Playing With the Gear – It’s Pool Time

IT’S POOL TIME – Playing with Scuba Gear

There is always a discussion on how many dives we did and what the details were. While this is good, we need to ask how we got there. Let’s go play with our Scuba Gear to have fun and decrease our dive stress when we hit the open water.

One way to get there is to know your gear. Knowing how your gear fits and how it reacts will help you keep your stress levels down and be able to “Stop – Think – Then Act” when an emergency or change to the dive plan occurs.

My primary purpose for getting in the pool was because I was changing the method of how my Waterproof D7X Cordura drysuit Ultima dry gloves were sealed, and I wanted to see how they would react (not leak). Well, they worked as expected. Now for the real test on an ice dive.

When I did this test, I used the pool session that the PASC has. Besides my drysuit and dry gloves, I wore my OTS Guardian mask, my dedicated Sherwood Blizzard regulator set for the mask, and my non-PSD OMS Comfort III BCD. This tryout was good for exercising the equipment for fit, feel, and problem resolution.

I noticed that my low-pressure inflator hose for the dedicated regulator set was about six inches too long for the OMS Comfort III BCD I used. This caused it to rub against the back of my head. The hose was meant for my OMS PSD BCD. Therefore, note to self – do not use the Sherwood Blizzard regulator set with the OMS comfort III BCD.

While exercising the equipment, I also noticed that I leaked to the Guardian mask Quick Disconnect (QD) male connector. This would have caused some grief if it occurred during a dive.

Of course, I had to play with my GoPro Hero 8, so all is on video. The long BCD hose leaks the primary regulator QD hose fitting and dry glove seals.

The message is to take advantage of pool time to get to know your gear. This is a great controlled environment to safely and quickly make fixes and adjustments. Know where and how your equipment sits, feels, sits, and reacts.

Lessons learned.

  • If you have specific gear for specific dives, keep it together.
  • Routine maintenance and equipment checks are a must
  • Exercising your gear in the pool is a great way to keep your “Muscle Memory” of your equipment.
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