Bubble Caps

evmoevmo San FranciscoAdmin
edited February 2013 in General Discussion
This discussion was created from comments split from: Marathon Swimming Rules Survey.

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  • IronMikeIronMike Bishkek, KyrgyzstanCharter Member
    That's a bubble cap? Is that normally disallowed? Are those actual bubbles that retain heat or smthg like that?
  • dc_in_sfdc_in_sf San FranciscoMember
    edited January 2013
    IronMike said:

    That's a bubble cap? Is that normally disallowed? Are those actual bubbles that retain heat or smthg like that?

    the bubble are just indentations in the surface of the cap (i.e. there are no enclosed air spaces in the cap itself). It does serve to potentially trap air between the head and the cap so some folk feel they are warmer than a regular silicone cap. They have been legal for English Channel crossings in the past as I understand it, but I have no personal experience in that regard.
    http://notdrowningswimming.com - open water adventures of a very ordinary swimmer
  • SharkoSharko Sonoma County, CAMember
    I wore a bubble cap on my ec swim and still use them because they cover the ears and stay on the head due to a rubber strap...I have seen a lot of swimmers caps pop off during long swims...not a good thing!!!
    "I never met a shark I didn't like"
  • Sharko said:

    I wore a bubble cap on my ec swim and still use them because they cover the ears and stay on the head due to a rubber strap...I have seen a lot of swimmers caps pop off during long swims...not a good thing!!!

    Question Sharko- what was the cap made of ?? I thought nearly all of the bubble caps were made of material which offered additional thermal protection -and i thought not allowed in the EC ??

  • SharkoSharko Sonoma County, CAMember
    It is just a latex cap with bubbles...not insulatiing material inside.....what women have been using in pools for years...the cap was disussed with the channel swimming authorities before hand....and to confirm...many others have used them over the years..
    "I never met a shark I didn't like"
  • Hi Sharko....Not questioning your swim validity for a single moment......Just the majority of the bubble caps on the market seem to promote they have the extra thermal element.
  • david_barradavid_barra Charter Member
    its not a bad look
    ...anything worth doing is worth overdoing.
  • NiekNiek Member
    edited January 2013

    its not a bad look

    A real bubble head. :)
    http://openwaterswimming.eu - Cold, wind, waves, sunburn, currents, jellyfish and flotsam! Hop in and join the fun!
  • SharkoSharko Sonoma County, CAMember
    It is important to have the look if you are doing a marathon swim and I think El Sharko does it pretty well....but seriously I am not quite sure why the bubble cap is not used more outside the South End????
    "I never met a shark I didn't like"
  • ChickenOSeaChickenOSea Charter Member
    I've got a bubble cap (no flowers) and I love it. The only problem is it starts out nice and snug but stretches out and flops around after a couple of hours. Maybe I need to get one that starts out very tight
  • SharkoSharko Sonoma County, CAMember
    They do stretch so size down is good...depends of the latex used by the company making them I have found so if you have a choice on sizes that is good...they seem to be fading out though as my source for yellow (club color) is gone!!!!
    "I never met a shark I didn't like"
  • ChickenOSeaChickenOSea Charter Member
    Thanks! When I looked online I could only get a purple color in the size I wanted. Ill have to get on and find an extra small one. I like how they cover the ears and don't squeeze the ears during a long swim
  • @dc_in_sf Some bubble caps do indeed have enclosed air bubbles rather than just indentations. These are also still Channel legal, though they are also rarely worn.
  • dc_in_sfdc_in_sf San FranciscoMember

    @dc_in_sf Some bubble caps do indeed have enclosed air bubbles rather than just indentations. These are also still Channel legal, though they are also rarely worn.

    Thanks, I did not know that.

    So is it the size or number of bubbles that determines whether they are legal or not? After all neoprene is just rubber with tiny bubbles :-)

    http://notdrowningswimming.com - open water adventures of a very ordinary swimmer
  • Neoprene material is forbidden.
    Only latex or silicon are allowed for caps.
    http://openwaterswimming.eu - Cold, wind, waves, sunburn, currents, jellyfish and flotsam! Hop in and join the fun!
  • ChickenOSeaChickenOSea Charter Member
    Mine has lots of little air bubbles, which is why I named it Bubbles. I'm also full of air bubbles.
  • dc_in_sfdc_in_sf San FranciscoMember
    Niek said:

    Neoprene material is forbidden.
    Only latex or silicon are allowed for caps.

