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  Topic Review (Newest First)
01-01-2010 10:55 AM
Originally Posted by j34035 View Post
Any opinions on full face masks?
I love my full face mask mask and would never consider boat bottom cleaning without it. I use the no frills IST mask that is available just about everywhere online. But it has to be made of silicone, not rubber. This is critical as the rubber mask will deteriorate and crack in a very short time.
01-01-2010 09:50 AM
j34035 Fast,
Any opinions on full face masks?
01-01-2010 08:51 AM
Originally Posted by 2Gringos View Post
Hey, I must be dead by now, huh? I just noticed my wristwatch ain't NEARLY big enough to be a diver's...
Great line.
01-01-2010 08:29 AM
2Gringos That one in the lower left of the brochure is the one we have. Subaru gasoline engine. We get about four hours of diving on a half gallon of gasoline. I have three regulators, and Brownies supplied me with the hoses cut in 20 ft. lengths. I can put three people to sixty-seventy feet but typically won't. Almost all the fun stuff to see is shallower than 30 ft. I give them a 20 ft. hose until I can acertain how comfy they are breathing underwater. That's plenty good for lots of fun reef diving, etc. down to 10-12 ft. If it's someone who knows what they are doing, another diver, etc. I can clip more hose on in 20 ft. sections. as needed. 40 ft. of hose will get you below two atmospheres, but just barely and you have to work at it. On the other hand, if I need to bounce down to a hundred feet, I can do that, too. Rarely happens.

Time at depth is one of the aspects of hookah diving that can get you in trouble without training. You could easily go to 50 ft. and be there for hours...this is something that needs an experienced diver to take control of.
01-01-2010 05:42 AM
Originally Posted by Bermudahigh View Post
I don't know about these hookahs, but those red and white stripped front mounted bcd's are NICE!
12-31-2009 06:32 PM
Originally Posted by zz4gta View Post
Thanks for your reply. I picked up a wet suit and snorkel gear to try that for a while, but what else would I need to make that particular compressor ussfull for hull cleaning? I know I'll need a regulator, any fitting?
I have always bought my 2nd stage regs from Innovative Designs in Florida. The regs they sell are designed for use in a hookah system and my experience is they perform flawlessly with little or no maintenance. Here is a link:

Super Snorkel

To attach the hose (breathing grade only) to the compressor, most guys just use brass hose fittings, quick-disconnects and hose clamps. Nothing special.
12-31-2009 05:41 PM
2Gringos After several incidents in which I had to abort a job to help another diver, I stopped diving with a 'buddy' back when I was using SCUBA to install oceanographic instrumentation in the 70's. I found that the job went quicker, and safer, if I did not have to keep my eye on someone else all the time. I was able to concentrate on myself and my work without distractions. I remember one job in which I had to dive down to a series of bottom mounted tide recorders just outside Boston Harbor weekly, with the deepest one at 130 ft. I planned the bounces and surface time so I didn't have to make a lot of extra decomp stops. It was important to me to not be distracted from the job, because the narcosis typically hits me around 95-100 ft and it was okay when I anticipated it. It took me 3-5 minutes to remove the tide guages and replace them with a fresh one, and a couple extra minutes here and there screwed up my whole dive plan.

I found that I much, much prefer to dive alone when working. If there are other people in the water around me, I feel like the old lifeguard who has to keep an eye on everything. And I don't want to be the lifeguard. I enjoy the diving. And to me, it's a solitary pastime. A peaceful place to be. Until some bozo keeps flashing his newly learned hand signals in my face every few minutes to tell me he's okay, and expecting me to tell him that I'm okay...

When what I really want him to do is go climb on the boat and leave me alone.
12-31-2009 04:51 PM
hellosailor Dave-
"always dive with a buddy" Actually that was a hot subject for debate even 25 years ago, because divers tend to DIE in pairs as the result of buddy diving. USCG, DAN, all found that time and again, one diver gets in trouble, the buddy either tries to help or gets involved, and both die. Of course there are no stats on 'saves' so there is only debate, but I think even PADI (the 'certificate of the day' folks) offer a "solo diving" certificate now.

Diving has radically changed. Back then, most divers used the WW2 USN tables--and ignored the fact that those tables were "warm water, no wetsuit needed, prime healthy male" tables. At a seminar given by a USN diving medical officer, I asked "And since we all need wetsuits here, aren't we supposed to move up one interval in these tables?" and I think the room was shocked when he said "Yes, or use the cold water tables."

Now everyone is hooked on computers (which may be more accurate but probably eliminate some safety margin inherent in the conservative tables) and "Nitrox" which probably is a good thing--but nowhere near the big deal the marketers would make of it. (Hey, it's still "air" and if you use the appropriate table, what's the big deal?)

My instructor was indeed a veteran ww2 "frogman" who told us that simply inhaling, holding a deep breath, and shifting from a horizontal position to a vertical one (in the water) could cause enough of a pressure change to blow out some lungs. Not typical--but possible. Someone with no training at all, could still get into trouble with a "mild" compressor in a situation like that.

So..."just" using a compressor at ten feet, shouldn't be a problem, but still could be a danger for some folks.
12-31-2009 01:20 PM
zz4gta Fastbottoms,
Thanks for your reply. I picked up a wet suit and snorkel gear to try that for a while, but what else would I need to make that particular compressor ussfull for hull cleaning? I know I'll need a regulator, any fitting?
12-30-2009 08:48 PM
Originally Posted by zz4gta View Post
Here's a tip from someone who uses an electric hookah every day to earn his living, and has done for fifteen years- any oilless compressor will work. They don't make a small compressor specifically designed for diving applications, every commercially available consumer-level hookah from Brownies on down is repurposing a compressor that was intended to do something else. That being said, while a cheapo, Home Depot special will do the job, there are better alternatives. Yes, they cost more. But they will last longer. But maybe you don't care since you will only be diving on your own boat. Whatever- it's your dime.

Here is the compressor most professional hull cleaners use, if they are using a hookah:

The Thomas 1020 is available at and They generally run about $325. They are lightweight, rugged and durable. I, and all my divers, use them without exception.

Here's another tip- the link above shows some hookahs built around standard, off-the-shelf compressors. My guess is the compressors are cheap Chinese knock-offs. At least one is plumbed with steel reserve tanks. Not only are reserve tanks generally unnecessary, IMHO, but mild steel tanks like these will rust out in short order, leaving you breathing mud. The fact that this web site is selling hookahs based on inferior compressors is a big red flag, IMHO.
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