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Sharm in February?

Discussion in 'Red Sea' started by goodgamethanks, Oct 21, 2011.

  1. goodgamethanks

    goodgamethanks Garibaldi

    # of Dives: 0 - 24
    Location: Essex, UK
    2
    0
    0
    Hi, am new to diving. Went to Hurghada in September, and my sister who is a divemaster talked me into a OW course, which I found great fun, now can't wait to go back to Red Sea. I am looking to go to Sharm for a week in February to do the AOW/or do as many dives as i can squeeze in. Have read a lot of really useful info on this site, which is really great for a beginner like myself. Will be getting various bits of kit as and when I can afford it. This time round will just be a dive computer and wetsuit.

    Computer i have already decided on, but on the wetsuit I am undecided and would appreciate any advice. I bought a 3mm shorty for hurghada which was fine. Temp there was 34 degrees on the surface and averaged 28 degrees in the water. I gather that in February it will be mid to high twenties on the surface and low twenties in the water. I am debating whether to get a 5mm or 7mm full body wetsuit. I am thinking that a 5mm wetsuit would be ok for all tropical destinations whereas a 7mm might be too hot. Although a 7mm suit would probably be ok for UK summer diving if I decide at a later date to go down that route. I realise that most divers will have a number of suits for different diving, climes, and locations. I plan to go to Sharm in Feb, then another couple of weeks late summer in either Red Sea again or maybe Florida. Am 6'3 and 85kg, not much bodyfat, would be doing no more than 3 dives a day, between 45 - 60 minutes, depth would be no more than 30m. Any advice, criticism, or tips welcome. Thanks.
    :)
     
  2. tacky

    tacky Nassau Grouper

    # of Dives: 100 - 199
    Location: Oslo, Norway
    91
    0
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    You'll probably be OK in a 5mm. If you start diving in the UK you'll probably want a dry suit sooner or later anyway. If cash is not an issue, then a DUI TLS style dry suit with just a thin undergarnment would be ideal for february in the Red Sea.
     
  3. Tigerman

    Tigerman Solo Diver

    # of Dives: I just don't log dives
    Location: Norway
    7,223
    1,881
    113
    As long as its a properly fitted, not too worn out suit a 5mil should be fine.
    A badly fitting, worn out suit is not recommendable for anywhere.
     
  4. Crowley

    Crowley Master Instructor

    # of Dives: I'm a Fish!
    Location: Planet Crowley
    1,832
    451
    83
    That time of year sees the lowest temperature in the Red Sea - two years ago the lowest temperature according to my computer was 23 degrees Centigrade. Last year it was 22. This year, the sea has not warmed up as it did in the last two years I've been here. I've been out of the water a lot, for various reasons, but last week in Ras Mohamed my computer was still showing 28 degrees in places, but I'm getting 27 in Na'ama Bay at the moment and I saw 26 at Tower this afternoon.

    This does not bode well for the winter months, in my experience, so a 5mm wetsuit might be enough but I'd recommend something warmer. A 7mm wetsuit would probably be okay but a semi-dry would be better. There's a fair amount of drysuits in the water in February. I can promise you that in no way, shape or form will you be "too hot" in a 7mm wetsuit!

    Any reputable dive centre will have suitable suits available for rent. A common theme here is 5+5 two-piece long-johns and shorty over the top. If you decide to go rental and they offer you a 3mm shorty, laugh and walk away! :D

    If you're planning to buy a suit for all conditions - look at a combination suit. I used to have an Oceanic Titanium three-piece (5mm full suit, 5mm shorty and also a hood) and it was great - summer in Sharm? Take the shorty! Winter in El Gouna? - take everything! December in Thailand - the long suit works well.

    Hope that helps a bit - anything else you need to know just ask!

    Cheers

    C.
     
  5. goodgamethanks

    goodgamethanks Garibaldi

    # of Dives: 0 - 24
    Location: Essex, UK
    2
    0
    0
    Crowley, Tigerman, and tacky. Thanks for the replies. I'm budgeting about £150 for a full body wetsuit so that rules out a drysuit or a semi dry. A 5mm sounds more appealing now. Didn't realise I could wear a shorty on top. Will have to see if my 3mm shorty would fit on top off a 5mm. It was a pretty snug fit when I got it. My shorty is a 3mm Aqualung Mahe (which was cheap, £50, and a good fit). But they only seem to do a 3mm full wetsuit. I have been looking at Scubapro and Mares wetsuits. I gather that these are decent brands?
    :)
     
  6. diverLux

    diverLux Barracuda

    # of Dives: 200 - 499
    Location: Luxembourg, Moselle Region
    227
    33
    28
    Look at it this way, the more dive suits you use the less they wear and tear.

    Scubapro and Mares are top of the line brands. Mares are also top in price. I have recently bought a Cressi Comfort 5 mm it comes with a detachable hood and is almost dry, this type suit would be defined as semi-dry.

