Sealed arm and leg wetuit cuffs
Sealed arm and leg cuffs
A wetsuit should prevent as much water from entering your wetsuit. But It’s called a wetsuit, not a drysuit for a reason. Therefore, you will not die if a few drops come in, but the less water the better of course. No one likes good flushing while you duckdive. An area where water could potentially enter your wetsuit, especially when wiping out, is your neck. However, don’t forget your sealed arm and leg cuffs. This is why these areas should seal as good as possible. Doing so, without cutting off your blood flow and making it impossible to put your suit on and off.
A good way to get a functional wrist and ankle seal is to limit the amount of stretch in the edge of the cuff. In addition, make it stick to your wrists and ankles to create a good seal. It can be done by applying a strip of liquid rubber on the inside of the wrist. Another option is an extra stitched on cuff panel with glideskin inside to create a seal, these cuff panels seal well but can be fragile at times. If the seal is too sticky it can pull out your arm or leg hairs when pulling off your wetsuit. There is a fine line between a good seal and an uncomfortable or leaky one, so make sure your arm cuffs have the right size for you and they feel good and seal well when wearing them.
Depending on the type of wetsuit it can have different types of neck seals. The most common one is the use of a glideskin inside a collar panel that sticks gently to your neck to create an even seal over a big surface area. There are other ways of sealing the neck such as the use of a glideskin binding edge, which limits the amount of stretch in the edge of the collar panel and seals off by sticking to your neck on the edge. This type of neck seal makes the size of the collar panel very important. A neck that is too tight will choke you, while a collar panel that is too wide will not seal well. Summer suits such as shorties with a nonwaterproof flatlock seam construction don’t need a glideskin neck seal. Here a double lined inside and outside collar panel will suffice.
Drysuits mostly used for diving require a higher level but a more uncomfortable neck seal. Latex seals are mostly used on drysuits and diving suits to make a drysuit 100% watertight at the neck, arms, and ankles. These seals are extremely tight, easy to damage and can be uncomfortable, this is why they are not often used in surfing wetsuits.