Breathable or Neoprene???

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Breathable or Neoprene???

Postby ZMan079 » Tue Oct 19, 2010 10:01 pm

I'm looking at getting a set of waders and I'm debating between Breathable and Neoprene. Can you experienced folks share your thoughts on which is better and why??

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Re: Breathable or Neoprene???

Postby drod » Tue Oct 19, 2010 10:15 pm

I'd say get a cheaper pair of each if you can, instead of breaking the bank on one or the other.

I know, I know, many hunters (and fishermen) will say they only buy top end waders, and I would too if I could afford 'em.

But I've had a pair of Hodgman breathables that I got on clearance for $20 that are going on their 5th season. In fact, just bought the exact same ones for the exact same price on clearance just to have when this pair fails. Love them for early season hunts, and even the first few weeks of the late season when I'm doing some walking into spots. Of course the downside to that is that you've got to be very, very careful with breathables in brush and briars. If you plan to wade out, set your dekes, and hang out on land while you hunt, you should be pretty comfortable with the right layers. Early season, all I wear underneath is a pair of polyester jogging pants. As the temps and water gets colder, I'll throw on a pair of fleece pants over the poly base layer.

Late November and on, I'm thankful to have neoprene waders. Again, cheap ones from Cabelas that have lasted several years. 3 mm. I had a pair of 5 mm neo bootfoot waders with 1200 grams of thinsulate in the boot. I got way too hot in those, even on those nasty days that ducks love. Again, watch out for puncture hazards. Neoprene isn't indestructible, even the ones that claim to be.

I wear the breathables prob 20-30 times a year hunting and fishing. 4 full years with no problems. The neoprene I might wear 10 times a year between hunting and fishing. 2 full years with no problems.
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Re: Breathable or Neoprene???

Postby breckenmore » Tue Oct 19, 2010 10:19 pm

I use both plus hip boots when it's real warm. Just ordered a new pair of drake lst 5 mm neoprenes. Tried them on at cabelas this weekend and was very impressed. They aren't cheap but were well made and had enough features that it made it worth my while.
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Re: Breathable or Neoprene???

Postby zippyduck » Tue Oct 19, 2010 11:08 pm

I use cabelas brand Neoprenes and they last about three years of hard hunting even though I abuse them and put them away wet. Take care of them and they should last you alot longer.
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Re: Breathable or Neoprene???

Postby PSUbuzz » Wed Oct 20, 2010 10:09 am

neoprene all day. in september when its too hot for neoprenes, im still in fishing mode from late summer and fish without waders. neoprenes can take alot more brush and thorns and bumps into rocks and underwater logs than breathables. Also if youre like me and you avoid nice days on public land and wait for the really crappy weather days when all the fair weather hunters stay home, you will appreciate some warm neoprenes. The last 3 pairs of waders ive bought are the cabelas brand cheapos for 140$, they last me about 2-3 seasons depending on the size of the holes i end up poking and patching. My crew and i like to go after those hard to reach spots that other hunters dont want to put the effort into getting to so we tend to go through brush and briars in the dark pretty regularly. In MD, 3mm will get you by, but i know every year in PA i end up busting holes in ice come late season to get a hole open for ducks and 5mm is the only way to go in that weather. If you hunt a lot of brush, look for the waders that have the padded knees, or say "brush buster", those waders can take a lot more abuse and wont get holes as easily but will be a little stiffer to walk around in.
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Re: Breathable or Neoprene???

Postby zippyduck » Wed Oct 20, 2010 1:26 pm

I've used the neoprene ones. Breathables wouldn't last me through the first week of the season.. Let alone when the Ice gets here.
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Re: Breathable or Neoprene???

Postby breckenmore » Wed Oct 20, 2010 5:44 pm

The better breathable waders definately last longer. I have a pair of Simms goretex waders and I don't hesitate to go through any thorns, briars, multiflora rose, etc. They are great when I'ts too warm for neoprene and too cold to wet wade.
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Re: Breathable or Neoprene???

Postby ashtoncvsg » Thu Oct 21, 2010 10:33 am

I use Cabelas Dry Plus all year around and absolutly love them! Early goose it was 99 degrees out and I just had a tshirt and basketball shorts under them. When its freezing I layer underarmour, fleece, and wader liner pants and am toasty as can be. The key is to get them large enough to layer as much as you could possibly want under them. This is my only pair of waders, I wear them every day I hunt, and I'd buy them again if I had it to do all over again.
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Re: Breathable or Neoprene???

Postby waterfouler » Thu Oct 21, 2010 7:21 pm

I have a pair of both but have recently been using my fishing breathables with a pair of gander mountain brand wetland camo pants over them. The extra layer provides camo and does not hinder movement. I tend to lug a lot of gear so my fly fishing waders help the sweat factor and the paints over top prevents rips. Late season i will be definately using the neoprene.
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Re: Breathable or Neoprene???

Postby TravisBickle » Thu Oct 21, 2010 9:32 pm

You guys get what you pay for.......sure you heard that once or twice. If you buy neoprene, try not to wear them in flooded timber or where you will rub up against anything, no matter what brand, they will tear, I guarantee that.......as for a cabelas, gander mountain, BPR brand.....they are all made by the same manufacturer...yes, they are.