    Apparently my attempts at humor should be forbidden as well...
    http://notdrowningswimming.com - open water adventures of a very ordinary swimmer
  • Sorry but I seemed to miss to see the humour. :((
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  • I wonder if they make those in reverse bubbles, or dimples. Used on golf balls to improve the trajectory of the ball. Maybe I could finally swim in a straight line. :D
  • ChickenOSeaChickenOSea Charter Member
    Jim_Pape said:

    I wonder if they make those in reverse bubbles, or dimples. Used on golf balls to improve the trajectory of the ball. Maybe I could finally swim in a straight line. :D

    Hahaha well the dimples on my backside haven't helped my trajectory :)
  • Speedo makes 100% silicone bubble caps-http://www.speedousa.com/product/index.jsp?productId=3385055&kwCatId=&kw=bubble+caps&origkw=bubble+caps&sr=1

    A side note: on behalf of a swimmer who was nervous to ask the question I asked CSA this past year if they allowed bubble caps and they had no idea what they were. Not knocking CSA but bringing it up in relation to the other discussion on rules and the survey. Things are changing quickly in this sport and it is difficult for the Federations to keep up with new technology/creations and swims are being done and recognized when no one has really decided if the new device/contraption is really legal.
  • Bubble caps were used by my mother in the Sixties so they are not new.

    I think the cap from the picture isn't allowed. ;)
    image
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  • SharkoSharko Sonoma County, CAMember
    edited February 2013
    I is interesting as the CSA was the organization which allowed and approved bubble cap use for Drew Downs and myself.....which we both used on our swims so there may be a "lost in translation" situation here...by the way...in my view the chin strap is helpful to hold the cap on in rough conditions....not seeing that on the speedo model too bad...I used the cap to cover my ears and to be visual on the swim...as far as giving any thermal it was not a factor as 60f is not considered to be a temperature factor for many of us that train at the SE.... in any event, in my view Bubble Caps perform much better than most caps and they stay in place for me...see above photo taken on Viking Princess before my EC start in 2004....
    "I never met a shark I didn't like"
  • evmoevmo San FranciscoAdmin
    edited February 2013
    So apparently CSA has never heard of bubble caps. What about the CS&PF? Here is the relevant snippet from their rules:
    Caps may not be made from neoprene or any other material which offers similar heat retention properties (as determined by the CS&PF Committee). Silicone or latex hats are permitted.
    So it remains unclear. And are bubble caps with chinstrap distinguished from those without?
  • bobswimsbobswims Charter Member
    edited February 2013
    I heard Paul Asmuth speak and he said he always used one.
  • SharkoSharko Sonoma County, CAMember
    My fellow Sharks et al,

    Sharko has just formed the Bubble Cap Channel Swimming Association....we can swim anywhere we want....we don't however allow no stinking latex or silicon pool caps....cause they don't work.....our caps have been a tradition for Channel swims since the 1930s...who else can say that!!!!.....fees for joining the BCCSA are reasonable...and with your membership you get two colorful caps and I will personally give a guided swim from "The Rock"......
    "I never met a shark I didn't like"
  • I don't know Sharko, I only know I asked the question and received an answer and then sent a photo of a Speedo bubble cap with specs showing it is 100% silicone and then told it was 'legal'. Perhaps a different person than the one you dealt with? I have never worn one but I hear that some swear they are warmer. Who knows, but if one thinks it is warmer it just might be because as we all know the mind is a powerful thing. Rock on BCCSA!
  • ChickenOSeaChickenOSea Charter Member
    edited February 2013
    Sharko said:

    My fellow Sharks et al,

    Sharko has just formed the Bubble Cap Channel Swimming Association....we can swim anywhere we want....we don't however allow no stinking latex or silicon pool caps....cause they don't work.....our caps have been a tradition for Channel swims since the 1930s...who else can say that!!!!.....fees for joining the BCCSA are reasonable...and with your membership you get two colorful caps and I will personally give a guided swim from "The Rock"......

