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Going from backmount d12 to sidemount

Discussion in 'Sidemount Diving' started by alex_nr, Jan 20, 2019.

  1. Rollin Bonz

    Rollin Bonz Solo Diver

    # of Dives: 200 - 499
    Location: Georgia, the state, not the country ;-)
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    I've been diving SM with no formal training for about 6 months. I do, however, have a regular dive buddy that has been diving SM for the last 2 years. I watched and learned as he learned and became proficient his first year and 1/2. He has been good enough to help get me set up, show me the ropes, and mentor me for the last 6 months. Without his help and insight, I'm not sure I could have found my way.

    Most of my diving is quarry. 5mm wetsuit June through August, drysuit the rest of the year. I have done a bit of warm water diving in SM. Dove a 3mm with adjustments only to the weighting.

    I started and continue to dive AL80s on the regular. 18 to 20 pounds of lead in a harness with drysuit. 8 to 10 pounds in a 5mm. I've been trying out steels off and on, but haven't used them consistently enough to get properly adjusted or decide if I like them. In fact, yesterday was the first day I dove my "normal" setup in a while. It was 30 degrees and windy on the surface, and I didn't feel like playing around with my setup, so I went with my standard weighting and tanks (AL80s). Diving solo, dropped to max depth, followed the wall around riding about a 12 minute NDL up to 60 feet. It was Zen like. I may never try tweaking my setup again.

    One thing to consider is further training. I've been thinking of taking some tech training this coming summer. My LDS has told me they can't teach me in SM unless I'm SM certified, which makes sense from a liability standpoint. So if you plan on advancing your training in SM, you may have to take the class eventually.
     
    alex_nr likes this.
  2. alex_nr

    alex_nr Garibaldi

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    Does all the lead fit in the bc or do you have a belt as well with that setup cold/dry? I do want to be able to hand of or at least handle the tanks.
     
  3. Rollin Bonz

    Rollin Bonz Solo Diver

    # of Dives: 200 - 499
    Location: Georgia, the state, not the country ;-)
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    Didn't ask me directly, but I'll respond anyway...

    I use a weight harness with my drysuit (18-20 pounds). Tried a belt, was impossible to keep from slipping. When I'm in a wetsuit (8-10 pounds), I may use the harness, but can get away with a couple of weight pockets on my BC waist belt if I want.
     
  4. Doby45

    Doby45 Do I have something in my teeth?

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    HP100 steels, dry suit, no weight and you ain't getting my tank. That's why I have a long hose.
     
  5. decompression

    decompression Instructor...seriously...

    # of Dives: 5,000 - ∞
    Location: Victoria, BC, Canada
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    Agreed.....however....as you know....to ensure the balanced rig you can substitute steels for AL. Just for others that may not know.
     
  6. a878bob

    a878bob Barracuda

    # of Dives: 1,000 - 2,499
    Location: Michigan
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    I use an xdeep double spine weight pouch plus two xs weight pouches on my belt. I have plenty of room for whatever weight I want, and able to adjust it for trim. My coldwater sm rig is a homebrew with a simple sm harness and a Manta wing, it’s really marvelous for drysuit and tech dives, easily carry 4 al80’s.
     
    Coztick likes this.
  7. Coztick

    Coztick Barracuda

    # of Dives: 50 - 99
    Location: calgary
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    How much lift does the Manta have, may I ask? I'm not familiar with it. Do you have any pics?
    Tia
     
  8. АлександрД

    АлександрД Manta Ray

    # of Dives: 100 - 199
    Location: Moscow, Russia
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    Welcome to dark side! :)
    When you were well educated as backmount diver (wow! by twins from beginning! GUE?), you will have no big problems with SM.
    If you have pool for training - it is better to start there to make thousands adjustments for your rigs, but then you will fill your tank as you suit.
    After I`d tested sidemount - I never use backmount harness :)
    Me never learned courses, but sometimes consulting with friends, who use SM. Some ideas they`d take from me :)
    I love SM for two reasons
    - my laziness - it much easy to carry. Also very nice on the boat - you fully equipped (just without tanks), and can walking near the people, nobody disturbing with heavy tank on the back.
    - and feelings under water. When you can slide through the water as freediver, when you do not feel any tanks...

    P.S. here is my SM way in pictures :) Minimal diving harness
     
    Rollin Bonz likes this.
  9. a878bob

    a878bob Barracuda

    # of Dives: 1,000 - 2,499
    Location: Michigan
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  10. Rollin Bonz

    Rollin Bonz Solo Diver

    # of Dives: 200 - 499
    Location: Georgia, the state, not the country ;-)
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