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FLOAT TUBE FISHING FORUM » Float Tubes, Pontoons and Related Equipment Discussions » Float Tube, Pontoon, and Equipment Related Discussions » Leaky waders

Leaky waders

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1 Leaky waders on Sun Jun 23, 2013 11:07 am

ustolemymarbles

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Does anyone know how to locate a leak on your waders? I have hodgman stocking foot waders that have a leak in/around the right foot that I want to repair and patch up, but I cant seem to find it.

I know if you're trying to locate a leak on your bladder, you use the soapy water trick, but not sure if that applies to waders as well.

Any advice???

2 Re: Leaky waders on Sun Jun 23, 2013 11:29 am

Tim Murphy

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Dear ustolemymarbles,

Here are a couple of ways to try to find a leak that have worked for me. 

I apologize if the way I describe them sounds like I am making you seem dumb because that isn't my intention.  Holes work in two directions and what comes in can just as easily go out so you have to keep that in mind when looking for leaks, especially if they are in the fabric section of your waders.

This one works if the hole is somewhat larger.  Take the waders and a flashlight into a dark room and stick the flashlight down the leg of the waders and look for where the light comes out.

You can also try filling your bathtub with water and taking the leaking leg of the waders after it is fluffed full of air and scrunching it closed.  Then shove it down in the water and look for bubbles.

One other way is to put water into the leaking leg and watch for where it comes out.

If you had your waders for a few years and you have worn them a lot it is very possible that you may have a compression leak in the neoprene foot of the waders.  If that is the case and you find bubbles or water escaping from the foot section about all you can do is slather on some GOOP or Aquaseal and pray for the best.  Once the neoprene feet get mashed enough they will never stop leaking.

Hope this helps!

Regards,

Tim Murphy Very Happy

3 Re: Leaky waders on Sun Jun 23, 2013 5:25 pm

TheAsianGuy

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Time, great info. However, try not to be so formal Red Smile We're all float tube, fish porn, and adrenaline junkies.

4 Re: Leaky waders on Sun Jun 23, 2013 5:42 pm

Tim Murphy

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Dear Asian Guy,

I'm sorry, but I'm old school and write answers like I am writing a letter.  Old habits die hard bragh.

I know I'm an old fart so I'll try to behave and act like a cool kid, but I'll make no promises other than to give good practical advice when and where I can.

Us old people still know stuff!

Regards,

Tim Murphy :-)

5 Re: Leaky waders on Sun Jun 23, 2013 6:07 pm

TheAsianGuy

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None at all Tim. My coworker next to me is the same way, 57 years of age, Toastmaster, and write the exact same method via emails.

6 Re: Leaky waders on Sun Jun 23, 2013 11:28 pm

bodfish


Junior
Junior
hey guys,
Ok,here's an issue that has made me absolutely nuts for years!
Alright!,... if you are hell bent to repair your own waders here are a few things I have learned.

First of all, the the majority of leaks (at least the ones we care about ) occur below the waist. So, for the most part we need not look far above that. The primary areas of concern are leaks at high flex zones, (knees, crotch, and heels), high friction and abrasion zones, (knees again, buttocks, and feet). 

Second, especially with the "breathable fabrics" that virtually all waders are made of now, it is very hard to locate all but the most obvious puncture wounds. 

The positive pressure test, (filling the waders with water or air) is a cumbersome and daunting technique. Good for fairly obvious, punctures, compression leaks (like the heel of the foot) and seam failures.

NOTE: Compression and/or abrasion leaks (depending on their size ) are very difficult if not impossible to repair.

The light test, I have had some some good  success with, but it too, is cumbersome and daunting. (I use a 3' fluorescent high output green tube that I can insert into the wader. I get them from my work.).

I have heard of a technique that involves hanging the waders inside out, and dusting them with talcum powder, and them filling them with water, and like the old "fat chick joke" you are looking for the wet spots.  Hee Hee!!

