Aqualung regs...

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cjibber

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About 14 years ago, I bought my first set of Aqualung regs (Calypso or Titan, I think). They were the cheapest regs I could buy at the time and I have not had any problems with them in over 1,500 dives. The last time they were serviced, I was told that they were getting towards the end of their life and the person servicing them recommended that after another year, it would be advisable to replace them.

I am in the UK and it looks as if I can get another set of Calypso regs for £250 which I am quite happy with.... However, this time, I could afford to spend more if there is any real advantage to doing so. e.g. if I spent an extra £100, I could get the Aqualung Core Supreme regs. I realise that these are better in colder water but I do not plan on doing any cold water diving so would these actually be any better/reliable than the cheaper set?

Is there anything better around for similar prices?
 

lowwall

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What was the explanation for why they would need to be replaced? Wear parts are all replaced at service. There's only a few internal hard parts and they are also replaceable if needed.

Absent severe corrosion to the body of the first stage or a crack to the body of the second, this recommendation doesn't really make sense.
 

Zef

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First, establish what you have, Calypso or Titan....For the past handful of years the 2nd stages are the same except for the model name but the 1st stages are very different. The Calypso is an unbalanced piston first stage and the Titan is a balanced diaphragm. Both 1st stages are solid workhorse regulators and the 2nd stages work well despite not being anything to write to home about feature-wise.

I mostly dive Mares Abyss/MR22 but have 2 Calypso regs in my arsenal. The first was too good a deal to pass up, 1st stage/primary 2nd stage/backup 2nd stage/SPG/depth gauge for new from a shop for 145 euros. The second one I bought as 1st/2nd stage to use on a pony bottle and paid @ 120 euros for it. I then purchased a new Core Supreme 2nd stage (@ 80 euros) so that I could build the reg set as single tank setup for one of my kids when they are home from university.

The Calypso 1st stage is primarily marketed to clubs and resorts as part of their loaner/rental fleets as they are solid performing, low cost, have few parts, and are easy to maintain.

The Titan has always been always been considered a solid performing recreational 1st stage. A bunch of years ago it underwent a redesign which was mostly cosmetic, and it some time in the past few years it has been sort of relegated in the Aqualung lineup as it is, to my knowledge, no longer cold-water certified. The Core Supreme has replaced the Titan as entry level cold-water diaphragm 1st stage in Aqualung's lineup.

There is no reason to replace either as they are both supported by Aqualung and should be for the foreseeable future.

If you have a Calypso reg set, then there is nothing wrong with having it serviced but the cost to do so would be the majority of replacing it with a new one...so that is something to consider. To me it is a good candidate if you want to get started with self-service as there are not many parts. My recommendation and original plan was to use the Calypso set until it required servicing and then sell and reinvest in something else. Both my Calypsos have solid IP lockup and are not showing any indication of needing service...when they do, my current plan is to overhaul them myself and keep them in the quiver.

If you are considering replacing anyways, and are looking to stay with Aqualung, I would not hesitate to get a Core Supreme reg set if the price was good compared to similar reg sets across brands. Be aware that the Core Supreme is not much different than the regular Core and unless you plan on diving in waters below 10c or the price is the same as the regular Core then you save a little bit of cash by buying the regular Core.

The greatest benefit of Aqualung is that you would have little issue finding a service center if you need one, either in the US and abroad. Though, there are other regulators in Aqualung's lineup as well as other brand's that are worth considering if your budget allows.

I hope that helps.

-Z
 
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cjibber

cjibber

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End of life ? Based on what criteria ? Are they worn out to the point they cannot be serviced ?
I would clarify specifically what EOL is meant.

It seems strange, Aqualungs are normally very good from the parts availability standpoint. Is it that the shop is trying to sell you new regs ?

What was the explanation for why they would need to be replaced? Wear parts are all replaced at service. There's only a few internal hard parts and they are also replaceable if needed.

Absent severe corrosion to the body of the first stage or a crack to the body of the second, this recommendation doesn't really make sense.

