C4 Carbon company has never been on the market to follow trends, but definitely to make them and to lead the way to innovation. This was true for carbon fiber fins and spearguns, and this is a reality today in the wetsuits sector, thanks to the revolutionary C4 Carbon Skin.
Materials and protections
C4 Carbon, with the Carbon Skin, brings in the wetsuits sector a revolution, as it happened in the past with the Sandwich and the TRD-Skin neoprenes, and this time it seems the new neoprene by the Italian company can really put together the best of the 3 most important characteristics of a wetsuit: softness and elasticity, thermal insulation in and out of the water, and resistance to wear and tear. The idea is to have a neoprene that is a smooth open-cell solution but has externally a TPU (Thermoplastic Polyurethane) reinforcement layer, which is also water-resistant and extremely elastic. The final result is the equivalent of having a smooth open-cell neoprene with external reinforcement.
There are no specific protections externally to the wetsuits, as it is the TPU layer to give and extra strength and resistance to tear and wear to the C4 Carbon Skin, as visible in the above video. Only the sternal area has a rubber printed layer made of single rounded triangular elements to generate an anti-slip solution, and at the same time avoid any additional rigidity to the neoprene thanks to the fact that the print is not a one-piece solution.
Finishings and cuts
The C4 Carbon Skin has definitely its huge quality in the revolutionary neoprene. A big “well done!” by the AP team to C4, of course waiting for a deep test in cold water that we will publish in some months time just before Mediterranean Winter. Also, the duration test of this neoprene will be key to confirm its exceptional qualities.
Finishings are very good, with folded neoprene on wrists, ankles and pants waist, while the face profile of the hood is a net cut neoprene, which is a simpler solution but can work well at the moment that the TPU reinforcement manages to give sufficient strength against tear. Also, the absence of the folded neoprene determines a softer face profile and so better comfort and no signs on the face after hours of spearfishing.
Neoprene parts are limited to reduce to the minimum weak points that are always present when parts are bonded together, while the softness of the neoprene should ensure a good adaptation of the wetsuit to the spearo’s body, something that seems to work well and is already quite visible in the photos.
The lower part of the jacket is completely open-cell internally, except for the frontal area where the two closing clips are present, which is internally lined, while the beavertail is lined on both sides for maximum resistance, but with a 3 mm thick neoprene.
The underarm area is one single strip of neoprene going from the side of the chest all the way along the elbow.
The upper part of the back of the jacket has a cut going halfway down to mid-height to adapt well to the spearo’s body.
The high waist pants measure 43 cm at the front and 46 cm at the rear (size 3 wetsuit).
Starting from the end of June the 5.5 mm jacket and 5.5 mm pants will be available at the C4 Carbon authorized shops, while starting from the end of September the 7.5 mm jacket and 6.5 mm pants will also be available. Jacket and pants are always purchasable separately.
Due to the very special and top-level product, the C4 Carbon Skin will be distributed only to a selected number of shops, the list of which will be communicated mid June. Also, the C4 Carbon Skin will only be available at physical shops, and will not be sold online. Some selected shops will have a website where they will show the C4 Carbon Skin, but without indicating the price and communicating that no shipment is possible, but only purchase and withdrawal at the shop.
The suggested retail price for the 5.5 mm jacket is 270 €, for the 5.5 mm pants it is 226.5 €, for the 7.5 mm jacket it is 310 € and for the 6.5 mm pants it is 242 €. So, finally, not a cheap wetsuit, but if the C4 Carbon Skin confirms its qualities the cost would be absolutely justified.
It is important to know that the size chart, which goes from 1 to 5, is as for the C4 Extreme Camo based on the French measures, so size 1 equals Italian size 2. Reference can be the size chart of the C4 Extreme Camu.
Indeed the Japan super elastic smooth open-cell neoprene with TPu cover is a revolution. On top of this, the special Easy Lock system to close the jacket is extremely interesting and comfortable. The carbon fiber external pattern is particularly nice and captivating.
Plus and minus
- Revolutionary neoprene with TPU cover puts together softness, strength and thermal insulation in and out of water
- Easy lock system for the beavertail is very effective
- Few pieces of neoprene improve general resistance
- Cost is high, but can be well justified if the expected performance of the revolutionary neoprene is confirmed
For the complete data chart of the C4 Carbon Skin click here.