Regulator Service Tech Training - Tool Splitoff

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rsingler

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The single most common question as participants prepare for the Seminar, is "what tools to buy?"
You can almost fix regulators with a bolt, a screwdriver and a spoon (okay, I exaggerate), but the point is that you can have a budget of from $100 to $1600 depending upon how easy you want to make your job.

Common tools are those required by ALL service techs. There aren't many:
-thin brass picks
-a steel double-hook pick
-blunt brass spade
-wooden dowels
-a bolt with clean fine threads for both HP and LP ports, or a fancy vise handle and a vise
-lube

But this is where it gets difficult. Some regs are a piece of cake to service. Some (Mares comes to mind) are a veritable PITA. Disassembling them may require specialty tools, and entire businesses revolve around supplying technicians with the toys that make their jobs easier and faster.
Scuba Tools
Scuba Clinic Tools
Scuba Instruments
Salt Blue (Poseidon only)
https://www.scubaservicetools.com/
https://www.divesupport.de/
https://dive-king-pro.de (Affiliation with Padi / SSI / whatever must be provided)

To open up your first stage, do you need a "face spanner" with pins that engage the cap? Do you need a "hook spanner" with a bump that goes in a hole? Do you need a big adjustable wrench? And when it's time to button it back up, do you need an expensive specialty tool that not only has the special pins, but also a broach for a torque wrench? We cover workarounds in class, but maybe we need to have that discussion here, so folks don't spend more money than they really need on what is only an occasional undertaking.

This thread could be a forum where that information might congregate. I will start by appending two files that have gone out to previous seminar participants. It can be overwhelming to look at the potential expense. But remember the screwdriver and spoon. If you are really pressed, open a conversation and I'll bet we can figure out a bargain approach until you decide that reg service is so much fun you want to spend your entire allowance on tools.

More important, as you discover specific regs with specific requirements, post about them here! Soon, I'll try to start with a workaround for Poseidon's tools #3605 and 3606, which together run for $190!!!
But @Bigbella contributed this great link
https://www.silentexplorers.com/online-store/Service-Technician-Parts-Tools-c46740403
for much less $$.
They can also be built at home with just a little ingenuity.

Jump on in with suggestions! Previous participants...tell us what you might have discovered.
 

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Bigbella

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To your list, I would also add Silent Explorers, who carry quite an assortment of tools, especially for Poseidon -- at nowhere near the absurd prices of Salt Blue. Poseidon is still flogging that Hazet 15-35 Nm Torque Wrench, in its ridiculous kit, for four or five times its actual price elsewhere.

That cringeworthy 1540.62(!) kit on the link, becomes about 344.00 if purchased piece-meal.

Sure, tools can still be expensive; but if you do it well, it's often one and done . . .
 

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rsingler

rsingler

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From the main thread, here's an early post about
vise handles and torque wrenches.
I'm a huge fan of "torque to specification". We'll talk about why in the course. But a good torque wrench can run $40-$180 or more.
Check that thread above and consider investing in a $10 online luggage scale instead...
Screenshot_20210913-124041_Amazon Shopping.jpg
 
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rsingler

rsingler

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Not in the post #1 attachment...
Scubapro Mk19EVO requires #5 hook spanner to open the cap. No torque - just tightly metal to metal to replace.
Requires a small pin face spanner to remove the HP poppet retainer inside, and then a luggage scale to torque it back until someone invents the required pin wrench with torque broach. 44in-lb.

EDIT: The Uwatec Quik-Disconnect Tool (Scubatools 20-325-100) has the perfect pin spacing to replace and torque the HP poppet carrier. You'll need a 5/8" socket or 5/8" crow-foot attachment for your torque wrench to grab the tool for torque'ing.
 

