Drysuit or seperate Cag and Trousers

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beinbhan
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Drysuit or seperate Cag and Trousers

Post by beinbhan »

What would you recommend for a newbie getting first kayak a dry suit or seperate Cag and trouser combo.

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Re: Drysuit or seperate Cag and Trousers

Post by on the rocks »

Drysuit

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Re: Drysuit or seperate Cag and Trousers

Post by Northern Blue »

Both !

My drysuit with ‘wooly bear’ undersuit is brill in deepest, coldest winter, comfortable in spring and autumn with various layers underneath, but is far too hot in the summer, even with shorts and a T under it.

Short sleeved cag for those cooler summer days.

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Re: Drysuit or seperate Cag and Trousers

Post by Chris Bolton »

It depends what kind of kayaking you plan to do. Whitewater or sea kayaking, as a beginner, I'd get a drysuit. Calm lakes or canal, probably neither. Gentle rivers, or places where I might need to wade in cold water to launch, but then paddle in the sun, maybe separates.

I don't think separates will ever be as reliable if you're in the water, leaks at the join are likely. But if you're only likely to be in for a short time, or the water isn't going to be cold enough to kill you before you make yourself safe, the flexibility to wear one half or the other might be worth it.

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Re: Drysuit or seperate Cag and Trousers

Post by Beryl »

I’ve tried a lot of gear in my first two years and find conventional separates too lumpy in the middle for comfort. I’m very happy with a Typhoon Curve drysuit. I just pop off my shoes and jump in. The back zip is easy for one person to operate, unlike many other suits. For warmer days I use Forth Element leggings with either short or long sleeve top from same people. In winter I use both.
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Re: Drysuit or seperate Cag and Trousers

Post by robhorton »

Before too long you are going to want a drysuit, dry trousers, dry cag, shorty cag, touring cag and neoprene shorts plus various options to wear under these. Difficult to say what the "best" order to acquire these is as it really depends on what sort of paddling you plan to do and your personal preference (and budget!).

I just had a pair of dry trousers plus top for a while - the water does seep in when you're immersed but it's not as bad as you might think. The big advantage of that setup is the flexibility, especially if you have a couple of cags to choose from. Nowadays though if I'm planning to swim and it's anything cooler than "beach" weather, or any time the water is cold, I'll just wear the drysuit (probably over 50% of my paddling) - it's much nicer taking it off and being (hopefully!) completely dry.

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Re: Drysuit or seperate Cag and Trouser

Post by Pedro75 »

If you want to paddle through winter you can’t beat a dry suit IMO. I had separates for years and thought I was being a bit extravagant when I bought a dry suit but it’s been well worth it. As others have said separates are good if you have different combinations for different conditions. I’ve accumulated a dry suit, dry trousers, dry cag, semi dry cag, short sleeve cag, neoprene shorts, thick and thin short and long sleeve rash vests/thermals. I can mix and match these according to the conditions. Sometimes get it wrong though and got a bit cold on the last paddle. Always good to carry an extra layer.

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Re: Drysuit or seperate Cag and Trousers

Post by jackp »

probably obvious but a good spray deck keeps 90% + spray off from underneath .personally finding that drysuits don’t last that long and not worth the investment for maybe only 3 yrs of winter use .a thick longjohn wetsuit and mid range cag would be ok.

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Re: Drysuit or seperate Cag and Trousers

Post by Jim »

The relative cost of a drysuit is so much less than it was 20 years ago, for a beginner choosing which to get first, I would normally recommend drysuit these days if you are expecting to do a lot of wet training (capsize drills, rolling practice or anything where you fall in a fair bit when learning), unless it was coming up to the hottest months of the year, but they have clearly just passed.
Don't forget you will need thermal layers underneath a drysuit (or separates).

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Re: Drysuit or seperate Cag and Trousers

Post by mcgruff »

One day I'd love to try Thermocline 4th element. A single layer is said to be equivalent to 2mm neoprene so a full suit plus separate bottoms & top could be worn in different combinations to cover a range of conditions. Double up for maximum warmth. Could easily add an ordinary kag on top for more windchill protection.

The breathability & easy maintenance could be a big plus. And if you do have to take a swim you'd be much more agile in the water compared a drysuit.

Probably not the cheapest option though.
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Re: Drysuit or seperate Cag and Trousers

Post by P4ddy »

Looking on Southampton canoes a drysuit costs the same as a kayak so they are extremely expensive.

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Re: Drysuit or seperate Cag and Trousers

Post by Sarah7 »

jackp wrote:
Wed Aug 26, 2020 10:30 pm
probably obvious but a good spray deck keeps 90% + spray off from underneath .personally finding that drysuits don’t last that long and not worth the investment for maybe only 3 yrs of winter use .a thick longjohn wetsuit and mid range cag would be ok.
I have a DamX drysuit that's 13 years old and still going strong, just needed seal replacements. They have excellent service, highly recommended.

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Re: Drysuit or seperate Cag and Trousers

Post by Chris Bolton »

Looking on Southampton canoes a drysuit costs the same as a kayak so they are extremely expensive.
I think that's a high-end drysuit vs a low end kayak. Looking at it the other way, a Lomo drysuit is £225 and a Cetus Expedition Kevlar Carbon is £4360.
but a good spray deck keeps 90% + spray off from underneath
That's fair enough if you stay in the boat, but the OP is a newbie and probably not a high confidence roller.

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Re: Drysuit or seperate Cag and Trousers

Post by Spikeedog »

All good advice. You need a range of different gear to cover the varying circumstances. It does take a couple of years to 'learn' that in my limited experience. Most gear I've bought used and good quality and I've been able to sell on when changing things around.

