Buying Foul Weather Gear
Your Complete Guide to Buying Foul Weather Gear
Many sailors don’t let wind and rain get in the way of jumping on board their boats and getting out to sea. If you do plan to use your boat during the colder months it’s a good idea to get kitted out with sailing clothing that is specifically designed to provide full protection against the most extreme conditions.
Must be the Material…
Sailing jackets, trousers, gloves, mid layers and many other garments are made from a variety of materials. The majority of sailing clothing has been designed to provide essential protection from the wind and rain; however, particular materials will protect you more than others. It’s a good idea to pay attention to the materials the garment is made from. Popular technologies, such as GORE-TEX have proven to be durable and resistant, and of course similar materials provide the same performance. It’s also worth considering how waterproof it is and the breath-ability of the garment which are both essential for remaining comfortable and dry.
Suits you Sir…
When sailing in foul weather conditions ocean suits are ideal – the complete suit is made up of offshore trousers and a jacket. Before you buy it, it might be worth considering the type of climate you are in. Is it necessary to have a heavy jacket and trouser? Will you be out in the most extreme of weathers or will you take a rain check on those days? How long are you planning to be at sea?
There is nothing to say you won’t get caught in some foul weather. Also what type of activity will you be doing on your boat, if you need to be up-deck, and aren’t locking yourself in the cabin when the weather turns, then a full suit is very much recommended.
Here are some features you’d expect to find on a high quality sailing jacket or trousers – when you come to buy yours it’s worth looking out for the extras that suit your sailing style:
Colours – Bright colour garments mean great visibility, it’s not a fashion parade!
Reflective strips and patches – Essential if you plan to sail during the dark.
Hard wearing patches – Some jackets and trousers have been designed with more durable, hardwearing materials on the knees of trousers, cuffs and other areas.
Hoods and High collars – Providing extra protection from the wind and rain, some will feature inner fleece material around the collar for comfort. Some hoods include clear sides for better visibility for the sailor.
Two-way Zips – Providing easier access. It’s also worth considering which you prefer: a full length zip in a jacket or half a zip on a smock style jacket. Sailing trousers have a range of zip types which all depend on what you prefer.
Sealed Seams – This is essential for providing fully waterproof protection.
Tip: Select larger rather than smaller sizes. Most sailors wear clothes underneath for more warmth
Check out our best selling Foul Weather Suits: