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Is Cressi An Upgrade From US Divers / Aqualung?

Discussion in 'Snorkeling & Freediving' started by the.ronin, Jun 11, 2012.

  1. the.ronin

    the.ronin New

    3
    0
    We love to snorkel on our surf trips but don’t really go much beyond that as far as diving.

    We’ve got a set of U.S. Divers and Aqualung snorkels (snorkel, fins, and goggles) we picked up at one of the big box sporting goods stores which served us well but we don’t really have anything to compare to.

    Since we’ve been very good at taking these snorkels everywhere we travel, I thought it would be worth upgrading them to something of better quality.

    Would this Cressi set from Amazon be an upgrade?

    Amazon.com: Cressi Palau Long Fins, Focus Mask, Dry Snorkel, Snorkeling Gear Package: Sports & Outdoors

    Or even a bit more expensive, this Cressi set from PrimeScuba?

    Cressi Reaction Fin Crystal Mask Snorkel Set at PrimeScuba.com

    I’m not at all partial to Cressi or any name brand. They just seem to make a lot of the sets. With that said, I’m not against buying pieces individually either. Basically, any advice would be greatly appreciated.
     
  2. Testudo

    Testudo Contributor

    508
    621
    FWIW...Cressi Big Eye (original and Evolution) are my preferred masks. They are preferred because they fit my face better than other masks I've had and I can get about 2-3 years of frequent use out of them. Tusa Imprex are my preferred snorkels since they have plenty on no-frills models in the Hyperdry line. My fins are 10 year old Body Glove "Fish Tail" model purchased at Sports Authority or Costco that I hope I never need to replace.
     
  3. danvolker

    danvolker Contributor

    # of Dives: I'm a Fish!
    Location: Lake Worth, Florida, United States
    5,884
    3,012
    Cressi is definitely an upgrade....but consider this instead.... Cressi Gara 3000 LD Freediving Fins with Mask Snorkel & Gear Bag: Amazon.com: Sports & Outdoors For travel, you can put the freedive fins in your suitcase diagonally, if you don't want top bring a separate gear bag on a plane.
     
  4. the.ronin

    the.ronin New

    3
    0
    Thanks for the great advice you guys.

    Yes, Dan, we typically pack the snorkels separately in our single check-in luggage. Compactness is actually a very good point.
     
  5. danvolker

    danvolker Contributor

    # of Dives: I'm a Fish!
    Location: Lake Worth, Florida, United States
    5,884
    3,012
    And it's not like you really need a bag to hold snorkeling gear in....at the beach you just cary your fins and wear your mask on your forehead :)

    You would find the freedive fins vastly superior to the scuba length or standard snorkeling fins...they take very little muscle power, and keep your heart rate down very low, allowing you to dive down to the bottom longer, easier...Better for a 12 foot deep bottom or 60 foot deep bottom :)
     
  6. the.ronin

    the.ronin New

    3
    0
    Actually, we also pack the snorkel bags as well. We just prefer to carry around the gear in their mesh bags rather than tote them around and risk losing something – but the mesh bag packs away very compactly.

    I do want to clarify that at best, we’re diving maybe 10 feet from the surface. At least for me, the pressure on my head just becomes too annoying beyond some depth. Just really looking for comfort and travel-friendliness as the top concerns.
     
  7. thirst4theworst

    thirst4theworst Guest

    # of Dives: I just don't log dives
    Location: 954
    17
    0
    i know this may sound odd or a bit off, but If i know I am going to go snorkel somewhere and i know 1. its shallow 2. i wont be holding my breath or diving down much and 3.there might be a few people or more, I just use my mask and snorkel. And if i need to really be able to swim, I use those little neoprene hand gloves for a little added propulsion. I find that if the watter is shallow and clear, and I'm just snorkeling up top, fins are a waste of time. If the average group of snorkelers at a shallow water location didnt use fins, I wouldnt get kicked anymore, there wouldnt be sand all kicked up into the water, and there wouldnt be dozens of loud kicking and crashing fins everywhere scaring fish. only down fall i could imagine is maybe people would feel that they could stand up easier, but in my experience, if someone wants to stand, they will still do it in fins. If your mask seals to your face and you dont use it all the time, I'd stick with what you got. but to answer, cressi is a better/more expensive product. Just my 2 cents.
    I'm sure plenty will disagree.
     
  8. danvolker

    danvolker Contributor

    # of Dives: I'm a Fish!
    Location: Lake Worth, Florida, United States
    5,884
    3,012
    I suppose if you are going to deal with "populations" of people that have NEVER learned how to use fins properly ( or that are never going to have the coordination to use them well--there are plenty of people like this) , AND, if there is no current, and the water is 5 feet deep or less, then sure, your hand fins will do the job for this environment, and for the non-divers that can't coordinate their bodies. If I saw what you described going on, I think I would be happy that these people were enjoying the ocean.... I'd feel a little sorry for them that they had little chance of growth in to real snorkeling or freediving....like seeing a bunch of snow-plowers that you know will never leave the bunny slope, and will never really become skiiers...

