How many tanks do I really need?

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BB`

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I almost have almost enough.... Only another 10-70 more to go!

But seriously of my collection of 12 I would say 10 actually see regular use and I don't have any need to expand my "fleet" of tanks unless a great deal comes along.

Most of my diving is at a local lake and either at recreations limits using AL80s or doing a few tech dives with my doubles and a set of deco bottles (2xLP108s and 2xAL40s) . The HP120s are mostly reserved for a couple of air hog buddies and So-cal dive trips (they more than cover the offset between fresh/salt so I don't have to add any lead and the extra time underwater is always nice on a charter).

The LP72s were an impulse buy that I keep telling myself that I will sling as deco bottles some day but they still haven't ever seen o2 and are just light enough to be annoying to dive single tank


The inventory:
AL80 X 4 (weekly fun dives)
HP120 X 2 (Trips and airhog buddies)
LP108 X 2 (Tech doubles set)
Al40 X 2 (deco bottles)
LP72 X 2 (I ate the damn worm at the bottom of a tequila bottle before buying these)




It is my opinion that once you go beyond around 4 tanks that you really need to be able to VIP your own tanks or it is going to kill you in shop fees
 

Degenerate

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There is a simple equation for how many tanks you need, "X + 1".
Where X is the number of tanks you currently have. :D

A year ago I only had one set of doubles, have added quite a few since then...
Two 12L doubles
Two 12L singles
Two 80s
One 40
Four 3L cylinders for RB
A couple of suit inflation cylinders

Probably getting another pair of doubles soon to keep as a trimix bank for my RB.
 
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Bierstadt

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Perhaps a more useful rule of thumb than "I have tank addiction, join us" would be to have the tanks you need to dive as you want. That could be a large number or it could be a small one. Many recreational divers are served by a simple pair of al80's. In Great Lakes recreational wreck diving, it is hard to be beat a pair of hp100's and an al30 or Al40 as a pony. Folks who don't want to visit the dive shop for fills after every charter often choose to double or triple their primary tank inventory for reasons of convenience, or if they are providing tanks for other divers.

That covers the basics. The next level in building you tank garden into a tank farm is configurations and gases. Twinsets require a pair of tanks that are dedicated to being in a twinset, and as soon as you get into trimix you are realistically going to need multiple twinsets. And multiple deco tanks and stages. Want to do sidemount? More tanks. CCR? More tanks. You get the idea. And it's not just any old tank, of course. You'll want tanks that fit the gas plan and buoyancy characteristics for the diving you're doing.

As a new diver, I suggest not worrying about the second phase unless and until you're ready to get into such diving. It will take years of building training and experience anyways before you need the stuff to go do such dives. Collect what you want to do the diving you want to do. And always buy in pairs if possible.
 

Marie13

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Perhaps a more useful rule of thumb than "I have tank addiction, join us" would be to have the tanks you need to dive as you want. That could be a large number or it could be a small one. Many recreational divers are served by a simple pair of al80's. In Great Lakes recreational wreck diving, it is hard to be beat a pair of hp100's and an al30 or Al40 as a pony. Folks who don't want to visit the dive shop for fills after every charter often choose to double or triple their primary tank inventory for reasons of convenience, or if they are providing tanks for other divers.

That covers the basics. The next level in building you tank garden into a tank farm is configurations and gases. Twinsets require a pair of tanks that are dedicated to being in a twinset, and as soon as you get into trimix you are realistically going to need multiple twinsets. And multiple deco tanks and stages. Want to do sidemount? More tanks. CCR? More tanks. You get the idea. And it's not just any old tank, of course. You'll want tanks that fit the gas plan and buoyancy characteristics for the diving you're doing.

As a new diver, I suggest not worrying about the second phase unless and until you're ready to get into such diving. It will take years of building training and experience anyways before you need the stuff to go do such dives. Collect what you want to do the diving you want to do. And always buy in pairs if possible.

Tank garden? Love it. :D
 

Divin'Papaw

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The answer is different for divers in different locations. When I lived in the Midwest and dived the Great Lakes every summer I had enough tanks for a 3-day weekend trip. At a minimum I had three sets of doubles plus 3 deco bottles. I also had 2-3 singles for warm water trips. I also had drysuit inflation cylinders. When I moved out of the Midwest I had 20 tanks ... 4 sets of doubles, 3 drysuit inflation cylinders, 5 deco bottles, and 4 singles. All of those were necessary for the diving I did and the lack of fill station options. Once I moved to Florida the majority of these became unnecessary and too expensive to maintain. Living in South Florida now fill station options are plentiful and the types of diving I do has changed. I've sold off a majority of my inventory. I now have 7 cylinders ... 5 singles and 2 pony bottles.

So as with many things in diving the answer to your question is "It depends."
 

napDiver

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Since vip is per year and cost me about 15 bucks a tank now. I'm going to have 2x available for me and another 2x for my gf. Then an extra back up. That's 5x. If I ever need to bring a stage, its already filled so I dont need to worry about the al80 until after the fact.

I would just choose your fav tanks and use them with a small buffer. Say +1 extra day of diving for what you need. And change as your diving changes or you find you need more or less.

Cheers
 

formernuke

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I'm sure they gave you some steel 72s. Make a small set of doubles from them: independent, isolated maniford, whatever. Of course, then you will want two of those to not change gear for that day, so that takes care of 4 steel 72s and gives you long dives and redundancy underwater.

(Or LP50s or AL40s which make really nice tiny doubles, but people are less likely to be clearing those out of their garage.)

If anyone is clearing out matching lp50's, let me know those make great shore diving doubles
 

Marie13

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If anyone is clearing out matching lp50's, let me know those make great shore diving doubles

People have seen my 4 LP50s in a photo and offered to take them off my hands. Like h*ll, you will! A buddy has already claimed dibs on them.

I went from 2 x AL80s and a AL30 pony, to 8 x steel HP80s, variously used for single tank, sidemount, and doubles at different times, to adding 2 x AL40. I sold off all the steel 80s and the AL30. I'm down to 4 x LP85 and 4 x LP50, along with the 2 x AL40. I've gotten back my original 2 x AL80s from the buddy I sold them to. I sold my Fusion drysuit to buddy for $400 cash and the 2 AL80s. I wanted them for future use as deco/stage bottles.

:D
 

Marie13

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It is my opinion that once you go beyond around 4 tanks that you really need to be able to VIP your own tanks or it is going to kill you in shop fees

It really depends on if the shops you get fills on will accept diver VIPs or not. Some will, some won't, some will hassle you about it.
 
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