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PLBs Can Save Your Life

Discussion in 'Training, Practices and Equipment' started by letterboy, Mar 19, 2019.

  1. outofofficebrb

    outofofficebrb HARRO HUNNAYYY

    # of Dives: 200 - 499
    Location: San Francisco, California
    2,876
    2,168
    113
    The ACR 400 (no screen) and 425 (view screen) come with mounts as well. The antenna is very easy to launch and put away for testing and access to the emergency button. (The antenna has an integrated cover for the SOS button.)

    I performed a test while in Indonesia and I dived with my canister and PLB for 84 dives the last month. I’d say it was thoroughly tested barring activating it.
     
    Dan and DandyDon like this.
  2. DandyDon

    DandyDon Old men ought to be explorers ScubaBoard Supporter

    # of Dives: 200 - 499
    Location: One kilometer high on the Texas High Plains
    48,429
    4,217
    113
    I think your newer model will fit in the pouch I got for mine. Got a new belt pouch for my PLB - $8 I did tape over the velcro inside so it won't grab on the velcro strap.

    Wow, great dive trip. You did a gps test? You have the hdvseatek canister, don't you? Did it hold well?
     
  3. littlegorgor

    littlegorgor Angel Fish

    # of Dives: 0 - 24
    Location: hong kong
    9
    1
    3
    so I have been going through 101 pages of post and learnt alot from everyone.

    I planned to get the ACR PLB 425 resqlink view (only plb available in HK)

    my best bet with the canister would be small Hdvseatek ? I saw previous photos that it will fit?
    Only problem is that I may not be able to open it after usage?

    another option is from custom divers. But will it fit the ACR PLB 425? some also mentioned it may leakage.

    premium option is custom made from light monkey. Unfortunately the cost is out of my range.
     
  4. DandyDon

    DandyDon Old men ought to be explorers ScubaBoard Supporter

    # of Dives: 200 - 499
    Location: One kilometer high on the Texas High Plains
    48,429
    4,217
    113
    Hdvseatek makes two models, the smaller one designed for PLBs, so that one should fit fine - and it should open fine after usage. Why did you think not? Just keep the o-ring lubed with silicone grease and replace it every year or so, like with any canister.

    I don't remember the inside dimensions of the Custom divers, but I'd be very surprised if it didn't fit. Just double check dimensions of both before ordering. Any canister can leak, but fortunately the PLB is not damaged by that. Just keep the o-ring lubed with silicone grease and replace it every year or so, like with any canister.
     
  5. outofofficebrb

    outofofficebrb HARRO HUNNAYYY

    # of Dives: 200 - 499
    Location: San Francisco, California
    2,876
    2,168
    113
    Thanks for the tip on the pouch.

    Yes, I did a GPS test. It was really nice having the screen even for that. It confirms that you've started the test. It tells you it's searching...then it locks in the coordinates. Then it confirms with check mark confirming that it is functioning properly. Someone recently posted a great review and walk through of the product. If you skip to 26:16 of the video, he actually shows you how the antenna launches/stows, and how to do the test and what it looks like with the screen in action. It's a great review of the product including a comparison to the Garmin InReach (better for land based excursions like backpacking, IMO) and how to register it in the US, etc.

    The canister held up well once I got past the learning curve. I'm not used to using so much lube on an o-ring and I finally realized the amount that it needed in order to not leak. Once I got that dialed in and ensured that the inner lid where it seals is dry before sealing it, it was dry. I press the two sides together then twist the two ends in opposite directions until there's a good seal and there's a bit of resistance felt. While maintaining that position and compressing the two ends together, I then put the ring and tighten that. I hand tighten it just enough that it's firm. In the beginning, I opened it after every dive day to ensure it wasn't leaking. Once I got a few dry opens (my learning curve finished) it stayed dry. I then left it that way for 2 weeks and it didn't leak one bit and was easy to open. I hit max depths of 111 ft. Longest dive was 81 minutes, shortest was 60 minutes. The longest day that it had was 294 minutes. I did 84 dives testing this set up in 2 repetitive groups (56/28) over a period of 26 dive days.

    The challenge for me is remembering which way to turn the ring. It might be helpful to label or draw an arrow. :) I'm also directionally challenged. :wink: Granted, due to the circumference of the canister and my being a Ms. OOO instead of a Mr. OOO, my smaller hands have to reach around the ring a bit more to get leverage but it is not impossible or extremely difficult to open by any means.

