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So Cal wetsuit suggestions?

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entropy

New Member
Sep 4, 2002
3
0
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I'm moving from Houston, TX to Los Angeles next month. Time to quit borrowing equipment for the rare trip to the Gulf or Caribbean and get serious. (Hey, I love gear!)

Item number 1...I want to upgrade my cheapo shortie wetsuit to something more serious. (I checked surface temps for Southern California at NODC (57-68F).

I'm considering the following

Omer Oceanic/Med Mimetic 5mm ~ $300
Omer Master Pro Titanium ~ $350
Picasso Camu 5mm ~ $375
Picasso Mimetico 5mm ~ $600

I'll be doing mainly shore dives from LA to Ensenada initially. Though I will be living in LA, I will also be renting a home in Ensenada (long story re INS and my Dutch Guyana/Swedish wife that I will not bore you with). ..which reminds me, I'm also looking for spearo buddies as my wife does nothing more than the occasional snorkel.

Assuming equal quality, which I am, I'm interested in opinions on:

Camo vs. black only? Blue vs. Brown patterns?

Is Picasso's BioTermic® suit, like the Mimetico mentioned above, worth an extra $300?

Are there others I should consider?

Thanks in advance!

Bob
 

Bill

Baron of Breathold
Oct 17, 2001
1,805
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advice

Go to one of the local wet suit builders. Look at the material. Get measured by the guy who cuts the rubber. 6 mm and you can dive for 4-5 hours anywhere and any day. MHO but, it worked for me for 25 years..

Bill
 

fuzz

Hawaiian transplant...
Sep 9, 2002
995
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Just got a Camu & with a little conditioner to slip into, fits like a glove.

Never knew a wetsuit could fit so well........
 

Hamrrhed

Blue Water Wanna Be
Mar 27, 2001
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Recently I went to a local dive shop and had them measure and tailor a suit to me.
PROs: It fit.
CONs: Stiff rubber, Lack of smooth surfaces around potential inner diameter of water ingress points (Sleeves, around your face in the hood and around ankles) to prevent cold water flow through your suit. Price.:head
The suit I bought over the phone form Florida freedivers is much better than my "custom suit" with an affordable price tag. Or If your not that big (Euro sizes seem to run a little small), the shopping link on this page has a good selection of quality suits you can get, suits that are designed with the freediver in mind.
Good Luck
Anthony
****Most dive shops are in the business of selling Scuba related gear, this includes dive suits. Often times a scuba suit isnt the best ticket for keeping you warm while not restricting your movement while freediving.*****
 

Hamrrhed

Blue Water Wanna Be
Mar 27, 2001
125
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My previous post I think I got side tracked........
I like the Lizard suit they have a good price (Approx 200$) and you can get it in Camo, black or green. floridafreedivers.net/LizzardWetsuits.htm
No affliation so on and so fourth.................
So Cal diving a 5mm would work year round no worries, I dove mine routinely along Sonoma (48f to 54f).
Anthony
Torrance Ca
 

DeepThought

Freediving Sloth
Sep 8, 2002
2,334
410
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Camoflage suites.

Say, as i never spearhunted before, I gotta ask, does a camoflage suite make a difference in u/w hunting matters? because I'm probably in a minority about this, but I don't consider them good looking....
 

Hamrrhed

Blue Water Wanna Be
Mar 27, 2001
125
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My suit has a woodland pattern, Id like to think it helps but Im sure it only hampers people locating me while im in the kelp beds.
Im with you though I think the camo suis are pretty cool.:cool:
Anthony
S. Cal
 

icarus pacific

Human-in-training
Nov 7, 2001
2,880
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Take a stroll North to Blue Water Hunter in Santa Barbara, tell Andy that Sven sent ya and you're stylin. Bill and I use their stuff and it's first class for your use. If you don't want to go that route, go to the DB Store and get a Picasso 5mm Shadow- good, basic and the price is right. Unless you want serious misery, go with a suit with a nylon exterior... a Mimetico will look like a golf ball after a couple of weeks. And the Termic lining is worth it.


sven
 

OceanSwimmer

Well-Known Member
Nov 3, 2002
482
69
118
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Originally posted by icarus pacific
Take a stroll North to Blue Water Hunter in Santa Barbara, tell Andy that Sven sent ya and you're stylin. Bill and I use their stuff and it's first class for your use.
If you don't want to go that route, go to the DB Store and get a Picasso 5mm Shadow- good, basic and the price is right. Unless you want serious misery, go with a suit with a nylon exterior... a Mimetico will look like a golf ball after a couple of weeks. And the Termic lining is worth it.


sven

Or, since you'll be in SoCal, check Roger Yazbeck's Freedive Shop in Hermosa Beach....exclusively Picasso: great selection, service and price. Tell him Cynthia sent you. I love my suits...and yes, the Termic lining is worth it (thanks, Sven)
Welcome to Southern California! E-mail when you get here!
OceanSwimmer
 

Pezman

We pee deep. Ew!
Sep 24, 2002
591
72
118
Eliosub --- they are custom made and cheaper than anything on your list.

If you're on a budget, then a Cressi Comp or Super Comp. I've used the Cressi Comp in freezig water and managed to stay in for about 2 hours.
 

