These toasty suits have been a marvelous invention for the all weather diver, however, there is specialist training for those un-initiated in the practicalities of diving in the water tight boiler suit.
As someone who has jumped in the water with their suit un zipped I can also testify that some basic tips can help avoid some of the most embarassing errors.
1) Wear proper insulation
A drysuit can be used in a number of differing temperatures and is adjusted by simply varying what is worn underneath. What is important to remember is that by adding extra insulation you will trap more air and therefore need more lead. When changing undersuit it is important to perform another weight check.
2) Getting in and out
Getting into the drysuit can oftem prove more challenging than actually learning to dive. Seals which need to be a snug fit to prevent the entry of water can make for a rather ungainly look whilst donning the suit. A light dusting of talc will assist with latex seals and commercially based lubricants (KY) are extremely useful if not a tad blush enducing to purchase! Once in, crouch down to expel any exess air…jumping in with an air filled drysuit can cause you to flail around on the surface like Michelin man.
3) Take care of your dry-suit zipper
Mastery and care of the dry-suit zipper is important as done incorrectly this is the first area that can start to leak. Wax the zip after use to ensure efficient movement of the zip. Ensure that your buddy is familiar with the technique of opening and closing not as it will make sure you are fully closed before diving but also to make sure you are able to get out quickly (especially useful if you have a pressing need for a post dive toilet stop).
4) Buoyancy control
Buoyancy control when using a dry-suit can be “interesting” as the suit is normally used as a control device. The dump valve, usually located on the left shoulder does not dump air as quickly as a BCD would. As a diver you need to be very aware of your buoyancy and be sure never to become too positively buoyant, once an uncontrolled ascent starts it can be very difficult to stop using the valve alone. Should this happen pulling gently at a wrist or the neck seal can let sufficient air out…unfortunately water will also come in.
5) Check your suit before you dive
Check your drysuit a couple of days before diving, sudden discovery of a torn seal will put an end to any dives if it is discovered on the day. Ripped seals can not be repaired in seconds; even with gaffa tape!
Anyone buying a drysuit should invest in the PADI Dry Suit Specialty Course which gives a full orientation to use, problem management and maintenance of your suit find out by sending us an email on firstname.lastname@example.org
For a great deal on dry suit take a look a www.SimplyScuba.com. They have a vast range of dry suits suitable for everybody.