    I'm really glad I went with this model and I am confident that I won't second guess or question the transmissions with the screen if I ever need to really use it. Even testing it, it was convenient. No guessing of lights and flashes, etc. I really like that it is inherently buoyant. I can also figure out if the canister has leaked or not based on the sound it makes when I change positions underwater..I can hear the PLB hit the side or ends of the canister. When there is water in there....it doesn't do that.

    Please see above. I am very happy with the choice of canister and PLB I went with. I am also happy to report it was not an issue traveling with the canister given its questionable shape for flights. I split the 3 pieces of the canister to 3 different parts of the same piece of baggage.

    The HDVSEATEK small size will fit the ACR PLB 425 and a signal mirror as well as an emergency blanket with room to spare for something else. I posted a picture in the last few pages with it all in there. I have it fitting nicely in a thigh cargo pocket that is clipped off to my hip d-ring and buckled around my thigh. I don't notice it while diving. Please see above about opening it.
     
    Fastmarc and littlegorgor like this.
  6. CuzzA

    CuzzA Solo Diver

    10,959
    13,044
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    A couple stories from this past weekend. We had some pretty big seas, small enough to go out, but big enough to get into trouble.

    The first incident involved deploying what sounds like a PLB or EPIRB.
    https://www.flkeysnews.com/news/state/florida/article236951903.html?

    The second incident involved three divers all diving and leaving the boat anchored and unattended. Fortunately one diver was able to get back to the boat and call the CG to find the other two divers, which turned out to be a successful mission. However, with no PLB, it could have turned out much different.

    US Coast Guard Rescued Two Divers Out of Egmont Key - IONTB
     
    DandyDon and outofofficebrb like this.
  7. aviator8

    aviator8 Photographer

    # of Dives: 25 - 49
    Location: Georgia
    570
    281
    63
    I wanted to share something that came to mind and see if there is anything I am missing. In regards to how to carry a PLB to depth in diving, there has been much discussion about what would make a good pressure vessel to protect the PLB. Rather than try to have a vessel that keep the PLB, and/or nautilis dry and withstand the change in pressure due to airspace. Since there are PLB's that are waterproof to 5 meters, and the Nautilus is waterproof far deeper than that. Why try to create a pressure vehicle? Why not find a seal-able canister that will work but does not have to be robust. Stuff the PLB/Nautilus, and any other emergency gear in it, then fill it with fresh water. When you seal it up, assuming you get all or nearly all of the air out then there is no need to have a robust pressure vehicle since water does not compress like air. The water in the container could also work as emergency drinking water.
    Or am I missing something, like small air spaces in and ACR unit that would create issues. Or maybe that even though water will not compress like air it is still subject to the pressure changes of the weight of water above it? Just an idea, and wanted to see what others have to say.
     
  8. DandyDon

    DandyDon Old men ought to be explorers ScubaBoard Supporter

    # of Dives: 200 - 499
    Location: One kilometer high on the Texas High Plains
    48,429
    4,217
    113
    I'm no physicist, and you probably need to ask one, but sounds good to me. I'd check with a physicist, tho.
     
    aviator8 likes this.
  9. outofofficebrb

    outofofficebrb HARRO HUNNAYYY

    # of Dives: 200 - 499
    Location: San Francisco, California
    2,876
    2,168
    113
    I have the PLB 425 (View) from ACR. The non-view has similar specs and both are buoyant without an aid but the waterproofing limit is this:

    16.40 ft (5m) @ 1 hr., 33 ft (10m) @ 10 min.

    I’m sure the pressure equivalent of whatever it is in the case will allow it to endure more time but with that said, they aren’t designed to be in water submerged for extended periods of time. I also wouldn’t want it to possibly affect its performance or reliability if I had to use it. I don’t have an issue with my HDVSEATEK. It works great. I don’t see the need to do this for my situation and purposes. The risk vs the reward doesn’t seem worth it to me.
     
    DandyDon and aviator8 like this.
  10. aviator8

    aviator8 Photographer

    # of Dives: 25 - 49
    Location: Georgia
    570
    281
    63
    Just being inquisitive. I picked up a pair of canisters that I will convert to emergency packs. I was thinking that the risk of flooding (relative meaning depth rated flooding) might be less if the cavity was water filled having the side benefit of drinking water.
     

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