LaJollaFreedvr

New Member
Aug 10, 2002
101
8
0
if youre diving LA and south only..then you can do what i do if money is an issue...i surf too so i use a surf suit, 3/2 mm during the summer/fall, and put a 3 mm top on top of that for the winter and im fine...a 5mm suit woulld have me a little bit too toasty in the summer and i would feel kinda sea sick in it but right now it might feel prettty good...

i recommend saving and getting two suits for this express purpose, unless youre one of those people whose always cold
 

OceanSwimmer

Well-Known Member
Nov 3, 2002
482
69
118
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Originally posted by LaJollaFreedvr
if youre diving LA and south only..then you can do what i do if money is an issue...i surf too so i use a surf suit, 3/2 mm during the summer/fall, and put a 3 mm top on top of that for the winter and im fine...a 5mm suit woulld have me a little bit too toasty in the summer and i would feel kinda sea sick in it but right now it might feel prettty good...

i recommend saving and getting two suits for this express purpose, unless youre one of those people whose always cold

-- Guess this indicates there are as many solutions as there are divers/surfers.
If you're kicking out to the kelp in summer, I don't bother with a wetsuit. Too restrictive...rashguard for kelp is all that's I need.
For SoCal winters, 5mm Picasso Termic is sweet. Worked vry well 2 wks ago for diving off Boomers.
For NoCal diving, as in ab-hunting -- 7mm Picasso Termic is perfect.

@LaJollaFreedvr...so what you using now? I'm seeing the surf kids wearing everything from a 3/2 to a 5/4 (this on a dad-and-daughter going surfing duo....daughter looked red vry and cold.)
 

LaJollaFreedvr

New Member
Aug 10, 2002
101
8
0
right now i just wear my XCel Icon Flex 3/2...really stretchy, i surf and dive in it...Xcel makes the best surf suits in my opinion other than Hotline but Xcel suits are really durable...i had my last one for 2 years and i wore it EVERYtime i was in the water and it was just great.

when im diving however, i throw an oneil 2 mm vest on top, keeps me toasty...it should be noted that i dont get cold very easily though.

if hell freezes over (meaning water temp drops below 54...) i throw on my 7mm scuba suit...not very flexy but whos flexible with that much rubber on anyways? plus i hate wearing 24 pounds of weight to compensate...
 

OceanSwimmer

Well-Known Member
Nov 3, 2002
482
69
118
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Originally posted by LaJollaFreedvr
if hell freezes over (meaning water temp drops below 54...) i throw on my 7mm scuba suit...not very flexy but whos flexible with that much rubber on anyways?

Sounds like it works for you :eek: Good solution...
--- 7mm of typical wetsuit neoprene is not at all as flexible as Yamamoto neoprene. A world of difference.
 

IB Boyd

New Member
Oct 18, 2003
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Anybody have any experience with the picasso apnos suit? Saw it just below the Shadow in the DB store, looks similar to the shadow but.......green(ok by me). The price was looking good. And the reveiws were good as well. Hey Hamerrhead, is your lizzard suit the one piece or two? That looks like a good suit as well. I beleive the one peice was less expensive than the two. I have been fighting off the shivers(at least partly) diving socal this winter in a surf suit, garden gloves and an old scuba hood. Could keep on doing it, but I put a small tear in the chest of my surf suit while loading, dont want to rip up my surf suit loading my gun or crawling around the bottom looking for bugs.
 

icarus pacific

Human-in-training
Nov 7, 2001
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re: the Apnos suit

Get it. Mike (rigdvr) has one and it looked like a real well put together suit, similar to the Picasso Termic but green. And that green 5 feet under in PV ain't gonna hurt anything except the WSB. ;)
 

Roan

Deeper Blue Wayfarer
Jul 12, 2003
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I've been using a 4/3 surf suit with a Henderson 3/5 hooded vest this winter (in other words, I've been punishing myself). Water temps have been around 55-58 degrees here and the last time I went diving, I was ready to get out after about a half hour. Fed up, one day I drove down to San Diego and bought a 5mm Omer Green Mimetic. What a difference! I took it out yesterday for the first time and I kid you not, I was almost too hot. Granted I was only out for an hour (no vis) but still, this suit is toasty. (This is my first two-piece, smooth-cell interior free-diving suit ever) so I've already noticed a big difference in my bottom time because now I'm as warm as I would be in my living room. I could probably dive 5+ hours in 50 or sub-50 degree water wearing this thing. Because it's an off-rack-suit, it doesn't fit me perfectly, but I took Mattedhead's advice in another thread: I paid more attention to how it fit me width-wise. I may decide to turn the farmer-johns into high-waist pants.

Signed,
Feeling Tropical in So Cal
:cool:
 

Oldsarge

Deeper Blue Budget Bwana
Staff member
Forum Mentor
Jan 13, 2004
2,789
529
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Whooaaa! This has been the most helpful damned thread! I've just unloaded part of my battery (I'm cleaning out the gunsafe) and have enough spare cash to sign up for the Performance Freedive Beginner (Now class, this is the water. When you go under it, do not attempt to breathe.) Course . . . that bein' where I am at this low-karma point. Muchimos gracias, y'all. And Roan, you might look up the local clubs. If you're really in LA, the Fathomiers are really active and have a long-standing friendly rivalry with my local, the Long Beach Neptunes. If you don't mind having a gimpy old vet for a partner, shoot me an email when you get into town.
 

icarus pacific

Human-in-training
Nov 7, 2001
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I agree. The Fathomiers and the LB Neptunes are stuffed with long-time, long-term talent and anybody here would do real well to take a seat in the middle and listen up.
 

Roan

Deeper Blue Wayfarer
Jul 12, 2003
168
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Hey Sarge,
Sure, let's go diving some time (I'm not exactly a spring chicken myself: As a kid, I watched Bonanza and Star Trek before they were re-runs). ;)
I live in Tustin (O.C.) and would'nt mind checking out a Neptunes or Fathomiers function either.
 
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