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Unsure of my next step for cave training...

Discussion in 'Technical Diving' started by Blackfrogfeet, Feb 26, 2021.

  1. tursiops

    tursiops Marine Scientist and Master Instructor ScubaBoard Supporter

    # of Dives: 2,500 - 4,999
    Location: U.S. East Coast
    I found almost NO similarity between using a deco bottle in tech diving vs using a stage bottle in cave diving. In addition to totally different motivations and gas management -- as rjack321 points out -- my deco bottles were always slung, whereas my 1 or 2 stages were always on top of my sidemount tanks.
    rjack321 likes this.
  2. helodriver87

    helodriver87 DIR Practitioner

    # of Dives: 500 - 999
    Location: New Mexico
    Rigging is the same. So are switch procedures. It rides just like a stage if you're diving standard doubles config. The planning and utilization are very different, but the physical habits will transfer. The real value in a cave stage course is learning the gas management and logistics of stages. But you'll definitely have a leg up in class if you've been utilizing deco bottles in a standard configuration.
  3. Manatee Diver

    Manatee Diver Stop throwing lettuce at me! ScubaBoard Supporter

    # of Dives: None - Not Certified
    Location: Tampa Bay, FL
    Shouldn't most Florida cave divers have experience running deco bottles by the time that they get to stage cave?
  4. helodriver87

    helodriver87 DIR Practitioner

    # of Dives: 500 - 999
    Location: New Mexico
    Yeah. I was thinking about it in terms of OW tech moving to full cave + stage.
  5. rjack321

    rjack321 ScubaBoard Supporter ScubaBoard Supporter

    # of Dives: 1,000 - 2,499
    Location: Port Orchard, Washington State
    The OP already has open water experience with 3 bottles.

    Cave2 has one deco bottle (which is quickly dropped so really doesnt count for much) and one stage. In theory you could take GUE cave2 with no prior deco course experience and you'd have a deco gas along for the first couple days before adding the bottom stage.
  6. tbone1004

    tbone1004 Technical Instructor ScubaBoard Supporter

    # of Dives: I'm a Fish!
    Location: Greenville, South Carolina, United States
    @rjack321 beat me to it, but some of the biggest names are some of the worst instructors, so I'll second that for posterity.

    Stage handling is not, but gas planning is handled different by different agencies and instructors. More importantly Cave 2 goes beyond most full cave courses because it includes decompression and stage diving which is not part of standard full cave curricula. It goes one step further into "Technical cave" and "Stage cave" which is separate with other agencies.

    Unfortunately none of the gas planning really applies to CCR though since you essentially do not consume any gas on the ride in so you can't use ratios, it's all theoretical planning based on time, distance, and depth. It is the same as scooter planning though, but even then the VAST majority of DPV instruction uses ratios for gas planning. Historically GUE did as well which worked fine on a Gavin, but does not apply to an XK1. Then it becomes all based on SAC, kick speed, and average depth to do your gas planning.
  7. rddvet

    rddvet DIR Practitioner

    # of Dives: 50 - 99
    Location: Florida
    Rjack answered the questions same way I would have. So ditto

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