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What are thermal base layers and why are they so important when sailing?

Quality synthetic base layers are made of polyester, which is excellent for drying and light. Long-sleeved round-neck leggings provide the ultimate thermal base layer that can be worn all year round.

They are soft as the next contact with the skin, dry quickly, crease-resistant and easy to care for.

What is the main purpose of thermal base layers?

The main purpose of the outer layers (jacket, high trousers) is to stop water and contain warm air so that the middle layer can escape. The outer layer tries to stay warm, and although this is a practical side effect, it is not its core function. Never rely on the outer layer for heat, leaving room for a more appropriate layering.

Most sailors carry a heavy or medium base, followed by fleece. It’s a great idea to wear multiple layers and adapt when needed. Based on the above information, I will consider merino wool and synthetic blends as base layers for my purposes.

The actual function of the sailing thermal base layers is to keep the skin surface dry by removing moisture from the skin. This is called moisture transport and is essential to stay warm in cold conditions and stay cool on hot days by wearing a middle layer of breathable and waterproof outerwear. What is often overlooked is that wearing a cotton tea or jeans (old or washed) with a fresh or new base layer, day and night, improves performance and comfort. In summary, it can be said how important it is to wear base layers.

Base layers consist of moisture-carrying material – materials that cannot hold water. During the working cycle, sweat and water entering the clothing from the outside warm the body, and the volume of sweat / water entering the clothing becomes water vapor.

If the base layer is not able to hold water, the water vapours can move freely around the body due to the moisture gradient of the outer clothing layer. Intermediate and intermediate layers are also made of moisture-wicking fabrics – the water vapour that flows through the intermediate and middle layers condenses when it enters the outer layers of the garment and functions as in the environment, keeping the wearer warm and dry in the base layers. The middle layer forms a stable air pocket over the body so that the body is warm.

It is impossible to produce a base layer that performs excellently in both cold and warm conditions, as it requires different thicknesses and materials. However, high-quality base layers are suitable for a wide range of conditions.

Boaters and other watersport adventurers would be well advised to introduce a coating system for thermal insulation. Since water is 2.5 times more efficient than air to remove heat from the body, you need protective clothing to prevent excessive heat loss.

Neoprene is a rubber foam that contains thousands of tiny gas bubbles that slow heat transfer. Neoprene garments must sit close to the skin to minimise the input of cold water. For boaters who require torso mobility when paddling or rowing, they are limited to a neoprene thickness of 3-4mm. Hydroskin (r) (0.5-10-15mm) – The thickness of the neoprene skin is excellent as a cooler water layer, but other hydroskin parts are thicker than a wetsuit.

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