Cold Weather Sailing

Thread starter #1
Hey, guys. This is the first winter that I'm going to attempt to sail in. I was wondering, what's the coldest weather that you can wear a wetsuit in? Should you wear foul weather gear over the wetsuit? As you can see, I know nothing about cold weather. Any advice would be greatly appreciated. :) Thanks a bunch,

E.D. Conner
 

49208

Tentmaker
#2
Hi E.D.

Wetsuit wear depends a bit on both the air and water temps, and if it's windy/wavy enough where you will be getting wet (or possible capsizes) We are frostbiting right now in CT, last week air temps were 42, water temp was around 50. Most were in drysuits. The ones that were in wetsuits were wearing wicking thermals under the wetsuit, spray top. They were cold in between races. A warm hat is really important.

At 55 degrees air temp and 50 degree water temp, there will be more wetsuit users. It's a personal preference in this range, some people prefer to be warm to the point of sweating and sacrifice some mobility, while others prefer to be a little cold in between races while gaining in the mobility area.

If you can tell us what type of conditions you expect to be in, we can zero in on what seems to work in our locations.
 
#3
E.D.
In the past I have worn wetsuits in snowstorms (I have since bought a drysuit which I prefer). I still have athletes that only wear wetsuits. 4C water is not uncommon where we can do sailing in the winter and the air temp is all over the map. They are fine as long as they are moving. They do cool down between races and breaks during training. You should wear some kind of wind breaker/splash top over top. This helps keep you warm by creating another thermal layer. (You get evaporation off the surface of the wetsuit wich cools the material down which you feel the effects of). Hope this helps.

Steve McBride
 
#4
What worked for me was basicly my old kayacking stuff..i had a wetsuit,and it really does depend on the tempeture you are sailing in and if there is potenitail of capsizing or turtleing if you use a wet suit or dry suit, then I zip my fleece into my shell. I have waterproof sailing boots by gill and gloves by gill to wear also.
 
Thread starter #5
Hey,

Thanks guys. Your advice helped alot. I think I might even attempt a race in cold weather now! :) Appreciate the help,

LR29289
 
#6
I have An AQuafleece and a gul hottop. These are great warmers and i also hav a queensport polypropylene top it does not toast you up but keeps you dry. The colder it is the more layers i put on so when it goes down to 8 degrees i may be wearing about 4 layers. ANd i still am mobile
 
#7
I'm on a Coast Guard ice breaker right now, in Antarctica, and one of the junior officers took his laser along and a dry suit, now only if I had brought mine we could have had the first match race below the Antarctic circle!
But yeah, wet suit/dry suit wear all depends on the conditions, air temp, water temp, wind, and chop. I have a shortie wetsuit, a thick full lenght wet suit, and a decent dry suit as well. Sometimes I even find myself wearing my shortie suit on windy, overcast days in the summer, thats when you can lose alot of energy to conditions that don't really seem that cold until your out on the water for a couple of hours.
 

Tom

New Member
#8
Hi well i live in australia so what does the cold feel like? nah only joking

i wear my hiking pants, gloves, titanium lined rashvest all year round, i have been sailing in europe in winter and all i wore was hiking pants, gloves, hat, titanium lined rashvest and if it was really cold my air tech spray jacket by ronstan. This is really warm but if you want to go for the cheaper version a long wetsuit, wollen jumpers, spray jacket and a beenie does almost the same job.
 
#9
Ireland Winter Sailing in 4/5C plus strong cold breezes, most prefer Drysuit, put it on before rigging up and keep warmth in. The evaporation off the Wetsuit in a strong breeze can really leave you weak after a couple of Capsizes. A neoprene balaclava is a great addition with pinholes at your ears to hear the shouts for Water!
 
#11
There is a new type of wet suit out. It's called hyperstrech. Very confortable in flexability as well as keeping warm. I have a 7mm full wetsuit and was out in 34 degree water and was very warm. The air was not able to penetrate the wetsuit.
Ken
 
#12
I sort of learned about Titanium lined wetsuits in my design tech class at school this week. I think it has a thin lining of a titanium powder that doesn't allow your body heat to pass through it, it also reflects the cold. I'm with you Tom it doesn't get too cold down in Port Phillip Bay, where abouts are you from?
 
#13
JacksonAUS said:
I sort of learned about Titanium lined wetsuits in my design tech class at school this week. I think it has a thin lining of a titanium powder that doesn't allow your body heat to pass through it, it also reflects the cold.
All the titanium does is allow the designer to make a less bulky wetsuit that wont be affected as much by preasure while scuba diving. Compresion of a wetsuit realy screws with your boyancey under water. :cool:
 
#14
I did a bit of research, as i didn't think my teacher would lie to us... and found this:

Why is a Titanium wetsuit warmer?
Titanium lined neoprene is coated with a super thin film of Titanium Alloy. This dramatically increases the heat insulation and heat retaining properties of neoprene.
It works by retaining more body heat within the suit, and providing a more effective barrier between the cold outside water and air temperatures.
Double lined neoprene with Titanium Alloy is 40% warmer than the same thickness regular neoprene. The stretchability, feeling and wear comfort remain the same as regular neoprene.
This makes it possible to use a reduced thickness of neoprene, for instance, 3 mm in lieu of 5 mm, obtaining the same thermal protection.
Titanium suits are lighter weight, with more warmth, comfort and ease of movement, benefitting the user with greater comfort and flexibility and less fatigue.
Titanium lining sets new standards in insulating the wearer against the cold outside water and retaining the warm body temperature.
http://www.seventhwave.co.nz/FAQ/faq7.html ...most sites say the same thing.
 

Tom

New Member
#15
yeh titanium is also used in the lining of the malaren f1 car (along with gold) for the great heat it can absorb it pretty much causes all the tinny holes in the fibre to be filled up and conduct and absorb you body heat. I live in a place called Maclean about 280km south of brisbane.
 

Tom

New Member
#16
correction to my former post #8 i wear my hiking pants, gloves, titanium lined rashvest all year round, ""i know people who have been ""sailing in europe in winter and all i wore was hiking pants, gloves, hat, titanium lined rashvest and if it was really cold my air tech spray jacket by ronstan. This is really warm but if you want to go for the cheaper version a long wetsuit, wollen jumpers, spray jacket and a beenie does almost the same job.
 
#17
i just got a titanium linned farmer john about a month ago and was not in the least bit impressed. they are in no doubt great wetsuits going above and beyond any industry standard, but the thin lining that makes it so great isnt actually so great seeing as it peels off the neoprene within a few weeks, I am now left with a regular super stretch wetsuit that is still great in itself but is not as great as it was meant to be.

P.S: one other advantage of the titanium was that it was super easy to put on, giving you the ability to wear a tighter suit for warmth.
 
#18
BTW here in nova scotia we sail in any weather, in the spring when the ice leaves our harbours and most competitive sailors start training, its about 2 degrees water tempature and about 3 in the air. a lot of those sailors are wearing 3/4 hiking pants, boots and a dry top, but many (myself included) tend to go for the farmer john and a dry top. This year i plan to sail all winter long where ever i can find water with no ice on it.
 
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