Planning Deep Dives Like a Tech Diver

Deep Divers

Among the first things beginning divers learn is that gas consumption increases at depth. For example, a cylinder that would last a diver 50 minutes at the surface may only last ten minutes at 40 m/130 ft. That’s not a lot of time when there is so much water over your head. Because of this significant increase in gas consumption, deep divers need to be able to determine, ahead od time, whether or not they will have suficient breathing gas. One way to do so is to employ many of the same dive planning techniques technical divers use, including determining SAC rates and projecting gas consumption on each segment of a multilevel deep dive.

Getting Started In Cavern and Cave Diving

Cave Divers

Each of us may have different goals when it comes to cavern and cave diving (not the least of which is just staying out of them altogether). Assuming you are somewhat interested in overhead environment diving, the question is really what do you want to do? Your answer will help determine which of the many available avenues is best for you. Just be aware that, if you decide you want to become a fully certified cave diver, you are looking at a fairly substantial commitment.

Understanding Scuba Cylinder Inspections


The major reason for having your cylinders visually inspected, once a year or more, is for your safety in handling and breathing from them, as well as those individuals who fill them. Complete and thorough cylinder system inspections are serious business, not just a quick peek in a tank! If you believe your last one was, you need to find a competent repair facility and have it done properly with a documented checklist from a certified inspector.

Wreck Diving 101

Wreck Diving

Whether you are a new or more experienced diver, the need to explore this new weight-less world can become overwhelming. Visiting the underwater world can be a sensory overload of things to see and explore. We first start out observing fish, plant life, invertebrates, rocks, reefs or corals. The next step is exploring structures and wrecks. Wreck diving occurs when anyone sees or bumps into man made objects underwater which are fragmented, dismantled, damaged, dilapidated, ruined or otherwise wrecked. My first formal “check out” dives, as they were called in back in the early 60’s, were in a quarry.

Dive Computers 101


I wish there had been advanced electronic dive computers when I started diving in the late 1950s. Having a simple computer that easily reads bottom time, depth, ascent rate and no-decompression time left would have allowed easier dive planning and reduced anxiety prior to and during our dives. Depth gauges were available and I solved the time problem by buying a small clear pressure proof Ikelite case to carry my watch in.

Rescue Diving: Are You Prepared?


Think back to your last dive, what could have gone wrong? If something did go wrong would you have known exactly what to do? When was the last time you practiced diving emergency drills - has it been since your open water class ten years ago? The point of the exercise is to get you to think about the unexpected, a diving emergency. Sooner or later with enough dives something will happen, it probably will be something minor but are you prepared? Consider getting some training as a Rescue Diver.

Hydrostatic Cylinder Testing 101


Although cylinders are made of non-shatterable metal, they still can tear apart with explosive force, fire off the valve, spin or take off at high speeds through walls, causing severe bodily harm, death and destruction. The hydrostatic test actually measures the elastic expansion of the metal and its ability to return to its original shape within 10 percent of the original volume. The water test is safe since it cannot compress or expand like air.

Safety Issues for Sport and Technical Diving: Training and Equipment

Tec Divers

This incident occurred nearly 13 years ago. I had just returned from the NSS-CDS Workshop and was helping a fellow cave instructor teach. The Memorial Day weekend and the Workshop meant that there were plenty of divers at the springs and sinks of North-Central Florida. We decided that Sunday night we would get away from the group for a fun dive and determine the degree of difficulty in diving Cow Spring on the upstream side with back-mounted doubles, rather than a sidemount configuration.

Challenges Face Handicapped Students and Their Instructors


If my students have a willingness to learn, I will do my best to educate and train them to become certified or guided divers regardless of age or disability. At some point one has to deal with the physical, mental, emotional and social problems related to handicapped students. It is my job to help those with special needs overcome their adversities, develop self confidence and maintain a positive attitude to enjoy zero gravity.

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