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SCUBA-L  August 2001, Week 1

SCUBA-L August 2001, Week 1

Subject:

Re: Otter drysuits - first impressions

From:

TonyP <[log in to unmask]>

Reply-To:

Scuba diving discussion list <[log in to unmask]>

Date:

Thu, 2 Aug 2001 09:23:33 -0400

Content-Type:

text/plain

Parts/Attachments:

Parts/Attachments

text/plain (130 lines)

Simon L Hartley wrote:

> Tony,
>
> Not intending to be rude but I sometimes feel I'm speaking a different
> language when I discuss equipment choices with other divers.  IMO the dive
> industry is so profit orientated that everyones perception of what is
> necessary and not necessary is distorted.  Take the recent hard sell of
> rebreathers to recreational divers for an example.

The "hard sell" is a fact in the dive industry. And I do remember the "hard sell"
from the dive shop I used to frequent to get a rebreather (Draeger). They had free
tryouts in a pool, etc.. But the cost... well, let's just say I wasn't interested.
Not even now.

> At 05:34 1/08/2001 -0400, you wrote:
> >I too have read all the stuff about ankle weights and the reasons of not
> using
> >them. But if they help someone achieve trim easily (there are other ways.
> >Moving the tanks up or down, tank weights, etc.), why not. They are simple to
> >put on.
>
> I won't debate further on a topic I know little about.

I wasn't really debating. Sharing another viewpoint. Hey, if you can make it
without them, fine!

> FWIW I've never used "quick release" straps either, they weren't around
> when I started diving and I've never seen the point.  I can get my fins on
> and off faster with spring straps than anyone using the so called "quick
> release" straps.  Therefore "quick release" straps are unnecesary.

Great! I has QR's on my Blades. Guess I been using them so long that it is second
nature. I haven't seen many SS spring straps here where I dive. I would like to
check them out.

> My stainless spring straps are just the right size (there is no adjustments
> to make, they flick on and flick off in one easy movement, they are
> perminently attached to the fin so there is no way to come loose, they are
> in profile with the fin mounting so don't catch lines and you'd have to try
> exceedingly hard to break or wear out a stainless steel spring).

Beats worry about fin strap breaks. Especially in the water.

> The "quick release" straps have; clips that can break or jam up with sand,
> ratchets that can break or loosen off or jam with sand, dicky little
> attachments on the fins, big bulky attachments that can trap lines and they
> don't solve the problem of the rubber fin straps perishing or breaking.
> This becomes particularly critical on surf entries.  Numerous times I've
> seen folks get pummeled because sand got in there clips or they spent too
> much time mucking around fitting and adjusting them in the surf zone.
> Numerous times I've seen folks break a strap before a dive and have to miss
> the dive or scrounge around for a replacement.  I've seen a guy loose a fin
> and end up doing an uncontrolled ascent to the surface because he got
> inverted and couldn't dump air (OK this was a combination of problems but
> loosing the fin started it, he couldn't arrest his ascent either without
> the fin).  I've seen lots of others break a strap or loose fins in open
> water or in the surf.  There is a reason sales of fin straps outstrip sales
> of fins by ten to one  :-)

Ahh... surf entries. Not a problem for me here in the North East. Dive off of
boats. But do have to agree that the QR straps can and do break. And usually at
the wrong time. But that is what a spare is for. 10 seconds later, all is well.
And the cost is minimal. I don't know how much spring straps go for, but rubber
ones are dirt cheap.

> Sell the people something they'll need to replace or update rather than
> something that will last and last.

True. But sometimes the initial low cost is all that someone can afford in the
beginning.

> So why add another thing to fiddle with?  :-)

Putting on ankle weights takes no time at all. And for me, the help my trim. I am
not ready to switch fins, and if I do, they will be split fins. Not as negative as
Jetfins, so I need a little extra help.

> Maybe I'm anal but if I can get one tool to do a host of jobs, that's what
> I'll do.  At present my brain only has to cope with where my fins (which
> also double as mask box) and SCUBA unit are (OK hat, sunnies and wind
> jacket and occasionally weight belt too).  Working in a dive shop I have
> enough things to think about without worrying about my gear (also has to be
> very durable and low maintenance).

But tech diving, you have a lot more to worry about. Ever seen them gear up?
"check... double check... triple check.. check your buddy check..." in addition to
all the extra gear (slings, argon, hang bottles). Certainly, a far cry from my
days of single AL80 and bcd.

> >Nothing wrong with using your fins of choice. But the testing of fins is far
> >from dubious. And my rubber straps (I do carry a spare) haven't failed me
>
> Just about everything the dive industry does is dubious  :-)   Do you have
> any kids 8-12 years old (or younger) you'd like to train to dive?  How
> about doing a deep air course?  When money (or ego?) is a factor the truth
> is a very flexible concept.  How long did it take tobacco companies to
> admit their products were unsafe (some haven't)?  How about airlines and
> deep vein thrombosis (sp?)?  When ever somone has a vested interest (and
> usually when they don't) I treat advice or opinions with caution.

Well, not everything. But there is a lot of truth to what you say. It is money
driven. I talk to people that actually use the product. You can read the reviews
and get an overall idea of what the item is about. But someone that actually uses
it. Well, first hand info. I know someone personally that dove originally with
Quatro Planars and switched to split fins. He loves them.

> >With inspections of all my gear BEFORE a dive, I can head off most gear
> related
>
> Why not just eliminate the problem altogether.  I used to carry spare fin
> straps too, now I don't  :-)  FWIW I've had many rubber fin straps break,
> though I used to replace them well before there was a problem.

That is a minor problem I can live with. I have had only 1 strap break on my
Blades in 9 years.

> >You'll enjoy dry suit diving. Dove wet for my first six years here where the
> >temp ranges from low to mid 40's, to a blistering lower 60's. But won't do
>
> Definately keen to have a go.  Just justifying the expense is the problem
> (and making the right choices first time, unlike most of my other gear
> choices in the past).

Ahhhhh.... that is the problem. My choice was strictly financial. Bought the
cheapest in the neighborhood. Dive with those that have the expensive DUI CF200's
and they get just as damp/wet as I do. And, I did it at 1/4th the cost. So, I
could have a suit for every weekend of the month!
Once you go dry (at least in cold water), you won't go back to wet.

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