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Old 02-09-2021, 11:49 PM   #1
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simple scuba setup for emergency.

So i discovered i grabbed a crab pot line on my shaft when looking with my go pro. I had a diver come and remove it but it was like if the water wasn't so cold i would have just jumped in and removed the line. It got me thinking about simple diving setups mainly some suit to keep me from freezing. I could just hold my breath but a small tank would be nice. Has anyone played with this type of thing.
I am not looking at diving any lower then the keel or out in the open.
Thoughts??
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Old 02-10-2021, 12:17 AM   #2
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Could easily be done with basic gear. Mask, fins...weight belt. I’d prefer a small tank on a BC like a 40, 30 Cu. tank...that way I can control my buoyancy. Or you could use a surface unit like a hookah too. A wetsuit to keep you warm. But you’d have to rinse, dry and store it all. But you could also scrub your own bottom...
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Old 02-10-2021, 12:37 AM   #3
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Before you do this I am going to recommend you take a PADI dive course. Diving is very safe if you have training and very dangerous if you have not had training. You need to learn about the difference between wet suits, dry suits and weights. Jumping in with no weight and you will never make it to the prop shaft. Jumping in with too much weight and you might find yourself stuck to the bottom of the sound.

After the training you will find some simple cost effective solutions.
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Old 02-10-2021, 12:56 AM   #4
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While I have advanced cert, it has been a while.
So I got as far as thinking about it. A wetsuit back in the day, no way now. Weights, no way without a BC, but then you need a tank. Clean my boats bottom, not. The cost invested for the times it may be handy, Nyet.

if you are going to do it and use weights perhaps ankle weights?
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Old 02-10-2021, 01:31 AM   #5
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A hookah is simple and fairly safe. The compressor can stay on board or in the dingy.
No time limit and no tank to refill.
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Old 02-10-2021, 01:39 AM   #6
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if you are going to do it and use weights perhaps ankle weights?
Conventional wisdom for diving is to have your weights so that they can quickly and easily be jettisoned with one hand.
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Old 02-10-2021, 01:44 AM   #7
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Conventional wisdom for diving is to have your weights so that they can quickly and easily be jettisoned with one hand.
well I suppose if you cannot reach your ankles on dry land it may not be a good idea even if they are quick release
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Old 02-10-2021, 02:20 AM   #8
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A hookah is simple and fairly safe. The compressor can stay on board or in the dingy.
No time limit and no tank to refill.
If the goal is to get to the bottom of the boat. The diver is going to need weights. I find weights with out training to be a dangerous combination. I will grant that if you are working on your boat in 15' of water there is very little risk with a hookah set up. What if an inexperienced diver jumps in with 50' water? Does he have the training to get air into his suit before the hookah is yanked out of his mouth from being dragged down by to much weight. Does he know the correct procedure for dumping weight?

I'm not asking for much here. Just a few hours of safety training before messing about in a potentially dangerous setting.
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Old 02-10-2021, 02:24 AM   #9
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perhaps a beginner coarse just to get a feel for what i need and can store on board.I did a course 30 years ago and only did a couple. I found it boring.I need to be doing something not just looking around .I did dive in mexico once and the fish were interesting.I just want to be able to check the bottom and maybe cut a line or something.
I really appreciate this forum.
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Old 02-10-2021, 07:26 AM   #10
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I have a scuba tank with a long hose between the 1st stage regulator on the tank and the 2nd stage regulator in my mouth. Much prefer to not be banging the tank on the hull or running gear.

Really recommend taking a class so you don't end up dead when you hold your breath and pop to the surface.

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Old 02-10-2021, 07:27 AM   #11
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A. complete SCUBA gear
B. Tank left on boat and 50-75 ft of hose. I have 4 tanks onboard
C. Hookah. I can use the electric hookah to make sure I am attached to the boat.
I think all would require a BC and weights, if you intend to do some meaningful work.
Dont forget a couple of really sharp knives and maybe a cable cutter too.
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Old 02-10-2021, 08:03 AM   #12
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If you go for dive gear do yourself a huge favor and get certified and then get in some dives. Being under a boat at sea trying to work is not fun. And in bad/low vis it can get sporting in a hurry. If you are a very inexperienced diver you may regret going over the side. And if there are any seas at all then your prop(s) and or rudder becomes an extremely effective weapon with you as the target. Lots of folks do it safely just know what you are getting into. Don
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Old 02-10-2021, 08:04 AM   #13
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Mantus anchors sells a small scuba tank just for such situations as you mention.
https://www.mantusmarine.com/mantus-scuba/
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Old 02-10-2021, 08:07 AM   #14
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I have a scuba tank with a long hose between the 1st stage regulator on the tank and the 2nd stage regulator in my mouth.
That is what I have also used. 50 ft hose. Soft weight belt and I would run the air hose under the belt so I didn't have to support the hose weight/tension with my mouth. It worked well for the normal underwater duties such as cleaning, changing zincs, etc. Several of my fellow marina mates had borrowed it as well.

And we never got clams using it, that would be illegal
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Old 02-10-2021, 08:18 AM   #15
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I’m thinking the same as the OP about something simple for emergency use. And doing some research I definitely agree with others about the need for training. There are many things that can go wrong quickly and permanently.

