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Kids wetsuit


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We’re approaching fall here in NC and both of our boys want to continue riding. What wetsuit do you guys recommend? I’m thinking a shorty since it will be somewhat easier to get on/off.



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It is hard to recommend without air/water temps, ages, and skill level.  

Kids suits are getting scarce right now.  If you can track down the right size, an O'Neil Reactor or Hammer are both basic/fine shorties if the water temps stay warm enough for a shorty.  If it gets colder, and the kids are more than just beginners, I'd spend a little more on better than basic.   We just got my boy an O'Niel Hyperfreak full suit, which has better construction, sealed seams, and a fair amount of Technobutter (their high-end material), but isn't as expensive as the Pyscho Tech line.  The better material and construction stays warmer without killing mobility.  



Edited by jjackkrash
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Thanks for the feedback.  They are 11 and 8. We just started surfing this year so they are beginners. Water temps would rarely below 50 degrees. 


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50F is cold for a kid IME.  Go with a spring suit or full.  But get a 4/3 mm.  If they have them in your area BARE makes an awesome suit.  I like them better than O'Neill.  And Jack made a great suit.  And today's history lesson: https://www.nytimes.com/2017/06/05/business/jack-oneill-dead-popularized-the-wet-suit.html  I met him once in San Diego.  Quite the character.

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Thanks for all the info. 50 would be the absolute coldest the lake would get but I agree we probably wouldn’t be out when it’s that cold. I’m primarily trying to get them another 2 months or so to ride in the cooler water temps. I’ll check out the suits you listed. 

I’ll look for a full suit as well. 


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If you are going to get one suit, and the water will get under 60 degrees, at that age and skill level, I would roll with a basic back-entry full suit maybe a 3/2 but probably a 3/4 to be safe.  Under 60 heading to 50 is getting cold for a shorty.  

In O'Neil (I don't know other brands), Reactor or Hammer are the basic suits and Epic is the next line up in youth suits, IIRC.

I also agree 100% with Eagleboy99, whatever you get, make sure it fits, especially in a full suit.  If you can't go shop in person in a local shop, get height, weight, waist, and chest measurements, and call a shop to ask how the brand you are looking at runs compared to the chart.  Sometimes the size charts are on sometime they aren't.  I have had good luck with Wileys (Darren is awesome) and Cleanline Surf in Oregon getting the right size based on measurements over the phone.  Both shops ship and provide good service.  

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Check Overtons.  Been a while since we bought one, but their Gladiator suits were pretty inexpensive and worked well.  Still have a few of them in random sizes that don't fit anyone anymore, and a shorty in my size that I still use 10 years or so later.

Edited by oldjeep
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We just bought suits for both kids(10 year old boy and 7 year old girl). We went with 3/2 full suits for both and didn't go super high end since they will only be in them for 2 seasons if we are lucky, probably 1. My daughter got this Roxy PROLOGUE. It looks like my sons is already sold out, but we got him this Body Glove PR1ME. Hers was $75 and his was $150. Neither one is as nice as my Hyperfreak, but both seem to be doing the job and cost substantially less. We have been using them this whole week in Big Bear Lake with water temps in the 60s and air temp in the 70s. 

Edited by Philip
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