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    Weighting for Neutral Buoyancy

    I've read through this entire thread and have seen the usual replies about calculating buoyancy and weighting requirements, and many of those are absolutely correct. But the answer to your specific question is, the best way to get near-perfectly weighted is to do a weight check at the end of a...
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    Looking for a dive shop offering 4 dives a day

    I'm sure one could do 10 dives on air per day if the dives were short enough and shallow enough. With or without an expensive dive computer.
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    Looking for a dive shop offering 4 dives a day

    Cozumel dives tend to be fairly deep. I never use nitrox in Cozumel, but if I were diving 4 dives/day for several days in a row I definitely would use it. You'll be pretty limited on those 3rd and 4th dives otherwise, unless the dives are unusually shallow. I'm not sure how you feel about...
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    PDC Covid test recommendations?

    The last two times I've done it were arranged by the place I was staying; they made the call, someone showed up at the hotel and administered the test, and sent the results to my phone a few hours later. I would ask the people you are training with, they'll probably be able to take care of it...
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    A dilemma

    I have an air1 for parts you can have if you'd like, and maybe some extra parts. If open ocean diver ends up not wanting that MK5 I'll take it, but only if he passes on it.
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    Why would one increase cracking pressure to spec on a primary second stage?

    There's nothing at all wrong with setting cracking effort using a bucket of water in the manner that you describe. Although I'm not sure it solves the issue of 'how low can you set the cracking pressure before it free flows in use' That really is best done by experimentation and experience...
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    Light Monkey 32W VF or 20W fixed

    If you have a 2 pin canister and a 3 pin head, you will have to send it back (probably the canister) and I think they can put a 3 pin bulkhead in it. But out of curiosity, if that's the case, how did you fire up the light in a tupperware container?
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    Favorite Handheld Light Under ~$600

    I have the big blue 4800. It's pretty damn bright. It's not quite as bright as my LM 20W canister light was (rated by LM at 4800 lumens) but it's close, and it is a more focused beam. I bought an extra battery for a 2nd dive. Overall I like it so far, and with the 2nd battery it was $600. I...
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    I think awap made a little tool that basically grabbed the poppet body by two of the air inlet holes, allowing you to pull the cap off.
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    That little black o-ring in your photo is a tricky one to get installed correctly; it is the seat for the pilot valve. The originals were very soft. (Neoprene, maybe) I found some 40 or 50 duro silicone ones that worked fairly well and sent a handful to someone, maybe rsingler. The main valve...
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    Gas Management With Sidemount

    I'm not sure I understand your reply, are you saying that you would have trouble reg switching in a restriction? That's a real problem, unless of course you're talking about a major, no-mount restriction in which case you'd probably be a very advanced SM diver with little interest in discussing...
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    What Dive Gear & Accessories Have You REMOVED from Your Kit, or replaced with something different?

    I learned early on to be pretty judicious with my purchases and still have my very first regulator (MK2) and mask and even fins, although I rarely use them. I also like full foot fins for warm water boat diving. Probably the only big thing I've bought and then ditched was a LED canister light...
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    Lessons learned?

    36" is really long for the left tank in sidemount, most people I know use around 24". I wouldn't think of the two regs as primary and secondary, you're switching back and forth so think of them as either right/left or long hose/short hose. I like slightly longer SPG hoses; I use 9" instead of...
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    Suggestion for a BP/W setup that can carry me for the future

    You can definitely use the same plate switching from single tank to double tanks. Swapping out a wing and threading cambands is a very easy task that any technical (or advanced) diver should have no problem with. But you might eventually want both a steel and AL plate (with harness on each)...
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    Cave Training - No Nearby Caves

    First of all, nobody is "holding up cave diving as some sort of exalted magical thing" but that is a nice bit of creative writing.:D Second of all, you did see where I plainly said "That's just an opinion", right? Ok, then, it's my opinion, not stated as a fact, and it's based on my feelings...
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    Roberta's Scuba Shack: anyone for July or August?

    I've probably been to Village Tankah 20 times, I've lost count. I really like it there, and since I like to walk, I usually walk into town for late lunch or early dinner. It's about a 45 minute trip each way if you keep a decent pace. I am not a fan of Ernesto's, and I think Casa Del Mar is...
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    Cave Training - No Nearby Caves

    As I mentioned in my earlier post, I can usually afford 3 trips to Mexico/year where I cave dive. (Hoping to come to FL one of these years, it's a long drive but doable) For me, that's enough to maintain my skills, and I agree that some skills can be practiced anywhere, even a pool. But I...
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    Cave Training - No Nearby Caves

    I think you're a cave instructor, and presumably when you took a year off it was after several years of regular cave diving, maybe even teaching. I'm sure you'll correct me if I'm wrong. But this thread was started by someone with no cave experience, seeking advice about learning to cave dive...
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    What is the most bulletproof 1st stage of all time?

    Thanks, that makes sense to me. The one I had problems with was the genesis 1st stage with the schrader type valve. However, in both cases, the reg might compensate adequately on that dive, but it's likely to damage the reg as a result, because the salt water (as you pointed out) is going to...
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    Light Monkey 32W VF or 20W fixed

    I've never seen LM have a sale like that, so maybe it would be a good time to try one. They do have decent resale value, I got most of my money back when I sold mine. If you spent $1200 on the 32W vf, and didn't like it after a trip or two, you could probably sell it for $1000 or maybe even a...
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