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The latest technical diving regulator …the Phoenix

Discussion in 'Vintage Equipment Diving' started by Luis H, Oct 12, 2008.

  1. Luis H

    Luis H Instructor, Scuba

    # of Dives: I'm a Fish!
    Location: Maine
    2,851
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    Semi-Vintage tech rig

    Here is the rig I am planning on using for the advance Nitrox and deco procedures class I am planning on taking.

    The primary regulator is a Phoenix with only a LP hose to my drysuit. I could use my round label original RAM, but this Phoenix breaths great. Heck I could even use a Mistral.

    Notice the black hoses…I like my yellow hoses, but I thought black hoses would be more appropriate for technical diving. :D

    The alternate regulator is a modified Conshelf (it has the newer environmentally sealed dry ambient chamber). The second stage is a Scubapro metal balanced second stage.

    The harness is one of Allan's (no back plate on this rig). There is a Zeagle U shape wing around the harness that is directly attached to the tanks. It does work well.

    I used a Zeagle wing with four straps to the tank through the buckles that you can see in the picture.

    Today I dove this rig for the second time and after a few minor adjustments from last weekend dives, it worked great.

    I will probably be using the same configuration with my small double 40s and next summer I will probably set up a set of double aluminum 50s. Small doubles are so much nicer, but it was nice knowing I had a lot of air with me.



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    Last edited: Oct 12, 2008
  2. spectrum

    spectrum Dive Bum Wannabe ScubaBoard Supporter

    # of Dives: 500 - 999
    Location: The Atlantic Northeast (Maine)
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    Looks good under water too. Would you like to borrow some black weights?
     
  3. Nemrod

    Nemrod Solo Diver

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    I really like your outfit (except for those horrid green weights--lol). I am not sure I understand why you chose that Zeagle wing though? I guess that was to allow routing of the webbing of your Sea Hunt harness?

    You emailed me and I did not answer due to a internet issue but the reason one might add the third post on the Sherwood is that if diving single hose on the outside posts you could turn a regulator off--isolate it, you could not, however, isolate the cylinders because the center post valve does not shut the tanks off from one another, it only closes the center post valve.

    Your Sea Hunt harness appears to be nylon, not cotton?

    Nice rig.

    N
     
  4. Luis H

    Luis H Instructor, Scuba

    # of Dives: I'm a Fish!
    Location: Maine
    2,851
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    The price was right...on the weights...I don't like them any more than you do, but with the price of lead, I am not about to replace them.

    I just bought the Zeagle bladder and it works great for this application with the conventional military (Sea Hunt) harness.

    I replace the hose to make it shorter and that worked well.
    It is a single bladder construction (with no bag inside a shell) which I really like.

    It has bungee cord that retracts the the bladder tight against the tank.
    So far it seems to work well.

    The harness is nylon. After the first dive I modified it with a 2" waist strap and conventional metal buckle. It worked great today.

    The shoulder harness is original style.

    I also modified the 1" crotch strap to go to the weight belt instead of the waist strap. That way the crotch strap will never be in the way of the weight belt.
     
  5. Nemrod

    Nemrod Solo Diver

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    I notice you turned your band clamp--presumably to prevent it from rubbing a hole in that bladderless wing. I never was able to get much service from bladderless rigs, to prone to getting holes in them. Hopefully you will not suffer that problem.

    N
     
  6. Luis H

    Luis H Instructor, Scuba

    # of Dives: I'm a Fish!
    Location: Maine
    2,851
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    Only time will tell how durable is this BC, but it does look very rugged. I don’t expect the material to wear any time soon.

    I was actually more concern about my dry suit (a bit more money tied up in that) rubbing against the metal band edges. It this case I am not using the thin military bands, but Peanutking’s heavy SS bands. I ended up rounding the edge of the metal bands smooth, but even when I tried the tanks with a T shirt I don’t feel any edges at all…definitely nothing sharp or that would wear anything (I hope).


    My experience with bagged bladder style BC has never left me with a great impression. I have used bagged horse collars (US Divers), bagged jackets (I think it was a Parkways), and bagged rear inflate (a Sherwood that looked just like many other wings), and none of them seem to vent as easily as a bladder-less single bag style BC.

    Like everything, I am sure they are not all created equal…some will do a better job than others, but in general it seems that the bladder will create more folds were air can get trapped. I try to keep very little air in my BC therefore any little trapped air would be a hassle.


