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-   -   3/2 Full wetsuit enought for 50 degree water? (http://www.wakeworld.com/forum/showthread.php?t=791944)

wakesetter_WW 02-23-2012 12:22 PM

3/2 Full wetsuit enought for 50 degree water?
I'm dying to hit the water and with today being in the mid 70s I am considering going out this weekend for the first time this year. I have a 3/2 full wet suit that I plan to wear. Should this be enough to ride in water that is about 50 degrees? I don't want to get sick or have any chance of hypothermia. I have a 3/2 shorty also. There is a local scuba shop that I am considering renting gloves from for a day. No experience riding with gloves; only used them in the past when diving. Any thoughts?

TheHebrewHammer 02-23-2012 12:37 PM

You will be cold, but it's fairly safe as long as you don't stay in too long. You'll be fine without gloves for a short set, but your hands will eventually get cold. Just listen to your body and know when it's time to take a break and warm up. If you want to be more comfortable for a longer period of time, you can buy gloves, but not from a scuba shop. There are gloves made specifically for watersports like wakeboarding that will allow you to stay warm without making your handle passes clumsy. Most people I talk to recommend the 2.0 mm O'neill Psychos.

02-23-2012 12:37 PM

I wear my 3/2 if the water is below 70 degrees. Us Florida boys have become p****** lol

nuckledragger 02-23-2012 12:39 PM

The bottom of the temperature range on a 3/2 is usually around 58 degrees. The brand, age and condition the suit also factor in as well. Ideally you would want a 4/3 but if the sun its out and the air temp is 70 you might be able to brave it. If you don't spend a ton of time sitting in the water that will help also. Go for it, if it is to cold, get out.

TheHebrewHammer 02-23-2012 12:42 PM

Yep. I don't do well with cold water, so I bought myself a 5mm scuba wetsuit. It's kinda bulky, but totally worth it. I can stay comfortable all winter. Best money I've ever spent.

adamsilcio 02-23-2012 12:55 PM


i was in this same debate like three months ago. i have worn a 3/2 since i started riding winters. 3/2 is bearable in water below 50 degrees. i upgraded to 4/3 and i am not cold or shivering at all. i'd say 3/2 will suffice if you don't have the cash to upgrade. but a 4/3 is built for comfort and its not restricting at all. that's just my two cents

seth 02-23-2012 1:29 PM

HebrewHammer, why didnt you get a dry suit? They are so much better, just a little tight around the neck.

TheHebrewHammer 02-23-2012 2:08 PM

Not necessary cause I live in Florida :D

samsaslow 02-23-2012 2:21 PM

A 3/2 suit would be enough if it is blind stitched, glued, and liquid tape sealed. If it is just a flatlock stitch you will have a lot of cold water circulating into your suit. I have ridden in mid 40's water in my 3/2 that is blind stitched, glued, and tape sealed, but I prefer the dry suit since you have dry clothes on after you are done riding and hanging in the boat.

I'm in Denver, CO, so the air temps are cooler in the spring and fall.

TheHebrewHammer 02-23-2012 2:40 PM

Do people wear clothes under their drysuits? I've never used one.

irishrider92 02-23-2012 2:57 PM

Yes but get something with some of the warmer features if you can, like glued seams and a furnace lining, like in the Foil

brettw 02-23-2012 3:00 PM

Just do a dock start and don't fall much.

captain_vilfo 02-23-2012 3:03 PM

^^^ good advice, unless you get a dry suit.. then go for that backroll lol

BKinSoCal 02-23-2012 3:28 PM

Hammer, I wear trunks, a t-shirt and a sweatshirt under my drysuit down to about 50 degree water. The water doesn't get any colder than that where I ride. I may have a little water around my collar when I get out of the water, but the rest of me is dry.

I have a 3/2 wetsuit as well, but the comfort and mobility of the drysuit is significantly better than the wetsuit. In the past, I would wear my wetsuit down to about 54 degrees, but could go colder if necessary. One of the keys to cold water riding is to keep your hands above the water while you're sitting in the water. My feet don't get cold because they're in boots, but my hands do and once my hands are cold, it's tough to warm them up.

With the 70 degree air, you should be good as long as you're not spending a lot of time in the water.

seth 02-23-2012 4:05 PM

I usually wear some sweat pants and a long sleeve shirt under my drysuit. Like BK said, the mobility is so much better in a drysuit. Thats why I asked why you didnt get a drysuit over the 5mil.

cadunkle 02-23-2012 4:49 PM

You'll be fine. I used to trunk it in 50* water with similar air temps (maybe a little lower). To give you an idea, I hate the cold, it got up to low 60s today and I was bundled up with a jacket and hat. If I could have 80*-90* temps all year it would be perfect, and I never use air conditioning even in 105*+ high humidity. Just comes down to doing what you love, and in those temps having fun is more important than some temporary discomfort.

Anyhow, your hands and feet will be COLD, but once you get up you'll forget about it. In a 3/2 full suit you'll be fine. Personally I now have a 4/3 suit that is AWESOME compared to how I used to ride in early/late season. I bought some HO neoprene gloves this winter that should help when I get to riding in another month and change, and i may yet pick up a neoprene hood before I start riding. Cold weather gear is great but in those temps, especially with the warm air temp when you get out, you'll be fine.

texastbird 02-23-2012 5:42 PM

If air is mid 70s as stated, your hands WILL NOT get cold. And IMHO you will be fine in a 3/2 suite with air that warm and full sun. Strip the top down and let the sun shine on your chest/back between sets and you'll be fine.

pc_sledge 02-23-2012 6:20 PM

If you're concerned just wear your shorty under your full suit. I've doubled up full suits before...with really good results.

mracrew 02-23-2012 8:13 PM

Go for it man! I've rocked a 3/2 suit in 40 degree air and water, even walked through snow to get to the boat for that set. Cold water sucks but as long as you keep your sets shorter and heat yourself up right away you'll be fine.

dyost 02-23-2012 9:15 PM

If you have a good suit, totally doable. My buddy got a billabong FOIL 3/2 with all the bells and whistles in terms of (lining, glued blind stitch, rubber taped, solar heat panels, etc...) Billabong says its good down to like 42 deg. He got it as a replacement for his dry suit and I s totally happy he went that way. I spent 1/2 as much on a quicksilver 4/3 that's glued blind stitched and have ridden as cold as 45 pretty comfortably. The key is the glued blind stitch, makes such a huge difference.

The other rule of thumb I follow is this: whatever the mfg says the suit is rated for temp wise you can knock off about ten degrees, and here's why. These suits are built with surf in mind, where you sit in the water for 10 mins and then ride for two, whereas in wake you ride 10 and then sit in the water for two. That's my logic anyways....

I'm hoping to test mine in 40-42 this weekend here in Kansas if the weather for Sunday cooperates, looking like 70 in the forecast right now.

irishrider92 02-24-2012 7:19 AM


Originally Posted by BKinSoCal (Post 1733496)
One of the keys to cold water riding is to keep your hands above the water while you're sitting in the water

Or get a pair of these!


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