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refusing an instabuddy

Discussion in 'Basic Scuba Discussions' started by ballastbelly, Jul 1, 2014.

  1. Lorenzoid

    Lorenzoid idling in neutral buoyancy

    # of Dives: I just don't log dives
    Location: Atlanta, USA
    The OP is a case in point--no doubt he will make a fine instabuddy for someone. If I were him, it would be the possibility of being rejected by someone as an instabuddy simply because I'm a novice that would concern me more than the possibility of having to reject someone else.
  2. giffenk

    giffenk Great White

    # of Dives: 500 - 999
    Location: toronto
    Air check for an insta buddy added to our dive pair is at least every 5 minutes. More frequent at the start of the dive. The only times we have had a third is on live aboards when someone's normal buddy wants to sit out a dive. The DMs then attempt to match the stray with a compatible pair. Since we are slow shallow divers, we often get asked to take on divers who have air consumption issues. We pre plan with them to return them to the boat with sufficient air and verify they exit the water. We then continue our dive as a pair. Checking their air often allows us to liesurely move shallower if required and makes sure we will have them back to the boat with no stress on anyone. Checking air often with the insta buddy means there are no OOA surprises.

    When I dive with my regular dive buddy, then an air check is done at least very 5 minutes. Checking air often with my buddy means there are no OOA surprises.
  3. boulderjohn

    boulderjohn Technical Instructor ScubaBoard Supporter

    # of Dives: 1,000 - 2,499
    Location: Boulder, CO
    Let's go through a couple of these and see how they compare with how I feel.
    In summary, different people have different attitudes. You have yours. Mine is quite different.
    ratchet04 likes this.
  4. Hawkwood

    Hawkwood MSDT

    # of Dives: None - Not Certified
    Location: NA
    I'd say my attitude is similar to your's John.

    Peter Guy had the best comment in this whole thread...nobody thinks of them self as the the "instabuddy".
    shoredivr, Peter Guy and TSandM like this.
  5. azmodan50

    azmodan50 Solo Diver

    # of Dives: I'm a Fish!
    Location: New York

    OK, now I get it. That makes sense. It's just funny that you carry that much extra air when chances are you won't need it and open circuit divers rarely carry that much extra.

    Thank you for that explanation. That's one of the things I love most about diving. There's always something new to learn.

    ---------- Post added July 3rd, 2014 at 08:17 PM ----------

    I agree with this for the most part. I really like diving with novice divers, but I insist that they lead. Too many times have I looked back for my buddy for them to be gone and found on the surface for one reason or another.

    I don't mind if they tell me they need to surface for whatever reason, just don't leave me to search for you. Other then that, I agree with you 100%. I think the dislike by some for instabuddies maybe be due to that person relying on their buddy too much. I don't like to rely on other people no matter their experience.
    shoredivr likes this.
  6. cainslie

    cainslie Angel Fish

    # of Dives: 500 - 999
    Location: Ballito, South Africa
    Thank you for saying this!

    I'm that new guy, my only dives are my qualification dives so I really need to dive more (next weekend, yay!), but there's the catch 22 of being the new guy who needs to learn and gain experience and the nervousness of screwing somebody else's dive up because of my inexperience!

    I'll just have to be my usual self; humble, willing to learn and non-confrontational! :)
    TSandM likes this.
  7. Stoo

    Stoo NAUI Instructor

    # of Dives: 5,000 - ∞
    Location: Freelton & Tobermory, Ontario, Canada
    Don't misunderstand TS&M... My concern was over the attitude, not the fact that the OP is a new diver. As a retired Instructor, I love diving with new divers for all of the reasons you mentioned. I've spent the past two years mentoring a new diver and she has become an awesome diver, if not a little overly confident.

    I am involved with a "club" (really a FB group of keen divers) that is filled with really enthusiastic, and very capable newish divers. While I still prefer to dive with just a close friend or two, the odd weekend that I dive with this gang is always a lot of fun.

    So agreed... We old farts need to welcome the newbies with open arms. I know from experience, that spending time with a newer diver not only benefits them, but "us" as well. The constant stream of questions causes us to rethink, and reevaluate how we do some things. And their enthusiasm can be downright infectious and reminds us of just how much we love this ridiculous pastime too! :)
  8. rivers

    rivers PADI Pro

    # of Dives: 500 - 999
    Location: Bristol, UK
    Filled in my own answers
  9. boulderjohn

    boulderjohn Technical Instructor ScubaBoard Supporter

    # of Dives: 1,000 - 2,499
    Location: Boulder, CO
    In my experience, not showing your instructor card is the best way to be targeted as "That guy's buddy."

    I have shown a professional card for more than a decade now, totaling I don't know how many hundreds of dives. I have never once been asked to buddy with someone because my supposed superior skills would help a person who is a beginner. It is just the opposite, in fact. Dive operators in general want their customers to have a good time and come back. They want to be recommended to others by those customers. Getting an instructor angry is not a good way to build a client base. Knowing that, every dive operator I have ever used has been especially courteous to me. When they divide groups by ability, I go in the most capable group. I go on the boat going to the best sites. I get into very interesting collegial chats with the other professionals on board. I sometimes even get discounts, although I neither expect nor ask for them.

    Here is an example of such an experience:

    I checked in with a large operation in Kona, Hawai'i. When I got to the boat, I saw there were more than 20 divers. We were divided into 3 groups, all of whom then huddled with their respective DMs. A representative of the shop was in our group. He pointed to our DM and said this guy was a trainee, and he was mostly learning the sites. The least experienced dive in our group had more dives than the DM trainee, so the assumption was that we could be trusted to be primarily on our own while staying more or less together. The other 2 groups, we were told, were just OW divers. They would be doing a shallow reef dive while we went off a little ways to a more advanced and more interesting site. It was a great dive.

    I wonder if there were any instructors who had only shown their OW cards in the other 2 groups, diving with all the other OW divers on the shallow reef while feeling smugly satisfied about having hidden their true level of certification from the crew.
  10. industrious95

    industrious95 Barracuda

    # of Dives: 200 - 499
    Location: New Jersey
    I don't think it's really a big deal. If you travel alone, you are going to get instabuddies. Just discuss your plans before entering the water. How long will you stay down, what depth are you comfortable with, what will you do when one of you reaches 1000 psi (ow whatever your number is). If you can't agree on that when dry, then get a different buddy before hitting the water.

    You said you're just getting certified - so you may be that "bad instabuddy" by your definition. But you'll find a lot of experienced divers will give you the patience and friendship you need to become experienced on your own, and then it will be your turn to do in kind to the next generation of divers.

    If I had an instabuddy enter a wreck while with me, I'd be making my tank with a knife or clip and yelling at him to get his attention and shaking my head, and crossing my hands. But if I was on a wreck dive, I'd make sure our pre-dive discussion included "no penetration." If his (or her) intentions were different, I'd tell him we'd be better off to get different dive buddies, because I'm not going in.

    I was once on a Caribbean wreck, and a buddy I met a few days earlier and had already done 5 dives with wanted to take photos on the deck of the ship - at around 90 feet. I told him I would stay at 60 feet, keep him in my sight the entire time, and be 20 seconds away in case of an emergency. We did our dive, he got his pictures, and we had a great time. Good pre-dive communication on the surface is the solution to most problems.

    I've had insta-buddies that I wouldn't care if I ever met again, and buddies that I really liked, but the whole point of going diving is to have a good time. But I've never had a bad dive just because the person I was with had different interests or skills then me. I'll take a bad instabuddy over a good day at work - anytime!
    fire_diver likes this.

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