• Welcome to ScubaBoard


  1. Welcome to ScubaBoard, the world's largest scuba diving community. Registration is not required to read the forums, but we encourage you to join. Joining has its benefits and enables you to participate in the discussions.

    Benefits of registering include

    • Ability to post and comment on topics and discussions.
    • A Free photo gallery to share your dive photos with the world.
    • You can make this box go away

    Joining is quick and easy. Login or Register now by clicking on the button

Exposure protection for Kona liveaboard

Discussion in 'Hawai'i' started by Kamaros, Mar 4, 2019.

  1. Kamaros

    Kamaros DIR Practitioner

    # of Dives: 100 - 199
    Location: Mountain View, California
    84
    59
    18
    Hey Scubaboarders,

    I've got a spot on the Kona Aggressor II next week. I originally planned on bringing a 5 mm wetsuit + gloves and hood, but I've now heard enough recommendations for exposure gear (ranging from a 5 mm to a drysuit) to leave me thoroughly confused and worried about warmth.

    We're doing up to 27 dives over 6 days, in water that'll probably be hovering around 75 degrees. I currently own a 5 mm wetsuit, 8 mm semidry, and a trilam drysuit. Which should I bring? If the drysuit, how thick of an undergarment would I need?

    Thanks in advance!
     
  2. tursiops

    tursiops Marine Scientist and Master Instructor ScubaBoard Supporter

    # of Dives: 2,500 - 4,999
    Location: U.S. East Coast
    9,319
    7,025
    113
    No way to answer you without knowing your personal temperature tolerance.
    What sort of temps have you been in with each of your three exposure suits?
    Err on the side of being too warm....you will cool off over the 4+ dives a day regime.
     
  3. covediver

    covediver Solo Diver

    # of Dives: I just don't log dives
    Location: Alaska
    1,258
    270
    83
    I was diving Kona about this time last year, two dives in the morning for five days with two in late afternoon at night on the last day (manta). I dived in a 5mm and hood without any chills. It depends on your tolerance though. I would have found it difficult to snorkel in a drysuit with the basking shark when I\it appeared unexpectedly between the two dives.
     
  4. Kamaros

    Kamaros DIR Practitioner

    # of Dives: 100 - 199
    Location: Mountain View, California
    84
    59
    18
    @tursiops Frankly, I'm not sure. This will be the first time I'm diving outside of Monterey. I only just received my new drysuit on Thursday, so I've been using the semidry the whole time. I'd say that I've basically been mildly to uncomfortably cold the whole short time I've been diving, in waters that have usually been between 50 and 60 degrees.

    I've also never done more than 5 dives in a single weekend, so the heavy diving regime will be new to me.
     
  5. tursiops

    tursiops Marine Scientist and Master Instructor ScubaBoard Supporter

    # of Dives: 2,500 - 4,999
    Location: U.S. East Coast
    9,319
    7,025
    113
    I would not take the drysuit, then. You don't want that much of a change in your diving for a liveaboard....
    I don't think the 5mm will be sufficient at Kona, if the 8mm semidry was not sufficient in Monterey. Maybe the 5mm with a 3-5mm hooded vest....

    If you are comfortable with the 8mm, then that would seem the best approach. Can you take the 5 and the 8? And get a hooded vest? (I assume the semidry has an integrated hood?)
     
  6. scubadada

    scubadada Diver Staff Member ScubaBoard Supporter

    # of Dives: 1,000 - 2,499
    Location: Philadelphia and Boynton Beach
    12,018
    7,777
    113
    I'm a 65 year old diver who tolerates cold less and less as I age. For a couple dives a day, a full 5 mm with a 5/3 mm hooded vest would probably be OK, at the lower limit of its use. For 4-5 dives per day I would dive my full 7 mm with the hooded vest and I would be toasty. Perhaps this would be similar to your 8 mm semidry. Personally, I really dislike being cold. Comes down to your own cold tolerance.
     
  7. Kamaros

    Kamaros DIR Practitioner

    # of Dives: 100 - 199
    Location: Mountain View, California
    84
    59
    18
    I guess I'm definitely taking at least the semidry. Still considering bringing the drysuit as well, since I felt pretty comfortable the one weekend I rented a drysuit and did a pair of boat dives. Anyone have tropical base layer and/or undergarment recommendations?
     
  8. KauaiScuba

    KauaiScuba Nassau Grouper

    # of Dives: 5,000 - ∞
    Location: Kauai
    73
    34
    18
    A good vest with hood under a 5mm should be pretty solid. From there boots and gloves would help a lot. I think a dry suit would be overkill and a hassle getting in and out of between that many dives or having to stay in it all day. An 8mm semi dry I would really hope would be more than enough for 75! A vest/hood goes a long way though.
     
  9. wnissen

    wnissen Barracuda

    # of Dives: 25 - 49
    Location: Livermore, Calif.
    285
    138
    43
    I am very comfortable at the temps you state in Monterey in an 8mm semi-dry, and I was very comfortable for two boat dives in a 5mm in Kona last March, so my guess would be you would do well to take the 8mm.
     
  10. nashwl

    nashwl Barracuda

    # of Dives: 100 - 199
    Location: WV
    299
    165
    43
    I was on the Kona Aggressor in December. Water temps stayed around 76-78, and I was fine in a 3mm shorty. Granted, I am a warm-bodied person. Most the divers had on 3MM and a few had 5mm. Remember the dives stay mostly shallow, 50 range and you are only down for 45-55 minutes.

    Edit: Looks like you might already be on board. Happy diving and let us know what you went with.
     

Share This Page