    Not to be confused with the Michael Buble's Cry Me A River Swimming Association (MBCMARSA)

    image
  • SharkoSharko Sonoma County, CAMember
    edited February 2013
    This from Pete Windridge's Channel Swim Blog http://www.peteswims.com

    Posted on June 21, 2011 by Pete Windridge-France

    I spoke to Kevin Murphy about the bubble caps (I have a heck of a time with keeping swimming hats on my over-sized noggin) and he was fine about them, so I’ll get them ordered. I also asked him about a different type of cap that I found – the Aquasphere one
    At first Kevin said no to the Aqua Sphere one, but that’s because he thought it was a neoprene one. Then he had a closer look at the ingredients (82% nylon/polyamide and 18% elasthane (with polyurethane coating)) and was intrigued, as he said he’d never seen one of that type, and it might be OK. I’m ordering one to show him, as it looks really comfortable. If he doesn’t go for it, I’ll have the bubble cap as a fall back.
    Kevin said he didn’t get on with chin straps as they rubbed on him, so advised me to test them out and see for myself if they suit. Kevin said he actually got on better with thin ones, as he thought that the thicker CSPF actually “breathed” heat out and he believes them to be more porous.
    channel swim blog...

    We hosted Kevin for an Alcatraz and Golden Gate swim when he was our guest of honor a few years ago and I seem to recall a discussion about bubble caps which I was wearing at the time so I will e-mail him to confirm as he was in charge of the CS&PF last time...

    Sharko
    "I never met a shark I didn't like"
  • NiekNiek Member
    edited February 2013
    From the Channel_Swimmers Google group:
    Happy to report that the CS&PF Committee sought and obtained assurance from Speedo that they do not claim for their bubble cap that it aids a swimmer's "speed, buoyancy, heat retention or endurance". On that basis the Committee were able to resolve that it complies with CS&PF's rules and is an approved item.

    best
    Ian own
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  • SharkoSharko Sonoma County, CAMember
    edited February 2013
    I stirred it up a bit on the channel swimmers google groups site...but it looks like it got things moving...if you have access to the site take a look...Sharko is the bad guy now with some...My EC swimming friend Bonnie Schwartz had this to say which is cool?!?!
    Bonnie Schwartz Post reply

    10:14 AM (43 minutes ago)

    Maybe we should ban women (or men) with really long hair from swimming the Channel as that hair can provide extra insulation inside the cap.
    "I never met a shark I didn't like"
  • Kevin Murphy write on the Channel group:

    "Back in the old days (!!) we wore bubble caps because there wasn't much else apart from hats covered in little plastic flowers, much favoured by little old ladies doing breast-stroke.

    Bubble hats are nowhere near as tight fitting as latex or silicone hats so you get a lot more water underneath.

    Their use has been discussed by the CS&PF committee and it is our view that they do not retain heat or aid buoyancy.

    I'm not sure whether that will "put an end to hearsay" but they are allowed by the CS&PF.

    Now if you were to ask about wearing two hats or a hat made of neoprene - they're not allowed.

    Hope this helps.

    Regards

    Kevin Murphy
    (CS&PF Sec)"
  • SharkoSharko Sonoma County, CAMember


    Kevin....

    Thanks for the history and information....this does help!!!!...with all the new products being developed..I would imagine it can be difficult for you...I do like the idea of simple...but I like my bubble cap!!!

    El Sharko
    "I never met a shark I didn't like"
  • loneswimmerloneswimmer Admin
    edited February 2013
    For those of us on both Channel group and here, wasn't the reaction of a few people quite aggressively negative on this discussion after Sharko raised it there?

    Not the first time simple questions on the Channel group have elicited such hostile reactions. Forum members @suziedods and @KevinMurphy were the voice of reason, we must try to get them to visit here more often.
  • evmoevmo San FranciscoAdmin
    +1, but is this even a new development? The dinosaurs always seem to be berating the newbies.

    The only thing more tiresome than a tiresome discussion is people complaining about the tiresome discussion.
  • NiekNiek Member
    edited February 2013

    The only thing more tiresome than a tiresome discussion is people complaining about the tiresome discussion.