Having said that and making no endorsement, there is a new battery powered hookah called Nemo that I think was mentioned here a while back. It seems more of an alternative to snorkeling than scuba but looks interesting. They have an online training class to use it. I would venture to say it does replace conventional scuba training but would at least expose one to the basics.
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Old 02-10-2021, 08:54 AM   #16
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We have a 110 VAC hookah with 60' of airline, a 3 mm wetsuit and a weight belt. The hookah can run off the generator or the inverter.

I've tangled lines in the running gear before and thought it would be a quick fix. It's amazing how tight a line can get wrapped around the shaft/prop. A good serrated knife or hacksaw were the only way to cut the line free. (I have been diving for 40 years and certified)
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Old 02-10-2021, 10:18 AM   #17
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As the rest have said a basic course needs to be completed before most dive shops will even fill your tank, if you run a tank. Dad was a Master, my Cousin use to be a Manager at the Lighthouse dive shop and I took my first class when I was 10. For a first time diver I would not use a hookah or lines from the boat as they are easily tangled by the inexperienced, and then panic sets in and things go wrong. One must be in fair shape to even get a wet suit on. And by the time you put on a belt and fins its a small workout before your even in the water. One must have fair swimming skills, many fail the basic swim test. Cost is significate for a basic set up, more cost effective to hire a pro, and most are available in any area but the far remote. PNW waters are cold, dark, and it is very easy to become disoriented when you first start out. If one was to start fresh a hookah set up with suit and everything is about 2k. If you ditch the hookah and go with a BC/tank the cost is about the same for a basic set up. If you still want to do it I recommend the light house to get you started, they have weekend and night classes, most class is in a warm pool, then you take a basic "final" open water class. You could also look for used gear, most often is lightly used and about 1/2 price.

https://lighthousediving.com/instruc...urse-weekends/


On your boat if you had a line cutter on the shaft do you think it would have worked? I think you can have a diver install a two piece for about the same cost as a dive gear set up.


Now if we are talking warm water set up's and clear water its a different story in my book. Even with a good .5-.7mm suit you still get cold in a hurry around the PNW.
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Old 02-10-2021, 10:36 AM   #18
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I bought a hookah setup with a 50í hose and a soft belt for cleaning the bottom in the Bahamas and other maintenance. Iím not an experienced diver and have not taken a class, but have always been a strong swimmer, have surfed for quite a few years here in Texas and Costa Rica, etc, etc.

I experimented with it multiple times in my pool with my wife watching. Seemed pretty easy to modulate my breathing.
However, the first time I used it to clean my bow thruster blades and tube in the Bahamas I started sneezing. Maybe I was allergic to all the growth I was cleaning? I donít know, but the combination of the sneezing and working on a boat moving up and down and looking around for sharks 🤨 made it way more difficult than I had anticipated. Every little problem seems to be magnified underwater when inexperienced. It made me realize I needed instruction and more experience before trying it again. All the divers here told me that, but I didnít listen obviously.

Anyway, thatís my cautionary tale.
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Old 02-10-2021, 10:46 AM   #19
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I think the challenge is that it's a slippery slope.


To not freeze, you need a wet suit.


Wearing a wet suit, you will float like a cork, so you need weights.


Wearing weights, you need to know some basic safety procedures, or get a refresher on them.


To conveniently dive with weights, you need a BC (buoyancy compensator).


To operate a BC, you need an air supply, which you will really need anyway unless you are really fit and can hold your breath for a long time. Otherwise you won't be able to do much of anything before you need to come back up for air.


Now you need an air supply, and can choose between a hookah or tanks. But by now you see that the air supply is only a small part of the problem.


So by far the simplest solution is to call a diver, and that just leaves you exposed if you get tangled up out in the middle of nowhere, and can't limp home somehow. At that point, it's a risk assessment.
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Old 02-10-2021, 11:01 AM   #20
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I would use a mask that fits you and without a snorkel. The hardest part is seeing.

I would bring a good light. The hardest part is seeing.

I would search out and bring a good hacksaw blade. In reality, you wonít be slicing much.

I would bring a Victorinox serrated blade or 3. They are thin, inexpensive and work. Favorites among the professional fishing crowd.

I would bring a good pair of stiff solid fins, like scubapro jetfins. Floppy is for swimming, you want immediate trim control and power right when you need it.

I would wear a wetsuit just thick enough to keep you from freezing and just enough weight to get under but still significantly positive. You want freedom of movement. You will be a bit cold, but donít worry, you will be working. Wear a hood.

I would tie most of my tools with some short shock cord to my wrist. Itís easy to drop things.

For clearing a line, scuba is not required. If you are not already well experienced and a frequent and recent user, leave it. I leave it because it is not required for the job.

Iíve done the cutting out the line thing more times than I want to admit to. Iíve done it in calm conditions, somewhat rough and Iíve done it after being roused from my bed with the shakes from a full on flu. The hacksaw and serrated blades are by far the most critical parts to getting in and out. You will be working at it longer than you think sometimes.

The biggest risk is getting separated from a boat that canít retrieve you. Stay next to the boat and have some trailing catch lines just in case.

Scuba, and itís complications, are just not necessary.
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