Wetsuits

some buying tips please

1 to 20 of 21 messages
Blisters    pirate
10/07/2012 at 22:23

I think that I need to buy a wetsuit. Shops and the internet will ask me what I want. How on earth do I know what I want? I've never had one before.

I've seen new ones priced at £300plus, and hire ones for £5 plus £15 postage, and ex-hire ones for £50.

If I try it on dry, presumably it will completely change character in the water and become as streamlined as an open plastic bag. Or will it not be flexible enough to allow all that arm wagging with the crawl? 

Are sizes accurate?

Which brands are too cheap to contemplate?

Pethead    pirate
10/07/2012 at 22:32

My twopence:
There's nothing wrong with ex-hire ones as a first wetsuit.
A wetsuit should feel uncomfortably tight - i.e. not much room to breathe - when you're not in the water, otherwise it might be too loose once in the water. 
Each manufacturer seems to produce their own detailed sizing charts, and I've never seen anyone saying any of them are wrong.
As long as you steer clear of supermarket/chain-store wetsuits, which won't be designed for tri, any swimming-specific wetsuit ought to do the trick. The most pricey wetsuits are apparently wasted on the average swimmer, as they provide less floatation. 

10/07/2012 at 22:40
Blisters -are you near an open water venue. They may have wetsuits that you can try on and test in the water

I went to my local Tri shop, told them about my swimming ability (or rather lack of) and they advised me on the best suit for me ie catch panels on forearms etc etc
Blisters    pirate
10/07/2012 at 23:03

I think there's a tri shop in Swindon, (I saw a chalk board). I don't think that there's a lake there.
There are many lakes near Cirencester, two of which are for open water swimming. I am not aware of a triathlon shop there though.

I live in Gloucester.

Bionic Ironwolf    pirate
11/07/2012 at 07:28

If  you can get to try one out in the water, as suggested above, that is what I would recommend as it feels different to when you try it on dry land. Be sure to research the types of suit from the manufacturer  you pick - wetsuits are designed differently for beginners or poor swimmers, average swimmers and top-of-the-range for experts. If you buy the wrong type it could do you more harm than good. For instance, I am a pretty average swimmer with legs low in the water, wearing a top-line suit gives me backache.

11/07/2012 at 07:34
Blisters - you are loca to me,

Yes, there is The Big Adventure Store as the Tri shop and there is Lake 32 for OW. Lake 32 does not sell wetsuits as they are more geared towards canoeing, kayaking etc, The Tri side is more of a way for them to make money during non Term time
oii
11/07/2012 at 09:38

blisters - i am in cheltenham

are you a member of triteamglos yet!!!

there is a tri shop in bristol if that helps.

i got my 3 hire wetsuit from the mytriathlon website, after a recommendation. I rang them with my amateur questions, they asked me to email them my measurements and budget. which i did. they suggested a medium zone 3 aspire which i was  about as i wanted a 2XU. but they talked me round (and it was cheaper) and it fits REALLY well and i am so happy with it!!! I think it was £125 or something, well chuffed.

I promptly put a small hole in it when i was trying it on for the first time, must read instructions properly!!! So i am glad i didnt buy new!!!

kittenkat    pirate
11/07/2012 at 09:44

Def try one on and get advice from where you buy it, they also cater for different ability swimmers (more or less buoyancy etc)

 

oii
11/07/2012 at 09:47
Schmunkee - The List Fairy wrote (see)
Blisters - you are loca to me,

Yes, there is The Big Adventure Store as the Tri shop and there is Lake 32 for OW. Lake 32 does not sell wetsuits as they are more geared towards canoeing, kayaking etc, The Tri side is more of a way for them to make money during non Term time

schmunkee - where are you then, if you are local to Blisters?

kittenkat    pirate
11/07/2012 at 09:56
oii wrote (see)

blisters - i am in cheltenham

My Mum lives in Leominster

oii
11/07/2012 at 10:27

kk - i think the group ride will be sooner than next spring then!!!

11/07/2012 at 18:51
oii wrote (see)
 

schmunkee - where are you then, if you are local to Blisters?


I am in the land of Diana Dors, Justin Hayward, Melinda Messenger, and Billie Piper (and Nick Hewer, apparently )

I do the occasional Saturday ride with Performance Cycles in Poulton.  I also cycle from where I live to South Cerney or Cirencester

Edited: 11/07/2012 at 18:53
12/07/2012 at 14:23

Nothing wrong with going for an Ex HIre wetsuit to start off with. Last year was my first year in triathlon and I got my Ex Hire from TriUK. Perfect for first season and its still going strong now.

I have only just purchased a second as I will be making a Channel crossing in September - otherwise this would of done for a second yeah.

 

funkin-baby    pirate
12/07/2012 at 14:39

I bought a brand new cheapo 100 quid 2XU suit at a triathlon expo (there were two stands there and 2XU was one of them) about 4 years ago.  It's still going strong although I may upgrade to a fancy wetsuit early next year to get a little speed boost.

I'd personally go to a lake where you can try out some suits and speak to the people who know about them.  There's also another company (can't remember the name, although it could be TriUK) who hire them out for the season and at the end of the season you can either return it or keep it (and pay for it).  I like that idea.

Blisters    pirate
13/07/2012 at 23:44

Yes I joined TriTeam Glos, and it is they who are doing my coaching on a Sunday evening. Also bike rides on Saturday morning (Glos cattlemarket Tesco 0900).

Anyone spot the typo on the hire cost? Yeah, me. I've seen the TriUK website, and it interests me, but these Foor wetties must be cheap and nasty if they are £100 new, £35 hire, £50 second hand. Or am I being cynical? It's my nature.

Dubai Dave    pirate
14/07/2012 at 07:43
Tri Uk is in Yeovil not that far from Glous. The more you spend the more you get in the way of better neoperene, flexibility on the shoulders, catch panels etc, does spending a fortune make you that much faster? probably not. Fit is everything though so try before you buy. The incredibly tight sensation on land does ease offf in the water
14/07/2012 at 09:05

+1 on trying out the suits in the water before buying. My wetsuit was an xdemo and it did the job fine. Just had a look on the site though and the wetsuits are unisex. You need to havev a 'standard' shape Blisters. Do you?

 

Pethead    pirate
14/07/2012 at 11:58
Blisters wrote (see)

Yes I joined TriTeam Glos, and it is they who are doing my coaching on a Sunday evening. Also bike rides on Saturday morning (Glos cattlemarket Tesco 0900).

Anyone spot the typo on the hire cost? Yeah, me. I've seen the TriUK website, and it interests me, but these Foor wetties must be cheap and nasty if they are £100 new, £35 hire, £50 second hand. Or am I being cynical? It's my nature.

Blisters, come back to Severn, I'm tired of being a one-man "Multisport Group!"
I've got one of the ex-hire Foors, it's certainly lasted well. I don't reckon it's nasty, it's a decent fit and very buoyant, it could be just a bit more flexible around the upper arms, that's all. 

16/07/2012 at 21:29

Be careful buying online. Brought my first(only!) wetsuit online. Really not sure about the fit (the fact it split would suggest it is perhaps a little too snug!) I would recommend paying that little bit more for being able to try the buggers on.

25/07/2012 at 10:08

I agree with the OWS venue comments - go, pay a fiver for hire, say you are interested in buying and want to try some out and they will likely oblige! A good lake will also give you a specialist fitting. TS Bristol is good, or if you don't mind a journey some of the Reading area lakes (Little Marlow/Dachet) are also fab.

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