If you are going to hunt a lot for ducks and hunt a lot of spots that you have to trudge through lots of rough sections of water; my suggestion is to buy any ORVIS product. They have a lifetime warranty and trust me, they honor it everytime i send them back. Yeah, they are pricey, but I will make it relative to buying a good hunting dog, pay more up front than paying more in the back end when the dog gets older and you have no guarantee on their hips, heart, eyes, ect....

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Re: Breathable or Neoprene???

Postby gooserslan » Fri Oct 22, 2010 7:12 pm

I have torn through a brand new pair of breathables. Early season you can't beat them but some places are full of briars and thick vegetation. You have to baby them a little. I am on my third year with a 150 dollar pair of Gander Mountain Guide series and they are just not starting to develop a few pinhole leaks. My buddy just told me Drake has a pair for 300 dollars that have a lifetime warrenty. Don't know how well Drake will honor it but i think i might just go for them next. I only buy Neoprene anymore.
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Re: Breathable or Neoprene???

Postby Bmaybee » Tue Sep 24, 2013 9:31 pm

When we're talking "lugging gear" and walking over terrain in waders, how far of a hike are we talking? Is it realistic to hike for a few miles in breathable waders, over terrain to get to a spot? Or is it better just to hike in pants and dedicate some pack space to the waders and change when you get to water?
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Re: Breathable or Neoprene???

Postby PA_Drake_Hunter » Thu Sep 26, 2013 10:21 am

I use Gander mtn brand. Can't beat the deal, got decent neoprene waders for 119 ten got the one year replacement for an extra 20 bucks. The guy at te store sai if you pop them or put any small hole in tem within a year you can get them replaced for free. The way I look at it I get 2 pair for the price of one. I always end up getting a stick threw them or tear them walking to my spots or falling.
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Re: Breathable or Neoprene???

Postby BKScripto » Thu Sep 26, 2013 10:33 am

I have a pair of Colombia neoprene waders I picked up on sale for $120 about 3 seasons ago. No leaks whatsoever except where I snagged them badly a few times on objects in the boat. They've held up nicely when I go thru brush, etc.

I sure wouldn't hike much in them though. My next pair will probably be breathable waders though, for more comfort and flexibility.
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Re: Breathable or Neoprene???

Postby TomKat » Thu Sep 26, 2013 11:09 am

Breathable, x 100

If you MUST get neoprenes, dont get the 5 MM !!!! Get the 3.5 MM
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Re: Breathable or Neoprene???

Postby aclumpkin » Thu Sep 26, 2013 11:15 am

ashtoncvsg wrote:I use Cabelas Dry Plus all year around and absolutly love them! Early goose it was 99 degrees out and I just had a tshirt and basketball shorts under them. When its freezing I layer underarmour, fleece, and wader liner pants and am toasty as can be. The key is to get them large enough to layer as much as you could possibly want under them. This is my only pair of waders, I wear them every day I hunt, and I'd buy them again if I had it to do all over again.

x2... Love my Dry Plus!
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Re: Breathable or Neoprene???

Postby TomKat » Thu Sep 26, 2013 11:17 am

What up Will ??
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Re: Breathable or Neoprene???

Postby PA Waterfowler » Fri Sep 27, 2013 6:11 pm

I've got the Cabela's Armor Flex Neoprenes and love them. So far they have been great with no holes. Armor really seems to help with the brush. Havn't tried breathables, probably won't!

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Re: Breathable or Neoprene???

Postby DonkeyHunter » Sun Sep 29, 2013 3:59 pm

3.5 mm cheapo's from Cabela's - put a hole in the leg first time out at Geneva. Cabela's light mag with armor-flex, and double layer on the knees - seam leaked in crotch second time out. Brand new dry-plus breathables hanging in the basement right now. If these leak too, I'm switching to saran wrap
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Re: Breathable or Neoprene???

Postby ZMan079 » Wed Oct 02, 2013 8:51 pm

I ended up going with the Cabela's Brush Buster™ 1000 Chest Waders. I am on my 3rd season with them and they have held up well. Care after use seems to be the trick. Only negative is that they are a little stiff because they are so thick.

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Re: Breathable or Neoprene???

Postby fallscity1 » Mon Oct 21, 2013 5:43 am

Once i went breathable i never looked back at neoprene.

advantages breathable IMO

walking to the blind... if you work up a sweat it evaporates leaving you dry underneath not warm and clammy...

early season hunt are no longer to warm for the 3mm or 5mm neo...

when its cold out you simply layer with synthetics like silk weight, fleece and or polypro leaving you lightweight, dry, and warm...

i never like the constricted feeling of neoprene, wearing breathables IMO is like hunting in that worn comfortable pair of blue jeans...

I'm on my 9th season with a set of Lacrosse alpha swamp fox breathables in MAX 4... sure they have lots of rubber cement and glued on patches... but I hunt some rough areas... I went through 2 pairs of neo in the 7 years prior...

If Im hunting or fishing i'm wearing breathables... if i'm going diving or surfing ill fo for the neoprene wet suit
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