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View Full Version : dry suit + Halcyon Eclipse + weights = ?



Diving Dutch
December 22nd, 2005, 02:36 AM
I have recently acquired a Halcyon Eclipse with the SS backplate. Problem is that I DO NOT like wearing a 30 lb. weight belt in addition to the bp/w. So, where to put the additional 24 lbs (30 - 6 from the SS plate)?
I've read enough to know that the Halcyon ACB, outside of being outrageously priced, just takes up too much real estate on the waist strap. Folks have suggested the XS scuba tank pockets with the velcro fasteners. I guess these can be used on both the tank and waist straps. Everyone also talks about fine-tuning your trim based on weight placement, but that's if you actually use your bc for buoyancy. I use the air in my dry suit to achieve neutral positioning.
So, where to put the weights? And, any other suggestions on weight pouches? Thanks.

MSilvia
December 22nd, 2005, 02:54 AM
If you don't want to try using your BC instead of your suit, I'd suggest using a steel tank to eliminate more weight, and just keeping the rest on a belt to reduce clutter. Of course, if you really don't want to wear a belt, there are other things you could try, but they'd work a lot better if you didn't insist on using your dry suit for a bouyancy control suit.

Hoosier
December 22nd, 2005, 02:58 AM
He mentioned, "ACB is outrageously priced"

The steel tank isn't more expensive than ACB?

MarcG
December 22nd, 2005, 03:07 AM
In my current setup I use 30 pounds as well, here is how mine is broken up:

SS backplate: 6 lb
Weighted STA: 6 lb
XS Scuba weight pockets on harness waist: 6 lb (3 lb in each)
Weightbelt: 12 lb

Total: 30 lb

It works well for me.

Snowbear
December 22nd, 2005, 03:33 AM
How about a channel weight on your backplate? You can DIY it with used wheel weights from a tire shop.

Here are a couple links for tips on how to do it....

http://www.scubaboard.com/showthread.php?t=10847
http://www.scubaboard.com/showthread.php?p=280499#post280499

KOMPRESSOR
December 22nd, 2005, 05:40 AM
Either a weighted STA (left unit):
http://fue.no/images/halcyon-1128.jpg

or a "P-weight":
http://www.v4tec.de/p-weight/p-weight_1_thumb.jpg

or a heavier backplate would certainly lower your need for 30 lbs around your waist.


My way without any hesitation would be:

-Use you wing for bouancy control
-Steel single tank
-P-weight (6 lbs)
-Shell suit instead of neoprene, if you haven't got it already

And then a little extra lead in the ordinary waist belt, which you will find is much easier to wear with for instance 8 lbs instead of 30 lbs...


And YES, I've had an Eclipse 40 for about a year/60 dives now. It works great if you're "Doing It Right"!

Diving Dutch
December 22nd, 2005, 01:37 PM
I appreciate all of the suggestions. I'm just not very familiar with these tech rigs, so it's good to get a little feedback from other coldwater divers.

Doc Intrepid
December 22nd, 2005, 02:08 PM
One of the best ways I've found, which avoids a lot of stuff strung on your belt (but which is inflexible), is a heavy backplate.

Give FredT a PM. He's on this board. He makes 1/4" SS plates that are 12 lbs and 5/8" SS plates that are 15 lbs. I've got the 1/4". I don't need any more weight than that with steel tanks.

If you do, however, as Kompressor said, a 6lb weighted STA and a heavy plate, together with steel tanks, should meet your needs completely - thus avoiding the weightbelt entirely.

It's one option. Best with your solution,

Doc

PerroneFord
December 22nd, 2005, 02:10 PM
I am not a cold water diver, but is wearing THIRTY POUNDS of lead really common in cold water when diving wet? I am going to be doing some cold water diving next year, so I am just trying to get some idea.

Curently I dive a SS BP with a 5mm farmer top and 7/5mm hood, and use no additional weight.

Thanks.

