The S2AS Guide to O’Neill Wetsuit Tech

O’Neill make a huge range of wetsuits for both summer and winter. No matter what the sport or sports you partake in there will definitely be a suit in this vast range perfect for you and at any budget. Check out below for our definitive guide.

The Brand-New O’Neill Blueprint Wetsuit

As we all know wetsuit production in the past has not been great for the planet however for years O’Neill has been pursuing much more environmentally friendly ways to make wetsuits and they have certainly set the bar high with the brand new O’Neill Blueprint. Coming in in a 5/4+ and 4/3+ version this wetsuit is perfect for winter riding and on those colder summer days we all know and hate. Even with this way of production O’Neill have not forgot what they are famous for which is a truly great fitting and comfortable wetsuit that will not restrict your range of movement and keep you warm no matter how long your session. Below is how O’Neill has made this environmentally friendly wetsuit.

O’Neill Blue – Our Mission

We are aware of the environmental challenges humanity and the impact the surf industry is having on our playground. That’s why we strive to use materials that leave a minor impact on the environment. We do this by expanding the O’Neill blue line through our collection with the O’Neill blue label. We ensure that a product is made between 30 and 90% sustainable fabrics.  

Eco Carbon Black- Carbon black is one of the key ingredients in neoprene. It can now be pyrolyzed from scrap rubber tires using high heat to extract.

Water Based Glue- Solvent based adhesives used in most neoprene are considered moderately harmful to the environment. O’Neill works with their key manufacturing to develop a non solvent based lamination glue called Aqua-Alpha.

Dope-Dyed Yarn- Dope Dying infusion produces coloured yarns without the dying process. This saves tremendous amounts of water whilst reducing energy consumption and water pollution.

Recycled Plastic Bottles- Every blueprint full suit saves 100 plastic bottles from potentially polluting the worlds living oceans and decreasing the bottles that flow to the Pacific and Atlantic trash vortex

Recycled Oyster Shells In Neoprene- O’Neill uses recycled ocean oyster shells in place of calcium carbonate powder which compromises approximately 10% of neoprene.

Limestone Neoprene- Much more environmentally friendly way of making neoprene than the classic way wetsuits where made. O’Neill has used limestone since 1966 to replace petrochemicals in their neoprene. It comes from nature and has less of an environmental impact

A lot of these environmentally friendly features are also ran through the whole line of O’Neill wetsuits. Check out the individual listings on www.s2as.com to find out.

Neoprene

Sometimes the wording to describe neoprene in wetsuits can be a bit confusing and might as well be in a foreign language. Below is our descriptions to help make things a bit clearer.

Technobutter 3 Air Firewall- This is by far the warmest neoprene that O’Neill make and is usually used across the chest of the wetsuit where you are likely to feel the cold most. This uses a wind a waterproof smooth skin layer which will keep you extremely warm on even the coldest of days. The Air Insulated layered core is also the warmest core in the O’Neill line up. Its very lightweight and does not absorb water all helping to keep that precious warmth in. The interior jersey is O’Neill’s patented Technobutter Firewall. This gives you an extra layer of insulation and is designed to be worn against the skin. This being said there is no reason why you can’t wear a thermal rash vest underneath for even more warmth. If you ride somewhere very cold or are susceptible to the cold, then this is definitely the neoprene to look for.

Available in the Blueprint, and Psycho Tech

Technobutter 3- This neoprene is used in the majority of O’Neill’s high-end wetsuits. It is really flexible maintaining your range of movement whilst being incredibly warm. This Neoprene is also very durable and hard wearing which is why its predominantly used in high wear areas such as the legs, bum and back. Also, this is used in the arms and shoulders of the Psycho Tech and The Psycho One. These suits also utilise the Envy Foam rubber core, which is lightweight, warm and absorbs minimal water for easy drying. The inner jersey uses Technobutter 3x which helps add flexibility to the neoprene in an area that does not need to be as durable.

Available in the Blueprint, Psycho Tech, Psycho One, Hyperfreak and Mutant

Technobutter 3X – An extremely flexible neoprene for the ultimate fit, comfort and an unrestricted range of movement. This is usually found across the arms and shoulders of the high-end wetsuit where you require the most mobility. This neoprene is also slightly less durable than others hence why it is a lot more flexible and why it is not used in high wear areas like the legs or bum area. This style also uses O’Neill’s Envy Foam rubber core which is extremely light weigh and warm and Technobutter 3X on the inside of the wetsuit maintaining its flexibility.

Available in the Blueprint, Hyperfreak and Mutant.

