Drysuit compare - Kokatat Idol vs Typhon Multisport Hinge

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EdC
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Drysuit compare - Kokatat Idol vs Typhon Multisport Hinge

Post by EdC » Wed Jan 27, 2016 1:54 pm

At over £1000 why would I buy the Kokatat Idol as opposed to the Typhoon Multisport hinge at about half that price?
What are people's experiences using these two drysuits which both have waist zips.
Is the Kokatat going to be that much better that it will outlast 2 Typhoons?
Thanks in advance for all constructive comments to help me decide.
Ed

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Re: Drysuit compare - Kokatat Idol vs Typhon Multisport Hinge

Post by andy g » Wed Jan 27, 2016 3:43 pm

Ed,

I can't give you any information about the Kokatat, but my original Typhoon MultiSport 3 is still going pretty strong after 6 hard years use . OK it now needs a couple of seals but otherwise is great, perhaps the fit could be better but no other complaints.

When the time comes to get another one , I will opt for the MultiSport 4, it really is a no-brainer for me.

Andy G

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Re: Drysuit compare - Kokatat Idol vs Typhon Multisport Hinge

Post by g_mcmann » Wed Jan 27, 2016 4:15 pm

I have the multi sport hinge and have been using it for a couple of months now, I have made a couple of comments below.

1) Zip position - this isn't at waist height, more middle to upper chest, or this is the position I find I have to position the zip for maximum comfort when wearing it otherwise it can double over under your deck tube and create a pressure point. When the zip is in the higher position, above the deck tube, I cannot feel it at all and I have virtually unrestricted body movement.

2) Zip operation - it is fairly easy to both zip and unzip the suit yourself which is very useful, you do have to be careful however not to catch any of the material, generally the outer section of the waist tube, in the zip when doing it up.

3) Half on half off - a lot of us walk around with our suits half on half off both before and after our trips with the top half around our waist and the braces still holding up the trousers, tying the arms together to keep them out the way, with the hinge I find this a little more difficult as you have the whole of the top half of the suit hanging in front of you in such a way that it get in the way. When dry you can tuck it all in and give yourself a comical belly but I don't want to do this when its wet so it tends to just end up hanging there getting rain on the inside with the arms dragging on the ground when they become untied. The only other solution I have found is to tie the arms behind your back but this can be a bit uncomfortable when you sit down.

The suit performance has been ideal though, it replace my old MS3 that I had given a hard life for 4 years both kayaking and doing safety work, the sides of HPP take their toll eventually, and it had just become more of a damp suit. So far I have always been dry after river trips in this suit, even from sweat which makes getting changed a whole world quicker ans easier. I haven't had to test the glide skin neck seal in anger yet with a swim but I know its time will come, that said it seems to make an air tight seal like a latex one would and I still have to vent the suit when I put it on. The colour is brilliant too!

Hope this helps in some way,

Cheers

Gareth

EdC
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Re: Drysuit compare - Kokatat Idol vs Typhon Multisport Hinge

Post by EdC » Wed Jan 27, 2016 5:27 pm

Thanks for the comments.

Gareth - great feedback on the practicalities. Makes me wonder how the half on half off would work with the Kotakat where I think the zip is lower - the advantage being the top can be used as a stand alone cag if conditions don't warrant a full suit, but would presumably then mean more of the top getting in the way if half off and walking around after paddling, etc. Given I've used separate top and bottom for some years, to allow flexibility when it's not that cold, the idea of the Kotakat flexibility appeals, but the cost is very high.

Anyone know if the Kotakat Idol has internal braces to hold the trousers up if not wearing the top as it's not obvious from their website?

Ed

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Re: Drysuit compare - Kokatat Idol vs Typhon Multisport Hinge

Post by Matto » Wed Jan 27, 2016 6:21 pm

I think actually you're asking about two separate things. The Kokatat is Goretex, and that drives the price. Most Goretex suits are in the £1000 range. Bargains may be found but that's the RRP by and large. That's what you're paying for.

So the questions is do you want or need a Goretex suit? Personally I decide I did, after getting out of my old DamX suit very damp on almost every occasion due to lack of breathability I decided to go the whole hog and go for Goretex. Once I'd made that decision and accepted that I'd be spending a lot of money, then the Kokatat Idol seemed like a logical choice, if something of a new, and slightly scary idea.

So, I've had the Idol for about 6 months. I haven't had any length swims so far, but I have swum in it and come out dry. So it seems to do the basic job well enough to date.

Everyone tells me that Kokatat suits routinely last for 10 years. I don't know. I hope they're right. I'm not banking on it. It would be nice if it did but I didn't buy it for that reason. The trousers do seem very lightweight and I do worry about their durability long term. But Kokatat guarantee their stuff for life and offer a proper maintenance service which I intend to utilise.

The suit is a full two piece, unlike the Hinge. I can put the trousers on and then wander about the river side with just a shirt on whilst loading unloading etc. I can just throw a rain coat on if its raining and not feel quite as constricted as I always feel in a drysuit when on the bank. It's very convenient. On chilly days during a lunch stop I've taken the top off and put a belay jacket on instead. That is also very nice and easy. Others have commented on the attraction of this feature.

It does not have braces. It does not seem to need them. The trousers have a drawstring like dry trousers do, and they seem to stay up on their own. The decked waist pulls it all in pretty tight when it's a suit. Falling down does not seem to be an issue in either situation.

The zip/bolt thingy is a little bulky but is quickly forgotten. Pulling a sprey deck over it is a little annoying but that is pretty much the only time you notice it.
Matto

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Re: Drysuit compare - Kokatat Idol vs Typhon Multisport Hinge

Post by ajames456 » Wed Jan 27, 2016 7:37 pm

I have Kokatat Hydrus 3 and it's excellent in all areas, far better than the Palm suits that i've had.
It is also for sale, as I am selling up.

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Re: Drysuit compare - Kokatat Idol vs Typhon Multisport Hinge

Post by DaveBland » Wed Jan 27, 2016 9:12 pm

I have no doubt that the Kokatat is the better suit - they are simply the driest most durable suits going. [Maybe the Sweets are too?]

Whether you need a totally awesome suit or want to afford the price-tag is the issue.

Are you getting one for safety or comfort? Look at how much paddling you do and in what type of water/conditions. Also how much time you spend in the water/what will happen if you are in the water. I have the Kokatat Goretex one for here in Canada as the water can be a bit nippy. I got mine mostly for safety in case of a long swim or doing a rescue where I may be in the water a while. Or chucking and jumping round something.

Before that I had a second hand Levelsix one that leaked a bit. I had an epic swim* and was in the water for over 30 mins and that made my mind up.



*2:27secs – not the finest engage core boof moment

dave

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Re: Drysuit compare - Kokatat Idol vs Typhon Multisport Hinge

Post by box2k2 » Thu Jan 28, 2016 9:28 am

I've got the Kokatat (Idol?). Found some company with a single example keen to get shot, so it was a steal.

Having initially had a few doubts about the waist zip and pronouncing it a bit of a gimmick, I'm now a little more convinced, but still not sold on it being the next big thing.The lack of a convenience zip is frankly inconvenient having come from an MS4, but I have found that throwing the bottom half on in the morning and being able to remove the top for drives, coffee shops etc is great.

About the only game changing application I think I've worked out would be to start a day in the top only, and if you need to you can have bottom in the boat ready to drysuit it up if required.

The zip is lower down and sits below the waist, fitting nicely into the gap between seat and backrest.

Otherwise the cut, material and wearability are all excellent as I guess you'd expect from Kokatat (and a noticeable improvement on Typhoon), only I'm pretty certain I'd not pay the extra for the waist zip had it not been such a bargain.

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Re: Drysuit compare - Kokatat Idol vs Typhon Multisport Hinge

Post by Kizzie_St-As » Thu Jan 28, 2016 1:00 pm

I can't comment on the waist zip as I have a front zip suit, however I would say that I've had my Kokatat suit for 2 years now and it's still 100% dry. No leaks ANYWHERE. The people I know that got Typhoon suits say they're dry for a few months before you start to get mild seepage (usually on the feet) which slowly gets worse and after a couple years they can be classified as a "damp suit". I had a similar, though worse, experience with my Palm suit.
Given the guarantee on the Kokatat, I figured that paying a bit less than twice the price of a new Palm suit was worth it lasting more than twice as long.
Done a Scottish river not on the site? Message me!

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Re: Drysuit compare - Kokatat Idol vs Typhon Multisport Hinge

Post by EdC » Thu Jan 28, 2016 7:30 pm

One concern I had was how long it would remain watertight. The last 2 Palm top of the range, breathable dry cags I've had, have both become damp cags over time and it feels like the waterproof layer is no longer working properly, although there are no obvious leaks or anything. It's good to hear user experience that paying the extra for Kokatat and Goretex seems worthwhile, as it lasts. Only problem now is can I justify the expense given I'm not paddling as much these days, but on the other hand it is cold and wet out there at the moment and the Dart and S.Wales rivers are beckoning!

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Re: Drysuit compare - Kokatat Idol vs Typhon Multisport Hinge

Post by MikeB » Thu Jan 28, 2016 8:13 pm

Goretex. Goretex. Goretex, no substitute. Did I say there is no substitute for Goretex? And yes, the price is extortionate.

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Re: Drysuit compare - Kokatat Idol vs Typhon Multisport Hinge

Post by SimonMW » Mon Feb 01, 2016 1:01 pm

The Idol is a great suit. My observations from testing one, and owning a MS3:

- The Idol will be a much better fit than the Typhoon.
- The Gore-tex material is lighter and thinner than the Typhoon. It could be less robust, especially at places like CIWW which can wreck gear (I've ripped a cag rolling there, and my girlfriend recently ripped her new Kokatat drysuit there too!)
- The Idol will be more breathable.
- The sealing zip on the Idol can take a bit of getting used to and may cause a lot of swearing at first!
- The Idol zip will make you look like you have very big hips.
have both become damp cags over time and it feels like the waterproof layer is no longer working properly, although there are no obvious leaks or anything.
All waterproof gear goes like this. Its not that it isn't waterproof, but the pores get clogged over time and they become less breathable. Generally I just accept that I will be damp in anything other than brand new equipment. Not wet, but a bit damp from condensation. No gear will keep you truly dry, especially during physical exertion.

I've gone Immersion Research now. Great quality and price.

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