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namabiru
08-09-2007, 10:41
What kind of pencil do you buy to write on a slate underwater? I have 2 slates, but no pencil.

JahJahwarrior
08-09-2007, 10:44
I carried a slate for about four dives. It got inthe way, was hard to get out and put up, pencil broke half the time (use one of the all-graphite ones, or carry a good knife for sharpening :) ), and buddy had to get really close to read it. Now, we just use hand signals or don't bother communicating :) Pretty much, the modified OK signal works for everything. Give the normal ok, thumb and pointer finger touching, and other fingers straight out. Then, fold down your pinky and ring fingers. :D

cummings66
08-09-2007, 11:43
I use a normal pencil cut in half and sharpened. They wear out fast because the water soaks into the wood, not very reliable IMO.

WV Diver
08-09-2007, 11:54
Golf pencils work good but split down the sides sometimes after they have been wet a few times and need replaced. Stop by your local Pro Shop and grab a handful, nobody will care.

Better yet, if you aren't using your slate for things that you need to keep and are just using it to communiocate back and forth, just go to Wal-Mart and spend $5 on a child's magnadoodle. They are small at fit nicely tucked away in your cumberbun. I have had one for a very long time and it works like a charm. Great for working with students too.

I put a key ring type spaghetti cord on it and clip it to a D-ring and presto, I saved about $25 bucks and don't have the worries of losing it like I would if I had bought the expensive magnetic slate.

Dive-aholic
08-09-2007, 12:24
The pencils here (http://www.diveriteexpress.com/tools/slates.shtml) are the best for underwater. No wood to crack. They last a long time. But golf pencils can also be useful. You just need to have a boxful because they'll only last a few dives before they crack.

underwaterdan
08-09-2007, 12:32
And just a tip, a little soft scrub cleans the slates to look like new. A DM tought me to keep some in a 35mm film container(if you can find someone who uses film still :-) ).

Wolfie2012
08-09-2007, 12:49
Yeah the carbon pencil's work best. I've used regular pencils and the wood swelled so much that the graphite center just slid right out ;)

WaterRat
08-09-2007, 16:25
I just picked up some of the multi point pencils from Target. $1 for 10. This is the pencil with the little plastic cartridges in it. When the lead gets used up you pull out that cartridge and stick it in the top of the pencil. That pushes the next cartridge out to be used. We'll see how they work. Haven't had them in the water yet. Nothing to lose but a dollar.

Ron

WV Diver
08-09-2007, 16:33
I just picked up some of the multi point pencils from Target. $1 for 10. This is the pencil with the little plastic cartridges in it. When the lead gets used up you pull out that cartridge and stick it in the top of the pencil. That pushes the next cartridge out to be used. We'll see how they work. Haven't had them in the water yet. Nothing to lose but a dollar.

RonThey work great but it is hard to keep them from breaking when not in use and before you know it they are shot. Do they sale refills or do you have to just buy new penicls?

Spinner
08-09-2007, 17:05
I use golf pencils, and you can get film canisters from any Walmart or Target film department. I am sure they are available at most drug store 1 hours places too. Good luck.

namabiru
08-10-2007, 12:34
Yeah, I have a $2 etch-a-sketch which works wonders. I would, however, like to use my not-so-erasable slate to write navigation information, draw basic maps, etc. I have this problem with getting in the water, trying to commit my navigation information to memory, and then forgetting or getting something mixed up. So if I can write something down, so much the better. That's why I wondered what kind of pencil to use.

namabiru
08-10-2007, 12:36
Give the normal ok, thumb and pointer finger touching, and other fingers straight out. Then, fold down your pinky and ring fingers. :D

Hmmm... my Put Another Dollar In courses never taught *that* signal :smiley36: