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emoreira
March 10th, 2010, 03:53 PM
Hi people :

I'm a new diver. I have under my belt only 36 dives. I love diving.

This is the gear I own :
2 masks clear Cressi Matrix and black Asia Omersub
2 snorkels Scubapro escape and SeaSub ??
3 mm Boots
3 mm gloves
3 mm hooded vest
5 mm Farmer John Wetsuit
Open heel fins Cressi Frog
Dive knife
Main dive light Technisub Lumen X6
Secondary dive light Mini Q40 Xenon
Oceanic Compass
Oceanic VEO 180NX PDC
Canon A570is + Canon WP-DC-12 case
Trident tank banger
Home made Slate
Home made weights (8, 4 and 2 pounds)
Home made weight belt

This is what I normaly rent :
1) Neoprene Jacket (Upper part)
2) BC
3) Regulator + Octopus + manometer + inflator
4) Tank

I have some money to spend and was trying to decide one of the four points mentioned above.
My short experience as diver that rents scuba gear is that rented BCs are crap. They lose air from the bladders, broken and/or missing parts, valves hardly working, etc.
Only once had a minor problem with a regulator underwater. I've switched to the octopus though I could go on with the main secondary (it was only wasting air).
Neoprene Jacket is difficult to buy online. It should fit perfect and one should try it in the store to find out the right size.
Tank, there is no reason to buy a tank if you don't have still a BC and reg.

I guess that the right direction is the BC. What are your opinions ? Please help me take the right decision.
Ive seen this one :
ScubaMax Altima JX200 Buoyancy Compensator

SailNaked
March 10th, 2010, 03:59 PM
if you are not having any problems with the rented regulator then Buy a BC. A BC that fits you and you can use to normalize your weight will make you a better diver. however if you want to be sure that you can breath air then buy a Regulator so that you know its history and repair and use record first then Buy a BC.

dhuskins
March 10th, 2010, 05:07 PM
Of your four items:

1) Neoprene Jacket (Upper part)
If you need it regularly, then consider this. I would get some of the other things first.

2) BC
This is a good choice. Having your own BC means having something that fits every dive.

3) Regulator + Octopus + manometer + inflator
This would be my first purchase of these four. I would also get the SeaCure mouthpiece.
Having this means you know what service history your life support system has had.

4) Tank
Only buy a tank if you do a more than a dozen local dives per year. Less than that and
it may not be cost effective for you.

emoreira
March 10th, 2010, 06:52 PM
Thanks for the comments.
+2 for the regulator.
However, from the LDS that rents equipment point of view, the regulator service is mandatory. It's a life support device, but the BC is an accessory. If it's not working properly, well the diver should be able to handle. If it loses air, the diver will go to the bottom or will need more effort and more air to keep flotability. If the power inflator do not cut (that happened to me) the diver has to manage to avoid going to the surface as rocket. This is more dangerous than going to the bottom as a stone (unless you are diving a wall).
From the 36 dives I have under my belt, more than 80 % of the times I had complains with the rented BC, and only one time a minor problem with the regulator.

Bubbletrubble
March 10th, 2010, 07:13 PM
Since the fit of exposure protection is critical to its function, I'd be more inclined to get the wetsuit issue squared away first. If your LDS is renting out a suitable neoprene "top," then order a new version of that (same brand/model/size) or offer to purchase a used one from the LDS. That being said, BCD fit is important, too, but most BCDs offer a range of adjustment.

What kinds of issues have you had with your rental BCD?
Do you know how to do a comprehensive pre-dive check on a BCD (http://www.scubaboard.com/forums/4813655-post26.html)? (Most novice divers don't know how.)
You should really be doing this before you leave the LDS with BCD in hand.

In general, BCDs require a lot less maintenance than regs do. I'd be very unhappy if my LDS rented out a crappy BCD to me. I would definitely go elsewhere to rent...or buy one of my own ASAP. I'd be particularly wary of rental regs coming from the same shop. Learn how to do a solid pre-dive check for regs (http://www.scubaboard.com/forums/4320058-post14.html), too.

I suspect that you'll be getting all of the items rather quickly. I would save the tank for last. Keep an eye out for used tanks as they can be a much better value than a new one.

