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moosicman
10-19-2007, 20:11
I am gearing up to gear up soon and am trying to budget and so forth...anyway....after i get certified i will be buying a rig of bcd/reg and the rest but i don't know about renting a tank...do most ppl own their own tanks usually....it seems i've seen that its only $3 for air but now i'm thinking that may literally mean for JUST the air. so if i plan on renting a tank everytime i dive, how much is the normal tank rental.

ReefHound
10-19-2007, 20:23
Prices vary by region but I've not seen air fills that cheap unless you have some quantity fill card or program. Around here they are $5 to $8 for air fill and $10 to $12 for tank rental.

I think tanks are worthwhile to own if you'll be diving locally but probably not your first priority in gear purchases. If you dive frequenting, owning your own tanks will save a bit of money but most people buy them for the convenience factor.

Browse the Scuba Gear/Tanks section of this forum and there are several good threads on rent vs own.

ScubaToys Larry
10-19-2007, 20:23
Around here shops are about 8 bucks a day, or 12 bucks a weekend. So it you're heading out for the weekend, and paying 3 bucks for the air, and 9 bucks for the tank... it doesn't take a lot of weekends to pay for a tank.

Plus it's nice just having it there - so you can grab and go without having to stop by the shop.

moosicman
10-19-2007, 20:40
great info...thanks...i'll probably only be diving once a month and with the initial cost of bc/reg and the fins, snorkel, and mask and suit, i think i'll wait on the tank......but only for now

TommyB
10-19-2007, 20:59
Parts of Florida (Central) are 4 dollars air. and about 10 nitrox.
North Florida, (Cave Country) it's per cubic foot. (It's cheaper by the cuf).
Helium is the big thing now, approx 40.00/60.00 per fill/tank :)

Dive-aholic
10-20-2007, 16:39
Brad, check out Cave Adventurers (http://www.caveadventurers.com). It's located less than 45 minutes from you and on the way to the springs and the jetties in N. Florida. Edd sells and rents tanks. If you're only going to be diving once a month, you're best bet would probably be to rent. The nice thing about Edd's shop is that it's on his property so it's open 7 days a week and you can drop tanks off even if he's closed the shop.

moosicman
10-20-2007, 20:47
thanks for the heads up chipola divers. i will definitly keep that in mind, cause that sounds useful....after i'm certified i may want to hook up and go diving with ya. i'm gonna want someone to take me under their wing and show me some of the ropes of places to dive around here....although i won't be going in any caves..LOL...do you dive vortex springs much...that is where i'll be doing some of my ow.....

terrillja
10-21-2007, 14:21
I wasn't initially thinking that I would buy a tank, but after the scuba bug bit me, as well as my dad getting certified, we went on a tank buying spree- we each have 2 tanks, and I'm planning on buying him a pony for Christmas so we each have one of those too. It's a 30 minute round trip to get tanks filled/rented, so in my case, it was far easier to buy than rent, or I'd burn up an hour between going there to rent and to return the tank. Much nicer to just walk out and grab a tank from the garage, then jump in the lake.

Dive-aholic
10-23-2007, 16:54
thanks for the heads up chipola divers. i will definitly keep that in mind, cause that sounds useful....after i'm certified i may want to hook up and go diving with ya. i'm gonna want someone to take me under their wing and show me some of the ropes of places to dive around here....although i won't be going in any caves..LOL...do you dive vortex springs much...that is where i'll be doing some of my ow.....

Don't discount caves just yet. You're so close to them, you just might get bitten by the cave bug! We'll hit the jetties some time. Vortex is okay, but really crowded on the weekends because of all the OW classes there. It's also not that big. I have taught there, but only during the week. My preference is to teach at Morrison and the St. Andrews jetty.

RoadRacer1978
10-23-2007, 17:09
The dive shops around me are 30 minutes to 1 hour away and in the opposite direction of my local diving lake. So renting a tank for local diving would be a total waste of time and money. I purchased my first tank from a sporting goods shop that was going out of business and got it pretty darn cheap. Wish I had bought more now. I have one tank and it does pretty good for local diving and I can usually get it filled nearby, but 2 tanks would be better than one I think. My plans for my GC from ScubaToys is to get another tank. With the discount and GC you can't beat the price. Just gota get off my lazy rear and give the guys at ST a call.

