Help me spec my Seaskin Nova?

Please register or login

Welcome to ScubaBoard, the world's largest scuba diving community. Registration is not required to read the forums, but we encourage you to join. Joining has its benefits and enables you to participate in the discussions.

Benefits of registering include

  • Ability to post and comment on topics and discussions.
  • A Free photo gallery to share your dive photos with the world.
  • You can make this box go away

Joining is quick and easy. Log in or Register now!

Scuba Client

Banned
Messages
516
Reaction score
74
Location
Australia
# of dives
500 - 999
Hi All,

Interested in your opinions on some questions about ordering a Seaskin Nova Suit.

I do most of my diving (pre-pandemic about 20 dives a year) in 55ºF / 13ºC water in Monterey, California. So local shore diving. I currently wear an Aqualung Solafx 8/7mm semi-dry, am usually very comfortable at a steady swim, but get cold when hovering in one spot. I am going to get into photography, and eventually Reef Check, but have no interest in going deeper than 40m. I also have never dived in a drysuit, but I will take the class.

My priorities with the options are, in descending importance, safety, in-water comfort, and cost. E.g., I would prefer to minimize air trapped in boots, so I’m going with the neoprene socks instead of integrated boots. Similarly, I would like to minimize squeeze on my neck, as I can get anxious. I’m realistically never going to be more than an hour’s drive from a dive shop, and not doing a ton of dives, so ultra reliability is not as important as ease of use. I would prefer dexterity if I can get it, the 3mm neoprene gloves I wear with my wetsuit are clumsy. Are dry gloves more dextrous?

Here's what I've got so far:
  • £555 Nova suit
  • £53 Quick Neck system with Silflex seal
  • £21 2x spare neck seals
  • £10 Seal replacement tool
  • warm neck?
  • £46 SiTech Oval Cuff Rings (Siflex seals)
  • £8 Showa unlined gloves
  • £15 2x spare SiTech Cuff seal SILFLEX Cone (pair)
  • £50 Light Monkey Non Balanced P-Valve
  • £5 Inflation Valve Comfort Patch
  • - Compressed Neoprene Socks
  • £8 Increase Braces width to 40mm
  • £9 Change Mat Drysuit Bag Upgrade
  • £25 x2 Pocket, Bellows
  • £134 Undersuit High Wick Thinsulate 250 gsm
Total: £985

Still to choose:
  • Hood
  • Boots (need not be warm?)
Is it right that the oval rings allow you to skip the gloves if desired? Ideally I would take this suit to Hawai’i. My flexibility is pretty good, so I figure the default telescoping is enough. If anyone found the opposite to be the case, please let me know. Also looking for opinions on hoods and boots. Thanks!
Look at some crushed neoprene dry suits.
 

drk5036

ScubaBoard Supporter
ScubaBoard Supporter
Messages
839
Reaction score
758
Location
Sapporo, Japan
# of dives
100 - 199
View attachment 660183

If you need help getting in or out of a suit!
I can’t even get out of my damn undersuit by myself, so the drysuit is not my main worry haha.

it is an additional point I didn’t mention, of course. If self entry is a requirement, almost all tri-lams are appropriate, but only a few neoprene suits fit the bill.
 

happy-diver

Skindiver Just feelin it
Messages
2,898
Reaction score
2,120
Location
Just East of Australian landfall
# of dives
2500 - 4999
I go to the guys that make that bill fit

full.jpg


Perhaps it comes from my confusion about zipping my mother into her dresses when a boy
 

Degenerate

Contributor
Messages
569
Reaction score
450
Location
EU
I think this is kind of a strange take, as I've seen exactly the opposite. 1) Trilam's are generally more expensive than crushed/compressed neoprene, so I don't know why you would say "splurge" for one. 2) On scubaboard, plenty of people will tell you you're crazy to buy a neoprene drysuit instead of a trilam, but I've never seen anyone say that neoprene is universally superior.
Trilam is definitely favored on here, my experiences probably mostly come from diving in bad company over here :D
 