MSilvia
December 22nd, 2005, 02:15 PM
Yeah, when diving cold water wet, I usually had a 7mm farmer john with a 7mm jacket over that. With 14mm of neoprene on my core, 7mm on my arms and legs, plus a 5mm hood, boots, and gloves, I had a lot of neoprene on. When I was diving that with aluminium 80s and no backplate, I had 32 lbs of lead on, which is good for a fat guy. I started with 40 on my first cold water dives. Any less and I was having trouble descending.

In warm water with an AL80 and 6lb backplate, I wear 4-6 lbs on the belt. Diving dry with a backplate and steel 72s ($50 each used), I wear a manageable 10 lbs on my belt.

Doc Intrepid
December 22nd, 2005, 02:19 PM
Perrone,

Depending on the size of the diver and the undergarment used, as well as type of tanks (and whether single or double), it wouldn't be unheard of.

Both my sons, who are in excellent physical condition and athletic kids (20/21), in full 7mm wetsuits and shorties (e.g. 14mm of neoprene on the torso) w/hoods/gloves and single aluminum 80s, Scubapro BCs, etc. required 30 lbs of weight.

Cold water is definitely a different animal.

Hope you enjoy it! :D

Doc

MSilvia
December 22nd, 2005, 02:20 PM
He mentioned, "ACB is outrageously priced"

The steel tank isn't more expensive than ACB?

It's probably a lot more expensive, but that doesn't mean the price is unreasonable. $120 for a pair of weight pockets is highway robbery. $300 for a new steel tank is fair.

PerroneFord
December 22nd, 2005, 02:31 PM
Perrone,

Depending on the size of the diver and the undergarment used, as well as type of tanks (and whether single or double), it wouldn't be unheard of.

Both my sons, who are in excellent physical condition and athletic kids (20/21), in full 7mm wetsuits and shorties (e.g. 14mm of neoprene on the torso) w/hoods/gloves and single aluminum 80s, Scubapro BCs, etc. required 30 lbs of weight.

Cold water is definitely a different animal.

Hope you enjoy it! :D

Doc

Wow, ok thanks for the insight guys! :) Hopefully, I'll be diving dry by that time. I apparently don't get cold easily. I did 3 dives a couple of weeks ago in 56F water with just my 5mm Farmer top and hood. No problems. I'm thinking that with my 7mm bottoms and the 5mm top, I could get away with 6-8 pounds and be comfy in 48-50F water. Any colder than that, and I'll certainly be looking dry.

MSilvia
December 22nd, 2005, 02:50 PM
Wow, ok thanks for the insight guys! :) Hopefully, I'll be diving dry by that time. I apparently don't get cold easily. I did 3 dives a couple of weeks ago in 56F water with just my 5mm Farmer top and hood. No problems. I'm thinking that with my 7mm bottoms and the 5mm top, I could get away with 6-8 pounds and be comfy in 48-50F water. Any colder than that, and I'll certainly be looking dry.
That would probably work okay, as I used my "Michelin Man" wetsuit when the SURFACE temps were as low as 45. I think my coldest bottom temp diving wet was 38F.

PerroneFord
December 22nd, 2005, 02:54 PM
YIKES!!!

Being a Florida diver, those numbers are just PAINFUL to look at!

matt_unique
December 22nd, 2005, 03:10 PM
As others have said it depends on your rig, suit, and body type. 7mm neo drysuit with neo dry gloves, neo hood, thick winter thermals with a single alum 80 with a 6lb buoyancy shift...40 lbs is not at all uncommon. Obviously you can shave tons off with a SS BP, trilam suit, steel tank, etc., etc.

--Matt

countryboy
December 22nd, 2005, 03:30 PM
It also depends on the brand of the suit....

I have a 2 piece 7MM neo sport that "requires" 31 lbs of lead (in the pool) to make neutral.. I did this using a mesh gear bag, releasing all air from the suit under water, then kept adding lead to the bag until neutral.. I ran out of lead that I brought and borrowed some from another person...

Saltwater..
My lead was 38 lbs (Using BP/W and the 2 piece 7MM neo sport suit)
My lead was 24 lbs w/ Henderson Gold single 7MM (same BP - Tanks).

So, shedding one layer of 7 MM neoprene and changing makes dropped my weight 14 lbs..(Henderson makes the Neo Sport as an entry level [price] suit.)

