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Tidying up the Tec Gear August 4, 2012

Posted by Chris Sullivan in Equipment, Technical Diving.
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Using a dry suit as secondary buoyancy is all the rage  these days, so a single bladder BC is all that’s required. I see the point, but that precludes warm water technical diving in a wet suit. I like to feel the water when I’m in it, and I also move faster in a wet suit, so I’m sticking with my double bladder OMS BC. On the other hand it’s time for some changes, so I’m about to spend a bit of money to make things better. This is the plan.

  1. I’m ditching the oversize OMS “no-sag” pockets. They’re just too large. I could use them to carry weight, two lights, a spare mask, a pocket camera and Jon line, plus a bit more no doubt. The problem is the drag, the difficulty in reaching things, especially with gloves on, and that they would get in the way when attaching stage bottles to the D-Rings. I stopped using them a while back but before I do any serious technical dives I need some stuff to carry the spare parts.
  2. So the first things are cheap, a mask pocket and a Jon line pocket. I’ll see where to put them when I get them but the mask pocket will go on BC belt on the right hand side (I don’t wear a weight belt with a wet suit – no need), and the Jon line I hope I can mount near the tanks. It’s only used at the end of the dive so it can be out of the way most of the time.
  3. Next, it’s time to ditch the lights in pockets. For that, I already have one light that used 3 C cells and is tied to my shoulder strap with a clip and a bungee. The second light, I plan to invest in a wrist mounted self contained unit. I’ve see these up to 1200 lumens which is almost good enough to light up a stadium and no canister is required.
  4. Then, I will buy commercial (Halcyon, most likely) stage bottle rigging instead of the metal units and home made rigs I have now. I’m not convinced that I’ll ever be at risk of being trapped by rigging that can’t be cut with a knife, but having a non-removable ring around the neck of the tank means it has to be drained to be taken off, which has proven to be a pain. The commercial kits are maybe 10-20% better than the home made ones (at least as well as I can make them) in my opinion and I’m willing to pay for that extra 10-20%.
  5. Finally, in Florida last April my reel slipped off my belt, D-ring and all, and by the time I went back to look for it, it was gone. So I’m buying a Light Monkey 400′ reel. It will be a nice upgrade and I have high hopes it will operate more smoothly than the OMS reel it replaces (and much more smoothly that the one I borrowed to penetrate the Spiegel Grove).

More on this when it arrives.

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