I'm curious. Why do you have a dive computer and an UW camera setup when you don't have all of the "essential" dive gear yet?

Damselfish
March 10th, 2010, 08:54 PM
I would lean towards BC before reg. (Unless you normally have more problems with rental regs than rental BCs, but that doesn't seem to be the case.) It's more of a pain to use different BCs all the time. ANd I take it you're trying to save money - you should also be able to pick up a decent BC for a lot less than a reg set., and regs cost much more to maintain then BCs.

A wetsuit top or even a fullsuit could be pretty inexpensive, just keep an eye open for a deal. If you need it I'd put a fairly high priority on it, probably also before a reg.

It probably doesn't make sense to get tanks before BC/reg, unless you com across some great deal used.

Mayor
March 10th, 2010, 09:04 PM
For me I can dive in any old junk but please don't take my regs from me. :D

2degrees
March 10th, 2010, 09:11 PM
I would get a reg and computer first. I purchased a good reg and computer and I have been happy with them. I did not like the idea of putting something in my mouth that someone else might have puked in. I know your LDS tells you they clean it but.... I also enjoy having my computer display info the way I want with out setting it up. After getting a reg I then rushed to purchased a BCD. As my diving style has changed so has my BCD. I now have a BCD and a BP/w. If I had to do it again I would try and use different style BCD's before pulling the trigger. I think you should dive with a hybred, back inflate, BP/W, HOG before you get your own BCD. Or you may end up with 2 bcd's

emoreira
March 10th, 2010, 09:45 PM
I'm curious. Why do you have a dive computer and an UW camera setup when you don't have all of the "essential" dive gear yet?

Goooooood question, simple answer.
All the gear I have right now is all that gear that cannot be rented (well, not all).
I love UW photo. No where can be rented an UW camera (at least where I live).
In every LDS the basic gear can be rented, but this does not include knife, PDC, Compass, gloves, boots, slate, lights and camera. A fully rented equipped diver (for example you are a diver on vacation but have not carried your gear and all of a sudden you can dive) has none of the mentioned devices. Only wetsuit, BC, reg, tank, weights, fins and mask, even no snorkel !!!

emoreira
March 10th, 2010, 09:47 PM
I would get a reg and computer first.

I have already an Oceanic VEO 180NX

Bubbletrubble
March 10th, 2010, 10:10 PM
Goooooood question, simple answer.
All the gear I have right now is all that gear that cannot be rented (well, not all).
I love UW photo. No where can be rented an UW camera (at least where I live).
In every LDS the basic gear can be rented, but this does not include knife, PDC, Compass, gloves, boots, slate, lights and camera. A fully rented equipped diver (for example you are a diver but have not carried your gear and all of a sudden you can dive) has none of the mentioned devices. Only wetsuit, BC, reg, tank, weights, fins and mask, even no snorkel !!!
OK. I think I understand now. Does the LDS rent out an analog depth gauge with the reg? So long as the LDS rents out a depth gauge, you can use an inexpensive digital watch as a timing device and dive using tables.

I think I would have approached things differently from you. I'd recommend purchasing gear in the following order: "personal gear" (fins/mask/snorkel/gloves/booties), wetsuit, BCD, reg, lead, and tank. After all of the essential stuff, then I would buy a computer and an UW camera. I realize that others will probably disagree with me on this.

Good luck buying all that stuff. Purchasing new gear can be a lot of fun...and expensive. :)

emoreira
March 11th, 2010, 10:18 AM
OK. I think I understand now. Does the LDS rent out an analog depth gauge with the reg? So long as the LDS rents out a depth gauge, you can use an inexpensive digital watch as a timing device and dive using tables.

I think I would have approached things differently from you. I'd recommend purchasing gear in the following order: "personal gear" (fins/mask/snorkel/gloves/booties), wetsuit, BCD, reg, lead, and tank. After all of the essential stuff, then I would buy a computer and an UW camera. I realize that others will probably disagree with me on this.

Good luck buying all that stuff. Purchasing new gear can be a lot of fun...and expensive. :)

Rented regs can have a wide set of instruments. From manometer only to manometer + depth gauge + compass.
I've learned that I can only trust in the manometer.
Lead and weight belt is something I did myself, just for the pleasure of making my own gear.
Buying my PDC was something for my own pleasure + a great oportunity I've found.
As you mention, buying my own gear gives me pleasure and weak wallet.

