Our technical guide in Bunaken, Markus (pictured in the middle), had a busy start to the month, guiding a mixed group of CCR and open circuit divers on what we consider to be Asia’s best wall dives.
He was joined by Christoph (left, on his Inspiration Vision) who has dived CCR literally for decades adn was keen to explore more of North Sulawesi diving and Leo (right), who started his tech diving career much more recently after completing TDI courses at Two Fish Tech last year.
One of the first things my instructors mentioned to me when I arrived at Two Fish Divers is that in the diving industry plans change all the time. Safe to say that’s been very true for my Divemaster course. It’s not just down to dive centre logistics either, it can be simple things like a sinus infection which mean you spend rather more time with your books. Now that I’ve been back in the water for a few days, let me tell you what’s been going on.
Twinset manifolds – not the sexiest item of technical diving equipment by far and also not the most talked-about, you would think. Well, last week proved to be a little different – with three technical divers joining us in Bunaken for guided dives, we discovered that all of us had different ideas about manifold settings. So, who’s right?
Have you tried Sidemount diving? As our guest Simon discovered this week, sidemount diving is not just for serious technical divers (although they love it, too). Benefits include more comfort in the water, better buoyancy control, improved streamlining, and additional safety thanks to having a redundant air supply and a completely separate regulator.
As we all of head off to amazing scuba diving adventures, we are burdened with the pesky airlines’ baggage fees; thinking, are we even going to get our gear to the dive site or should we just rent gear that could be old, ugly, and questionable condition? It seems that there has to be a trade off, paying the cost of the airline fees versus paying to rent gear. Now there is a solution to this with Aqua Lung’s Travel Gear.
Travel Gear from Aqualung – Aqualung have developed a range of light-weight dive gear where everything, including the fins, has been specifically designed to provide you with max comfort while easily fitting in a carry-on bag. Pack light, travel more, “Why rent when you can travel light?” Just check out these weights!
On Aqualungs website they even have a handy weight calculator so you can calculate the weight yourself!
The Travel Bag
The Aqualung Travel Bag is made from heavy-duty PVC-free 600D nylon and total weight is only 7.26lbs/3.29kg for lightweight travel. It meets most major airline size requirements for carry-on baggage, and was designed to accommodate the new Aqua Lung HotShot dive fins.
The Zuma BCD is an ultra-light, weight-integrated, back inflation BCD that has everything you need, yet lacks weight and bulk. Once you lift it, you’ll feel for yourself that a size ML/LG weighs less than 2 kg (4.4 lbs), with the airway and weight pockets included!
Whats even more amazing is that it packs into a really small space!
Sport Diver Magazine’s Editor’s Pick, 2008 Gear Guide. Aqua Lung considers the Mikron Regulator to be the smallest and lightest weight regulator on the market today, weighing in at just 26 oz. (din) and 31 oz. (yoke). Even more amazing is that performance is not sacrificed by the extreme compactness of the regulator, and its balanced first and second stages produce exceptional breathing performance.
AirSource 3 Octopus
Sport Diver Magazine’s Editor’s Pick, 2008 Gear Guide. The Airsource 3 combines a high-performance second stage with a power inflator. By eliminating the need for a traditional octopus, the diver can streamline his entire system. In addition, unlike a traditional octopus that can drag in the sand or damage coral, you’ll take comfort knowing that the Airsource 3 is right in front of you ready to deliver life saving air in a moment’s notice.
The amazing Hotshot Fin has been engineered with the traveling diver in mind. It offers unsurpassed comfort, compactness for carry-on travel and power for a fully outfitted scuba diver. The foot pocket is designed to be worn with bare feet, and neoprene socks or thin-soled boots may be used for thermal protection. Its also very compact and light – it measures only 20.9in/53cm and so fits in carry-on luggage, and only weighs only 3.28 lbs / 1.5 kg.
Sport Diver Magazine’s Editor’s Pick, 2008 Gear Guide. The Micromask is a revolution in mask design. Never before have lenses been so close to the eyes. This not only results in an amazingly wide peripheral view but an extremely low internal volume, making it very easy to clear.
If you like the idea of having a snorkel that rolls-up then try the Nautilus Snorkel. It can be carried in a BC pocket or hung from a D-ring, and can be deployed in a snap, making it the most travel-friendly snorkel ever!
If you want a more traditional snorkel, the Impulse3 Snorkel consistently has been the best selling snorkel in the world. Available in a FLEX version that allows the patented COMFO-BITE mouthpiece to drop out of the way while switching from snorkel to SCUBA.
Adventure should take you anywhere, any way you want to get there and the Suunto D4i dive computer is a great choice. The new DM4 software allows easy synching with Movescount.com, where you can share your dive profiles, images, and experiences online. This makes the D4i a great choice for those who love socializing as much as diving. There is also the option of a wireless readout of your tank pressure and air time so you do not need those gauges anymore – another weightsaving idea!