Monday, June 21, 2010

Good timing

Removing the old gasket

Last Thursday as I put on my drysuit for a practice session at St. Philips one of my wrist gaskets blew out. Bummer. I pulled the velcro tight and had a productive night anyway.

I was lucky that it happened when it did because I have an extended trip planned for next week and it would have been a scramble to get it fixed. I doubt I would have had it repaired in time.

So, I had a week. Brian suggested I have a go myself. Nothing to it he said. That's easy to say after you've done a few as I now know.

With considerable trepidation I started the job and cut the old gasket out. Set iron on medium heat to release the remaining gasket from the drysuit material. That worked good.

To make a long story short, I made a mess of it. I had it all set up nicely to glue the new gasket on but the gasket moved. Aquaseal all over my hands, sweating bullets, a prayer or two and I took it apart to dry and make a second attempt the next day. Better luck but the end product wasn't pretty.

I've learned and made up a jig to do the other gasket that I believe will work better. If so, I'll post some pictures to save some other poor soul the experience I had.


  1. Did you apply the iron directly to the rubber or did you use wax paper? I heard that using the wax paper prevents the rubber from sticking to the iron and making a mess of it. I used the wax paper when I was removing the backing tape on a neck gasket a few weeks ago.

  2. I applied the iron directly on the rubber because Kokotak say not to iron on the fabric. Using just the iron allows for more precision.

    I used wax paper under the glued area to prevent it from sticking to the support I had underneath.

    Tony :-)

  3. If you place the wax paper over the rubber while you iron it, it prevents the rubber from burning/sticking onto the iron? I guess if the iron gets too hot and melts ther rubber, it can ruin your iron.

    Using wax paper to prevent the aquaseal from sticking where it's not wanted is a great "invention", isn't it?

  4. Your both braver than I am. My dry suit is only a year and change old, but when the time comes it will be going to Kokatat.


  5. Once you figure out what you have to do and get the stuff in order, it's really not that hard. My first attempt was retrofitting a neoprene collar with a latex. It took a bit of fooling around but it turned out great.

    I could have brought it to a local shop and they would've charged about 35.00 labour but I figured it's useful skill to have.