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Weight Belt question and "commentary"

Discussion in 'Hogarthian Diving' started by kidspot, Sep 14, 2004.

  1. kidspot

    kidspot Instructor, Scuba

    # of Dives: 500 - 999
    Location: Moses Lake, Washington
    (I put the question in bold if you'd like to skip the "commentary")

    Well I got to try out my HOG rig for the first time today during my OW cert - I've been letting a friend use it on the first 5 dives we had, but the last 2 I'm using it for (there was suppossed to be one for each of us, but since we had to share I thought I'd give the jacket style a try so I'd have something to compare it to). The difference was like night and day - WOW is all I can say. I got to try it basically because during our last dive when we did the gear removal underwater he had a lot of trouble and kind of thru up his hands in frustration - So during today's dive he used the jacket and I got to put my BP/Wing to use finally (He is stuck till the second set of gear arrives - I won't give it up again - lol). I have been practicing the gear donning/doffing at home (dry land style) so I was ready when the instructor had us do it underwater today - no problem. But I am having trouble with the weight belt still. I have found that I have to put the weight belt on under the crotch strap - I tried putting it on over, but it just would not stay put - it gets pushed away from me by the point where the crotch strap connects to the BP. I can easily unbuckle the waist belt and crotch strap to release the weight belt if I needed to, but since we were practicing surface rescues it took a lot of time and I'm not comfortable with it yet. Any ideas how I should be rigging this?

    Back to my impression of the HOG rig - (5ft hose, bungeed backup, bp/wing) I had a much better field of view as the regulator on the long hose allowed me to turn my head in all directions without problem (I had trouble with the traditional style - the 2nd stage kept pulling out of my mouth) the bungeed backup was great to have so handy (the other rig has an air2) and the stability of the BP/Wing over the jacket was incredible - my trim and bouyancy control immediately improved - I had much more freedom of movement with the 1 piece harness and I found it a lot easier to put on and take off both on land and underwater (Even though the jacket model had quick release buckles) The nicest surprise was the "non-restrictiveness" of the harness - the jacket made it difficult to turn my head (accentuated by the reg hose routing) and I felt restricted in my movement in the jacket - the BP was like going from a suit and tie to a t-shirt in comfort. I do have to say that the jacket was more comfortable for the few moments it took to get from the sidewalk into the water - but the 50 minutes of comfort in the water were well worth the 2 minutes on land of less comfort (not bad even, just less comfortable)

    I should add a follow up on my buddy's experience going the other way - (He's a great buddy - but this was funny watching him so I'll give him a hard time momentarily) During our OOA drill he had gotten used to reaching for the backup reg around his neck - today it wasn't there (Air2 remember?) but his snorkel was . . . lol - after a mouth full of water (which to his credit did not make him panic one bit, just become curious as to why his reg was delivering water instead of air) he figured it out - but found that his air2 and the low pressure inflator hose had gotten lodged behind him and caught in a strap - he took his primary back got those things straightened out and was fine. I asked him afterwards how he liked the jacket style BC and his reply was that he wanted the BP/Wing back - sorry I said, it's your turn to wait (It is mine after all. . . )

    One other note: I have heard a number of people voice concern over the comfort of a BP/Wing setup if they are not wearing a heavy wetsuit - I have done all my diving in a .5 mil suit (that's 1/2 mil, not 5 mil) and it does not dig into my back or hips, the straps don't cut into my shoulder (except very slightly when on land, but it's not very noticable)

    I'm starting to wonder if this should have gone under BC's instead of the HOG forum . . . oh well it's here now ;-)

  2. GreenDiverDown

    GreenDiverDown Instructor, Scuba

    Make sure that your BP is positioned properly on your back...high enough that it is just below your C-7 spinous process and where you can comfortably touch the top of it with your hand.

    Also, loosen your crotch strap.

    OTOH, you might want to consider continuing to wearing your belt UNDER your crotch strap...many of us do just that.

  3. kidspot

    kidspot Instructor, Scuba

    # of Dives: 500 - 999
    Location: Moses Lake, Washington
    Thanks Stephen,

    I had considered wearing it underneath since it seems more secure and stable, it is just kind of awkward when needing to do repeated removals for the instructor. Thanks for the advice on bp placement. Wish I knew someone locally to help with things like that, but it seems to be a rather foreign piece of equipment to everyone that I've spoken with so far. I was actually afraid I had it too high since I kept hitting my head on the tank (not just the valve - lol) It seemed like the tank bands couldn't go any higher on the tank, and the sta is as low as it can go, but I'll have to double check and see next time - unfortunately our next and last class dive isn't for a week now - only classroom learning this weekend. Once that's over at least I can just grab a buddy and walk down to the beach to practice practice practice.
  4. babar

    babar Solo Diver

    there's is a great article on fitting backplates on one of the gue sites. The article made a huge difference for me. I wonder is someone could post a url

  5. DA Aquamaster

    DA Aquamaster Directional Toast ScubaBoard Supporter

    # of Dives: 2,500 - 4,999
    Location: NC
  6. Mako Mark

    Mako Mark Dive Charter

    Nice post Tim, many tec divers purposely put the weight belt under the crotch strap in order to avoid the disaster of an accidentally dropped belt.

    Personaally as most of my tec diving is done in fresh water I dont need any weight with my doubles except when I dive dry, and then I use an ingot between the tanks which is non dumpable.

    In your case with so little wetsuit, you may find that having just one weight either side on the harness may suit you. You can get dumpable weight pockets from most stores that sell HOG and tec style gear.
  7. Quarrior

    Quarrior Solo Diver

    # of Dives: 100 - 199
    Location: Boise ID
    Personally, I suffer from "no butt" syndrome. Consequently, when I wear a weight belt, it doesn't take long for it to work it's way down my butt and head towards my feet dragging my legs down.

    The way I eliminated this is to purchase the DR 32 weight pockets and put them on the waist strap of my harness. They are dumpable and work great for me. Just something to consider.
  8. lairdb

    lairdb Solo Diver

    This is what I do (though the pouches I use don't have fancy dump arrangements -- if needed on the surface I can open them and pluck the weights out.) From past discussion, I know there's quite a few of us here using the identical solution.

    I wrote this post recently, including detail of what and how much I use.
  9. kidspot

    kidspot Instructor, Scuba

    # of Dives: 500 - 999
    Location: Moses Lake, Washington
    Thanks for all the input everyone.

    I had read the baue.org article before getting my backplate, forgot about it when I needed it though - thanks I'll review it now that I have something to review it with.

    lairdb, I remember reading that post of yours - I'll go re-read it also.

    I may give the pouches a try, since I have 2 already sitting here that would work (they are for something else, but the right size and all, just bright orange)

    I am really enjoying being able to take all the theory I've been studying over the past 6 months and put it into the realm of reality.

    We do have 2 LDS on my side of the island that deal in tech gear. The one I refuse to do business with and the other I am getting to know, but they are very small with only about 300 square feet of store space. No tech gear actually but they are an IANTD training facility. So I'll be talking with them about some special orders and as soon as I have my first 25 dives under my proverbial weight belt (hopefully within a month), I'll be looking into some training with them.

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