    Now I would add, that I have seen some classes at the Blue heron Bridge Marine park, where I would prefer to see the hopeless students and instructors wearing hand fins than the norm for scuba diving--this really starts with instructors that have no business being allowed to teach. For them, and the unfortunates that fall prey to them, the hand fins may well be a good thing. It's amazing to me these unfortunate students dont manage to look at any of the "other" groups being instructed at BHB, because the differences can be shocking. There are some instructors that I see there all the time, that are so masterful, you would almost think that all of their students have been diving quite some time--but for these instructors, it is like this even on the first dive. I see this with the local Force E instructors, especially Jeff ( their resident savant:) and with Pura Vida's instructors and their classes. I can only guess the bad the bad seeds come from little starving dive shops, that are hanging on by a thread, and are trying to blow people through as fast as they can--and skill development takes a huge back seat to paying their bills. The moral of the story here, is that everyone at BHB REALLY NEEDS TO START RECOMMENDING THE GOOD INSTRUCTORS, AND MAKING NOTE OF THE BAD ONES.

    See video...You can see that the problem really starts with the instructor, if you look closely. He is the one teaching them to be clueless and skill-less. Start 48 seconds in to the video [video=youtube_share;dgdabfvr2B0]http://youtu.be/dgdabfvr2B0?hd=1&t=48s[/video]

    **Note...the area this class is in is called Nudiworld by the local macro photographers....You can find well over a hundred nudibranchs on a single dive here. They feed on the dense hydroid forests that cover the bottom here, right under the bumbling fins of the instructor and his unfortunates. As they break up the hydroid forests, like crazed motocrossers tearing up a rich field of grass in a horse pasture, the field is destroyed, the uprooted hydroids are blown out of BHB with the tides, and what was once an almost magical and healthy forest, becomes a desert, and what is special and magical about BHB becomes LOST. One class, one day, won't be the end of the BHB. 100 classes, on 100 days of the year, and the motocrosser concept of damage potential is quite accurate.

    ---------- Post added ----------

    There appears to be an Agency Standards issue going on here....regarding what is being done. My take is some shops see this standing on the bottom, and the bouncing, as the EXPEDIENT choice, the only choice, and the choice directed by agency standards. So this would be EXPEDIENCE over ENVIRONMENT. This is an issue that the regulars of the BHB MUST deal with, if they want the Marine Park to remain the incredible place that it is.
    There are GOOD SHOPS and there are BAD SHOPS. There are GOOD INSTRUCTORS, and there are BAD INSTRUCTORS. EVERYONE OF US THAT DIVES THE BHB, NEEDS TO BEGIN CATALOGING THE GOOD AND THE BAD. We need to share this with everyone we know. Many have joked about this in the past, none of us have done much more than joke about it though..so far.
    The situation will NOT fix itself. The Economics of the Dive Shops and Bad instructors, are such that they will only get more destructive, if the regular divers of the BHB Marine Park, continue to ignore this....
    Put another way...If you guys and I continue to say or do NOTHING, then WE are almost as much a part of the problem, as the bad instructors are. You can't watch a crime take place, and do nothing, without being morally criminal yourself.

    For now, I propose each of us tries to ID the bad instructor or shop. If you have a camera, shoot some pictures or video each and every time.
    We start a new thread.... "Is this a BAD DIVE INSTRUCTOR AND SHOP" OR A GOOD ONE? If someone posts a damaging video, like the one above, the instructor starring in the debacle can come on and attempt to explain how the infractions were not the norm, and how this is not how he /she teaches. This is important, since any instructor may have an issue once in a blue moon. If the same instructor ends up having to make excuses every week, then some of us will need to find the schedules for him/her and the shop in question, and be sure they are videoed each time they visit the Marine Park. Clearly we need to have videos of some of the AWESOME classes, and the really good instructors....We need to see who is good, and so do the potential students. All instructors are not equal, and not all shops are equal. This needs to get out.
    When it becomes public knowledge as to who is good, and who is bad, the problems of today should fade. Students will hear of this, and the worst shops in diving will be avoided.

    If the offending classes are from hundreds of miles away--bussed in for cheap diving....We can always ID this and turn it over to the Park Department if we need to.
     
    Last edited: Jun 22, 2012
  9. thirst4theworst

    thirst4theworst Guest

    # of Dives: I just don't log dives
    Location: 954
    17
    0
    i was mostly thinking of places like red reef, bathtub beach and the like. places with next to no real current and shallow clear water. again, if ones goal is to float on top and just relax, fins are useless.
     
  10. Testudo

    Testudo Contributor

    508
    621
    Not sure of the scientific reason or if I'm just a freak of nature, but I find I can "float" much better with fins on than without. More surface area maybe?
     

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