Waterproof Socks

Please be fair and thoughtful in your opinions. No rants please.
User avatar
Mick F
Spambuster
Posts: 50935
Joined: 7 Jan 2007, 11:24am
Location: Tamar Valley, Cornwall

Re: Waterproof Socks

Postby Mick F » 3 Sep 2009, 9:11am

Thanks Jack.

I am not alone:

Don't be fooled, these socks are simply not waterproof, not by any stretch of the imagination. I bought these on the strength of a recommendation from a guy in a bike shop, but he was he was telling fibs. Twenty minutes in heavy rain and my feet were drenched. They are a con.
Mick F. Cornwall

AndyB
Posts: 921
Joined: 21 Feb 2007, 12:24pm
Location: Lancashire

Re: Waterproof Socks

Postby AndyB » 3 Sep 2009, 9:32am

Well, I'm happy with mine. I've only ever used them with overtrousers - it's obvious that anything without a drysuit-style latex seal will let water in the top if you don't, and if it's warm enough for shorts, I don't mind wet feet. I've not done any particularly long wet rides, but they were fine for 25minutes this morning, just a slight (and I mean very slight) sweaty dampness inside. They're airing in my office drawer now, ready to keep my feet away from my wet shoes this afternoon.

User avatar
Mick F
Spambuster
Posts: 50935
Joined: 7 Jan 2007, 11:24am
Location: Tamar Valley, Cornwall

Re: Waterproof Socks

Postby Mick F » 3 Sep 2009, 10:40am

Just posted them back to SealSkinz.
I wrote a covering letter. Do you think I came over a bit strong?

Thur 3rd Sept 2009
HI-VIS SOCKS fao: Hayley Culham

Hi Hayley,
Here are my socks. They have been worn once and took over 18 hours to drip dry over the kitchen stove.
They are LARGE size.

Thinking about the problem, I believe there’s nothing actually wrong with the manufacture, but the problem is probably that the rain came in through the tops by capillary action. Once the socks filled up, there was nowhere for the water to go.

Had I been wearing normal socks, the water would have drained through my cycling shoes, and my feet would’ve actually been less wet. Instead, I was cycling with water slopping around inside my socks. A very unpleasant sensation!

I think you cannot produce waterproof socks that can be worn in the real world on a bicycle in the rain. Your socks are probably waterproof in a static environment, or with extra protection ie waterproof trousers. Your advert and description mentions nothing about extra protection, in fact entirely the opposite. Your picture shows a chap with bare legs standing in a mountain stream. In real life, the chap would get his legs wet and the water would work its way inside his socks just like it did with me yesterday.

I should really be sending these socks back to St John’s Street Cycles of Bridgwater and ask for a refund. That may be the simplest solution, but it isn’t ideal. I don’t immediately want my £20 back, I want some waterproof socks just as you advertise. If you can’t produce socks to keep the rain out, I will require a refund.

These socks were bought in time for my forthcoming cycle tour. I will be cycling from here in Cornwall to Manchester, then down via Bedford before returning home. I will be cycling nearly 750 miles, and bearing in mind the weather we seem to be having, I expect to get wet. Your socks seemed to be the answer to constantly wet feet. The trouble is, I leave on Wednesday 9th Sept, so I won’t be taking your socks with me unless you can sort the problem quite quickly.

I am very disappointed, especially as your adverts suggest that it’s the end of wet feet. It patently isn’t the end of wet feet for cyclists, in fact it makes the problem worse.

It would appear that your Hi-vis socks are not fit for purpose. Hopefully this is not the case, and there is a manufacturing defect.

Regards,
Mick.
Mick F. Cornwall

User avatar
Si
Moderator
Posts: 15183
Joined: 5 Jan 2007, 7:37pm

Re: Waterproof Socks

Postby Si » 3 Sep 2009, 10:51am

I have the thermal version.

Never had a problem with them waterproofing-wise. I use them with MTB race shoes, on and off road, and even in walking boots when out wandering the moors.

I too think that your problem, Mick, is probably water running down your leg - I've heard this reported many times. I always wear longs over my sealskinz and so don't get the problem of ingress from the top (unless I end up in an exceptionally deep puddle). Being thermal I only use them in the winter when longs are the order of the day.

If I'm putting a lot of effort in my feet can get a tad moist - I'd expect this from thermal waterproof socks - they are never going to be the ultimate in wicking.

Drying after washing seems to be the same as any other thick sock - certainly not 18 hours!

The only problem with mine is that they are quite thick so they make one of my pairs of cycling shoes too tight to be comfortable.

User avatar
Mick F
Spambuster
Posts: 50935
Joined: 7 Jan 2007, 11:24am
Location: Tamar Valley, Cornwall

Re: Waterproof Socks

Postby Mick F » 3 Sep 2009, 11:23am

Thanks Si.

The problem with drying them was the fact that water was inside and couldn't get out. The outside dried after a few hours, so I had to turn them inside out and go through drying them a second time! They were actually waterlogged!

The idea of longs over the top of the sock would obviously work, but that is not how they are sold. They are designed to be used so you can see the yellow band!

Here's another scan from their leaflet.

Can you see overtrousers being used?
Socks2_1.jpg
Mick F. Cornwall

boink
Posts: 574
Joined: 3 Aug 2007, 4:25pm
Location: Stone, Staffs

Re: Waterproof Socks

Postby boink » 5 Sep 2009, 9:20pm

Had the same experience with mine on Weds night on way back from work. Got drenched minus sealskinz on Tuesday night so fished them out of the drawer for more predicted rain next day. Felt great for 20 minutes then a bit squelchy and after 45, at home, had to empty the water out. Didn't have longs on, but was still expecting better for 20 + quid.

