm wetsuit and layer it with the lavacore vest.

Which option would be warmer and/or easier to put On? Are there other things to consider?

Thanks!

I might have not been clear. I already have a 5 mm wetsuit and a lavacore vest/hoodie. I am seeking for opnions to decide to buy either 5 mm shorty (as a layer) or 7 mm wetsuit to prepare the coldest dive spot in Galapagos Aug - Dec.
 

Brett Hatch

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If you are trying to choose between a 7mm wetsuit versus 5mm wetsuit + 5mm shorty wetsuit, I'd go with the 7mm. 5mm+5mm is not as warm as you might expect, since there will be water flushing between the two suits, which reduces effectiveness of shorty.

But if you already have a 5mm and are trying to decide between buying a cheaper 5mm shorty versus a more expensive 7mm wetsuit, then it's a more interesting question. I don't know if the 5+5 will be sufficiently warm. If the fit is bad, then I doubt it. But if the fit is good, I reckon that some people would be comfortable, others would be cold. If you can find a way to try it without spending money upfront, best way is to just get out there and dive it. If you aren't cold at 100' deep, and you aren't cold after say an hour dive, then you're in good shape.

My local waters run about 50-55 degrees F, and I do see some people in a single-piece full 7mm wetsuit. I've never seen people layering 5mm's in this area, but I'm sure they are out there. More often 8mm semi-dry wetsuits, which I personally used for 50 dives or so. After awhile, I decided to go for a drysuit, which is dramatically warmer, although it cost me about $1k more than my wetsuit did. 60F is pretty cold, you might want to consider a drysuit, or at least a semi-dry wetsuit.

By the way, thicker hoods with better seals help a lot in cold water. Like if you are used to diving a 3mm in 75F water, try a 7mm hood for cold water diving, and make sure that there isn't room for much water in the head part, and that the neck part seals really well.
 

BoltSnap

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5+5mm is too much buoyancy change. Since you already have a 5mm, you may try the 5mm shortie, at your risk. I have a 5mm for the time I can dive with a 5mm, a 7mm when I need a 7mm. 60F/15C temp is drysuit country for me but it is a lot more $$$.
 

Disco King

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If you are trying to choose between a 7mm wetsuit versus 5mm wetsuit + 5mm shorty wetsuit, I'd go with the 7mm. 5mm+5mm is not as warm as you might expect, since there will be water flushing between the two suits, which reduces effectiveness of shorty.

But if you already have a 5mm and are trying to decide between buying a cheaper 5mm shorty versus a more expensive 7mm wetsuit, then it's a more interesting question. I don't know if the 5+5 will be sufficiently warm. If the fit is bad, then I doubt it. But if the fit is good, I reckon that some people would be comfortable, others would be cold. If you can find a way to try it without spending money upfront, best way is to just get out there and dive it. If you aren't cold at 100' deep, and you aren't cold after say an hour dive, then you're in good shape.

My local waters run about 50-55 degrees F, and I do see some people in a single-piece full 7mm wetsuit. I've never seen people layering 5mm's in this area, but I'm sure they are out there. More often 8mm semi-dry wetsuits, which I personally used for 50 dives or so. After awhile, I decided to go for a drysuit, which is dramatically warmer, although it cost me about $1k more than my wetsuit did. 60F is pretty cold, you might want to consider a drysuit, or at least a semi-dry wetsuit.

By the way, thicker hoods with better seals help a lot in cold water. Like if you are used to diving a 3mm in 75F water, try a 7mm hood for cold water diving, and make sure that there isn't room for much water in the head part, and that the neck part seals really well.

This really helps! Thank you. Good to know 5mm + 5mm may not be as warm as I thought. Will look into a semi dry option as well. I already have a 5mm wetsuit - added it in my post as clarification.
 

Brett Hatch

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This really helps! Thank you. Good to know 5mm + 5mm may not be as warm as I thought. Will look into a semi dry option as well. I already have a 5mm wetsuit - added it in my post as clarification.
I see. Well, then I'd say go for the 7mm unless the difference in cost is a deal-breaker. Deep6 has a really sweet 7mm for $225, definitely recommend giving that a look. If you do not fit neatly into their size chart, give them a call and they can help you figure out which will fit best.

You may also want to see if anybody in your area will make you a custom wetsuit from scratch. A good fit is really important, and custom suits aren't as expensive as they sound.
 

Searcaigh

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60F / 15.5C definitely drysuit for me but I've done it in a 7mm semidry when I was much younger.

By the way, thicker hoods with better seals help a lot in cold water. Like if you are used to diving a 3mm in 75F water, try a 7mm hood for cold water diving, and make sure that there isn't room for much water in the head part, and that the neck part seals really well.

A hood with a bib works better than a standard hood to prevent ingress of water, a hooded vest is even better.
 

Disco King

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Here're a few articles I found on Google search. Hope it helps. I have never owned one so I can't tell how effective it is.

"Semi-Dry Suits – Semi dry suits are a wetsuit with seals and features similar to a drysuit but they are made to allow some water in. These suits have ankle, wrist and neck areas made of a special material to reduce the flushing effect of warm water being washed out of the suit by cold water entering."

Source: simplyscuba.com

Here's another https://www.scubapro.com/blog/article/diving-semi-dry-wetsuit
 

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JMJ Wetsuits

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When I was in the Galapagos the water below the surface layer got down to 62 F. For that I was very happy to have a custom 7mm fullsuit with a 5mm hooded vest. I would suggest that over doing triple layers.

Let us know if you have any other suit questions.

Hope that helps,
Derek & JMJ
 
https://www.shearwater.com/products/swift/

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