Cambridge Underground 1989 pp

A Wetsuit Compressor

by David Gibson

The necessity of cramming all my caving gear into a rucksack resulted in the demise of one rucksack, and some loose stitching on another. With this in mind I produced a very simple piece of equipment designed to hold a wetsuit in a compressed state to make it easier to handle. The design was inspired by the 'compressor stuffsacs' that can be bought for sleeping bags.

In this application a stuffsac would not be very useful as a wetsuit just does not 'stuff' very easily. Instead, the compressor is based around a 65 cm square of heavy duty PU nylon as shown in the diagram. Hems were sewn round the edges, eyelets and a cord fitted to two opposite corners, and a half-inch tape with 'Fastex' buckles sewn diagonally as shown.

The wetsuit and any other gear is placed in the centre of the sheet and the two eyelet corners folded over and pulled tight with the cord. The other two edges are then folded over, the buckles clipped together and the tapes pulled tight. The result is a very small bundle of wetsuit which can be dropped in a rucksack or carried in a carrier bag.

The space saving is quite large, but the damage done to the wetsuit is probably also large. For a caving wetsuit this may not be important, but you should perhaps not store your wetsuit for long periods like this, and not treat a diving wetsuit like this.

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