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WETSUIT ONeill Sector
I VIVIDLY REMEMBER THOSE DIVING OCCASIONS on which I suffered from cold, which is why I turned up for a Red Sea charter aboard Blue Horizon with a very chunky-looking wetsuit, when many of my fellow-passengers were making do with 3mm shorties.
The new ONeill Sector was labelled as being made with neoprene only 5mm thick, but it felt like a very spongy 7mm to me, and I needed 12kg of lead to get it neutrally buoyant, even with a 15-litre steel tank.
Thick suits used to be awful to fight your way into. I remember trainees of mine years ago disappearing in clouds of talcum powder in the effort to get ready for a dive. I used to tell them that after getting into their suits, everything else would seem easy.
The Sector is not like that. Its made with very stretchy material and the few seams it has are blind-stitched and completely glued so that the joins look very much like the welds on an Egyptian-built steel hull.
The glue is a silicone-based urethane, which is very stretchy too. It has what the manufacturer calls Firewall Insulation - a nice soft Jersey-like lining to the upper part. No chafing there, then.
There are narrow seals at both wrists and ankles, together with a big smoothskin seal at the neck and throat. These combine to discourage cold water from flushing through.
The zip at the back is both over-sized and coloured red. Long knee- and shin-pads of a hard-wearing yet soft fabric complete the picture.
I shouldnt forget the much-vaunted hidden key pocket, but dont forget that this is a wetsuit, so its not good for electronic car keys.
The Sector fitted me like the proverbial glove, although at long last I seem to have started to put on the weight I was promised for my easy living in the past. I used it for very long dives and I was never cold - nor was I ever too hot.
The ONeill Sector comes in a wide range of sizes to suit the shape of both men and women. It is also available in various subtle colours. Its brochure is value for money too, with magic lines such as ...designed with all the same psychotic features... Luckily I never noticed any psychotic tendencies while wearing it!
The ONeill Sector 5mm full-length wetsuit costs 180.
The 3mm version is not available in the UK.

  • ONeill, www.oneilleurope.com


  • Divernet
    Seams
    Seams on the ONeill Sector wetsuit are blind-stitched and glued
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    + Very comfortable
    + Easy to don
    + Very flexible


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    - Needs a lot of lead to get it neutrally buoyant