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New boat

Discussion in 'Boats and Boating' started by scubabear47, Dec 14, 2009.

  1. scubabear47

    scubabear47 Angel Fish

    I just bought a 18 foot center console. I am so excited but this is my first boat and was just asking for any tips about setting it up for diving. I will be using it for mostly diving on the jersey shore and up in lake George. But I will often be using it for other things any suggestions.
  2. Lee Taylor

    Lee Taylor ScubaBoard Supporter ScubaBoard Supporter

    # of Dives: 200 - 499
    Location: Charleston, South Carolina, United States
    You need a way to get out of the water and back into the boat with all your heavy gear on. In other words a very well designed, strong ladder. This can turn into a big project.

    Or you can take off your gear prior to getting into the boat (pain in the butt).

    You need a way to secure the tanks.

    You need a long anchor line and anchor, of course.

    You need a dive flag (this is more important than people think)

    That's about it
  3. alheng

    alheng Angel Fish

    If you are diving with a buddy, you will need to organize the boat really well so you have some space.

    Have a good single post ladder.

    Have everything that is not used during the actual dive up front so that the rear deck is clear of clutter when you get back on. Last thing you want to do is trip on something when you have all the gear on.

    I have a large rectangular tub on board so there is a place to put all the gear into and not have it rolling around when motoring along in less then ideal conditions.

    Set up a mermaid line that doubles as you dock line. I have 6 cleats on either side of the boat. The line is tied with a bowline knot to one of the rear cleats, then passed thru the forward cleat on the same side, across to the other side and to the back, all slack is taken up in the bow. This way, I can come along side on either side of the dock. When used as a mermaid line, I just leave it tied to one of the rear cleats and tie a float at the other end.

    I have a short line hanging over the side with a couple of clips on it from the middle. When I start or return from the dive the catch bag and tickle stick or speargun gets clipped to it, so I have my hands free. Just remember to pull it up before you head off! If it's not too long and if you hang it from the middle cleat, it won't foul the prop if you forget.

    My tank holders are closer to the rear of the boat. That is where I suit up roll into the drink. This way, when I have to change tanks, I don't have far to carry them. You might say the boat is just 18ft, but you will find it hard to move around carrying something heavy when rocking and rolling in heavy seas.

    Have a proper place to store your dive flag. A PVC tube works great.

    If you carry extra weights on board have then in a small bucket, easier to carry and less damage to the deck. The food grade buckets are usually super heavy duty and will last a long time.

    Have a routine with your deckie/buddy, so that each person knows exactly what needs to be done and when to do it.
  4. Nemrod

    Nemrod Solo Diver

    Excellent list, you also need a:

    first aid kits

    I would go to East Coast Plastic web page and order a set fo Roll Control tank brackets:

    East Coast Plastics - Double B Tool & Die

    To prevent deck damage you need Dri-Dek:

    Dri-Dek | Interlocking Tiles, Sheets & Rolls

    DIR gods included, nobody brings hard weights or tanks without boots onto my boat--period. I am the captain, it is my boat, I am paying the way, I make the rules. No exceptions. Anyone who cannot live within these rules can dive from shore.

    You might look into soft weights and weight integration BCs

    I like the Garlick ladders but there are several other similar types:

    Garelick EEz-In

  5. Chuck Tribolet

    Chuck Tribolet Loggerhead Turtle

    # of Dives:
    Location: Morgan Hill, CA USA
    It's no hassle at all to take your gear off prior to getting in the
    boat. Two things that make it easier:

    1. Your BC+tank should be negative (with an empty BC) at the end
    of that dive. That way when you take of your BC, YOU are positive.

    2. Take off you BC with the bag empty. This makes it a lot easier
    to get off.

    With Dri-Dek, hard weights are not a problem.

    You need GPS and depth finder to find the dive sites.
  6. rrweather

    rrweather Barracuda

    # of Dives: 25 - 49
    Location: Suisun City, CA
    When you start looking into GPS units and VHF radios, I suggest getting a GPS and VHF that both support DSC. Basically, my VHF radio and GPS "talk" to one another. My VHF is always getting my position from the GPS. My VHF has a guarded button that, once pressed, sends my boat's info and current location over VHF frequencies. Any boat with the same setup will receive my transmission and my location will pop up on their GPS. Additionally, and more importantly, the Coast Guard will get my transmission and will hopefully be able to respond. For any non-boaters or people unfamiliar with VHF radios, it is simpler to explain "if something bad happens, push this button," as opposed to "tune to channel 16, find our location, etc." The DSC is more common than not; you just have to make sure both components are compatible. Once you get it, you register with the CG and get a number assigned to your boat. Then this number is programmed into your radio so that when the message is sent, your unique number is also sent. It allows the CG to know "who" they are receiving a signal from. My gear was purchased 3 years ago so the technology should be better and cheaper. My boat isn't built for big ocean by any means. That being said, if something happens to me, my fiance can push the button and hopefully help is not far away.
  7. Nemrod

    Nemrod Solo Diver

    The DSC is a good idea. I have that also and it is nice to know that pushing the red button transmits an ID and GPS location. We also carry a waterproof handheld vhf.

    I might would add a PLB for further offshore expeditions. Kind off expensive but if you need it----.

    Dri-Dek stops most damage to the deck but does not do much for the gunwales, seats, sides, transom well, swim platform, console and other exposed beauty areas.

  8. scubaskipper

    scubaskipper Captain

  9. bkotheimer

    bkotheimer Barracuda

    # of Dives: 100 - 199
    Location: Southern CA
    When I decided to christen my boat as a dive boat, I brought along some helpful buddies on the first trip and we made adjustments as we went along. By the time we went out on a second trip, it was dialed in.

    We found that on a smaller boat, with a small ladder and a high transom, that taking your BCD off in the water and clipping it to a line was the way to go.

    You certainly don't need "sonar" as one poster suggested, nor do you need radar for near-shore daytime trips on an 18' boat. VHF and GPS for sure, though.
  10. Nemrod

    Nemrod Solo Diver

    Depends where you dive, many places you do in fact need "sonar" or what is more commonly called a fish finder. Wrecks often move around, sometimes quite a bit. Many a time I have arrived over the published numbers only to discover a sand bottom. A quick scan of the area with the sonar will put you on the feature.

    But each to their own, don't want sonar, don't buy it. Most combo units now come with a sonar/chart plotter, if you get one look for one that can accept higher detail mapping cartridges (usually a SD card) or has them pre-loaded. Blue Chart and Navionics are two I have used.

    Oh, one of the reasons sonar units are referred to as "fish finders" is that they are very, very good at that little task. Something like this or similar units from Garmin, Lowrance etc:



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