OP
wnissen

wnissen

Contributor
Messages
840
Reaction score
592
Location
Livermore, Calif.
# of dives
50 - 99
Trilam suits are favored here for sure, but I think a lot of that has to do with the bias of scubaboard. 1) there are people here who do REALLY COLD water diving, like below 38F. At that temperature, you need extremely thick undersuits with drygloves, etc., and in these circumstances, the flexibility and expandability of a trilam is beneficial. You can fit more layers underneath more comfortably. Also, if you are diving really WARM water but expect to do long dives (3 hours + ) or need redundant buoyancy, Trilam's also work well. Diving a > 3mm neoprene drysuit in 25C water might cause you to overheat. For me, about 23C is the limit.

However, as I and @lexvil said, in that 55-65F range, a neoprene drysuit works great. Because neoprene is stretchy, it can be cut much slimmer; there's no folding things over at the waist and buckling it down. When you're not wearing it, it basically looks like a wetsuit. Also, especially if you get neoprene socks with rock boots, it'll dive very similarly to a wetsuit. You can't feel a significant amount of air moving around--there's no obvious bubble you have to fight against, like with a trilam.

In my opinion, a lot of people on here don't differentiate between old 7-8 mm uncompressed neoprene drysuits and newer, thin, compressed ones. New neoprene drysuits don't compress with depth, and they're not significantly heavier than a wetsuit. I mentioned before that I dive an ultra (with regular neoprene neck and wrist seals). I've done dives down to 39F by using the seaskin 150 gram undergarments, and didn't feel any chill in my body, but most of my diving is in water that is 55-65 degrees. I like that I can get away with wearing thin undergarments most of the year, and that I don't need much weight.

I just got back from a trip to Okinawa wear I used my seaskin ultra in 21 degree water (70F). I just wore very thin base layers on top and bottom (cheap wool stuff i got for 50 dollars on amazon), under the suit. I only needed 4 kg of lead to be perfectly weighted. For me, that's incredibly good versatility. The only "issue" is it doesn't pack as densely, meaning it's a bit of a pain to travel with. But my total was £565.

That's a very interesting perspective, and I do find it attractive. At 25C / 77F I would switch to a shorty, so that's not really a problem. As someone who is prone to gain weight, I was planning to add a bit of stretch in the measurements, anyway. So having something stretchy would be better. My 8/7 semi-dry is quite a chore to get on and off, even with a skinsuit underneath, but I can do it myself without any particular difficulty, so I'd be sad to give that up. No interest in solo diving for the foreseeable future, so I think that would be fine as well, though.
 

runsongas

Contributor
Messages
4,762
Reaction score
2,364
Location
California - Bay Area
# of dives
500 - 999
the compressed neoprene seaskin is backzip which is not ideal if you ever solo dive or dive with instabuddies you can't always rely on to zip you up correctly.
 

lexvil

ScubaBoard Supporter
ScubaBoard Supporter
Messages
5,199
Reaction score
5,285
Location
jamestown, ca.
# of dives
1000 - 2499
the compressed neoprene seaskin is backzip which is not ideal if you ever solo dive or dive with instabuddies you can't always rely on to zip you up correctly.
This is the only and main drawback to the Seaskin neoprene suit. I’ve been kicking around the idea of the pinnacle Tahoe but haven’t seen one in person yet.
 
OP
wnissen

wnissen

Contributor
Messages
840
Reaction score
592
Location
Livermore, Calif.
# of dives
50 - 99
the compressed neoprene seaskin is backzip which is not ideal if you ever solo dive or dive with instabuddies you can't always rely on to zip you up correctly.
What is the "wrong" way to zip? Can you tell by feeling around if the zip is good?
 

runsongas

Contributor
Messages
4,762
Reaction score
2,364
Location
California - Bay Area
# of dives
500 - 999
comes down to if your buddy doesn't zip it closed completely shut, you are going to have a very cold time. with front zip, you can double check it is closed all the way and if you feel it seeping a bit, you can always tug it shut a bit more to try and close it. backzip, you are aborting and getting out of the water.
 
https://www.shearwater.com/products/teric/

Top Bottom