I’m really happy with Rip Curl Ultimate Elastos. I have a 4/3 and a 3/2, and the 4/3 is my second one. They hold up well.
I’m from north of San Francisco, typical water/air temp at dawn when I usually surf in winter is around 42F water, 36F air. The 4/3 is plenty, especially with a thermo-type rashguard under.
Rip Curl has 6/5 and 6/4 and 5/4 models as well. All the Ultimates are super stretch, taped, etc. Some are zipless.
www.ripcurl.com has a store locator too. I used it on the UK (its flash so I can’t link to results) there are 460 Rip Curl retailers in Great Britain, including one in Cardiff, Wales.
That’d be my recommendation, anyway…
Cheers for that, tbh I’ve had Ripcurl suits beofre and am totally unimpressed with them.
My Summer ‘Classic’ leaked in through the back 1st time I wore it - nice and flexible and in summer it doesn’t really matter so I’ve hung on to it. My mates did exactly the same.
I then bought a ‘Raptor’ winter suit 5/4/3 and it leaked in through the back of the knee on one leg, 1st surf - very flexible but on the whole I find Ripcurl to be poorly made. Again I stuck with it as the surf was pumping. I ended up buying a thermal rashie and it was nice and snug. It has now become my Autumnal suit.
I know alot of surfers wear them but I think this is down to good PR, sexy designs and Pro surfing rather than making quality suits.
My mate bought the 6mm Ultimate last winter and said he was a bit dissapointed with it although he was pretty warm initially he wasnt much warmer than me after a few hrs in and this was abrand new suit. Personally I could never wear 6mm, even in the UK- just too much rubber!
I’ve had mixed reviews about O’Neill wetties - a lot of mates returned theirs last season as they were flushing in through the neck but this might have just been down to a dodgy batch - I don’t know… but it put me off getting one this yr.
The best suit I’ve ever owned was a Billabong Absolutex2 with built in hood, lasted me for abut 5yrs!
I don’t know about you guys but nowadays I seem to be buying a new winter wettie every 2 yrs?! You’d think they’d be lasting longer nowadays with all this supposed new technology!..although I’m sure
half of it’s just gimmick.
I guess if you’re surfing in warmer climes it doesnt matter so much - you don’t notice the difference in build quality.
This time around I thought I’d go with Excel - I’ve yet to hear a bad thing said about them and they are one of the few companies that do a built in hood - a must for colder winters. Those popper things on the Ripcurls are terrrible! Why we don’t have built in hoods as standard in the UK - I just don’t know?!
You can always take it down if you’re hot or don’t like them but they’re the only system that stops the dreaded flushing!
Sorry didn’t want to turn this into a wetsuit rant, but I have!