Lastly and probably bestly, try spraying the waders with rubbing alcohol and watching for the dark areas which indicate the leak. (something to do with the evaporative characteristics of alcohol) This works best in my experience.

    bodfish

PS. Truth be told, I have not had to worry about this problem for many years because I now buy only SIMMS. The best waders in the world, with the best guarantee. I know,... they are expensive, but considering they are one of the most important pieces of my tooning kit,...THEY ARE ABSOLUTELY WORTH IT!!!!

7 Re: Leaky waders on Mon Jun 24, 2013 9:48 am

ustolemymarbles

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Thanks for the replies, guys. I know that the leak is in/around the right foot area..

I tried the light trick, didnt seem to work. I then turned my waders inside out and poured some water in to the right leg and I believe I found the leak, but I will try the rubbing alcohol trick just to make sure

8 Re: Leaky waders on Mon Jun 24, 2013 3:33 pm

Gatorfan

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Can't you just fill that foot with a water/dish soap mixture?  I would imagine that you would still get bubbles at the leak.  Not sure, but that's what I would do.

9 Re: Leaky waders on Tue Jun 25, 2013 11:42 pm

bodfish


Junior
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Hey Guys,
If the leak is in the neoprene portion of the wader (most likely a compression or abrasion leak) you may not be able to repair it by the conventional means of applying glue. Compression/Abrasion leaks are notoriously hard to fix. (punctures not as hard) Check your manufacturer to see if they replace stocking feet, (Simms offers this service for a nominal fee for their waders) otherwise you may be into a new pair. 

bodfish

10 Re: Leaky waders on Tue Jun 25, 2013 11:58 pm

bodfish


Junior
Junior
Oh, By the way,...
Spoke to an engineer today regarding leak detection and I mentioned our problem with finding leaks in our waders. He gave me a very interesting technique that he uses to find leaks in soft bladders. He uses the typical positive pressure test, (in this case filling the bladder with a fluid and observing the outside for leaks) but, he adds TONIC WATER to the fluid. Apparently Tonic Water has a natural organic component that fluoresces when exposed to Black Light! He suggested that we hang our waders, inside out and fill them with water and Canada Dry Tonic Water and then search for the leak with a black light! I am going to test this as soon as I have some time. I will let you'all know how it goes!

         bodfish

11 Re: Leaky waders on Wed Jun 26, 2013 7:47 am

ustolemymarbles

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[You must be registered and logged in to see this link.] wrote:Oh, By the way,...
Spoke to an engineer today regarding leak detection and I mentioned our problem with finding leaks in our waders. He gave me a very interesting technique that he uses to find leaks in soft bladders. He uses the typical positive pressure test, (in this case filling the bladder with a fluid and observing the outside for leaks) but, he adds TONIC WATER to the fluid. Apparently Tonic Water has a natural organic component that fluoresces when exposed to Black Light! He suggested that we hang our waders, inside out and fill them with water and Canada Dry Tonic Water and then search for the leak with a black light! I am going to test this as soon as I have some time. I will let you'all know how it goes!

         bodfish

Yeah, I turned my waders inside out and filled the right leg with water and just felt for the leak. Lo and behold, I found out what a compression leak was...

I bought these pair of hodgman waders not too long ago (probably a month or two) so I was surprised when they started leaking, but I guess the compression leak came from the top of my stocking foot...specifically the big toe area. Figured that I'd start wearing socks in my waders to keep them from getting any worse. Plus I slathered both the inside and outside of the supposed leak..hopefully it fixes it. But if it doesnt, buying a black light doesnt sound all too bad

12 Re: Leaky waders on Sun Jun 30, 2013 5:54 pm

dayhut

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I dont know how well this works, Im just passing it on.
Ive heard that once you FIND the leak, you can patch it with bass lures.

Thats right, bass lures.... soft plastic worms in this case.

You heat the soft plastic bait with the flame from a candle until it melts and comes just short of catching fire. Once hot and liquid-y, you shove the melted goo into the leak/hole that is casuing you all your worries. Do this a few times inside and out and it is supposed to seal the trouble spot.

Again, never tried it. Just something I recall hearing about. Red Smile 

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