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Thread: Best all around AK drysuit

  1. #1

    Default Best all around AK drysuit

    So I finally have the scratch to get a new drysuit and wanted to get some opinions on model. I'm pretty set on getting the NRS brand so opinions on that would be appreciated.

    Looking to get one primarily for wilderness raft trips but will also be doing ocean kayaking as well. Durability and being comfortable for long stretches in the suit are my top priorities.

    Any thoughts would be greatly appreciated.

    Matt

  2. #2
    Member BlueMoose's Avatar
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    No prefence as long as it does not leak and has relief ;-) I like the NRS as well as the Kokatat Meridian. I will state however take a good look at all some have Latex Gaskets and over time some people may or do have issues with that.

  3. #3
    Member DannerAK's Avatar
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    Its hard to beat a Kokatat goretex drysuit.
    "The North wind is cold no matter what direction it's blowing"

  4. #4
    Member jaydog's Avatar
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    Kokatat goretex - they set the standard and for good reason. Generalities - A relief zipper is nice, and if you're not planning on doing a lot of subsurface work (AKA swimming!) you might want to look into a "paddling suit" like the Kokatat Supernova - the neoprene neck won't keep you totally dry, but it's a LOT more comfortable than a latex neck! I've used both for rescue training and the neoprene will leak when you're submerged, but it'll take a dunking especially with a PFD on to keep you riding high in the water. Integral socks on a drysuit are a gift sent from heaven.

  5. #5
    Member DannerAK's Avatar
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    A new latex neck gasket, like that on a brand new suit will turn your head red and try to strangle you no doubt. They can be stretched and trimmed to form a water tight, yet comfortable fit. Whenever I install a new one one of my dry suits or tops I fit the neck gasket to a coffee can for a time until it loses some of its memory. I've also used neo neck gaskets and agree with the above statements about comfort. I do find them to be a bit bulky and they collect neck cheese. Over time they can really start to stink. I've taken some good swims wearing both latex and neo neck gaskets and a properly fitting latex gasket keeps you dry every time.
    "The North wind is cold no matter what direction it's blowing"

  6. #6
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    Personally, after stretching a neck gasket over a large can for a day or two, I trim them until they just barely press against my neck. I've still never had one leak and they no longer strangle me. However, they no longer fit skinny people. In the unlikely event you cut too much, it's not the end of the world; just replace the gasket & start over.

    eVent is said to be the best breathing fabric available, and some of the new Goretex fabrics are nearly as good. If you sweat a lot that is something to consider. I have an NRS Extreme Drysuit with their TriTon fabric. It breathes, but as well as Goretex and certainly not as well as eVent. There have been plenty of times I was getting damp from sweat inside and wishing for a better fabric. It is a durable fabric though and costs less than better options.

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    I got a deal on a Stohlquist pod suit 5-6 years back and its holding up very nice. Like the NRS it uses some other non-GoreTex brand breathable fabric. They have since changed their models a little but they look basically the same. Haven't priced one out again, but at the time you got more bang for your $$$ with the Stohlquist as the relief zipper, arm pocket, and built-in double knees w/pads in them were all included in the basic suit price.

  8. #8
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    both manufactures are good.....imo kokatat has the best warranty and customer service. as far as is the eVent being better than three layer gore-tex is a matter of opinion also.I was told that if nrs was allowed to use three layer gore that's what they would do but kokatat has a special deal with gore tobe able to use it. kokatat only uses three layer gore in there higher end suits and use a light weight for there less expensive modles so you will want to take that into consideration aswell.

  9. #9
    Member Gerberman's Avatar
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    Take a look at the USIA web site, they make them for the Coast Guard, Kim, the owner is easy to work with.

  10. #10
    Member DannerAK's Avatar
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    Another great maker of dry suits is Palm. http://www.palmequipmenteurope.com/
    "The North wind is cold no matter what direction it's blowing"

  11. #11

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    For what it's worth-- MY vote goes with gortex KOKATAT. Have one of their first ones circa 1990- she still works fine --just smells like the bottle of teriyaki sauce that broke in my dry bag years ago. The new one I have now works lots better breathing.
    Have used as a bivi-sack more than once. Just my thoughts, you get what you pay for.
    Goo

  12. #12
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    I think I should clarify my previous post about eVent vs Goretex. I said: "eVent is said to be the best breathing fabric available, and some of the new Goretex fabrics are nearly as good." I did not mean to imply eVent is the best breathable fabric for drysuits. I should have said that eVent is said to BREATH BETTER than any other waterproof fabric on the market today. And that some of the newest versions of Goretex are nearly as breathable. (Gore has several grades of fabric with different capabilities. There are some independent studies on the breathability issues.

    That said, I have no idea if eVent holds up as long as Goretex, which has a very good track record.


  13. #13

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    Thanks for all the great replies guys. After talking to some folks and reading these posts I am going to go with the Kokatat gore tex. It seems like a dry suit is one thing you don't want to good around with in terms of quality.

    Again thanks for the input.

    Matt

  14. #14
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    Default Drysuit

    I have had an event for two full seasons and have no problems except the booties are kinda thinnish feeling and tear easier than a replacement boot. As far as the suit, they breath great, I have hiked for miles in mine, and of course I sweat in the sun, but the suit breathes as good as anything on the market.
    Much better than Triton, and as good as gortex, and I have had/ have all three. As a side note, I sent an old style NRS suit back that was well used and delamentated,(for choice of words) and they sent me a new suit no questions. Great customer service, ALWAYS.

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