Caving Coveralls

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Caving Coveralls

Postby kodyodom » Oct 6, 2010 10:50 pm

Is it worth it to buy a pair of caving coveralls? And what are the best kind to get?
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Re: Caving Coveralls

Postby Cody JW » Oct 7, 2010 8:20 am

They are nice but most are HOT!!!! I have a two piece custom set and never use it. If you cave around water alot I can see where they could help. I cave in jeans and t- shirt for most dry caves but I am thick chested and get hot fast going up and down breakdown piles.I do cave with others who use them when I use jeans and t- shirt and they are fine. It depends on your tolerance for cold. If you are heavy you will build up more heat doing the same thing a thinner person does.Also consider the hike to the cave in the summer.I have heard others say cotton is not good but for me I prefer it for dry stuff or shallow wading.I have a never ending supply of old jeans anyway.I suspect you will hear others say the opposite , that is fine.Everybody is different.
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Re: Caving Coveralls

Postby dfcaver » Oct 7, 2010 10:48 am

Dickey's coveralls are a decent compromise. They'll wear out a lot quicker, but a lot cheaper. They tend to dry quicker than denim as well.
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Re: Caving Coveralls

Postby JR-Orion » Oct 7, 2010 12:47 pm

I have the Lost Creek standard coveralls, and like them. Reinforced at the butt and knees, and the knees have pockets to hold neoprene foam pads (so maybe you won't need kneepads). The zipper is protected by a velcro flap.

For a quick cave trip, I'll just toss them on over jeans and a t shirt. For longer trips, I wear polypro and the coveralls. The latter combo is just about right for the caves around here (48 to 55 degrees F).

Mine are just over a year old and are still going strong.
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Re: Caving Coveralls

Postby Amocholes » Oct 11, 2010 7:46 am

I am on my 2nd pair of Lost Creek. The 1st pair lasted 11 years and could still be made serviceable if I resewed all the seams. Of course that would make them a bit smaller and they were starting to get a little snug. (I swear they shrank) They will take a lot of abuse and help out when you need that extra little bit of friction to hold you in a tight climb. I use a 1/2" closed cell foam pad in the knee pockets and a cheap pair of kneepads inside the suit.

I normally wear just polypros under them and stay warm enough. They can be almost too warm at times.
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Re: Caving Coveralls

Postby kodyodom » Oct 11, 2010 10:50 pm

would you be willing to use your old pair? I am in need of some coveralls and i am on a limited budget.
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Re: Caving Coveralls

Postby self-deleted_user » Oct 12, 2010 8:23 am

Personally I find them restricting. I've heard this is generally how it goes too, it's not just the few I've tried on it is how they are because of how they are made. I am quite flexible person (can almost do full splits, I can do bridges easily, etc) and I tend to use my flexibility in caves, say, when struggling with tough breakdown, when others can just heave-ho themselves over it I don't have the strength to do that, so I use my bendyness to get over it. It also makes twisty crawls easier for me. In coveralls, they are so limiting in movement, I can't lift a knee up to my chest even, for example, and maybe I could get a 90 degree angle in my legs but nowhere close to full splits, etc. I am not claustrophobic in the least but what I have found is that limited mobility where I SHOULD be able to move, is what freaks me out. Standing in a huge open space in coveralls and not being able to move my body because of how constricting they are scares me. So uh...I hate them personally. Everyone is different though!
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Re: Caving Coveralls

Postby Amazingracer » Oct 12, 2010 10:04 am

I use a Meander suit. it works great. I generally only use it for wet caving though, as otherwise its just too hot.

Burce at OR1, sells suits with Shazam on the butt and knees which would make it very durable.
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Re: Caving Coveralls

Postby graveleye » Oct 12, 2010 10:43 am

Kyle, what do you wear under your Meander suit in the wet caves? Polypro?

I have a Meander I've used once over at Tumbling Rock and thought I was going to burn up. That was in February too.

I figure they're only going to be good for me in the wet caves unless I plan on doing some alpine caving.
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Re: Caving Coveralls

Postby Amazingracer » Oct 12, 2010 11:58 am

Depending on the cave, its normally just polypro bottoms and long sleeve poly pro top(inside of the suit is rather scratchy). Or all that plus the addition of a wetsuit.

Yea, cave suit in TR is killer. I always wear short sleeve shirt and pants there.

I have met some people who wear cave suits always due to various reasons, but to each there own.
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Re: Caving Coveralls

Postby Stridergdm » Oct 12, 2010 7:24 pm

I own a pair of Lost Creek and while I like them, would make a few modifications.

I wear them when caving up north in New York. Down in TAG country i find them too hot and restrictive.

For the modifications, if I could get underarm zips for ventilation that would be ideal.

The other would would be to make side panels out of something slippery. I find sometimes while crawling through tight muddy passages, the cloth acts like Velcro and it's very hard to move.

Other than that, I do love them. (In fact was just in them yesterday caving :-)
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Re: Caving Coveralls

Postby BrettWakeman » Oct 14, 2010 6:43 am

I've been looking at ordering some Lost Creek overalls (via internet for shipping to Australia) - I see that there are both Deluxe and Standard versions available, and that the differences seem to be limited to velcro closures on wrists/ankles, internal belt loops and knee straps.

I can see the benefits of the closures on wrists/ankles, but i was wondering if anyone can provide feedback on the knee straps - are they useful, do they get caught on things, etc.

Thanks in advance for any advice anyone can give.

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Re: Caving Coveralls

Postby Amocholes » Oct 17, 2010 5:09 pm

BrettWakeman wrote:I've been looking at ordering some Lost Creek overalls (via internet for shipping to Australia) - I see that there are both Deluxe and Standard versions available, and that the differences seem to be limited to velcro closures on wrists/ankles, internal belt loops and knee straps.

I can see the benefits of the closures on wrists/ankles, but i was wondering if anyone can provide feedback on the knee straps - are they useful, do they get caught on things, etc.

Thanks in advance for any advice anyone can give.

Brett


The pockets for the kneepads are pretty large. To be effective the pad needs to fill it . The straps hold them in place, help them conform to your leg and keep them from shifting around. I have never had problems with the straps getting caught on anything. I use a 1/2" Closed cell foam in mine. I also use a cheep pair of kneepads inside the suit. Similar to these.Image
The velcro at wrist and ankles helps keep your hands and feet clear. The sleeves and legs tend to be a bit long for me. Without the velcro the sleeves can get in your way. Velcro at the ankles is nice but not necessary. I did use a belt inside of mine when I first got it but I've put on a bit of weight since then and it's not needed anymore. The entire suit is made with a waterproof coating on the inside. This was fine for the 1st few years but after that it began flaking off. It left little bits of coating all over the polypros that didn't want to come off. There is also a hood inside the collar that I have never used.
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Re: Caving Coveralls

Postby Beerlover » Nov 19, 2010 4:18 pm

I've been considering coveralls, as well, and I wondered how a military surplus nomex flightsuit would work? I see them in abundance on ebay in the $20-$40 range. Any comments/experiences with them?
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Re: Caving Coveralls

Postby rlboyce » Nov 19, 2010 4:58 pm

Instead of me quoting every single post, just go to the search in the top right corner of the page and type in "nomex." Lots of opinions about them. From what I've read, they aren't very durable.
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