BuzzF117
10-28-2007, 15:23
MY LDS has a program that if you purchase a license plate that goes on the front of your vehicle that advertises his store then you get free air for as long as the plate lasts (some are 3 yrs old) the cost fo the plate is $40 so there are people that come into his shop that haven't had to pay for air in three years. It's a pretty good deal and one I will be taking advantage of in the future.

Puffer Fish
10-28-2007, 15:40
I am gearing up to gear up soon and am trying to budget and so forth...anyway....after i get certified i will be buying a rig of bcd/reg and the rest but i don't know about renting a tank...do most ppl own their own tanks usually....it seems i've seen that its only $3 for air but now i'm thinking that may literally mean for JUST the air. so if i plan on renting a tank everytime i dive, how much is the normal tank rental.

Brad, there are lots of very active divers that go to Panama City/Destin to dive. Most of us have our own tanks... for a lot of reasons other than the cost.

First is that we, for the most part, are diving Nitrox. There are not a lot of dives that air makes sense (ok, the springs and the jetties).

Second is that most of us have HP steel tanks. This reduces weight (mine take 5 lbs less lead).

Third is we match the tank to the dive, I have 133, 117 and 100 cubic ft tanks. Getting an extra 40 minutes of bottom time on a dive trip is worth paying a bit more.

The people I dive with in south Florida, make my little collection of tanks seem tiny. Guest get free tanks to use... we do more than two tank trips a lot...and use different mixes a lot.

Once you go hight pressure steel, it is hard to go back to aluminum.

I get down to the coast at least once a month, just PM me if you are interested in joining us.

bubble-head
10-28-2007, 20:26
I highly agree with what has been said about steel tanks. I dove aluminum tanks for many years and after switching to steel, I would not want to go back. It's great not having to carry very much weight too.

terrillja
11-01-2007, 12:59
I bought 1 AL80 used when I got my OW, but when my dad got certified, we started diving more ans we now each have 2 AL80s and 1AL30 pony. We are looking to get HP steel 120s now. For us, it is a pain to get a fill, 20 minutes each way to the dive shop, so having our own tanks is almost a necessity.

CompuDude
11-01-2007, 13:45
I agree, tank ownership is financially worthwhile only depending on how much you plan to dive and how close you are to the rental shop.

If you're close to the shop and really will only dive once a month or so, rent away.

If you're far from the shop, or will dive closer to 50 times a year (or more), it becomes more financially viable (not to mention convenient) to own vs. rent tanks. You may also find that once you own your own tanks (and all of your own gear), you dive a lot more than you originally expected, because it's convenient to decide to go on the spur of the moment without needing to pre-plan a trip to the shop, etc.

Either way, tanks should be your last purchase... get the rest of your gear first.

Puffer Fish
11-01-2007, 17:16
I agree, tank ownership is financially worthwhile only depending on how much you plan to dive and how close you are to the rental shop.

If you're close to the shop and really will only dive once a month or so, rent away.

If you're far from the shop, or will dive closer to 50 times a year (or more), it becomes more financially viable (not to mention convenient) to own vs. rent tanks. You may also find that once you own your own tanks (and all of your own gear), you dive a lot more than you originally expected, because it's convenient to decide to go on the spur of the moment without needing to pre-plan a trip to the shop, etc.

Either way, tanks should be your last purchase... get the rest of your gear first.
I am right there with you on this one... it should be the last item anyone gets...and you have been diving enough to know and understand the type and size of tanks you need for your style of diving...

50 dives a year... at $5.00 a rental (don't really have a clue what tanks rent for... sorry), that would be.... $250... That would be a one year payback if they were single dives.. and a two year payback for two tanks... and that is the cost of most of my HP steel tanks.

Buoyant1
11-01-2007, 17:59
It was more of a convenience thing than a price thing...I know that I'll eventually get the return on my investment, but the bigger savings is being able to get them filled at will, not have to make time to take them back if I can't get there easily, or if something happens and I need to call a dive, I still have full tanks I don't need to pay for and return unused!

More than just the return on the initial investment!

Illini_Fan
11-01-2007, 18:10
...50 dives a year... at $5.00 a rental (don't really have a clue what tanks rent for... sorry), that would be.... $250... That would be a one year payback if they were single dives.. and a two year payback for two tanks... and that is the cost of most of my HP steel tanks.