I can't remember exactly but when I collected them from service, he did explain that they were not in great condition and he had had to think about whether or not they should be serviced again. He did show me photos of the insides of the second stages which did seem to have a lot of dirt in them. The first stage has been in water without the dust cap on at least one occasion in that time and they have done a lot of travelling.

Like I said, I can not remember the exact issue - it was before covid so a couple of years ago now - but it was a local dive shop that I trust (they have serviced the regs for the last 14 years) and I do not believe that the shop was just trying to get me to buy a new set.

As it is, a service costs £100 plus any additional pats that are not included in the service and a new set can be had for around £250. I am resigned to paying this but just wanted to know if it is worth paying any more.
 

Nemrod

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However, this time, I could afford to spend more if there is any real advantage to doing so. e.g. if I spent an extra £100, I could get the Aqualung Core Supreme regs. I realise that these are better in colder water but I do not plan on doing any cold water diving so would these actually be any better/reliable than the cheaper set?

Is there anything better around for similar prices?

Uh, no, there is not. The AL Core Supreme is a top performing regulator. It is light weight for travel and is rated Superior on the ANSTI machine. It can be serviced anywhere. Is it the darling of the DIR world, no. Is it a damn good regulator, YES! And I have one and I can afford what I want and the Core Supreme is what I wanted. It sits at a performance to price ratio point that is hard to beat considering it is a name brand product.

And yes, stepping up to the Core is a worthwhile step over the Titan.

The Core Supreme vs the standard Core, the Supreme has a heat exchanger on the second stage, both have metal inner barrels. The Supreme has an environmentally sealed first stage and is slightly detuned from the standard Core. I bumped the IP up on mine and that is the real difference. The Core Octopus is a Supreme version, note it has the snowflake and the heat exchanger.

James
 
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cjibber

cjibber

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First, establish what you have, Calypso or Titan....For the past handful of years the 2nd stages are the same except for the model name but the 1st stages are very different. The Calypso is an unbalanced piston first stage and the Titan is a balanced diaphragm. Both 1st stages are solid workhorse regulators and the 2nd stages work well despite not being anything to write to home about feature-wise.
-Z
It is the Titan that I have. I have had to replace the octopus and that does not have a name on it but my original second stage has Titan on it.
There is no reason to replace either as they are both supported by Aqualung and should be for the foreseeable future.

If you have a Calypso reg set, then there is nothing wrong with having it serviced but the cost to do so would be the majority of replacing it with a new one...so that is something to consider. To me it is a good candidate if you want to get started with self-service as there are not many parts. My recommendation and original plan was to use the Calypso set until it required servicing and then sell and reinvest in something else. Both my Calypsos have solid IP lockup and are not showing any indication of needing service...when they do, my current plan is to overhaul them myself and keep them in the quiver.

If you are considering replacing anyways, and are looking to stay with Aqualung, I would not hesitate to get a Core Supreme reg set if the price was good compared to similar reg sets across brands. Be aware that the Core Supreme is not much different than the regular Core and unless you plan on diving in waters below 10c or the price is the same as the regular Core then you save a little bit of cash by buying the regular Core.

The greatest benefit of Aqualung is that you would have little issue finding a service center if you need one, either in the US and abroad. Though, there are other regulators in Aqualung's lineup as well as other brand's that are worth considering if your budget allows.

I hope that helps.

-Z

My local shop charges £100 to service Aqualung but more for other brands but after what I was told last time, I would rather put the money towards a new set and am happy to stick with Aqualung
 

rsingler

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Biggest factor for me in pointing towards replacement is the non-removable volcano in the original Titan. Like the Conshelf, the regs are adored, but few shops can restore a nicked volcano. Far simpler, if you are looking to get 30 more years, is to have a diaphragm with a replaceable volcano.
 

elan

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It is the Titan that I have. I have had to replace the octopus and that does not have a name on it but my original second stage has Titan on it.


My local shop charges £100 to service Aqualung but more for other brands but after what I was told last time, I would rather put the money towards a new set and am happy to stick with Aqualung

If it's at the point where it's not much more to pay for a new go for a new Aqualung. Like James said it's not a DIR favorite but it does not look that you care :) Aqualungs are great... For a UK diving i would go for a version with the heatsink - Supreme.
 
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