That was at the beginning of the summer... Now a few dives later, and a steel LP 108 tank, I only use 12 lbs with the single 7MM.. as per a buoyancy check post my last dive, draining the tank to 400 psi.

KOMPRESSOR
December 22nd, 2005, 05:28 PM
PerroneFord, for your knowledge there are those of us with less need for lead under water :D

But you guys are soooo in love with your aluminum tanks, and therefore (in my perspective!) you have to COMPENSATE with a lot of extra lead due to your light tanks. Over here aluminum tanks was something they did back in the 70's, as a result of low dollar and cheap US made tanks. I don't know ANYONE here who uses alu's as anything else than decos. And I tell you I know a lot of divers, being Norway's largest distributor of diving compressors. ("Kompressor", get it?! :14: )

I myself have used a single 12 litre 300 bar tank, empty weight is 17 kilos, BP + 6,5 kilos of lead in salt waters. 6,5 kilos should be about 14,5 lbs of lead. My suit is 7 mm neoprene drysuit with one or two thin layers of pure wool undergarments.

Adobo
December 22nd, 2005, 05:58 PM
It sounds like there are a bunch of ways to remove weight from your belt and move it to your rig. STA, bolt on plates, pockets that sit on tank bands, etc. By moving all this weight from your belt, aren't you effectively moving weight north? If so, how do you counterbalance to maintain reasonable trim?

FWIW, a little guy like me (5'7", 175lbs) who wears a dry suit and uses a SS BP needs about an additional 16 lbs of weight on my belt here in Northern Cali. My instructor says I could probably drop a little more lead when I get more experienced.

StSomewhere
December 22nd, 2005, 10:08 PM
He mentioned, "ACB is outrageously priced"

The steel tank isn't more expensive than ACB?Yeah sure but the steel tank is a much better value than the ACB.

No Fish
December 22nd, 2005, 10:31 PM
Remember you can always double up backplates if you have two of the same kind.

Diving Dutch
December 22nd, 2005, 10:41 PM
Just as a side note (and I never really thought about it until now), I do want to keep a little weight around my waist. I do 90% of my dives from shore, traversing rocky terrain. Having all that weight up high throws off my center of gravity and makes for a bit of a balancing act, not to mention hard on the back. It's a safety issue.
Thanks for everyone's input. I've a better idea of what might be right for me.

KOMPRESSOR
December 23rd, 2005, 02:36 AM
It sounds like there are a bunch of ways to remove weight from your belt and move it to your rig. STA, bolt on plates, pockets that sit on tank bands, etc. By moving all this weight from your belt, aren't you effectively moving weight north? If so, how do you counterbalance to maintain reasonable trim?

FWIW, a little guy like me (5'7", 175lbs) who wears a dry suit and uses a SS BP needs about an additional 16 lbs of weight on my belt here in Northern Cali. My instructor says I could probably drop a little more lead when I get more experienced.

You are correct about weight positioning. That's one of the reasons you'd be better off with a long steel tank. Over here we've had 10 litres 300 bar og 15 litres 200 bar (both steel of course) beeing the most sold tanks for ages. These are rather short tanks, and when on a Hogarthian rig they turn the diver a bit nose heavy, making it difficult placing fixed lead on the rig. Now luckily there's evolution, and slowly we've had a much better tank sailing up on the sales charts. The longer 12 litres 232 bar. Especially the Worthington heavy bottom (14,4 kilos) has become popular, since it contributes to trim by beeing "bottom heavy". When using one of these it's much easier to throw some of your ballast inside your BP, like in a p-weight for instance. Now there you have a more complete picture of what the correct steel tank can contribute to your trim.

I have just received a new set of doubles. Steel Worthington 2x12L/232 long tanks. I guess I will have to start all over again, after 12 months of refining my single tank rig. But that's just a lot of fun when you have a grasp of what you can achive by really working on it. I've been diving on and off since 1994. I have learned more about trim and diving the past two years than ever before, since I "turned" Hogartian. It's the way to go with diving if you are serious about getting the most out of your great hooby, for sure!


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