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When I read the forums most of what I see are discussions about
technique or this or that type of equiptment.
How many of you have ever made a dive with just the basics. I mean just mask,fins, regulator, tank and backpack, no BC, no gadgets (computer), no wet suit, etc.
Try this sometime on a warm, clear, shallow reef and experience the freedom.
I don't want to imply that one should do all dives that way but when condition allow it, it is a feeling of freedom you just can,t get dragging around all the other gear.
I still have a USD steel 72 with backpack/harness, oval Voit mask and single hose (as in one - no SPG, no second, no inflator) Conshelf. My original rubber fins have long since disintegrated, but I do have some 20 year old SP jets...
With no weight and no wetsuit I can still dive that rig with neutral buoyancy, and late in the summer every year I do it at least once, just for the pure enjoyment of the "good old days."
Now that the surface temps are around 72 degrees, I like to dive with just a steel 72, tank, backpack, US Divers Mistral double hose regulator. I cheat a bit though and use a vintage Scubapro horse collar BC.
I'd like to try that. However the surface temp around here is still mid fifties and the bottom temps have been low forties. I think I'll need the wetsuit yet. Now if I could lay my hands on an old beavertail suit.........
I'd be willing to give it a try but I've rarely seen water warm enough to dive without exposure protection. Heck, I use half of my 1/4 inch in the pool and use a dry suit every place else.
I do have a couple of back packs that some one donated to my display and an old single hose reg.
OTOH, my double 104's helium and O2 (for deco), dry suit and a stage or two give me plenty of freedom too. I can pretty much go where I want for as long as I want. I also get to avoif the cattle boat, resort and other dive industry bs that you guys might not have had to contend with in those days.
Wow, some vintage gear. I am surprised to see that SP still sells the old Jet Fins. I have seen several people diving with them. Most people think Twin Jets when I mention them. I have a pair of those and an AMF Swimmaster version of the Jet Fins. I got made fun of a few weeks ago about my 19-year-old USD Aqualung Wrap-around clear (sort of a yellowish tint) triview mask. The guy said it should be in a museum. I wonder if this gear would pass the DIR specs?
That's the way I used to dive in Saipan in the mid 70s. Surprised you didn't mention no octo, no SPG (only one hose -- imagine!) just a J valve -- dive until it becomes hard to breathe and reach back, hoping that the lever is still in the up position.
There were no computers back then even available (when did the decobrain/bend-o-matic come out anyway?). We did dive with a depth gauge, I still have my old Dacor model (I have no idea if it still works) along with the backplate of the time and my old steel 72.
To allow the hang-wringers to accuse me of hijacking yet another thread, this is why, after migrating to the popular poodle jacket BCDs of the 80s, I went looking for a way to dive closer to those days of yore and stumbled upon the BP and wing. Now I have the best of both worlds: A mimilaist system with buoyancy compensation.
Walter once bubbled... "I am surprised to see that SP still sells the old Jet Fins."
They will make them as long as there's a market for the best fins ever made.
Unfortunately, don't count on it. Excellent equipment gets discontinued al the time.