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double hose regulators...what happened?

Discussion in 'Vintage Equipment Diving' started by diver_doug, Dec 3, 2009.

  1. diver_doug

    diver_doug Solo Diver

    # of Dives: 100 - 199
    Location: Rancho Cucamonga, CA
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    I always thought the double hose set-up was something specific to rebreathers, I never realized that standard scuba regs were made with a double hose set up in ye old early scuba days. Just curious as to why this style dissappeared? What were the down sides to this style, and what are the real/purported benefits of the separate 1st stage 2nd stage regs that are predominate now?
     
  2. captain

    captain Captain

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    The main advantage of the single hose is that it placed the exhalation valve and diaphragm closer to the mouthpiece which helps to some degree in reducing inhalation effort compared to the two hose at the expense of increased exhalation effort. That said, a two hose can be made to breath just as good as a single hose by careful tank and regulator placement.
     
  3. Nemrod

    Nemrod Solo Diver

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    Wow, seriously, not really huh?

    You never saw Sea Hunt? None of the Cousteau series? James Bond? :confused:

    Well, some of us still dive them. :eyebrow:

    The biggest reason that twin hose regs fell out of grace was that in the 70s most of the training agencies began promoting octopus regulators, buoyancy compensators and of course, styles just change. The twin hose regs have greater variation in breathing effort with water position and a different skill set for diving that did not fit into the PadI cookie cutter three day wonder scuba diver.

    Different strokes for different folks, but, there are plenty of double hose divers, many of us learned on them and never really quite lost our fondness for them. There is nothing like them for simple, free spirit diving.

    Get one, get it fixed up and join in with the fun.:crafty:

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    N
     
  4. herman

    herman Divemaster

    # of Dives: 500 - 999
    Location: Raleigh,North Carolina
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    Welcome to the board. That can be a long topic but let me see if I can give you a quick version. Originally, single hose regs were the cheap alternative to the more expensive and better quality double hose regs. Early single hose regs were a good bit less expensive than the double hose regs and most of the early ones breathed horribly, even by the standards of the day. As they became more popular they also improved in design to rival the performance of the DHs of the day. The single hose has one major advantage (other than cost) over a DH reg, the second stage diaphram is located at the divers mouth and not behind them. Because of this, the breathing resistance of a single hose does not change with diver position as opposed to the DH which will change breathing resistance as the diver changes position. A correctly functioning DH reg will breath harder as you go into a head down postion, easier in a head up position and it will likely freeflow if you roll over on your back. As add ons like SPGs, octos and LP inflators became the rage it made more sence for the manufactures to drop the more expensive DH regs for the more profitable SH regs. With a single hose reg, adding more ports for these dodads is rarely more complex than drilling another hole in the reg body as opposed to redesigning the more expensive DH into an even more expensive reg.

    Still, there are those of us who prefer the DH regs. I started on single hose regs and still dive them at times but ever since I started diving with an old DH that has been upgraded with modern internal parts and hoses it has become my reg of choice. Then there is the cool factor. No one ever walks up and ask about my Zeagle or single hose Aqualung reg but it's rare that I dive the old DH reg I don't get ask a lot of questions. If you get the oppertunity to dive a DH reg with someone who regularly dives them, give them a try, you may find you enjoy them.
     
    Joel <°)))>< likes this.
  5. Luis H

    Luis H Instructor, Scuba

    # of Dives: I'm a Fish!
    Location: Maine
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    By 1971 when I started working at the dive shop in PR, the double hose was already loosing popularity. It was probably several years before the octopus and the BC inflator stated to become popular.

    IMHO, it was in part the lack of a pressure gauge port in many of them and the perception that the hoses were delicate and required extra maintenance that make the double hose less popular.

    Also the original single hose with only a SPG just took a lot less space in your gear bag. At the time we used to leave the back pack attach to a tank and we didn&#8217;t have a BC, therefore the smaller single hose just seemed a lot more streamlined. Now that the single hose has all kinds of attachment they have lost a lot of the simplicity that they had in the early 70&#8217;s.

    The hoses in a double hose do need a bit more maintenance when cleaning them, but I think the perception was worse than the reality.

    In Puerto Rico and the rest of the Caribbean, the heat could deteriorate the rubber duckbill and hoses if they weren&#8217;t cared for.


    The truth is that even do I was working at the largest dive shop in Puerto Rico during this transition period, I am not totally sure that there was any one reason they lost there appeal. At the time most divers still referred to the DH as the top of the line regulators for professional use, but at the same time everyone was using a single hose.

    Actually, another very important reason might have been cost. Many less expensive single hose regulators were selling very well. The least expensive double hose cost as much or more than the most expensive, top of the line single hose.
     
  6. diver_doug

    diver_doug Solo Diver

    # of Dives: 100 - 199
    Location: Rancho Cucamonga, CA
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    wow...thanks for all the info. I was thinking that it would be a better system because you have wide-diameter hoses that would allow for more air flow and since none of the reg "guts" are in the mouthpiece it would be much lighter than a standard reg, but it sounds like there's a number of downsides I hadnt thought about. Someday I'd I to pick up a DH reg and give it a try
     
  7. Slonda828

    Slonda828 Divemaster

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    Vintage Double Hose is offering a warrantied and rebuilt doublehose explorer kit that allows you to try diving a restored vintage regulator. Why put it off any longer? You are not going to want to dive a single hose once you dive a double....
     
  8. herman

    herman Divemaster

    # of Dives: 500 - 999
    Location: Raleigh,North Carolina
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    There are also the upsides, no more bubbles in your face and because you have balanced hoses I find less jaw fatigue. I carry a camera a lot of the time and it seems to me that fish are not as afraid of the DH as they are of the single hose. It my be the shape, the bubbles are farther away or just my imagination but shots of shy fish do seem easier to get.
     
  9. Luis H

    Luis H Instructor, Scuba

    # of Dives: I'm a Fish!
    Location: Maine
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    There are some down sides and some perceived down sides that can be easily be dealt with just some different procedures or training. But, there are also plenty of advantages:
    Bubbles behind you back… this one alone is a huge advantage. Not just keeping the bubbles away from your vision and ears, but fish definitely are not as scared of the bubbles.

    All double hoses (except the Sportways which hardly anyone dives) are environmentally sealed, both the first and second stage, making them the ideal cold water and contaminated water regulator.

    Also a well maintained double hose can easily be considered more reliable regulator due to its simplicity.

    There are other advantages once I get into other details.


    And of course, a huge advantage is that they are just fun and cool to dive. Once you are used to them, they just seem natural.
     
    Joel <°)))>< likes this.
  10. Slonda828

    Slonda828 Divemaster

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    Location:
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    That is a good way of putting it Luis. Once you are used to it, a doublehose really does feel like a pair of fins or a good wetsuit. Single hose regs never feel like that to me as they continually remind me of their presence by hanging out of my mouth and blowing bubbles into my face.
     

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