    They're complaining that these discussions are a sort of spam. Don't they realize that the complaints ARE the real spam.
    Spam as in: a useless message that only fills the in-box without contributing anything.
    http://openwaterswimming.eu - Cold, wind, waves, sunburn, currents, jellyfish and flotsam! Hop in and join the fun!
  • tortugatortuga Member
    Stupid newbie question--So if swim caps don't retain heat, why wear one? (caveat- I'm bald and caps slide off my head anyhow).
  • dc_in_sfdc_in_sf San FranciscoMember
    tortuga said:

    Stupid newbie question--So if swim caps don't retain heat, why wear one? (caveat- I'm bald and caps slide off my head anyhow).

    1. latex/silicone/bubble caps all retain heat to a degree, but not to the same extent as a neoprene hood.

    2. Visibility
    http://notdrowningswimming.com - open water adventures of a very ordinary swimmer
  • NiekNiek Member
    edited July 2
    @tortuga There's no obligation in the channel rules to wear a cap.
    - Caps keep the hair (oeps you're bold) together,
    - Caps are the best for sun protection,
    - In some races they're used to distinguished the swimmers/ the different waves/ different swim strokes by means of colour, number on the cap or both*.
    - It gives some protection when colliding with debris in the water

    * in the Netherlands we use numbered caps that are personal. For different gender, strokes and age groups we have different colours. The caps are yours till they wear out and then you need to purchase a new for €10. The issued caps are valid for at least 5 years.
    We have around 25 official federal events each season. http://noww.nl/agenda

    With those personal caps it's easier for the officials and the spectators to see who's who.
    And no numbers on the shoulders needed.
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  • NiekNiek Member
    edited July 2
    left on the photo the only exception on our Dutch rules. That man only wears cloth caps because he's allergic [so he says :) ] for silicone.image
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  • tortugatortuga Member
    I could just tatoo my number on my head
  • IronMikeIronMike Bishkek, KyrgyzstanCharter Member
    edited July 3
    @Niek, what if the cap slips off the swimmer's head and s/he doesn't know/cant' find it? Then is s/he disqualified?

    And what if a foreign swimmer comes to swim? Can he get a cap?
  • I've struggled to find a comfortable hat for a while, and have settled on the bubble cap. Its a bit looser, so it actually stays on better than latex/silicone ones which tend to squeeze themselves off. Some would say I'm "follically challenged" so maybe thats a consideration. They tend to stretch a bit as well, so if you have a size option, get a small one. The speedo one lasts the best. I've never used a chinstrap, even on the ones that came with one, so can't comment on that.

    The next best hat I found is the speedo serenity silicone one. Nice and thick with grippy grooves on the inside.

    All rubber hats definitely retain heat to a degree, whether thin latex, thick silicone or bubble cap. Looks like its just something that's accepted and we can "get away" with it.

    FYI, In an effort to adopt a minimalist approach to swimming, I did experiment last year and go hatless from September on. I was fine down to about 10C/50F deg. Anything below that was just hard work and I found it colder on the back of my head than the front.
  • NiekNiek Member
    edited July 3
    @IronMike
    what if the cap slips off the swimmer's head and s/he doesn't know/cant' find it? Then is s/he disqualified? No the swimmers gets warned by the officials and than must stop swimming (no forward motion!)and adjust the cap. Breaststroke swimmers don't get disqualified if the official has ordered them to adjust the cap -although they don't swim according bs rules at the time off adjusting. Finishing without cap and not adjusting the cap when warned is automatic disqualification.

    And what if a foreign swimmer comes to swim? Can he get a cap? Every organization has a few spare caps on lone. A cap can rupture minutes before the race when put on.
    http://openwaterswimming.eu - Cold, wind, waves, sunburn, currents, jellyfish and flotsam! Hop in and join the fun!
  • SharkoSharko Sonoma County, CAMember
    Bubble cap, bubble cap everbody bubble cap...why screw around with a cap that comes off your head during an important swim???...Sharko's humble opinion....what you say Evan and Shark Bait??!!??
    "I never met a shark I didn't like"
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