PDA

View Full Version : Another Weight Issue



snagel
04-29-2008, 08:06
Any tips on what I can do to drop some weight? I've only dove about 7 times in a drysuit and man do I need a lot of weight.

Crushed Neoprene Suit
AL80 Tank
Basic Vest BCD
5' 11" 220 pounds
7mm with hooded vest I use 24-25 pounds
Drysuit 36 pounds

Last weekend went out to Haigh and worked on trying to use the minimum amount of weight. Made sure all the air was out of BC & Suit, but could not descend without putting on 36 pounds of weight. I talked to another "seasoned" drysuit diver and he told me he has to add 12 pounds when he dives dry. This equates to about the same for me, but this amount of weight just wears me out. It's like "swimming through malasis".

I have to believe that as I dive more with the drysuit that this has to get better, but physics is physics. In previous discussions, some have said to think about moving to a steel tank and backplate system. To me this isn't really cutting the weight it's just redistributing the weight.

What I'm seeing is that drysuit diving is not like wetsuit diving. The positive is you are warmer and dry at the end (hopefully). But, the tradeoff is you have much more resistance in drysuit diving that I call "pushing a tank through the water". Is this normal? At this point, I'm questioning exactly how fun and relaxing is drysuit diving compared to wetsuit diving if I have to work this hard.

Any thoughts on reducing the needed weight or is this just a necessary evil to drysuit diving? At this point, I'm thinking my only option is to lose about 20 if not more body weight to help out.

S. Nagel

mitsuguy
04-29-2008, 09:30
Go to a steel tank... Even a hp80 steel tank would help immensely... It is just redistributing the weight, but its putting it in a smaller form factor. A steel hp80 is about 6 lbs more negative than a al80, but is probably 6" shorter... Aside from that, streamline... I've had to wear a lot of weight previously, but even with 24 lbs in a 7 mil wetsuit, I didn't feel a whole lot different than 14 lbs in my 4/3... What did make a huge difference was going to 8 lbs and a steel hp80...

cummings66
04-29-2008, 10:48
A steel cylinder also doesn't need to weigh more. The HP100 is very close to an AL80 and that means you can take off maybe 6 lbs there, then use a BP/W and you may find you can remove another 6 to 8 lbs depending on your current BC. That means you could lose 12 to 14 lbs of weight just by moving to steel and a BP/W setup. That means you'll carry 22 lbs of lead.

I use 20 lbs of lead with my heavy undergarment, 8 lbs with the one I use in the Summer. All due to the steel cylinders and BP/W.

There is little way to lose weight other than that. Exercise may help a few lbs, but to be honest your biggest loss will be a gear change. There are no tricks.

RoyN
04-29-2008, 12:29
Well, I think 7 times in a drysuit of not diving comfortable is nature. I wasn't comfortable with it until after my 10th dive and this is in my instructor's drysuit which I am borrowing for the time being as Pinnacles just called my mom that the drysuit is still on the drawing board. Also, as for the losing weight, that is really up to you, but being healthy is the most important thing. I do massive weight workout and I still gain pound, but that means no weight belts for me underwater.

elijahb
04-29-2008, 13:37
36 lbs in a dry suit is not bad for salt water. You can wear less layers under your dry suit to reduce the weight needed. As for the drag make sure your BC is fully deflated, when I dry suit dive I only use the dry suit for bouncy control. The more weight you have the more air you need to be neutrally buoyant.

CompuDude
04-29-2008, 15:38
I agree, given your size and weight, 36 lbs in salt water with a drysuit, basic BC and aluminum tank is probably about right, especially with thicker undergarments.

Steel tank and possibly a bp/w would help a lot, but there's only so much you can do to fight against the physics of buoyancy.

Improving your fat-to-muscle ratio will allow you to drop some weight as well, since muscle mass is negatively buoyant and fat is positive. I know I have had to add and remove a pound or two through my diving career as my weight has changed.

But in a neoprene drysuit (even crushed), with thick undergarments, in salt water... I know people who sink like a rock in just a bathing suit who still need to carry a good amount of weight when switching to the DS and such.

Personally, I add about 4 pounds going from my 7mm to my DS with summer undergarments, and about 6 lbs with the thicker winter layers. I'm not in a crushed neo drysuit, though, mine is the CLX450.

cummings66
04-29-2008, 17:39
I suspect it's fresh water diving. I know he dives locally, at least within the state. But still, without knowing what brand the crushed neoprene suit is makes it a bit harder to say what would be within the range of reasonable. Some crushed neoprene is mighty thin and others pretty thick, toss an undergarment into the mix and you could easily start needing a lot of lead.

CompuDude
04-29-2008, 18:27
I suspect it's fresh water diving. I know he dives locally, at least within the state. But still, without knowing what brand the crushed neoprene suit is makes it a bit harder to say what would be within the range of reasonable. Some crushed neoprene is mighty thin and others pretty thick, toss an undergarment into the mix and you could easily start needing a lot of lead.

Oh, I see... I had read post #5 and saw salt water, so I thought I had missed that in the OP.

Still, I agree with you.

And it's not entirely unreasonable for fresh water either, just less so than salt. Every body type, even those externally very similar, takes a different amount to sink... or float.

snagel
04-29-2008, 19:14
Thanks for the insight. BTW, the suit is a SeaSoft. It is rather thick compared to other neoprene suits. At Haigh, I was wearing fleece long johns, sweats, wool socks and a thick fleece upper garmet. I have a thick fleece undergarmet that came with the suit, but I was trying to thin it down a little on the undergarmets.

And yes, I typically dive fresh water in Missouri, USA.

Thanks for the input,

S. Nagel