Manta Divers, January, 2015 Getting Ready for Vacation
Manta Divers would like to thank all of our customers for helping us to finish up 2014 with a bang, and wish you all a happy 2015 with best wishes for new wet adventures in the months to come! With the holidays over many of us are looking forward to getting away from the cold and snow, so naturally the scuba gear comes out and everything gets the once over.
Assuming your regulator maintenance is up to date, start with an inspection of your regulator. Check the mouthpiece for tears in the bite area. Gently pull on the mouthpiece while checking for disintegration of the material near the zip tie. This is a common cause of water leaking into the regulator and it is easy to miss unless it is specifically looked for. If it shows signs of wear, replace the mouthpiece. Check all of the hoses near the first stage for cracks or other signs of wear. Replacement hoses can come at a premium at some remote areas, so better to discover this problem and address it here before you leave! Do not forget to verify that your computer’s batteries are fresh. If you have not used your computer in a while, the batteries may have self- discharged and may have shortened life. Therefore, it is wise to have the batteries replaced pre-trip
Take out your BC and inflate it. Leave it fully inflated for a day to ensure there are no leaks. If the BC deflates overnight, inflate it again and submerse it in water. The bubbles will indicate the location of the leak. To repair the leak, mark the spot of the puncture, then allow the BC to dry thoroughly. Once dry, Aquaseal can be applied to the area to make the repair. Clean any Velcro with a soft toothbrush.
Pull out your wetsuit and try it on. I have heard from some customers that wetsuits can “shrink” if stored for a time unused. If It’s not time to get a new wetsuit, move on to checking the zipper and the integrity of the neoprene, especially around the knee pads. Some minor repairs to the wetsuit are possible, but if the suit is several years old, or if it has many deep dives on it, you may be better off purchasing a new one. Remember that over time, and with many dives, neoprene begins to crush and can lose much of its insulating power. That 3mm suit that always kept you warm in the past may currently be more like a 1mm skin, offering little thermal protection.
Check your boots for leaks or separation of the neoprene from the sole. Inspect your mask straps and verify that the skirt still makes a good seal on your face. Make sure your snorkel is still intact, with a utile mouthpiece. Try on your fins, tightening the straps as much as you can. This is a good way to stress the straps and reveal any weaknesses. Check that your fins are still the shape they should be, and not curved abnormally. Verify that the boot (where your boot goes into the fin) does not have any fissures. These are very difficult if not impossible to repair, so this sort of defect will lead you to the dive shop to upgrade your fins!
Finally, once you are sure that all your gear is in shape, give your gear bag a once over, working the zippers and inspecting the rollers. If everything checks out, you are ready to go. Now you only have to fit everything into your bag without going over 50lbs.!
In Other News…………….
Click here for a my dive vacation checkoff list.
If you are in the market for a dive computer, check out the Liquivision Lynx and the Scuba Pro Chromis, Meridian and Galileo Luna. All easy to use and cutting edge technology!
There are still a few clearance bargains to be had, so if your wetsuit “shrunk” or you need a backup mask, stop in and see what we have.
Good luck on your check out dives to all of our referral students. Hope you have a wonderful experience and are looking forward to diving with Team Manta this summer.
We are off to Bonaire in a couple of weeks, so stay tuned for a full report of our adventures! Then, make plans to join Team Manta's tropical adventures in 2016.