Bald Wookie

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My most commonly used:
  • Benchtop Vice with Soft Clamps
  • 1st Stage body holding tool (Or suitable bolts, as suggested above. The tool is nice to put in the vice though.)
  • Large adjustable wrench (Opens greater than 1 inch)
  • 5/8ths, 9/16ths, 1/2, 11/16ths wrenches at BARE minimum. Do yourself a favour and get both a metric and imperial set. Adjustable wrenches do not do the job to remove tough hoses and often round over edges.
  • Allen keys. Again, get both metric and imperial
  • Flathead screwdriver suitable for oriface adjustment
  • Pliers. End Cutters and Diagonal/Sidecutters are both great, I use them both! Probably use diagonal more, but the end cutters nicely trim zip ties.
  • Various brass picks/spades. Reinvest in these yearly. Minimum 1 pointy pick and one spade
  • Hook Spanner. Get two different sizes, some fit first stages nicely, others don't. Return the one that doesn't
  • Face Spanner/Pin Wrench. Get one that has an adjustable/moveable head, the long ones with the hinge at the bottom are a pain sometimes. Exchangeable pins are also good, you'll mostly just use one size but nice to have the others.
  • Dowels. Or get a few sets of chopsticks from your local sushi bar.
  • Jewellery/Watch screwdriver set. Alternatively, there are a few nice precision screwdriver sets that are magnetic and have lots of accessories. I actually recommend these as they often have a flexi piece and nut attachments to adjust some of the older style 2nd stages which can be a PITA.
  • Christolube or similar
  • Cottonbuds (removal of old lube and excess corrosion)
  • Paper Towels - I use these to cover my workbench and to absorb excess moisture after a rinse/wash.
  • Old or cheap toothbrushes to clean items with.
  • *Controversial* A rubber mallet. I've found countless times where something has needed a light tap to break free.

One or two specialty:
  • Oriface adjustment tool (inline) - not necessary but man, the reduced annoyance is great.
  • An Ultrasonic Cleaner (or two). There are a few cheap ones, most work fine. If you just get one, use it with a simplegreen solution.
  • 3 and 4 slot poppet holders - for some older regs
  • Thin wrench set. Think similar to the zig-zag scuba wrenches you commonly see, but a whole set. I've found these useful at times (niche, but useful)
Fun one:
  • The Battery tool sold commonly (Two pin on a flat piece of metal) actually works great when clamped into a vice to disassemble some of the older first stages that have the two notches in the top.

I probably use more and will edit as I remember.
Also, These do not all need to be new! Old tools work just as well in most cases, and you can thrift for these! We know divers love a deal...
 

wetb4igetinthewater

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It might be good to have a spreadsheet with all the tools in one column and then in the next columns have x's for different regulators to simply who needs what. Just an idea.
 

happy-diver

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What happened!!!

Get a plastic hammer to bang your seized dry and dusty first stages around and loosen them
before you put them in an aluminiumised - rubberised vice and loosen it with a strap wrench

So you never barely ever, hack your beautiful regs around with that dumb rubbish c spanner


There is washing powder here, and washing powder everywhere, and beats simpleton green
Cheap too, better than a bought one!


I like to finish all my cable ties with a sharp knife, to leave it as smooth as a babies bottom
These are great cable tie side cutters made in Japan. Flush cut and gripper for your mouthpiece installation and removal. $20

https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B07H3QL9JF/ref=ppx_yo_dt_b_asin_title_o01_s00?ie=UTF8&th=1


All you do is gently squeeze the head of your cable ties and they pop open cutting nothing
I have found many small side cutters don’t open wide enough to cut the tie head off.
 

Open Ocean Diver

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What happened!!!

Get a plastic hammer to bang your seized dry and dusty first stages around and loosen them
before you put them in an aluminiumised - rubberised vice and loosen it with a strap wrench

So you never barely ever, hack your beautiful regs around with that dumb rubbish c spanner


There is washing powder here, and washing powder everywhere, and beats simpleton green
Cheap too, better than a bought one!


I like to finish all my cable ties with a sharp knife, to leave it as smooth as a babies bottom



All you do is gently squeeze the head of your cable ties and they pop open cutting nothing
 
https://www.shearwater.com/products/swift/

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