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Masks with Purge Valve VS. Masks Without

Discussion in 'Fins, Masks and Snorkels' started by AnZal, Jun 17, 2004.

  1. AnZal

    AnZal Angel Fish

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    Me and the wife are thinking of buying our first masks. We haven't been diving for long and are not sure what all the pro's and con's are of masks with purge valves and those without.

    What we do know is that you need two hands to equalize with a mask with purge valve and that we've experienced more squeeze with masks that had a 'soft' nose.

    Any advice from the more experinced, or does it also depend on personal preference ?
     
  2. Kim

    Kim Here for my friends..... ScubaBoard Supporter

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    I can't tell you yet - but my new Ocean Master Z4 with corrected lenses and yes - a purge valve - arrived this week. Weather permitting I'm going diving tomorrow so I'll post back what I think afterwards! One thing I already do know about them is that you have to wash out the valve very carefully after each dive. If any stuff starts to build up in the valve it will start to leak. The design looks very simple however - so that shouldn't be a problem.
     
  3. AnZal

    AnZal Angel Fish

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    am thinking of buying one this weekend so will be able to compare notes after. It's more the wife that needs convincing than meself .... ;)
     
  4. Mo2vation

    Mo2vation Yes I Did ScubaBoard Supporter

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    Good to see you get back in the groove. In addition to being my very best friend, my wife is one of my dive buddies, too.

    Here's my take. I always ask not do I need it, but can I do without it. To me, less features are always better.

    I've never dove a purge / snot valve. I equalize with one hand on the descent - and its just never been a big deal. Wifie takes a LOT longer to equalize. But a purge mask wouldn't help that - she doesn't dive with one, either.

    Purge valves are designed to be 1-way valves to blow water out, I guess. But clearing my mask, doing a full R&R (several, actually) in a single breath is no biggie. My mask doesn't leak. Ever. When my beloved Seavision started to trickle after about 4 years, I picked up a Cressi (Bug) Big Eye (last fall) that is dry - I mean bone-freeking dry. I may let in a little water if I'm fogging, but then I just do your basic mask clear and its back to being dry.

    I'm not trying to be a jerk, but if your mask fits, why would you add a valve to it to drain it? I dove with face hair for years, and the trickle was no biggie... just pop the top, blow, its all better. But now that I'm smoooov, there is no leak. To me, its just another thing to babysit.

    I just don't get the Thing + features = A Better Thing thinking.

    K
     
  5. ShakaZulu

    ShakaZulu Great White

    # of Dives: 200 - 499
    Location: San Diego, CA
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    I agree, that purge thingy is a gimmick, you'll learn to clear that mask very quikly without and fancy drainage device. they work about as well as the snorkels with purge valves, the water still comes in.
     
  6. Kim

    Kim Here for my friends..... ScubaBoard Supporter

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    The main reason I quite like the idea is that I'm normally carrying a camera rig - so hands free clearing sounds (in theory) good. I agree though - it IS another failure point. Still I still have my old mask - and I can easily clear with one hand - so we'll see!
     
  7. AnZal

    AnZal Angel Fish

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    Don't have problems mask-clearing, and do see your point for not needing extra gadgets and more complications. The mask in question, a Tusa model (Imprex Hyperdry) also fits well, and it would probably be that which will be the deciding factor.
     
  8. Mo2vation

    Mo2vation Yes I Did ScubaBoard Supporter

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    Fit Fit Fit Fit Fit.

    The 5 most important features in any mask.

    Well, that and a black skirt.

    :D

    K
     
  9. AnZal

    AnZal Angel Fish

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    Black skirt ? Damn ..... this one doesn't have a black skirt. Nothin a bit of applied Magic Marker won't cure ... i guess.
     
  10. Mo2vation

    Mo2vation Yes I Did ScubaBoard Supporter

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    My first mask, in fact, most of us, our first mask is a clear skirt. There something about putting somethng black over our grill that is a little creepy for new divers, I think.

    My first mask was a tri-window clear skirted thing... like strapping an aquarium to yo face. I dove with that for awhile. One day I took my sister on an intro dive... you know, where a non-diver watches a video then gets the gear on and goes down wo like 40' or so with an instructor working the BC, etc.

    I went with sis (she was amazing) and the instructor saw my aquarium, and asked if I wanted to try a low volume black mask. So at depth he handed it to me (dude had a spare mask...) and I swapped.

    WOAH

    I was amazed. Without all that side light slamming my eyes I enjoyed it so much better. I expected to be all restricted and all tunnel vision like. It wasn't at all. In the end, fit is king, and you gotta be comfortable with your mask choice. I went black, and never went back. One of those things I had to try before I believed it.



    K
     

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