I own 2 tanks, but I'm not sure I'll ever be ahead financially. Yes, I do save on the rental and if I say 20 local dive trips (40 total dives), that would cost around $250 for the tank rental + another 20 air fills for my second dive of each trip. Say another $150. Total annual rental cost is $400. My two AL80 cost $175 or so each and come with lifetime free airfills, BUT, you need to factor in the cost of the annual inspection. I haven't hit the first year inspection, but I'm thinking $50 per tank.

So, from the above. My annual rental cost is $400 and it is a better deal to buy tanks then rent. Five year rental cost of $2,000 vs five year tank ownership cost of $850 (I would still need to do the hydro at the end of this period, so that $850 is low) But if I only dive 10 weekends a year, my annual cost is $200 and the math gets a little fuzzier. If you dive less than that, I think rental is financially a better decision.

That being said, I love the freedom of having my own tanks and the ability to go to locations that don't have compressors and still get two dives in.

Puffer Fish
11-01-2007, 18:40
...50 dives a year... at $5.00 a rental (don't really have a clue what tanks rent for... sorry), that would be.... $250... That would be a one year payback if they were single dives.. and a two year payback for two tanks... and that is the cost of most of my HP steel tanks.

I own 2 tanks, but I'm not sure I'll ever be ahead financially. Yes, I do save on the rental and if I say 20 local dive trips (40 total dives), that would cost around $250 for the tank rental + another 20 air fills for my second dive of each trip. Say another $150. Total annual rental cost is $400. My two AL80 cost $175 or so each and come with lifetime free airfills, BUT, you need to factor in the cost of the annual inspection. I haven't hit the first year inspection, but I'm thinking $50 per tank.

So, from the above. My annual rental cost is $400 and it is a better deal to buy tanks then rent. Five year rental cost of $2,000 vs five year tank ownership cost of $850 (I would still need to do the hydro at the end of this period, so that $850 is low) But if I only dive 10 weekends a year, my annual cost is $200 and the math gets a little fuzzier. If you dive less than that, I think rental is financially a better decision.

That being said, I love the freedom of having my own tanks and the ability to go to locations that don't have compressors and still get two dives in.
I pay around $20 for a vis and sticker, and that includes a nitrox fill. I forgot the gas and travel expense savings in that...and the choice of what size tank you get.. and the weight you don't have to carry around (HP steel).

And if you happen to dive in the fill express land, they only charge by what they put in your tank... assuming you have a tank to put it in.

CompuDude
11-02-2007, 04:04
I actually ran the numbers in another thread, but I don't care to look it up. Suffice to say there IS a break even point, but the precise point will vary considerably depending on individual circumstances: How far are you to the LDS? Separate trip or on the way? What cost gas? etc.

Some factors that are rarely considered (even in my original post) are these: How much is your time worth? How long does it take you to pick up and drop off rentals vs. fills? Are the shop's hours convenient to your schedule? The list goes on...

mike_s
11-02-2007, 10:05
I figured out the financial break even point was one thing, but the convience issue far outweights that....

Dive-aholic
11-03-2007, 10:23
The convenience factor has to be figured into the financial break even point. If you have limited hours at a shop to deal with, along with a drive in the other direction, you have to account for your time and gas money. However, if the shop is on the way and they have extended hours...

For Brad, he has a dive shop that's on the way to most of his diving and is open 8am to 6pm, 365 days a year. Once he becomes a regular customer, those hours can even be a little extended (the shop owner lives upstairs from his shop). I've dropped tanks off there at 9pm with no problems. With once a month diving, it makes sense to rent at this time. It won't be much more than an air fill and he doesn't have the maintenance involved. And Brad, you can just use one of my tanks if we dive together. Just pay for the fills.

Puffer Fish
11-03-2007, 10:40
I figured out the financial break even point was one thing, but the convience issue far outweights that....
There are lots of different types of convience.. I don't happen to like AL80's.. so one of the conviences is that I have Faber XF tanks... as I dive mostly Nitrox, if you look at my dive profiles, I get at least 10 minutes more a dive, by having tanks that match my sac rate, to the depth, to the No-deco limits. 50 dives a year or so... and we are talking 500 minutes more diving because I bought those tanks...500 minutes of more fun...actually, it is over 10 more hours a year. Not for everyone... but what is the extra 10 hours worth to me?

moosicman
11-04-2007, 07:15
what a nice guy Dive-a-holic is....i thank you for that kind offer!! i will be in touch once i get certed. and so forth:) the folks on this board are ubercool!!!