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BLACKJACK

I need a new pair of chest waders -- advice??

25 posts in this topic

My current pair of 'beathable' chest waders are breathing too much, no obvious holes but I come out of them with wet legs -- too wet for cold weather!! My duck hunting consists of throwing out 1/2 dozen decoys -- thats why I need the waders -- sitting in the blind, then picking up the decoys. I probably walk 150 yards to the truck.

 

Not interested in another pair of breathable waders, they leaked from the get-go. I don't want any where I have to buy a separate wading boot. I'd rather go light and then add two pair of long johns and more socks later in the season. The neopremes are all over but they look hot and tough to get on and off.

 

Any advice??

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Man, that's tough. I really don't like lightweight waders. They've never "felt" waterproof enough for me. My dad gave me a pair he wore once or twice, and I swear I feel the water rushing in even though I stay dry. It's a strange metaphysical experience. 

You can look for lighter weight neoprene, say under 6 mm. It's still somewhat insulating so you might get warm during the early season, but if you can get a thinner pair it should be a lot less bulky and plenty waterproof. 

MJ1657 likes this

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I have 5mm neoprene with an attached and they are very very hot. I typically carry mine to the water then put them on when I get there. Otherwise they are too dang hot! They are no problem late in the season though! 

MJ1657 likes this

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I have 3 mm and 5 mm and now some breathable Cabelas, all stocking foot. After one season i MN and Nodak the breathable get my vote. They are the better ones, but now they make them even thicker. I like them, and used them in very cold water, but I wear the Cabelas Waderwise wader pants, and they are awesome! It is like not wearing waders at all, lightweight but still warm.

I am fan of stocking foot, but I walk a lot (especially in NoDak), and I don't think they are hard to put on (and i am even fat!). I get good boots too, though. But if you dont walk far the boot foot ones have better boots these days that grip your heel better. If you ever walk in true "sucky" bottoms, you would be amzed at how much faster you can get around when the boot is tightly tied to your feet. Like night and day. If you walk in sand or rock, ten it doesn't matter.

For value, I think the 3mm neoprenes are pretty good, and not that hot IMO. The 5 mm or thicker are too hot for me, and they are more binding. FWIW, I had a Cabelas neoprene 3 mm for years, lots of years, and the only leak was from barbed wire, easy to fix. I got some Gander neoprene and the darn things leaked almost from day one. I just have had good luck with the big C neoprenes and now breathable.

I see there is now some breathable with a boot foot, but the boot is more like a wader shoe style that would make walking nice. But they are too spendy for my blood.

Enough of my wader book writing ;) Good luck!

TylerS likes this

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I think the best advice is don't "order them"

 

Go someplace you can try a bunch of them on and get what you like best. The price is a little painfull, but when the options are buy a set or get wet....

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Sorry if I divert this topic into a parallel lane, but the one thing I don't like about neoprene waders is their ability to hold and magnify odor. 

Take a dog that's rolled in 10-day-old road-kill skunk and a set of waders that's nigh on 5 years old, and ask which one I'd rather spend a day with. The choice is the dog every time. 

The moment someone comes up with neoprene waders that don't stink like you're sliding on the carcass of an African big game animal is the moment I start writing a check for a brand new pair. 

 

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I have 3 mm and 5 mm and now some breathable Cabelas, all stocking foot. After one season i MN and Nodak the breathable get my vote. They are the better ones, but now they make them even thicker. I like them, and used them in very cold water, but I wear the Cabelas Waderwise wader pants, and they are awesome! It is like not wearing waders at all, lightweight but still warm.

I am fan of stocking foot, but I walk a lot (especially in NoDak), and I don't think they are hard to put on (and i am even fat!). I get good boots too, though. But if you dont walk far the boot foot ones have better boots these days that grip your heel better. If you ever walk in true "sucky" bottoms, you would be amzed at how much faster you can get around when the boot is tightly tied to your feet. Like night and day. If you walk in sand or rock, ten it doesn't matter.

