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New XT Free Flowed

Discussion in 'Dive Rite' started by Dubious, May 25, 2019.

  1. Dubious

    Dubious Nassau Grouper

    # of Dives: 50 - 99
    Location: Wisconsin
    173
    84
    28
    Greetings All,

    I bought a new XT open water regulator set via a scubaboard member instead of buying from an authorized seller. I took it to my LDS who assembled and inspected before I did my open water checkout dives. I should note that my lds is not an authorized dive rite service center. My lds cleared it for use but noted that the IP was sitting at 150. I read about ip on this website but beyond that, it didn't really register that this could or was an issue.

    I took the regulator out for my open water check out dives. The first part of the first dive went fine. We were sitting at 35' with a water temperature of 49-degree Fahrenheit for about 15 minutes before having to surface. We sat at the surface for some time before descending to do regulator recovery skill. It was during this skill that both the primary and secondary free-flowed.

    My LDS said it would look at the regulator again, but noted if it needed new parts, I would need to take it to an authorized service center.

    Part of me just thought I should just make the short trip to a different LDS who services and sells dive rite. That said, I had to drop off some rental gear to my LDS and they asked if I was leaving my regulator to be looked at. I said why not.

    My regulator is now ready to be picked up again. I was told the tech adjusted the IP to 135 and adjusted the cracking pressure. Does this sound right or should I err on the safe side and take it to an authorized service center?

    Your input is greatly appreciated. Next quarry dive is in about two weeks. I am trying to get it in the pool before that. PADI Advanced open water dives are in two months.
     
  2. tomfcrist

    tomfcrist NAUI Instructor

    # of Dives: I'm a Fish!
    Location: Virginia, USA
    2,889
    1,795
    113
    135 seems legit. 150 is a recipe for free flow
     
    Cdncoldwater likes this.
  3. Dubious

    Dubious Nassau Grouper

    # of Dives: 50 - 99
    Location: Wisconsin
    173
    84
    28
    Thanks. I am not sure why they allowed me to take it out with the high ip. Not the best first open water dive experience for me.
     
  4. tomfcrist

    tomfcrist NAUI Instructor

    # of Dives: I'm a Fish!
    Location: Virginia, USA
    2,889
    1,795
    113
    In 75 degree water you would have probably been fine
     
  5. Zef

    Zef Divemaster

    1,908
    1,305
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    Not sure why you thought it was a good idea to take the used gear you just bought out on an open water checkout dive. Comes across as poor judgement....perhaps they "allowed" you to take "your" regulator out with the high IP because they are not your parent or your nanny.

    You knew they were not a Dive Rite service center, so why would you think they would know the specs your regs should be set at? I imagine they put your reg on their test bench and pressurized it, checked the IP and ensured it did not free flow on the bench. The shop is what one would consider "workshop" or "test" conditions. In the real world, when you were diving, the reg free flowed. While 150psi is high it is not outrageously high for IP as some regs are spec'ed at 140ish....so no free flow on the bench the regulator goes back to the customer especially if they were doing you a favor by checking it over....unless they are doing a service/overhaul/rebuild then they need to know the specs.

    The bottom line is that a free flow is not an emergency. You can breath off a free flowing regulator...in fact one of the PADI open water skills is to do just that...one is supposed to simulate a free flow by holding the purge button down and then demonstrate that you can sip air off the regulator without freaking out.

    An uncontrolled freeflow is just a reason to end the dive as besides being really annoying to the diver, air loss through the LP circuit of the regulator happens at a quick rate...but not so quick that you can't safely ascend. Worst case scenario is you drop your reg in favor of your buddy's octo and do a shared air ascent to the surface.

    Also, since you bought this used online, the prudent thing to do would have been to have the reg set completely serviced before use. The fact that you had the problem you experienced is exactly why that is routine when buying/obtaining used gear that you do not know the complete history of. Caveat emptor.

    Glad you are ok, and glad you got your reg sorted out.

    -Z
     
  6. arcticat99

    arcticat99 Barracuda

    # of Dives: 25 - 49
    Location: Saskatoon Sask canada
    329
    165
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    i had a brand new apex AT 20 free flow on me during open water doing a giant stride in the fall in 50 degree water.we just tuned it up a bit and no problems after .cold water is most likely the cause
     
  7. divad

    divad Solo Diver

    8,032
    2,127
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    Yes.
     
  8. fmerkel

    fmerkel Loggerhead Turtle

    # of Dives: 1,000 - 2,499
    Location: Salish Sea (Seattle)
    1,702
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    I think @Zef was a bit short with you. One of the problems with this sport (many things in life) is you don't know what you don't know. In this sport it can hurt you.

    I did a similar thing; bought pretty much a complete used kit from a guy. I didn't personally know him, but was referred by a good friend that did, so there was somewhat of a vetting connection. He also insisted I have a shop check it before use.
    I took the reg in for a check, it checked out, so I used it, and it was fine. That was 20+ years ago and that reg is still in use.

    IMO, the shop initially did you a disservice. Even if they were not a Dive Rite shop the it was out of spec and a diaphragm reg can be tuned in almost no time, both stages. It is not a Dive Rite specific task. It's quite easy. They should have done that, made sure the IP locked up, and maybe charged you a small amount for it. They could have also recommended that it needed a complete overhaul and sent you out to have that done if they were not confident or saw IP creep.

    FWIW, I can't tell you how many regs I've tuned in the field when someone takes it out for a first dive after an overhaul and it's leaking a bit. This is not terribly uncommon as the 1st and 2nd stage seats take a minor set after the shop overhaul tune. It's easy to fix, not a really big deal but not very encouraging if you don't understand what is going on.

    Lots of people recommend buying used rather than new. I do often, but with that comes either the need to know how to evaluate the condition, or be willing to take it to a shop to 'start over' with a fresh overhaul which can tack on $100-150 to the price.

    If the prior owner took pretty good care of the reg, the IP now locks up, there should be no reason the reg should not work properly. It would pay to get yourself an IP gauge and check it yourself. One of the best things in a save a dive kit.
     
    Cdncoldwater likes this.
  9. Dubious

    Dubious Nassau Grouper

    # of Dives: 50 - 99
    Location: Wisconsin
    173
    84
    28
    I didn't see it as used since it was new in box.

    I was trying to do the right thing. In all honesty, if I never came to this site, I would have not known to take in a new regulator to a shop to be assembled and inspected. I was initially under the impression they serviced dive rite. Noone mentioned it to me when I dropped the regulator off for inspection and assembly. It was only after the incident that I was told they are no longer an authorized service center. When I went to pick it up the second time, I was told they used to have dive rite just like they used to have halcyon.

    True. I had no troubles in the pool doing that. Was a different story in open water especially on my first open water dive. I was with an instructor and 4 other students.
     
  10. Dubious

    Dubious Nassau Grouper

    # of Dives: 50 - 99
    Location: Wisconsin
    173
    84
    28
    I was charged for an inspection and assembly fee. I thought I was doing the right thing by paying them to take care of it.

    I only bought this because I was under the impression it was brand new never used. By doing so, I thought I was getting a good new regulator set that would not need to be overhauled for two years. Lessoned learned.
     

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