Full Face Masks

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rjack321

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I have asked him the same questions. I do not see to much of and issues with your list, gas switches would be on him.

So you were not taught to verify your buddy's switches?
 

rjack321

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SlugMug

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If you do go for a FFM, I recommend you get the appropriate training and practice.

For example, if a FFM wearer is OOA, to receive a donated octo, they would need to ditch their FFM. That means you need to be able to receive the octo with no mask on, and then don a backup mask. Ideally, that skill and others are practiced, so you can do them easily while under stress or narc'd.
 

O-ring

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I instabuddied with a couple that had FFMs earlier this year. Granted it wasn't a tech dive, but the experience was enlightening. They had underwater comms on their FFMs which was kind of cool and even had a spare if I wanted to use it (they explained I would be limited to listening since I don't dive an FFM). I told them it wasn't my thing, but it was neat listening to all the technical details of how the system worked. During the predive discussion I also noticed neither of them had an octo. They each carried a spare air and the plan was to bail to that and make a free ascent if things went sideways. I asked if they had backup masks so they could at least see during the free ascent, but they didn't carry those either. The plan was to rip off the FFM, grab the spare air and then ascend. Since I knew I was diving solo at that point anyway I just sort of let them do their thing while I did mine. That actually worked out great since they were diving air and had about double the air consumption I did so I was able to relax and just enjoy my dive.
 

napDiver

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spare air and the plan was to bail to that and make a free ascent if things went sideways.

I asked if they had backup masks so they could at least see during the free ascent, but they didn't carry those either.

After messing around a lot with FFM. I probably have over 100 FFM dives. I can live without a backup mask pretty easily, if a failure meant going up to the surface. But an uncontrolled bail to the surface with a spare air if anything happened is completely dumb...
 

SlugMug

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Another vote for "Spare air is dumb." I say that, as someone who owns a spare-air.

The TLDR for anyone who isn't informed on the subject yet, spare-airs are far too small to be of much use. To bail out at 100 to 130ft, and do a safety stop, you'll need approximately a 19cu pony bottle. To do the same, and skip or shorten your safety-stop, you'll need at least 13cu. 6cu might (or might not) barely last an emergency ascent. 3cu or 1.7cu, and you might as well not carry it.

You can get a pony-bottle and cheap regulators for about the same price as a spare-air. You don't need anything too fancy for the regulators, just something that works. Plus, if you decided to do a brief shore-dive or something along those lines, the pony-bottle could actually work, whereas the spare air you'll find yourself running out in a shockingly short amount of time. Spare-air's don't really have a pressure gauge (technically, there's kinda one, but it's not readable).
 

O-ring

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It was kind of an unusual config for sure. Since they are a husband and wife buddy team that dives together all the time the next logical question was why not octos? Even in an emergency (sharing gas so doubling the massive hoovery) you would still think there would be more gas in one of their cylinders than a spare air, but I got the impression there was a lot of spearfishing, same ocean buddy diving and not being in the general vicinity of each other underwater that led to the spare air decision. The interesting thing was that in watching them underwater I kind of came to the conclusion that the underwater comms were actually part of the problem. That obviated their need to stay that close to each other since they could just press to talk and say "I'm over by the big rock" or whatever.
 

napDiver

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I agree, that worries me even more due to the chance of getting stuck solo and needing help or time to problem solve.

My gf is my dive buddy 80+% time. We use ffms usually due greater comfort in the cold water. We have comms but never use it now. Hand signals seem to be the best configuration for us as a team pair. Plus i'd rather not waste my air since I use way more then she does.
 

SlugMug

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It was kind of an unusual config for sure. Since they are a husband and wife buddy team that dives together all the time the next logical question was why not octos? Even in an emergency (sharing gas so doubling the massive hoovery) you would still think there would be more gas in one of their cylinders than a spare air, but I got the impression there was a lot of spearfishing, same ocean buddy diving and not being in the general vicinity of each other underwater that led to the spare air decision. The interesting thing was that in watching them underwater I kind of came to the conclusion that the underwater comms were actually part of the problem. That obviated their need to stay that close to each other since they could just press to talk and say "I'm over by the big rock" or whatever.
The mistake is you're assuming the couple is informed, or had thought through the decision with enough depth. It's very likely they don't realize how quickly their 3cu spare-airs would run out at depth.

When you have redundant-air, an octo is unnecessary. It's standard in sidemount to not have an octo. If you had an adequate pony-bottle, an octo should also be unnecessary. Redundant air is great for solo-diving, or even when buddy-diving, because there are scenarios where your buddy might be absent or unable to help you.

I bought a spare-air, and after a brief conversation with people who are informed, quickly decided it wasn't worth carrying on a dive over 40ft & would guarantee blowing through a safety-stop even at shallow depths. I only spent about $80 on mine, so not a huge investment, but that money would have been better saved or spent on a pony-bottle setup. When properly informed and comparing the cost, I think most people would choose a 13 or 19cu pony bottle over a spare-air any day.

I agree, that worries me even more due to the chance of getting stuck solo and needing help or time to problem solve.

My gf is my dive buddy 80+% time. We use ffms usually due greater comfort in the cold water. We have comms but never use it now. Hand signals seem to be the best configuration for us as a team pair. Plus i'd rather not waste my air since I use way more then she does.

If you aren't on a tight-budget, I highly recommend investing in a couple 19cu pony-bottles & cheap regulators. Consider it like a form of health insurance. A pony bottle and cheap regs will be around $400 new, possibly less if you shop around. If you find pony-bottles used, you can cut that cost significantly. The pony-bottle regulators can also act as spares, in a save-a-dive sense.
 

kensuf

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They aren't using them to switch to high ppO2 deco gases.

And commercial divers go through significantly longer training than any recreational / tech diver out there.
 
https://www.shearwater.com/products/teric/
http://cavediveflorida.com/Rum_House.htm

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