For value, I think the 3mm neoprenes are pretty good, and not that hot IMO. The 5 mm or thicker are too hot for me, and they are more binding. FWIW, I had a Cabelas neoprene 3 mm for years, lots of years, and the only leak was from barbed wire, easy to fix. I got some Gander neoprene and the darn things leaked almost from day one. I just have had good luck with the big C neoprenes and now breathable.

I see there is now some breathable with a boot foot, but the boot is more like a wader shoe style that would make walking nice. But they are too spendy for my blood.

Enough of my wader book writing ;) Good luck!

Three pair!!! We'll have to nickname you 'The Wader King'.

I've always wondered how the 'stocking foot' model works for being totally waterproof?? I would think it would leak at the ankles. They WOULD be nice for walking or in being in muck where it wants to pull your boots right off though.

 

Sorry if I divert this topic into a parallel lane, but the one thing I don't like about neoprene waders is their ability to hold and magnify odor. 

Take a dog that's rolled in 10-day-old road-kill skunk and a set of waders that's nigh on 5 years old, and ask which one I'd rather spend a day with. The choice is the dog every time. 

The moment someone comes up with neoprene waders that don't stink like you're sliding on the carcass of an African big game animal is the moment I start writing a check for a brand new pair. 

 

Mmm, stinky and hot, not a very good endorsement for neoprenes!!! Yet 2/3 of the waders you see are neoprenes. They've really sucked the hunters in!!

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You have three choices.  Goretex/fake goretex, neoprene, or rubber over canvas.  You vetoed the first two, so that leaves the third. 

Personally I like the "Goretex" (breathable).  You do have to wear fleece or sweatpants or something when wearing them or they are weird, like wearing a rain jacket with no shirt. 

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I think the best advice is don't "order them"

 

Go someplace you can try a bunch of them on and get what you like best. The price is a little painfull, but when the options are buy a set or get wet....

I agree, I was looking at some online and was wondering to myself how big is big enough to get on a couple pair of socks for cold weather? I think a trip to Cabelas or St. Cloud (Gander or Scheels) is in order.

You have three choices.  Goretex/fake goretex, neoprene, or rubber over canvas.  You vetoed the first two, so that leaves the third. 

Personally I like the "Goretex" (breathable).  You do have to wear fleece or sweatpants or something when wearing them or they are weird, like wearing a rain jacket with no shirt. 

I liked the breathables that I have now but it didn't take more than a year or so and my pants underneath came out wet. I was wearing them this summer and I came out really wet. Light and comfortable but don't keep me dry. And yes I do take care of them, I have a drier for them and I hang them on boot hangers. 

Wondering how long the breathables that other people have last??

You have three choices.  Goretex/fake goretex, neoprene, or rubber over canvas.  You vetoed the first two, so that leaves the third. 

Personally I like the "Goretex" (breathable).  You do have to wear fleece or sweatpants or something when wearing them or they are weird, like wearing a rain jacket with no shirt. 

Mmmm, interesting, 'merging replies'.  A new feature I guess.

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My breathables have never leaked and are going on year 6.  I like having the non-attached boot as they are much more comfortable to walk in and with better support.  They pack up nice for fishing trips to Alaska and if I have a ways to hike in they pack up around my waist via a belt.  I will never go back to the 1 year use of rubber waders and will only use my neoprene with a boat.

BoxMN likes this

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I've been trying to decide what to get myself. Lots of good ideas here. I think I'll go with breathable.  Now I have to decide between getting them at Cabelas or Scheels.

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There is also probably a fair amount of difference between the various breathable implementations.  Goretex would be my first choice, after that hard to say.  Check the online reviews to see if there is any information on durability there.  You could also just have gotten a bad pair. 

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The only thing I worry about with the thinner waders is their ability to hold up to all the pointy/rough/nasty objects we come in contact with during a duck hunt. My waders look like they've been shredded by a feral cat, and they're still waterproof (mostly because they're 6 mm neoprene, which is a lot of material to get through). 

But it sounds like there's been some solid advice here. I really like the idea of getting wader boots instead of built-in boots. Never even considered that, but it sounds like it would be a lot more practical for walking out to spots and getting through muck. I'll definitely consider that in the future!

