Question Should I have tools to adjust IP in save a dive kit?

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AdamRay

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A regulator technician told me he carries the pressure gauge to adjust his first stage IP in his save a dive kit, in case his regulator free flows (so he can troubleshoot and see if the IP has changed and is therefore the cause of the free flow.)

I know how to adjust the IP, but am wondering if this happens often with newer, more reliable regs? I have a SP MK25/G260 (less than 1 year old) and plan to follow the recommended service schedule.

Is it worth buying and carrying the gauge in my kit?
 

tbone1004

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The tools to adjust IP and the tools to measure it are very different.
Newer regs aren't necessarily more reliable than the older ones, your MK25 is using the same technology as the MK10 did 40 years ago and the G260 the same as the 156BA of the same era.

I personally carry an IP gauge with me because it will at least let me diagnose so I know what's wrong and if I can fix it there or need to swap out regs. Generally speaking I just swap the reg out and deal with it later.
As said above, you need to establish what is wrong and if you can fix it. IP creep/drift isn't fixable without a rebuild so that's ruled out. IP shifting does happen after the first 10-20 dives but you are using a balanced second stage so it is pretty inconsequential to whether the reg is freeflowing or not.
If there is a slight freeflow it is typically just the second stages being tuned really light and as they break in they need to be tightened back. This can usually be done with the adjustment knob on a regulator like a G260 though.

Now, I believe all divers should have an IP gauge because it is like a heart rate monitor for your regulator system, but since the title is on adjusting the IP in a save a dive kit, I personally just carry a spare first stage and if it goes sideways then I swap the stage out. Basically I carry a single tank regulator set and a stage bottle rig which gets me a spare 1st/2nd/hose and that is usually enough to get you on the dive and deal with it at the hotel.
 

lexvil

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Agree with tbone if things go so far out that it’s causing a freeflow, IP in the 170 zone, it needs more than adjusting. Most dribble type leaks are the second stage, the 260has enough adjustment usually to take care of that while on the dive.
 

Centrals

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I checked the IP regularly especially after a long trip.
Most operators would have a IP gauge for their own use so I never bother to bring mine along.
It is always a good idea to check it before the 1st dive.

Every keen diver should possess one, it is dirt cheap.
 

scrane

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I carry one. It's small and easy/ quick to use. I've rebuilt and know the regulators I dive and like to know that everybody's feeling OK.
 

Bigbella

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I usually check out my gear — the IP, cracking effort, etc — before any trip or assignment, to ensure that everything is in working order; though I also carry a meter in my field kit, out of habit, as well as several spare first and second stages. Since I service my own gear, were I careless, that gaffe would be on me.

As others have already mentioned, if you find that you have, say, a creeping IP, there are few options, unless you have the wherewithal and parts to either fully rebuild a given regulator, or swap out seats, potentially in the middle of nowhere.

I have done that on only a couple of occasions, years ago, while on a live-aboard, when two other divers, didn’t think to check any of their gear, before traveling 120 nautical miles away from shore, for ten days — something that I would not recommend; and it was just spectacular dumb luck that someone else on board had the requisite rebuild kits . . .
 

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