2degrees
March 11th, 2010, 08:31 PM
What the heck is a man-o-meter?

vladimir
March 12th, 2010, 04:47 AM
What the heck is a man-o-meter?It measures how much of a man you are, obviously. :shakehead: At 9-1/2", mine is so large that I have to strap it to my leg. People call it "Big Squeeze." Here's a pic:

"Big Squeeze" (http://www.leisurepro.com/Catalog.aspx?op=BrandItemDisplay&BrandName=Wenoka&ProductID=SQTKBSD&Sort=Stock&DescSort=0)

USCScubaboy
March 12th, 2010, 05:25 AM
It measures how much of a man you are, obviously. :shakehead: At 9-1/2", mine is so large that I have to strap it to my leg. People call it "Big Squeeze." Here's a pic:

"Big Squeeze" (http://www.leisurepro.com/Catalog.aspx?op=BrandItemDisplay&BrandName=Wenoka&ProductID=SQTKBSD&Sort=Stock&DescSort=0)

Mine's bigger :rofl3:.

a spg is a manometer - something to measure pressure (in this case, the pressure inside a tank).

Meggie66
March 12th, 2010, 07:02 AM
Hi Emoreira, I'm in the same position as you, new back to diving after a 15 yr absence. Because I dive weekly I decided it was more cost effective to get my own gear, and I started with the BC because:
* I've had some trouble with rented BCs - the last time I rented one, the inflator hose started leaking air and the BC had to be inflated by mouth underwater (I was overweighted), then the dumps stopped working so half way through the dive I popped up like a cork and had to surface swim for quite a while (which maybe was a blessing in disguise as the leak had bled so much air I probably wouldn't have been able to stay down for the whole dive anyway);
* I wanted integrated weights, hard to get in a rental;
* You can't always get a ladies' BC when you rent, and they're definitely much more comfortable for us females; and
* While proper exposure protection is important everywhere, it's probably not as much of an issue in a Sydney summer (which has just finished) than it is in colder waters, so rented wet/semi dry suits which don't quite fit are still okay.

Having said that, owning your own gear addictive :chuckle: so within a fortnight I also had a semi-dry, reg, octopus, computer and compass - so much for my resolution to just go with the BC for now!

All the best
M

emoreira
March 12th, 2010, 09:58 AM
What the heck is a man-o-meter?

Pressure measurement - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pressure_measurement)
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/SPG

emoreira
March 12th, 2010, 10:38 AM
I want to thank to all the people that took time to answer my post and gave it's uninterested feedback.

Divertor
March 20th, 2010, 02:18 AM
Best deal on great regulators here: Scuba Regulators | Scuba Diving Regulators | Dive Regulators | Scuba Max: at Divemastersupply.com (http://divemastersupply.com/scuba-REGULATOR.html) You can get brand new reg for $139.98 + s/h. Personally, I would never get a used regulator....kinda gross.

medicgts
March 20th, 2010, 08:54 PM
I'd go with the BCD. The more comfortable you are in it and with it re: your bouyancy the less air you will waste inflating and deflating the BCD, giving you more bottom time. Just one guys opinion.

Divor
March 22nd, 2010, 12:31 AM
Buy the best regs on the market. All the rest is peripheral.

Lindzi258
March 24th, 2010, 10:38 AM
I bought a BC first, But being a small female rentals where never well fitted. The next thing i am buying is a Reg.

eelnoraa
March 24th, 2010, 02:10 PM
I think BC and reg are about equally important. If I have to choose one, I would get BC first because it will affect diving experience immediately. With your own BC, you can also work on your trim and weighting. Once you nail it, you will be more consistent in water. With rental, you may get a different type/brand/model everytime, hard to nail down the trim and weight.

Also, BC requires a lot less maintainance than reg, so the cost of owning a BC is also less than that of a reg.