Technobutter 3 Firewall- Usually found across the chest however in some wetsuits you can find it through the legs as well. This is a thermal layer designed to be up against the skin to keep you warmer on even the longest of sets and coldest of days.

Available in the Psycho Tech and Psycho One

UltraFlex Neoprene- This is O’Neill’s entry level neoprene but is definitely something to not be overlooked. Years of research and design has produced a neoprene that is still incredible flexible giving you a great fit, unmatched comfort and without restricting your range of movement without breaking the bank. The foam core is really warm and will absorb very little water keeping you warm and stopping the suit getting heavy. This truly is a great option if you are on a bit of a budget. Available in the Epic, Reactor, Hammer, and Bahia

Seam Construction

Seams aren’t all created equal. Below is the definitive guide to the different types of seams uses throughout the O’Neill range.

Stitchless Technology- Glued seams taped with TB3X tape and an exterior fluid seam weld.
Available in the Blueprint and Psycho Tech

Single Fluid Seam Weld- Blind stitched and triple glued seams with a exterior fluid seam weld
Available in the Psycho One and Mutant

TB3X Taped Seams- Triple glued and blind stitched exterior with a TB3X Tape interior. The lightest and stretchiest neoprene tape ever. 0.5mm split neoprene applied to triple glued seams with a water based glue to keep you dry and loose
Available in the Hyperfreak

Glued and Blind stitched. Critically Taped- Triple glued and blind stitched exterior with critical areas taped on the inside
Available in the Epic

Flatloc Stitched- Overlapping neoprene with Flatloc stitching.
Available in the Reactor, Hammer, Bahia

Entry And Closure Systems

O’Neill have a total of 5 different styles of entry and closure systems. Back zip is traditionally the easiest to get into however this is not suited to everyone and can be more likely to get flushed down the back of the wetsuit. With a little bit of practice, technique and thanks to the flexibility of O’Neill’s neoprene even the zipless suits are very easy to put on. The choice is yours.



F.U.Z.E. Closure (Chest Zip)- Front upper zip entry uses a free-floating zipper panel and anti flush barrier with drain holes to keep you dry and feeling loose

Z.E.N. Zip Closure- O’Neill’s patented back zip closure system featuring an anti flush barrier with drainage holes to keep you warmer and prevent getting flushed.

Modular Closure – Modular closure system with dual cinches. Interchange the neck or the hood depending on the condition

Zipless- Lightweight closure system over a 360 degree barrier with drain holes and cinch cord. Watertight seal with ease of entry and exit

Backzip- Backzip entry system with a durable zipper provides easy entry and exit with a water resistant seal

Other Note-Worthy Tech

Throughout the range you might find some features that you are not sure what they exactly mean. Below are some of the key features we thought would be worth a mention. Obviously if you have any other questions you can contact us.

Red Zone Water Resistant Zipper- Urethane coated, offset zipper teeth interlock to stop leaks and keep water from entering the suit. 

Minimal Seam Design- Designed with larger panels and less seams to increase flexibility, durability and fit.

Double Super Seal Neck- A comfortable and fully adjustable watertight glideskin seal.

Krypto Knee Padz- Protect the most venerable part of your wetsuit with this ergonomic knee protection.

Long Arm Shorty’s

We definitely believe these are worth a discussion due to how popular they are with the S2AS team riders and staff. As we know here in the UK even in the middle of summer it’s not always the warmest and theses are a great option for wakeboarding and kitesurfing. With some traditional full length suits the speed you get on the board can cause water to rush up the leg of the suit especially with thinner summer suits giving what we call “Elephant Leg”. Using a short leg wetsuit eliminates this. Also, if you are wakeboarding or kitesurfing in boots the wetsuit will not affect the fit of you boot.

A few years ago, O’Neill produced 4/3mm long arm ¾ length leg wetsuit that was very popular, however for some reason it disappeared from there line up which in all honesty was a massive shock to us. Well now this style is back, and we cannot be more excited for the Hyperfreak 4/3+ Chest Zip L/S overknee. Perfect for Kitesurfing and wakeboarding in spring and autumn when it’s not quite cold enough for your full winter suits.

Final Words

We understand that a good wetsuit can be a serious investment, but we believe that it is definitely worth it. It can extend your sessions and keep you getting out on the water making your kit useable all year round. And with O’Neill’s massive range of summer wetsuits and winter wetsuits there is something to suit everyone’s budget.

I hope you have enjoyed this blog and it has helped to explain some of the technology going on in O’Neill’s wetsuit line up. If you have any other questions feel free to contact us on 01202 738448 or visit www.s2as.com

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