Zip repair for neoprene wetsuits (surf, dive, triathlon, etc)
Wetsuit zip repairs are among the most frequent repairs in the workshop.
The different zip problems on suits
The zippers are a rather sensitive part of the suits, as they are under a lot of pressure when put on. Often located at the back of the wetsuit, the pull of the slider strap is often poorly controlled and forced, which can weaken the neoprene around the zip. Our workshop, specialised in the repair of neoprene wetsuits, takes care of this kind of manoeuvre on wetsuits of all brands.
Broken link in the zip
A zip consists of links aligned on two sides, each of which is dependent on links on the other side of the zip. If your lock jams when you pull the slider in one direction or the other, it is likely that a link is broken or torn off.
Checking whether a link is broken is more or less complex. This can be seen when a link is particularly detached/advanced from the rest of its fellows. Or when the seams that hold it together form little threads that stick out.
Unfortunately, it is not possible to change just one part of the zip. A broken link will mean that a zip replacement is required. This is a service that we offer at 40€HT for all types of suits: diving, surfing, triathlon, etc.
Torn fastener that comes off the suit
As mentioned earlier, the zip is a particularly stressed area in the suit. As neoprene has difficulty withstanding heavy pressure, the neoprene can become damaged near the zip, causing tears in the zip seams.
So, if the zip is intact and still in good sliding condition, then it can be kept and re-sewn around it. To get a price for this repair, send us a request for a quote!
Obviously, metal zips do not stand up to salt water after a few years. Ideally, the closure should be maintained from time to time with a little WD40 if it is made of metal, for example.
It seems unlikely that you will be able to restart a zipper that has corroded in its links, so the best thing to do is to change it and start with a clean slate. A service that we offer at €40 excluding VAT.
Repair of a suit zip in pictures
Follow Véronique, our neoprene specialist, during a front zip repair! The process is the same for back closures.
Step 1: unzip the first side of the zip.
The zips are sewn into the neoprene when the suits are designed. In order to change the zip, the zipper must of course be unzipped. First, a cut is made on the wire, which can then be pulled until the wire comes out completely.
Once the sewing thread has been removed, the zip must be unstuck. The latter is glued in addition to being sewn.
Then do the same on the other side, to remove both parts of the zip.
Step 2: find a zip of the same size or slightly larger
The idea is to find a replacement for our old zip. We will therefore look for a model of the same size, or a slightly larger model. In the case of this example, the model is slightly larger.
Step 3: cut the new zip (if necessary)
You start by making a chalk line to trace the new length of the zip, using the old one as a reference.
After that, the excess “teeth”, also known as “links”, must be removed. A clamp is used in our case.
The end of the fastener is then cut off, which will not come off with the pliers.
Then we will burn the pieces of fabric that may be sticking out so that they do not come apart later.
A new zip end will be installed to make it functional again.
Step 4: add a snap (if needed)
In the case of this front zip suit, the snap had to be put back on, and this is done on the strobel sewing machine!
Step 5: Glue the new zip to the suit
A special neoprene glue is applied to the suit and then to the zip.
After letting it dry for a few seconds, the two parts are glued together.
Compress the glue with a roller
Then we do the same thing on the other side of the closure! We will skip this step so as not to be repetitive.
Step 6: adding tape to consolidate the repair
It should be noted that our specialised iron was out of order at the time of this repair. We fell back on a classic iron 🙂
A brand new front zip for our customer who will be able to return to the water as soon as he receives his suit! We deliver within 1 working day after repair, and our repairs are done between 24 and 48 hours after receipt in the workshop.
For more information contact us!