Meet new scuba divers, maintain a virtual dive log, participate in our forum, share underwater photos, research dive sites and more. Members login here.

Cobbling together a little more warmth
Coho - 10/23/2007 9:40 AM
View Member Articles
Category: Equipment
Comments: 8
As the water is getting cooler, I`m wondering about how to squeeze a little more warmth - or, literally, a little less warmth - out of my wetsuit. Would it make sense, for instance, to add an outer neckpiece (a second hood with the top cut off above the chin?) to decrease water flow down the back? Or perhaps one might additionally wear long dishwashing gloves with rubber bands or velcro straps at the open ends to impede water circulation. I don`t care if I look silly if it keeps me in the water - after all, walking in a full wet suit past swimmers on a hot midsummer beach already looks pretty odd. Have people tried any extra warm bits? What were they, and how did they work? What else can you think of, keeping safety in mind?


Aimlow321 - 11/09/2007 9:32 AM
I believe in layering. I use a dry suit for cold water, but still normally use thin gloves. I use thin gloves (like exam gloves or painter`s gloves) under my diving gloves, and find that it helps quite a bit. They help a good deal coming out of the water too - seems to minimize the evaporative cooling effect on the hands.
seaweed - 10/25/2007 6:06 PM
if you wear dish gloves,the pressure will increase the further you go down.
seawolfdiving - 10/24/2007 9:40 PM
A caution about adding a neckpiece of any kind to your wetsuit hood. The additional pressure applied to your neck may cause something called Carotid Sinus Syndrome. I have seen this happen on a few occasions when the wetsuit hood or colar is a little too tight on the diver. For more info on Carotid Sinus Syndrome, check out the following links:
Coho - 10/24/2007 4:26 PM
I agree that ultimately dry suit would be the way to go, but unfortunately it`s not in my current budget. I actually got dry-suit certified this summer, so should one fall into my lap I`m ready. (Look, Ma! The fabled Dive Gear Tree, ripe for picking!) Meantime, I`m just trying to extend the season a bit.

The suggestion about hot water is a good one. The "Bad Day at the Office" email is great. It must be on line somewhere, but if not I`d be happy to forward it. IMHO it`s something everyone, diver and non-diver alike, should get a chance to read. Indeed, one of the members of our dive club received it from his 78-year-old aunt "who doesn`t even know what scuba is!"

DalelynnSims, I`d be delighted to see you, but Lake Rawlings is an awfully long way from Boston. Perhaps if I end up visiting my father in Tennessee I could stop by. :) Then again, I probably don`t want to haul gear quite that far, even if my car were up to the drive. :P
DiveRex - 10/24/2007 4:00 PM
I have used the warm water trick as well. I ice dive in a 7mm farmer john wetsuit. The Henderson Hyperstretch. I also employ the use of 1mm socks inside my 7mm boots for an extra layer. I wear a .5mm skin under my wetsuit for an additional layer and to keep the water coming in down the back of my neck, I use a hooded vest. It is also a Henderson Hyperstretch.

Just make sure your wetsuit fits you well and doesnt buldge at the bending points (knees and elbows). I have dove in 36f water for 40 minutes with this setup and only had numb lips and cold hands. But even a dry suit diver will have that! Good luck and stay wet!!
scubasylkie - 10/23/2007 9:17 PM
I just have to add to this blog the funny story about the pro diver that had a sensitive encounter with a jelly fish... Google it and it may, just may, offer some helpful hints. Oh yeah, and a drysuit is always an option. Sarah.
TColJeep - 10/23/2007 7:31 PM
A neat trick to help with cooler water when a wetsuit is the only option you have, bring along a thermos of warm (not hot) water. You pour it into the wetsuit before entering the water. Now when you enter the water, your body does not need to heat up the water. As the cooler water begins to enter the wetsuit, it mixes with the warm water already there, helping to keep you warmer for a little longer. I`ve used this more than once before switching over to a dry suit. Good luck...
DalelynnSims - 10/23/2007 11:11 AM
If you do not want to go to a dry suit, always glad to introduce others to that, consider a semi-dry. Pinnacle and Mares Isotherm semi-dry are but two out there. I have been down in the Mares Isotherm and can attest to its ability to keep you warm in water well below 50f.

If you would like more information on Dry Suits or like to try them look into the DUI Demo Days like the one we just had locally at Lake Rawlings. Need training came see us.

Hope this helps. Best Fishes!!! [