Wetsuit top only

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bvbellomo

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I have a 3mm, a 5mm and a hooded sleeveless vest. This was intended to give me options:
85F: Swim Trunks
80F: 3mm only
75F: 5mm only
70F: 5mm + hooded vest

Obviously these are on the warm side, and I can drop one category if I am only doing 1 or 2 dives instead of being in the water the whole day every day, but my SAC rate suffers.

I am leaving for Cozumel soon (80F), and am tempted to try just the hooded vest and trunks. Aside from looking ridiculous, is there anything wrong with this? I am not comfortable wearing trunks under a wetsuit, and switching means being naked, which can be a logistical challenge depending on other divers comfort level and available privacy. It also gives me the 3mm + hooded vest option if something unexpected happens, such as cold windy rainy days and below average water temperature.
 

Nemrod

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I never understand this inability to wear a swimsuit under a wetsuit. But, yes, you can wear your boardies, which are not really a swimsuit, and a hooded vest, why not? Other than you will probably freeze your tush off. Anything to keep from doing the logical. This time of year it can be coolish in Cozumel with the El Nortes coming through. Me, I wear a full 3mm suit with a 3mm hooded vest and a rash guard shirt under or a neoprene beanie type cap and was in Cozumel a few weeks ago and I was cold towards the end of dives and on the boat. My wife just puts her suit on in the room and does not take it off this time of year. I hate wetsuits so I change in and out. And I am warmer that way on the long boat rides. But if you insist upon being naked under your wetsuit then just put it on in the room and leave it on for the duration. Lots of people do that when it is cooler. Many boats do have an enclosed head area so you could change, just depends upon the boat.

James
 

TMHeimer

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A little away from your question, but at times in the FL panhandle in winter I would wear only the top of my 7 mil farmer john wetsuit and my hood (I always wear the hood to keep water from going FAR into my ears). Looked weird, but who cares? The water temp. had to be about a little over 60F for that. Colder and I wore the full suit. Above 65 and I'm in my shorty.
 

waterone

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Id go full 3mm for anytime in the next few months in coz. I wear boxer briefs under my wetsuits. If you purchase the right type such as workout under clothes, they dry as fast as swim shorts and are much more comfortable undersuit.

Last time I went to coz in October I wore my 3mm for my 1st dive and the next 15 with a long sleeve water shirt and board shorts.
 
OP
bvbellomo

bvbellomo

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A lot of it is inability to find trunks that are comfortable under a wetsuit - American ones are too bulky and European ones I've tried are extremely uncomfortable even without a wetsuit. I am sure I will find something that works, but haven't yet.

There is a big difference to me between immediately feeling cold - like if I put my hand in 50F water, and the slow drop in core temperature if I am in the water all day. I am not sure what dives I will do in Cozumel, but if I just do morning, my core temperature will recover long before the next morning. Immediately feeling cold is what you feel the first 10 minutes and the hoody is minimal help for this, the slow drop is what you feel after an hour, and really any neoprene helps.

If I have the weight, I will take both.
 

waterone

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I'm fairly cold tolerant and dive at 48 degree in a 7mm and hood and often in a 3mm at 65 degrees and am quite content.

I didn't get cold at all for my 2 morning dives or my afternoon dives in October with shorts and a shirt in coz but I'm going again next month and will be full 3mm full time. Boats are cold when you get out and even with a coat it's hard to warm up once it is lost.
 

rongoodman

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A Speedo-type swim suit works well under a wet suit, no bulk at all. For Coz I would have a 3 mm suit and a hooded vest in case I got cool later in the week.
 

Nemrod

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You really could not wear this due to comfort?:


The 100% poly type swimsuits wear like iron and resist even chlorine. I was and am a swimmer all my life and still swim laps, got over my body a long time ago. I have found the 100% poly suits to last forever.

I also have some Scubapro shorts like these. While not exactly intended to be worn as a swimsuit I see no reason you could not. I love mine as a warm water bottom with my hooded neoprene vest but I have worn them under a wetsuit also.



Deep down you want the best and these have the expensive S on them and they are very nice!

N
 

Jim Lapenta

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At a minimum I would want a 3 mil full suit. But as I get older it seems I am less tolerant to cold. On an actual dive vacation where I planned on doing 3-4 dives a day? I'd take my 5 mil. Core temp loss is cumulative and over a week diving every day I find that by day 3 I start to get cold and by the end of day 4 I wish I had my drysuit.
The other consideration is that I never go in open water without full body protection. Even just a skin because things like jellies, fire coral, brushing against the down line or ladder, and other accidental contacts can result in nasty infections on unprotected skin.
Exposure protection is also environmental protection in my mind and what I tell my students. A skin is easily donned over a swim suit and helps a wetsuit to slide on easier. It's also good UV protection, dries fast (like by the time you sit down and 15 min later in full sun), and helps with wardrobe malfunctions that I've seen when someone was pulling off a wetsuit over just a bathing suit.
I normally wear regular boxer style swim suits and find that once I get the legs of the wetsuit on, it's a simple matter to just reach in and smooth the legs down. Takes a couple seconds.
 

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