View Full Version : Asking for advice on a used drysuit
June 29th, 2012, 06:53 PM
I found a used drysuit for sale locally for what seems to be a great price, but I know absolutely nothing (and I mean nothing) about drysuits; just guessing it would be nice to have one in the winter. The suit that's for sale is a Whites brand. From the photos, and some google searching, it appears to be a polar protek model. This model isn't listed on their (Whites) website, so I assume that means it is out of production. What should I check before buying? Any known issues with this model? Any advice or feedback would be greatly appreciated.
June 29th, 2012, 07:04 PM
That is an earlier model, the things to look for are;
- overall condition, is it worn or badly treated
- seals, no tears or holes (latex or neoprene)
-zipper, slides easily and closes completely
-inflator, corrosion? Cracks?
-most importantly, are there any leaks? You can test this yourself by using electricians tape around the seals over jars on the wrist and neck seals. Fill with air and gently spray with a soapy water solution.
Keep in mind to replace a neck seal can be $300, wrist seals can be $200. So if there is any doubts, walk away. There is lots more but that's a quickly. Having lived and dove near the whites factory, I have some experience with them. Feel free to send pictures and I'll do my best to give you my opinion.
Edit.....Zipper replacement $300....
"how could I forget to mention fit.....kick me out of the PADI club...."
June 29th, 2012, 08:37 PM
another very important thing is fit. if it doesn't fit, it will make you miserable.
June 29th, 2012, 08:47 PM
Keep in mind to replace a neck seal can be $300, wrist seals can be $200.
Good heavens -- where are you getting your dry suit work done? It has cost me pretty reliably about $75 for a neck seal, a little less for wrist seals. Wrist seals are also an easy DIY. (I haven't tried a neck seal yet.)
Buying a used suit with bad seals can be an extremely good value, as most people won't do it so the price is generally low. We bought a used DUI suit that needed seals (and the seller sent the seals!) for $500, IIRC.
What is a bigger and more expensive repair is the zipper, which will run you in the neighborhood of three to $400 to replace. Personally, I wouldn't buy a suit with a bad zipper, simply because it means that either the suit has been dived a LOT or the person who owned it didn't take very good care of it.
June 29th, 2012, 10:47 PM
I've bought/sold a few used suits. My suggestions is to turn the suit inside out, block the wrist seals with soda can or similar and fill with water through the neck seal hole on the driveway. Any holes or leaks will appear as dark spots and can be assessed for required repairs.
As was pointed out by the wise moderator, the zipper is a very expense repair on a suit. Care should be taken to inspect the zipper for frayed edges and thin sections below the teeth that will leak over time.