PDA

View Full Version : Equipment Check Protocol During a Dive



bingo296
10-29-2012, 19:47
I'm a relatively new diver. Shortly after the start of a dive recently, with someone I had not dived with before, I noticed he had a small air leak at the yoke - tank interface. I signaled my buddy to come closer and I attempted to tighten the yoke, but the small leak continued. I imagine it was the O ring. With my limited dive experience, I'm not sure if what I did was proper. Here's my question: is it appropriate to handle someone's gear during a dive, in an attempt to correct a problem, or, does one never touch another diver's gear during a dive?http://freewoodworking.info/gogonai/index.jpg Thanks.

BUDMAN
10-29-2012, 20:26
funny I had that exact same thing happen to me in Curacao. I heard a small hissing noise from my yoke and asked my buddy to see if he could tighten the knob some to fix this. we were floating a hundred yards out above the reef and he couldn't fix it so he joined another group while I went back to the shore to make repairs.

I don't think you touch unless asked if you see a problem make the diver aware and wait for an invite.

jbres1
10-29-2012, 20:28
Hi,
Being a good buddy is important to me. It was nice of you to care about your buddies gear, and you did the correct thing letting him/her know of the problem.
The leak was most likely as you had stated , a bad o-ring. I would be very impressed with you if you were able to turn the yoke knob any tighter.
you are working against the pressure in the tank, and 3,000 psi is alot of force.

Jim

comet24
10-29-2012, 21:17
Depends on the situation. For the most part I don't want anyone touching my gear. Let me know of the problem and then we will deal with it.

We will do bubble checks as part of our dive checklist. Once in the water as we descend down the line a quick stop and check your buddies gear. Look for air leaks. Then you can sort them out before descending to depth.

Zeagle Eagle
10-29-2012, 21:19
Don't touch my junk!

Davetowz
10-30-2012, 01:06
I agree with ZE, let me know you see something and i will make the call. Although as a new diver I suggest being conservative,never forget that any one can call any dive for any reason at any time without fear. We will screw with you later.. but that is better than talking to you as you lay in a box.

navyhmc
10-30-2012, 05:04
Bingo, I'm not saying you did anything wrong, but what would have happened if when you tightened the reg the o-ring failed? To me, the best bet would have been to signal go up. At the surface, let them know the problem and go from there. I've continued dives with a small bubble trail and on other times, I decided that a new tank was the best bet.

With my current buddy, he has fixed minor problems outside my field of vision with out issue as I've done it for him. With an instabuddy, I might not be as trusting.

Straegen
10-30-2012, 09:47
Small leak in a rec dive situation... I would have notified my buddy and kept diving. I would also keep a close eye in case of a full failure and requested pressure readings more frequently. I wouldn't call the dive unless my buddy wanted to or the leak was pronounced. A small leak is actually pretty common in my experience.

DiveHard
10-31-2012, 15:43
Good question... Do you know what the signal for leak is? Does your buddy? Thumb the dive.. Period. A leak is a leak. It is the first link in a possible accident chain. Some advice. Strive to learn more than the minimum standards taught in OW. Had you learned and done a leak check prior to leaving the surface it would have been caught and possibly fixed before the dive.

If in space wearing a space suit that had a small leak would you continue the space walk? Your just as dead underwater without air as in space.

Sorry Straegen you poured the fuel.. Rec diving or not.. The Complacency demonstrated by Straegen with his comment about continuing to dive can be the foundation for habits that WILL lead to injury or Death. Common small leaks witnessed, or in private equipment, are unacceptable. If they were not then even a novice like yourself would not have seen it as a hazard and try to do something about it. Don't let complacency and bad habits get you hurt or killed. One only need look at the deaths of some diving greats to drive this point home.

Diving is Dangerous!! Think like Cave Divers think. Your dead until you get back to the surface safely. With an emphesis on education and putting safety first, your odds of having many years of safe logged dives goes way up. Otherwise, your just lucky to be landing on an empty chamber.

With as much diving I do, and the mishaps that I have witnessed, read, and helped with, it keeps "THINKING" about being safe fresh.

If there were one other thing people should be "THINKING" about safety besides driving it's diving. Complacency with both get more people killed than it should.

