Wetsuit Zubzor Pro
I recently wrote that what I wanted in a diving suit was extra padding around the pecs and shoulders, a nipped-in waist and a six-pack effect at the midriff. It had nothing to do with insulation. It was all about looking drop-dead gorgeous. Thats something I find hard to do nowadays without some artificial aid, so its gratifying to know that manufacturers listen to what I have to say.
     I was initially attracted to this Swedish-designed Waterproof Zubzor Pro suit because it had a ridge of stomach muscles embossed just where I wanted it!
     Its mainly made with 3mm neoprene, so its certainly aimed at the warmwater diver, but then coldwater diving can hardly be called a stylish pursuit, can it You wouldnt expect a push-up bra effect in a wetsuit for ladies or an anatomically designed crotch area (provide your own sausage) for us lads; certainly not for those used to jumping into icy waters. But you get that with this suit.
     Its a suit loaded with other novel ideas, too. For instance, it has a panel of what they call harmonica-stretch 5mm neoprene at the kidneys. This is effectively a thick layer of corrugated neoprene. At the front it has that Judge Dredd look, plus a panel of smooth skin at the chest area, all super-heroic.
     A good idea at the back is the large area coated with non-slip Toughtex. This helps rid you of that insecure feeling while sitting on the side-sponson of a quickly driven RIB.
     Ankles and cuff have seals made from a fine thickness of mesh-skin neoprene and these are protected by the main 3mm neoprene of the suit, which in both cases is closed with a zip. They collude to reduce the amount of water that might otherwise flush through the suit.
     At the back is the vertical-entry zip, of a heavy-duty YKK bronze metal type. This has a long ribbon-tag on it to enable you to close it on your own. I never can. In common with other Waterproof suits, there is a comfort zip at the throat. The neck area is also in-stitched with comfortable Lycra fabric.
     Pre-bent arms and legs, with soft flexible polyurethane elbow and knee patches nicely integrated on the one side, and more panels of harmonica-stretch fabric on the inner edge of the curve, all conspire to beat discomfort. I tried to find a Swedish blonde for the photograph but had to settle for some common-or-garden English roast beef. However, the overall design, using panels of black, silver, grey and blue, enabled him to strike a perfect pose. Ladies versions are in black, grey and white.
     I can already hear the more jaundiced members of the diving trade muttering that with so many elements, theres an awful lot of stitching to come unravelled. I took a close look because I always understood that if you buy a suit in Saville Row, its master tailors will jump to attention if you question the quality of the stitching.
     In this case, the Zubzor Pro seems to be constructed in the same way as many neoprene drysuits - stitched both inside and out. Waterproof has confidence in the construction because it is all backed by a two-year warranty.
     These suits are available in a range of off-the-peg sizes. The one sent to me was almost a perfect fit, though a little wanting when it came to my 36in inside legs. These suits are clearly not intended for use in the Mediterranean, nor any tropical place that might be swept by an ocean current, but in the Red Sea in midsummer or anywhere of that sort, the Zubzor Pro 3mm suit would seem ideal.
     The Zubzor Pro costs £124 and there is a shortie version for £89.
  • CPS Partnership 01424 442663, www.tusa.demon.co.uk

  • Divernet
    + Loaded with good ideas

    - May not be so good when its loaded with you!