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Re: Drysuit or seperate Cag and Trousers

Post by P4ddy »

Chris Bolton wrote:
Fri Aug 28, 2020 12:20 pm
I think that's a high-end drysuit vs a low end kayak. Looking at it the other way, a Lomo drysuit is £225 and a Cetus Expedition Kevlar Carbon is £4360.

Hmm, ok. Sounds a better price.

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Re: Drysuit or seperate Cag and Trousers

Post by Gordon Gilzean »

I have a few options, drysuit, dry trousers, dry cag and a wetsuit, I usually wear my drytrousers with a quick wicking top if its arm and I carry my dry cag incase it gets cold, I find paddling in my drysuit or dry cag makes me sweat a lot so if the conditions are well within my ability I like to only have a quick drying top with my ba over it and sometimes a waterproof spray jacket, if I'm planning on doing a lot of rescue practices or going out into conditions where there's a high chance of swimming like in surf zones to play around in I'll wear the full drysuit, if you have a good roll a good cag and spray deck will keep you dry aswell making splits a realistic option, long story short if your going to spend more time in the water get a drysuit, if it's for mainly paddling trips and you just need to have some form of safety if you have a capsize and swim dry trousers and a cag will be more comfortable

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Re: Drysuit or seperate Cag and Trousers

Post by Beryl »

mcgruff wrote:
Thu Aug 27, 2020 8:06 pm
One day I'd love to try Thermocline 4th element. A single layer is said to be equivalent to 2mm neoprene so a full suit plus separate bottoms & top could be worn in different combinations to cover a range of conditions. Double up for maximum warmth. Could easily add an ordinary kag on top for more windchill protection.

The breathability & easy maintenance could be a big plus. And if you do have to take a swim you'd be much more agile in the water compared a drysuit.

Probably not the cheapest option though.
It’s brilliant kit; the claims made for it are accurate. It took 2months on eBay but I got a new short sleeve top for £45 and S/h shorts for £17. But what I use mostly is a full two piece suit by Sharkskin (Thermocline equivalent ) which cost £60. Okay, it’s secondhand but this stuff is bulletproof; plenty have had the same outfit for many years.
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Re: Drysuit or seperate Cag and Trousers

Post by Kevin Cooper »

I have struggled with this debate personally and when advising friends, one factor I cannot see reflected in the above comments is taking account the individual and how much they feel the cold. I have a friend currently looking at this option and they feel the cold a lot and are very slight in build so I am leaning towards suggesting a drysuit. But then the issue becomes finding one that will fit a person at the extreme end of typical sizing. The other negatives to dry trousers I have experienced are that you have yet another layer of fabric around your midriff, especially with high fit trousers, and if you opt for trousers with socks for maximum warmth, any water that does get into them during submersion is then trapped unless you can stand on your head.

I prefer seperates to reduce condensation and improve flexibility for conditions varying on the day but from autumn through to spring I opt for drysuit to avoid the potential of water ingress during a swim.

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Re: Drysuit or seperate Cag and Trousers

Post by pathbrae »

"Feeling the cold" and becoming hypothermic are two very different things.

If you paddle off the south coast, only in summer and and don't plan on doing anything which will involve you spending any time in the water or on going out in poor weather then you don't really need a dry-suit and might never wear it unless you were deliberately going out to do rescue practice sessions.
Paddling off the Scottish coast at almost any time of year, going out in more challenging paddling conditions and weather - a dry suit is going to be useful for probaly at least ten months of the year.

It is probably the single best purchase a lot of "old school" paddlers will ever make - going from years of soggy bottoms, cold feet, changing out of soaking wet gear in a freezing rain-soaked car-park to stepping out of a dry suit, maybe a bit sweaty but mostly dry and warm, shoes on and away..... No brainer for me - dry suit every time (but with the option of short sleeved cag and w/proof bottoms for warmer days)
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Re: Drysuit or seperate Cag and Trousers

Post by Owen »

This time of year in calm weather I would go with Reed Salopettes and touring cag over something like track suit bottoms and fleece top. The sea is relatively warm around where I live at the moment (east coast of Scotland) and I have practiced wet training sessions dressed like this and lived to tell the tale. As it gets more drish, wetter, windier and colder I swap the fleece and tracky bottoms for Fourth Element top and bottoms. Save the dry suit for when it's really cold.

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Re: Drysuit or seperate Cag and Trousers

Post by ChrisJK »

Beinbhan has made no response to all this advice,!
Initially I got away with what I already had viz a wet suit, old goretex coat and waterproof leggings but that's not ideal.
So first I also aquired a hooded cag then some Palm thermal tops and bottoms and later another club member had a Typhoon dry suit in need of TLC to sell for £25. The TLC consisted of bits of old Goretex plus some storm sure and a reproof and I've got a workable dry suit to at least cover till I think I need to shell out on a new one.
Basically if you don't think you'll fall out of your boat or the weather you paddle in is always warm sunny and calm you can wear what you like other wise particularly if you've taken to the sport as many have said, you'll need to build up a wardrobe to suit the seasons.

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Re: Drysuit or seperate Cag and Trousers

Post by beinbhan »

I haven't responded because I have been away for a couple of weeks :) Thanks for all the advice. It looks like there is no correct answer I'm in Scotland so the sea is never warm. I tend to run hot so it looks like the answer is it depends on the conditions and id there is a chance of going for a swim. Guess I will just have to build up a wardrobe for different conditions. There goes the kids inheritance.

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