However, if you are set on getting a reg, check out Oceanic Delta4 at Leisurepro. They are selling it for $299, authorized dealer, 2 year manufacture warranty. Not sure if there is a better choice for the same price. I am picking up one myself.

emoreira
April 3rd, 2010, 04:37 PM
Finally I bought my BC. Brand new Sea Elite Scout at Divers Supply. The deal was so good that I've gone for a new one instead of buying used.
The reg is my next objective. I must wait a few months for this, otherwise my wife will throw me out home.

brucet
April 3rd, 2010, 05:33 PM
Just curious, can a LDS service the ScubaMax regs, or is it just available/repairable at divemaster supply? Has any body used these? Recomendations on model? Also, looking at a package for my son. He is 14 and recently certified. Here is the package I am looking at DISCOUNT Dive Gear Equipment Package, HAMMERHEAD buoyancy compensator package, dive regulator package, octopus and gauge package | Discount Scuba Equipment Packages| Essential Scuba Gear List packages start under $650, professional quality ScubaMax a (http://divemastersupply.com/pkg-hammerhead.html) Is it any good?

halocline
April 3rd, 2010, 07:39 PM
Buy the best regs on the market. All the rest is peripheral.

This is a typical "spend more, your life is worth it" type of post.

Almost any regulator sold by a respected major manufacturer will work absolutely fine for recreational diving. I spent $84 on my current 'go-to' single tank regulator set (1st and 2nd stage), and I'm pretty certain it performs as well as "the best regs on the market", whatever that might be.

Of course, I do have a knack for finding good deals on used regs, and I know how to work on them. The point is, it's difficult to buy a bad reg if you stick to the major brands like scubapro, aqualung, zeagle, mares, sherwood, etc...

emoreira
April 3rd, 2010, 07:51 PM
This is a typical "spend more, your life is worth it" type of post.

Almost any regulator sold by a respected major manufacturer will work absolutely fine for recreational diving. I spent $84 on my current 'go-to' single tank regulator set (1st and 2nd stage), and I'm pretty certain it performs as well as "the best regs on the market", whatever that might be.

Of course, I do have a knack for finding good deals on used regs, and I know how to work on them. The point is, it's difficult to buy a bad reg if you stick to the major brands like scubapro, aqualung, zeagle, mares, sherwood, etc...

I fully agree with your position.
The most expensive regulator may fail if not properly maintained, rinsed, stored, and used with care.

Divertor
April 10th, 2010, 08:40 PM
Just curious, can a LDS service the ScubaMax regs, or is it just available/repairable at divemaster supply? Has any body used these? Recomendations on model? Also, looking at a package for my son. He is 14 and recently certified. Here is the package I am looking at DISCOUNT Dive Gear Equipment Package, HAMMERHEAD buoyancy compensator package, dive regulator package, octopus and gauge package | Discount Scuba Equipment Packages| Essential Scuba Gear List packages start under $650, professional quality ScubaMax a (http://divemastersupply.com/pkg-hammerhead.html) Is it any good?
Yes, the Hammerhead Package from Divemaster Supply is very good. You get a balanced regulator with adjustable second stage, a complete gauge console, and the BC is great. If you aren't satisfied, you can return it in 30 days too. Your local LDS should be able to service these, but you can call them to find out. Divemaster Supply is an authorized ScubaMax dealer too, so the manufacturer warranty always applies.

divinlion
April 10th, 2010, 09:09 PM
Thanks for the comments.
+2 for the regulator.
However, from the LDS that rents equipment point of view, the regulator service is mandatory. It's a life support device, but the BC is an accessory. If it's not working properly, well the diver should be able to handle. If it loses air, the diver will go to the bottom or will need more effort and more air to keep flotability. If the power inflator do not cut (that happened to me) the diver has to manage to avoid going to the surface as rocket. This is more dangerous than going to the bottom as a stone (unless you are diving a wall).
From the 36 dives I have under my belt, more than 80 % of the times I had complains with the rented BC, and only one time a minor problem with the regulator.

Find another dive shop that has decent rental gear. That crap about being able to handle malfunctioning gear is just a way to get new divers to buy gear IMO. and don't buy from the shop that has been renting you crap.

emoreira
April 16th, 2010, 04:53 PM
Finally I could do several good deals.
I bought a used refurbuished reg set in ebay, a spg console and a 5 mm Henderson Thermoprene shorty in Divers-Supply to add to my old Dufour Farmer John.
This is the last item I needed.
I want to clarify that I'm in no way related to Divers-Supply, but they have a very good service and prices.

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