Bought mine last year and I'm sure they've performed better than this, but I'm positive it was just water trickling in from the top. As Mick correctly says, that yellow band surely indicates you're meant to be safe with shorts on.

thirdcrank
Posts: 30805
Joined: 9 Jan 2007, 2:44pm

Re: Waterproof Socks

Postby thirdcrank » 5 Sep 2009, 9:35pm

I'd have to say the publicity pics just seem silly to me. Rain is always likely to run down bare limbs and into socks or gloves, unless they have a pretty tight cuff - something that would have a tourniquet effect after few hours riding.

(On a similar note, I bought a PVC cover for my plaster cast so I could get in the bath (sort of.) To enable you to put it on one-handed, it has a rigid plastic hoop mounted around the top and that holds a rubbery diaphragm, intended to fit closely around the leg to keep the water out. Now, a plaster cast on a foot is quite big and long before I had got it through the hole in the diaphragm, the latter had started to come adrift. I managed to improvise a seal with a towel and I had to make do - I need baths rather than a debate over the Sale of Goods Act. :evil: )

User avatar
Mick F
Spambuster
Posts: 50935
Joined: 7 Jan 2007, 11:24am
Location: Tamar Valley, Cornwall

Re: Waterproof Socks

Postby Mick F » 6 Sep 2009, 7:42am

Oh you poor devil, TC!

I was desperate for a bath after my accident last year, the hot water was softening my dressings even though they were "waterproof", so I had to be quick!

Get well soon,
Mick.
Mick F. Cornwall

User avatar
EdinburghFixed
Posts: 2375
Joined: 24 Jul 2008, 7:03pm

Re: Waterproof Socks

Postby EdinburghFixed » 7 Sep 2009, 9:24am

Waterproof technology does exist... if I take a swim in the river in my kayaking kit I can step out on the bank, bone dry, and drive home as I am.

This being so, I wonder why nobody makes 'inverse drysuit' style socks (where the normal ankle seal prevents water running down the leg rather than up it). You can almost imagine rigging one up with spare seals...

Perhaps it would just be insanely hard to put on? :?

PS. on a recumbent, water doesn't run down your legs (and your feet are well away from wheel spray). It's a bit of a revelation :)

User avatar
Si
Moderator
Posts: 15183
Joined: 5 Jan 2007, 7:37pm

Re: Waterproof Socks

Postby Si » 7 Sep 2009, 10:01am

PS. on a recumbent, water doesn't run down your legs (and your feet are well away from wheel spray). It's a bit of a revelation


but do you not need sealskin knickers in bad weather?

User avatar
EdinburghFixed
Posts: 2375
Joined: 24 Jul 2008, 7:03pm

Re: Waterproof Socks

Postby EdinburghFixed » 7 Sep 2009, 10:54am

Interesting point! :P

Some people apparently suffer from water pooling on their stomachs, but I haven't found this (although generally I don't wear waterproof gear other than neoprene overshoes, so it's neither here nor there). If you wore waterproof trowsers you'd need to tuck them in to prevent stuff blowing up, I guess!

I did find over the weekend that my hitherto awesome windproof jersey is slightly less awesome on the lowracer. Because your arms are the other way around I have windproof panels on the sheltered side and wicking material on the 'business' side. :cry:

thirdcrank
Posts: 30805
Joined: 9 Jan 2007, 2:44pm

Re: Waterproof Socks

Postby thirdcrank » 7 Sep 2009, 12:33pm

I've been thinking about what might affect the breathability of the Sealskinz stuff - there's a lot of difference betwenn stnding in a bucket of water, and excercising in the rain. Firms such as Goretex go to a lot of trouble to treat the outer layer of laminates with waxy compunds which have the effect of forming surface water into droplets which are supposed to run off, rather than cover the surface of the garment with condensation-inducung cold water. It seems to me that the jersey fabric these things are made from must make condensation inside the garments inevitable if they are soaked with cold water and the wearer is doing prolonged exrecise such as cycling.

rualexander
Posts: 2474
Joined: 2 Jul 2007, 9:47pm
Contact:

Re: Waterproof Socks

Postby rualexander » 7 Sep 2009, 3:13pm

EdinburghFixed wrote:This being so, I wonder why nobody makes 'inverse drysuit' style socks (where the normal ankle seal prevents water running down the leg rather than up it). You can almost imagine rigging one up with spare seals...


My memory might be faulty here but I seem to remember Sealskinz did introduce a version of their socks with a tight cuff a couple of years ago, but it doesn't seem to be in their range just now.

User avatar
Mick F
Spambuster
Posts: 50935
Joined: 7 Jan 2007, 11:24am
Location: Tamar Valley, Cornwall

Re: Waterproof Socks

Postby Mick F » 7 Sep 2009, 4:21pm

Some sort of "sticky" neoprene cuff should do the trick, I would think. Might pull at the hairs a bit, I may have to start shaving my legs!
Mick F. Cornwall

rualexander
Posts: 2474
Joined: 2 Jul 2007, 9:47pm
Contact:

Re: Waterproof Socks

Postby rualexander » 7 Sep 2009, 5:50pm

I thought I remembered these :
http://www.bikemagic.com/news/article/mps/uan/1336
seem to be unavailable now in the UK though, but have found their American counterparts here :
http://www.kayakproshop.com/SZ_socks.html
and a fairly negative review of them here :
http://toddnowack.blogspot.com/2008/02/ ... ocker.html

But here's my idea, get an old mountain bike inner tube (needs to be a fat one), cut it into sections about 2 or 3 inches wide, pull over your feet and position them just above the cuff of your sealskinz socks, maybe put a small amount of grease/vaseline on the inner surface, 'et voila!' a waterproof seal to prevent water ingress!