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I really like the idea of getting wader boots instead of built-in boots. Never even considered that, but it sounds like it would be a lot more practical for walking out to spots and getting through muck. I'll definitely consider that in the future!

Definitely go with the better boots if you do this. Makes a huge difference in comfort and longevity. They also slip on much easier when wet than dry. You can get a pretty decent pair from Cabelas for about $45 when on sale, normal price about $80. Next time I might try an even better pair to see the difference between mid priced and high priced ones. Don't get the cheap ones unless you really need to conserve $$, they work but wear out sooner have much less support (but still more than boot foot).

I do have three pair of waders, but over the course of many years - and one 3 mm neoprene pair is old, and a bit "skinny" for me these days, haha! I forgot, I even have another pair of the canvas/rubber ones with boot foot, but that is for friends if they need them. The 5mm neoprene Gander ones are leaking but I think I aquasealed them up so they will be dry now - I am going to test this weekend. Maybe I am Wader king ;)

FWIW - I tried all the "cheap" alternatives to AquaSeal and none of them worked nearly as good as AquaSeal. It is expensive, but works best, for pin hole leaks or big holes or even tears. 

Edited by BoxMN

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Box, how do the wader boots without the boot foot work?? Is it just a goretex type sock that is attached to the wader? 

 

For you guys with the breathable waders, do you treat them with anything??

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The stocking is actually neoprene that is attached to the goretex/breathable above the ankle height. So it is warmer and "soft" on your feet. There is a gaiter that goes down around the connection point (where breathable and neoprene connect), and covers the laces of the boot. The boots them selves go on just like shoes/boots. They have drains in bottom for water the drain when you step out of water. That is where you get good support, because you can tie them as tight or loose as you want.

Mine breathable is only one year old, so can't say about durability yet.

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I just picked up a pair of wades for my son last weekend off of hsolist. I got them for $90 for a pair and they seem like nice waders. He said he had some size 12 left if you need that size.

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I just picked up a pair of wades for my son last weekend off of hsolist. I got them for $90 for a pair and they seem like nice waders. He said he had some size 12 left if you need that size.

New waders?? What brand name?? What kind??

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They are Pro Gear waders. I got them off another list that starts with a C, not hsolist. Must have been auto correct. I could give you his phone number.

 

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Edited by Rip_Some_Lip

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I got a pair of camo Frogg Togg canvas/rubber waders on clearance at GM last summer, they are nice and light weight and the boot fits good, never went out in much below 35 degrees but stayed warm enough.

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My neoprene waders failed me last night. :cry:They worked well on youth waterfowl day. Now to either find the hole and repair or buy new... 4days before the season... Grrrr

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I went through a tube of aquaseal on my old neoprenes to try to make them usable as spare... last weekend I found that they still have leaks somewhere... I would not want to wear them in the oct/nov cold. Into the trash they are going. Will stick with my newer breathables... I am no longer wader king ;)

MJ1657 and Neighbor_guy like this

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I got a pair of the Cabelas Dry Plus. Other then that are a little big around the waist I like them alot. 

Neighbor_guy likes this

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I ended up with the dry plus as well. Took them for a test ride today after work. A lot different than the neoprene that's for sure. The water was cold!!! Couldn't feel water temps in the neoprene ones. 

I found several bad spots in the same general area on the old pair. image.thumb.jpeg.d2cb82c20c824ac48969d46image.thumb.jpeg.38de6508e1b674ff50be313

I used the flashlight method. Grabbed a tube of aqua seal and rubbed some boogers in there like the directions and the Internet videos suggested. I'm not sold that it's going to work. I will give it a try just to see, but I feel like it's just a surface thing. Maybe I should come at it from both sides????

image.thumb.jpeg.867baed4c48d8ff0661900d

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I bought a pair of Frogg Toggs as well a few seasons ago for some duck hunting, they're pretty lightweight and have lasted fine. You could check out the Catch Them Easy site guide for more reviews of waders.

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