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Go Back   SailNet Community > Out There > Cruising & Liveaboard Forum
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  #1  
Old 05-18-2005
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Scuba Compressor

Has anyone gone cruising and taken with them a scuba compressor? I have searched and found minimal information about folks doing so.

One post I read said he enjoyed having it, but once it broke couldn''t value replacing it.

I want to head to the Bahamas and Carribean and dive when I have the chance. I have a great passion for diving, so limiting myself to getting an occasional air fill now and then probally would be a let down for my trip.


Any info on type, electric, gas, belt driven hydraulic etc. would be nice.


Also if you have owned one, how big was your boat.



Rob A
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Old 05-18-2005
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Scuba Compressor

I also have a passion for diving, but because we''re coastal New England cruisers, have never been away from airfill access for more than a day or two. Four cylinders are usually sufficient.

The initial cost of an on-board compressor, even for recreational use, is very high. When I factored in high maintenance and spacial demands, coupled with filter & toxicity considerations, my plan of getting one for the boat was diffused years ago.

However, I can relate to your desire to have one during your planned Caribbean & Bahamas adventures, since diving opportunities abound. My decision has always been to dive with small group diving operators, or book on live-aboard diving vessels when vacationing in the tropics . . . fewer things to worry about.

Have you considered simply adding more tanks to your gear? Certainly, this is a less costly option over the cost & maintenance headaches of compressor ownership.

Best of luck in your research.
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Old 05-18-2005
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Scuba Compressor

Ya,

More tanks may be the way to go. I own 3 steel 120''s which would provide me with 6 dives to -60 ''.

And its not like you are "adding" weight, 2 extra tanks is much less weight then a compressor.

Preference though would be to dive each dive with a steel 80 or something similar thats nice and small.


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Old 05-27-2005
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Scuba Compressor

Scubaman

I''ve been looking into this also. What I have found is cost prohibitive for us so far. The best, in terms of quality and function, is the Yanmar diesel compressor = $8000. I found that the AC electric motor won''t work due to the startup load and drain on the battery.

I''m also considering running one off of the engine. In our case, our boat had a engine driven refrig, but I removed it and replaced with a dc system, so we have a pulley to use on the engine. I''m just starting to look into this alternative.

Roger
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Old 06-20-2005
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Scuba Compressor

I have two friends who have taken different tacks at this and I myself find it daunting.

One friend has begun assembling a variety of new and used components and is making his own compressor for his boat and goes into great detail explaining to me how it will work. It looks a little cobby. (Very cobby.) I''m not so sure I''d want to breath the air.

The other friend has one mounted secretly on the foredeck of his trawler under a very secure box/cover. As he''s geting ready to go cruising again, he decided to go over it, or, I should say, have it gone over.

He hired a company and they came. The machinery under that box is all polished stainless steel and VERY businesslike in every way. A small diesel you could eat off of did the work and there was not a part of that thing I wouldn''t have been proud to have on my mantle. The guy working on it was by no means your average plumber, or whatever. He was intelligent and professional and knew exactly what he was doing.

I was very impressed and rushed back to my other friend, told him what I''d seen and asked him to either throw out his pile of crap or give me an address for his next of kin so I could tell them how he died. He''s considering.

For me, it''s just too risky and too expensive for now. I''ll carry a couple of extra tanks, probably aluminum 60''s so they are easier to horse around ports by handcart or burro, and plan my dives carefully.
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Old 08-02-2005
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Scuba Compressor

The biggest complaint most people have is where to put the damn compressor, and how to keep it from rusting on you while out cruising. I bought a Nautica, now (maxair).as one of the last items to install on my tayana 37 in the spring of 95,just a few months before saling off for three years of cruising from Oregon thru the canal and the western carib, and landing in Florida. My installation was just behind the mast and bolted thru the roof in a sewing machine style type cabinet with good rubber seals around the base. It never blocked the vision from the helm and never came loose. Iv''e been diving for over 40 years and I wouldn''t have even gone on this adventure without a compressor. Of all the places we''ve been, the best looking stuff was under water. In the bay of Aqua Verde in the sea of Cortez, I had gone spearfishing one morning and upon return, I proceeded to refill my tank. When finished I happened to look over and found two tenders along side the boat. I started to apologize for making noise in fear of having awakened some of the bays cruisers, but was put to rest with the explainations that they had been up for hours, but had noticed that this same activities had gone on the day before and they couldn''t quite make out what machine I was running sfter comming back from a morning dive. I explained that although I had 4 tanks I liked to keep them full and just use one at a time so''s not to have to dig after the others in the lazarette. They confessed that they we also divers but had been afrair to use their tanks for anything other than an emergency for fear of not being able to get it refilled. They asked what i charged to fill a tank and I explained that I was not here to make a living by filling other peoples tanks for money, but if they brought by their tanks and an occasional gallon of gas or a couple cold beers I would not only fill them, but teach them how to use the compressor correctly to fill their own. Also as a dive master, I had the job of re-entroducing most of these sailors back to the water for their first time in years.
Most of these people followed us through the Sea of Cortez for the rest of the year, and others joined us on our trek south through the canal and through the carib. They have all become life long friend .
Basic understandings of mechanics is usfull as well as care and maintaniance of any equipment, and it will run forever. I sold that boat three years ago and the compressor came with me to our 42 foot Tayana Trawler. Where ever we go, San Juans or Canada ,we go in groups of boats, and everyone dives.
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Old 08-11-2005
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Scuba Compressor

in florida i saw many HOME DEPOT (NO-OIL) COMPRESSOR used for scuba. $120.00-$150.00, need generator
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Old 09-15-2005
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Scuba Compressor

Hi all. sorry i came into this a bit late.. but I have recently of the east coast of Africa in the Mozambique Channel seen a dive compreesor that was fabricated from the 24v system that fills airtanks for break systems on large roadgoing trucks.. any one ever come across someting like this ??
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