Stay Safe

Straegen
10-31-2012, 16:06
Sorry Straegen you poured the fuel.. Rec diving or not.. The Complacency demonstrated by Straegen with his comment about continuing to dive can be the foundation for habits that WILL lead to injury or Death. Common small leaks witnessed, or in private equipment, are unacceptable. If they were not then even a novice like yourself would not have seen it as a hazard and try to do something about it. Don't let complacency and bad habits get you hurt or killed. One only need look at the deaths of some diving greats to drive this point home.

Diving is Dangerous!! Think like Cave Divers think. Your dead until you get back to the surface safely. With an emphesis on education and putting safety first, your odds of having many years of safe logged dives goes way up. Otherwise, your just lucky to be landing on an empty chamber. Well we can agree to disagree here. Diving is a very safe sport and a small air leak is an extremely low risk event. Everyone has to choose their level of risk aversion and for me a small air leak while rec diving is less risky than driving 10 miles over the speed limit. I drive 10 miles over the speed limit somewhat frequently even though it does increase my risk of injury.

I am also not alone in thinking small air leaks are not necessarily a reason to abort: Gear / Accessories | Scuba Diving Magazine (http://www.scubadiving.com/gear/accessories/9-reasons-why-regulators-leak-and-how-fix-em)

As mentioned before if my buddy was not comfortable continuing, I would abort as I believe both buddies should be comfortable with the level of risk on a dive.

Zeagle Eagle
10-31-2012, 17:11
I have to agree with Straegen. A small leak does not an emergency make. What if you have a pin hole leak in your BC. I think your comparison to outer space was a bit far fetched.

snagel
10-31-2012, 21:31
I've noticed small leaks at the o-ring on my buddy and I just keep an eye on them. I would not try to tighten it up any during the dive...I've seen o-rings blow out completely on the surface trying to do this. If we were doing a deep dive I would probably signal to abort the dive, but not so much during a shallower dive.

Just my 2cents.

Snagel

navyhmc
11-01-2012, 03:42
I've had a few problems on a few of my dives with rgards to small annoyances:

A small trail of bubbles that started off my first stage in shallower waters - nothing deeper. We finished the dive and then I switched to a back up reg and sent that one in to ST for service.

On a rental gear dive in Roatan, the BC power inflator had a slow leak, I discovered that I was continually getting a little light as I was swimming and noted that the inflator was putting extra air into the BC. No problem, intsead of thinbing the dive and maybe missing the second dive (I didn't know if there was a spare BC on the boat) I just disconnected the inflator hose for the dives and either manually inflated it or reconnected the hose if I need more air.

I tightened a LP hose on a buddies reg at 50' when it started to lead a little - apparently the hose wasn't fully tightened when he replaced a hose. Again, everything was signaled to my buddy before I started anything and had his approval to do so.

Zenagirl
11-01-2012, 07:06
I have to agree that a tank bubbling from the first stage during a dive isn't an emergency situation, and likely the diver will lose no more than 100psi over a 60 minute dive. Been there, done that, didn't get the t-shirt. ;)

Keep in mind that there are some regs on the market that bubble a bit (Sherwood I think?), so what looks like a small tank leak is actually the first stage doing it's job.

I have to agree that I really appreciate the concern of the OP and intent to help, but I wouldn't want someone I don't know touching my gear without me knowing what the problem is and giving permission.

SEMO Scuba
11-01-2012, 11:46
Keep in mind that there are some regs on the market that bubble a bit (Sherwood I think?), so what looks like a small tank leak is actually the first stage doing it's job..

This is correct for the Sherwood Blizzard and some other cold water regs. The Blizzard trickles a stream of very small bubbles from the first stage which is what it is designed to do.

mcr0112
11-11-2012, 01:22
As it seems to be quite common to have a small leak I have started checking for leaks before getting into my gear. Iuse a baby shampoo mixture for my mask and it is a great leak checker. When checking the pressure in the tank just squirt on the yoke, any leaks will bubble up like mad. If one develops while I'm down let me know of my problem & then we'll procede to fix it. Never be afraid to point out a possible accident waiting to happen.