The other day we talked about cycling wetsuits to give new life to old wetsuits. I briefly mentioned throwing out those super-old wetsuits when they get replaced by old wetsuits.
I was thinking about it, and maybe you don't have to throw them out after all. Here are three ideas to consider before throwing it away:
- "Recycle it." Before throwing it away, consider donating it for recycling. This can be something like Rip Curl's [Project Resurrection], where old neoprene is recycled, or something like A Warm Current (website currently down), who take old gear for kids.
- Use it for patches. While a few key areas may be worn out or torn, much of the old wetsuit probably has usable neoprene. Keep the suit around and cut it up for use as a patch when necessary. We'll cover patching wetsuits in a future article.
- Make something out of it. A lot of things are made out of neoprene. For the artistically inclined, cut up the old wetsuit and make yourself something like a cellphone, iPod, or even a laptop case. Get creative!
I think at least one of these ideas should appeal to everyone. There's no point dumping neoprene in a landfill, especially when it could have new life in several different ways.