    OBTW, I will be sending you some pictures of the other doughnut shape wing I got to use with a plastic (semi-vintage style) back pack. It is also a bladder less wing. I think you will like it.

    As you mentioned in that other thread, I do like the modularity of the wings and I like a conventional harness in a vintage style back pack (mid 70’s style back pack, preferably with the tank strap, not the metal tank band). My vest does incorporate a conventional harness and plastic back pack, but it is not modular.

    IMO, there is definitely a time and place for different rigs. There are pro and cons to every rig.

    Now, if I can make those tanks lighter then I could put them over my head like Mike Nelson used to do. :D
    I think I will reserve the over the head donning for my single tank. This thing is a monster. In the water it dives great, but out of the water it is a lot of weight. The harness does allow me to carry it as well as expected.

    It has probably been 30 years since the last time I dove a full size set of doubles.

    BTW, the plastic back pack comes with handles on the side perfectly designed for over the head donning (for single tanks).
    :D
     
  7. mwilding

    mwilding Manta Ray

    # of Dives: 25 - 49
    Location: Glen Ridge, NJ
    662
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    Nice set-up!

    This is a whole new "screw You" to the BP/W snobs.

    Who the hell needs a back plate? :rofl3:
     
  8. Nemrod

    Nemrod Solo Diver

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    It was the band clamp on the regulator that I noticed you had sideways??

    Yeah, I know what you mean about doubles, I don't like doubles except when I absolutely need either full isolation and/or lot's of air. Otherwise I can make do with a single. I really like my LP Faber 85s pumped up to 3,000. I also have a couple of old 108s I think they are. Still not light but lighter than a double set and they work fine with my Mach V 30 pound, the Mach V 18 pound is not enough volume. I guess I am just not a doubles fan, my back never did well with all that weight, hiking around with them. Small doubles are different but still they are heavier than an equivalent single I suppose.

    I thought Allan decided the nylon material did not work well for a military harness, that it slipped to much? How are you working around that? I had purchased some yellow nylon webbing to make a harness for my Peanut King double bands but did not proceed after Allan said it did not work well?

    Mwilding, you really don't need a plate, especially with doubles the military harness (Sea Hunt Harness) work great, singles do tend to roll a bit with a military harness but doubles sit just fine. I am just not completely sold on a military harness combined with a wing, as far as I know, Luis is the first to really experiment with this type rig combined with a wing. It is an interesting concept, I like minimalism and anytime a piece of equipment can be eliminated, such as a plate, that is a step in the right direction.

    Thanks for sharing the pics, we need more.

    N
     
  9. simonbeans

    simonbeans Barracuda

    # of Dives: 1,000 - 2,499
    Location: Western NY
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    I thought Allan decided the nylon material did not work well for a military harness, that it slipped to much? How are you working around that? I had purchased some yellow nylon webbing to make a harness for my Peanut King double bands but did not proceed after Allan said it did not work well?

    When I first made a nylon harness for Karl I used the wrong nylon material. It slipped like crazy. The harness I made for Luis is from a very thick nylon and seems to work well. (In fact, I made up a harness for a single tank using this material and an early Heathways plate that used bands that fit 80s and 72s. I dove it quite a bit this summer. But you never heard that from me.)
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    I still rivet them however and use a 2" piece of weight belt type material for the shoulder "pads". Luis can tell you how it works. So far it is almost as good as cotton; not historically accurate, but we all have weak moments once in a while.
     
    Last edited: Oct 13, 2008
  10. Luis H

    Luis H Instructor, Scuba

    # of Dives: I'm a Fish!
    Location: Maine
    2,851
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    Double tanks are naturally comfortable on your back. It has a nice open space in the middle so it is not pressing on you back bone and the tank curve fit very comfortable.

    By avoiding any plate or backpack it also places the tanks closer to your center of gravity when you are walking. I find it a lot easier to walk any distance with the basic Navy style harness that I am using.

    For a single tank I do like a back pack or maybe even a back plate like the Freedom plate than Nemrod has. I have dived many times with a basic Sea Hunt style harness on a single tank and the tank does tend to move a bit due to the location of the attachment points, so a small back pack seems to be best.

    For double tanks I have yet to see any advantage of using a plate, other than to attach stuff to, but I can easily design ways to bypass any need to attach to a plate.



    BTW, triple tanks works well with no back pack either, but they are not as comfortable as a set of small doubles.
     

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