My own equipment not allowed for Open Water class?

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OP
Horgh

Horgh

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Something to bear in mind SB represents a small portion of divers and a larger percentage of us are tech/cave or heavily influenced by them.

That is exactly the point... how did I get to this board? What got me interested in diving? As I said in my original post, it was by watching the analysis of and commentary on cave diving and wreck penetration videos, both good and bad. I've devoured a lot overhead environment content and it really drew my attention and sparked this interest. The science, the techniques, the equipment. That is why I'd like to start with gear that is aimed at that type of diving. I have nothing against fish, they're pretty, diving some reefs would be cool, but that is not my ultimate interest. I realize technical diving is a long, long ways off, but I'd rather drive a sports car on the street than take a Prius to a race track.

People get into all kinds of sports and hobbies with different goals, some with "professional" aspirations, especially at a younger age. Only a select few make it to those levels, but that doesn't mean the rest shouldn't enjoy trying, and buying whatever equipment makes them happy doing so. I hope that I enjoy my Try SCUBA session, I hope that I get my OW certificate, and I hope that I live long enough and get enough real diving experience during that time to one day, MAYBE, just maybe be good enough and experienced enough to take a cave diving course and see some of those wonderous places with my own two eyes. But if I fall short of that goal, that's ok, I can still enjoy my tech setup in a shallow quarry or floating along a reef.
 

lowwall

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I think it's worth pointing out that while I prefer a BP/W over a conventional BCD, the differences are not night and day. If you want an automotive analogy, it's like toggling my 328i between Sport and Eco mode on a twisty road, not like getting out of the BMW and into the Sienna.

I guess I'm saying if you need to use a jacket during your class, it's really not a big deal. OTOH, there's really no good reason for preventing you from using a BP/W. They have the same functions and same general layout.

The 7' hose is a different matter. it's awkward to use with a snorkel which is still required for OW training under the standard agencies. Also handling is quite a bit different which is likely to cause at least some confusion and wasted time with skill demos and buddy drills. It's arguably less than optimal for OW diving anyway. Because of this I suggest using a conventional hose setup for your OW class. It's good to get used to this anyway because that's what you are going to get if you rent while travelling.

You can move to a streamlined primary donate 4' setup or a 7' as soon as you are done with the class. Hoses are pretty cheap and swapping them is trivial.

If you really want to start with a 7' hose, then you should be looking for a private class or a class with one of the DIR-derived agencies like GUE or RAID
 

Pipehorse

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For what it's worth, I just spoke to ScubaVentures in Bir


Your two comparisons don't really align, namely IFR in a GS650 compared to basic lessons in a Cessna isn't the same as Ford vs Chevy, unless you're talking lap records in a Ford GT40 at Le Mans vs a hauling hay in a Chevy pickup on a Saturday afternoon.

In any case, how about we use an analogy that actually relates to me, namely motorcycles? I've been riding regularly for over 15 years, I have easily 100K+ road commuting miles under my belt in Seattle traffic year round, and even more if you count recreational rides. I've seen and ridden it all, downpours, snow, hail, steep uphills in stop-and-go, slippery old street downhills, manhole covers and trolley tracks in the rain, etc., so I'd argue I'm very experienced. Before I bought my first bike, I did a ton of research (that's my nature) and had my mind made up about what bike I wanted, but then I listened to the "experienced sales guy" and bought the bike he recommended (that his shop happened to carry). It was good, but I eventually sold it and bought the bike I actually wanted and realized that I would have been better off buying it in the first place. Not only because it was more aligned with my riding style, but also because it was easier to learn on despite what the sales guy and some misinformed people on the internet said. The two bikes were similar, both had two wheels, handlebars, etc., but there were differences in weight, balance and handling. The cumulative opinion of the owners of the bike I should have bought were correct all along because they owned the bike and had experience with it. That's why I originally listened to them.

Despite numerous personal and situational differences, people tend to come to accurate conclusions when you consider a large enough sample set, you just have to be willing to spend the time to research the topic, as well as topics related to it, to see all angles. You also have to be intelligent enough to filter out the trash. To that point, most people here tend to agree that a BP/W setup is more stable in the water, simpler (less failure points), obviously more modular, and thus more configurable to specific tasks. You see plenty reef diving in a BP/W, but show me people cave diving in a jacket BCD. Maybe there are and I just didn't find those examples, but I have a feeling there aren't many. Why? For the reasons I just mentioned, and those are the reasons that attract me to the BP/W configuration. If it's really Ford vs Chevy, then why do you and the instructor care which I choose? I see them as significantly different, though.



And that will say more about PADI than about him.
So since the time you traded in the first motorcycle for the second motorcycle that you really wanted, have you bought a third motorcycle? I am guessing you own multiple motorcycle as this point? And why would that be, because your riding style has continued to evolve over the 15 years you have been riding?

I don't really care what equipment you buy or use. It just strikes me as odd that you have already made a decision on what equipment you need, with zero experience using any kind of equipment underwater, based on your "research" which amounts to a reasoning that others decided, not you. To put it how you phrased the motorcycle riding, you don't have a "diving style", so how could you possibly know what equipment suits a nonexistent diving style? What I wrote still stands, you can do all the research you want, you are not going to know for yourself until you have experienced it yourself.

To me SCUBA equipment is just a means to an end, the end being experiences underwater. Endless discussions about equipment configurations turns the equipment into the end point, as opposed to the experience underwater being the endpoint. You seem far more focused on equipment than on having a good experience underwater. Another poster already wrote, any decent diver can make it work regardless of the BC configuration, jacket, bp/w, etc.

Lastly I see more than a few individuals beside myself have suggested you just go with the rental gear for the OW class, but you don't really want to hear that, do you? Seems like you just want validation of what you have decided to do regardless of your utter and complete lack of experience. You offer argument(albeit polite) for everybody that will not give you the validation, although the majority of the posters have far more experience than you.

I am done with this now, good luck, hope it all works out.
 

MichaelMc

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you have already made a decision on what equipment you need, with zero experience using any kind of equipment underwater, based on your "research" which amounts to a reasoning that others decided, not you.
How is this different and worse than:
"Oh, I guess I need the pretty green BC you're showing me on the shop floor and telling me it is what I need. Me with no experience, with reasoning that others decided, not me."?

I think neutral and in trim is more important. But it is funny the consternation that they want the Blue (BP/W) BC vs the Red one. And that they should not be making that choice.
 

Gandalf-the-Diver

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It just strikes me as odd that you have already made a decision on what equipment you need, with zero experience using any kind of equipment underwater, based on your "research"

Does not strike me as odd. I did it myself when I started. Did a whole bunch of research, then chose my gear. I opted for a back inflate, as opposed to a bp/w. I also used the gear list from both the PADI Self Reliant, and the SDI Solo course, to determine what I needed to buy. 275 dives in, and pretty much the only gear change I have had, is to upgrade to a bigger pony.
 

johndiver999

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The initial Ow training (4 short open water dives?) is so brief compared to the many hundreds or thousands of dives that will presumably be done in the future; I think it makes little difference exactly what kind of gear is used for "that weekend".

Learn to blow bubbles and not float away and don't worry much about the gear for this class.
 

Paradoxprophet

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My wife and I were able to use our own gear for our OW dives. We did have private instruction so that is vastly different than a class. Honestly, I think it would be easier to just use what they provide. It is only for a couple of days and from then on you could use your own gear.
 

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