    I buy all my gear on the german market they always have good prices due to high competition. Go to this link to get an idea about prices for comparison https://ssl.kundenserver.de/www.underwaterno1.de/sess/utn154ea5539367ba4/shopdata/index.shopscript

    The largest aquatic trade fair in Europe - Boot - is held every year in Düsseldorf at the end of January, it has a large section just dealing with every aspect of diving, all the manufacturer's are represented. Seen lots of British there , low cost airlines fly into ( Düsseldorf) - Weeze. airport. Home -- boot Trade Fair
     
  7. Crowley

    Crowley Master Instructor

    # of Dives: I'm a Fish!
    Location: Planet Crowley
    1,832
    451
    83
    Welcome for the replies.

    If you can find one - there is a semidry available from SeacSub (The Flex series) and as lot of staff have bought this suit here in Egypt, including me. It cost me about 200 Euros (I get a 15% staff discount) including a hood.

    It's not the best suit in the world, the Zip is great but the seals are cheap and need careful looking after. Mine has seen me through two winters and well over 1,000 dives with constant every day use apart from a couple of weeks when it was warm enough to wear shorts and a rash vest. For 200 Euros that's a bargain.

    In my personal experience, at least in terms of suits available here, the SeacSub outranks them all in terms of value for money, also the Waterproof suits come highly recommended. The Mares suits do not. Not at all. Having said that, please bear in mind the workload our suits have to go through! If you're diving only a few weeks in the year and look after your it, pretty much any suit manufactured within your budget would suffice, I expect.

    Very importantly, make sure you try the suit on. Sizes as in L XL M S or whatever vary immensely between brands, and if you want to buy a suit where temperature will play a significant factor in your diving, the fit is all important. It should be snug, and a new suit should be borderline restrictive, without of course impairing your ability to move, breath, or father children at a later date! They will slacken off pretty quickly, so if it's not a good, snug fit, the thickness of your suit becomes a bit pointless.

    Definitely recommend a hood in the Red Sea at this time of year, preferably one that seals over the suit's neck.

    If your budget doesn't stretch to a semi-dry, layering wetsuits is a good option. There's nothing wrong at all with wearing a vest, long suit, then a shorty over the top. Some are actually designed this way.

    Happy hunting!

    C.
     
  8. Topper1972

    Topper1972 Instructor, Scuba

    # of Dives: 1,000 - 2,499
    Location: Denmark
    117
    75
    28
    I might be moving to Sharm for a long stay starting late January....

    DiverLux mentions the Cressi Comfort 5mm...I like the Cressi suits, too...well priced and that brand always seem to fit me nicely sizewise.
    The Cressi Comfort 5mm comes with a hood, right? I don't get cold easily...but considering 3 dives a day all through the months of January-February-March-April-May, will it be enough for warmth and will it put up to the daily wear and tear??

    PS - Oh, I need some advice on a cheap hotel for a long term hotel room...perhaps with breakfast...I have been recommended Delta Sharm...my work will be based from Naama Bay...is it okay to ask for recommendations on a cheap long term hotel room in this thread?
     
  9. diverLux

    diverLux Barracuda

    # of Dives: 200 - 499
    Location: Luxembourg, Moselle Region
    227
    33
    28
    The Cressi Comfort 5 mm comes in 2 variations. I have the one with soft knee cap and tibia protection, the one shown on this picture has the hard covers. The hood seen here is attached to the suit with a hook. They also do a 7 mm. http://www.diveandfish.com.au/media/catalog/product/c/r/cressi_comfort_man.jpg
    I am not diving in Winter but have used it in April, Mai and June !! and I was fine with it . For the Summer months in the Red Sea I use a 4 mm shorty. For my last dive trip this year early Nov I will use the 5 mm again.
    If I were to dive in Winter in the Red Sea I would certainly get a 7 mm and that would be as a recreational diver (or professional tourist diver, to use the expression of some funny guy here on the forum)
     
    Topper1972 likes this.
  10. Crowley

    Crowley Master Instructor

    # of Dives: I'm a Fish!
    Location: Planet Crowley
    1,832
    451
    83
    If you're going to be working here, or making an extended dive vacation even, a 5mm single-piece wetsuit is not recommended in February. Please trust me on this! In winter time here, McDonald's is like super high calorie health food for the dive staff, and we still lose weight! :D

    I know some hardened cold water divers will say that diving in 22 degree water is like having a nice bath, but coupled with the northerly wind howling down the gulf of Aqaba, it makes days in Tiran wish you had a small fire and some hot gluehwine on board. I like to go and sit in the galley with the cook....

    Topper - PM me if you have questions about the move and working here.

    Cheers,

    C.
     
    divebunnie and Topper1972 like this.

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