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View Full Version : Who is best qualified to give gear advice?



mm2002
02-23-2008, 18:30
Reading through a thread in the “regulators” section sparked my interest on this topic, so here goes. I’d be very interested in your opinions on this subject.

#1. Is technical knowledge of diving equipment directly related to the quantity of dives that a person has logged, or how many years that person has been involved in diving?

#2. When questions arise regarding advice about a particular piece of gear, does it matter more that a person has experience with that particular piece of gear, or that they have more knowledge of scuba equipment in general?

#3. Is it possible for a person with 20 dives to have more technical knowledge of a particular piece of scuba gear than a person with 1000 dives?

#4. Is it possible for a person who has logged 1000 dives to not have any real technical knowledge of scuba gear at all?

What do you all think?

terrillja
02-23-2008, 18:40
I would say that owning a piece of equipment would qualify you to give advice on that specific piece of gear, however a diver with more dives could possibly offer more general advice over what to look for in a specific type of gear. Having said that, I have certainly met divers who had lots of dives under them who thought that the gear they had owned since the 70s was the best and there was no reason to update.

I think that someone with a lot of dives under them could offer a lot of general advice on what to look for in a reg, but if you want to know how a specific piece of gear functions, there is no better advice than from someone who owns a specific piece of gear. I wouldn't offer advice on zeagle gear bc i've never used them. If anone wants to know about an oceanic gt3, I'd love to offer my experiences.

That was a lot of typing in my iPod...

FishFood
02-23-2008, 19:03
The more scuba equipment you've used, and more dives the better.

A common trend around here, when someone asks what type of product they should use, is for people to reply back with "I use XYZ and love it" or "XYZ is the best because i bought it".

Really, that's a common trend in ALL internet communities, and in real life. People that should, under no circumstances, be recomending gear to other people are doing so because their first 5 dives went well and thats the gear they used. LOL!

I often times read a thread, and don't reply because I dont think i have the knowledge to do so. THen, ill read the replies and realize I know more than half the people that replied. A lot of threads are the blind leading the blind. Kinda irritates me when people reply to threads they really arent qaulified for.

Oh well...

mitsuguy
02-23-2008, 19:06
in this way, scuba is kinda like cars...

some people are new and have lots of knowledge on certain portions - typically the stuff they have when first starting out - typically these "newbies" even know more than the old timers just because they've done the research more recently...

and at the same time, some people that have been in the game FOREVER are set in their ways, and not very open about newer ideas, and don't really care about the newest thing out, just what they know works...

mm2002
02-23-2008, 19:07
The more scuba equipment you've used, and more dives the better.

My Dad is 67, and has owned nothing but Corvettes since he was in his late twenties............he still to this day couldn't tell you how to change a spark plug.

mitsuguy
02-23-2008, 19:21
The more scuba equipment you've used, and more dives the better.

My Dad is 67, and has owned nothing but Corvettes since he was in his late twenties............he still to this day couldn't tell you how to change a spark plug.

thus my point about how diving and cars are related... just because you are into them doesn't mean you are qualified to make any kind of recommendation...

terrillja
02-23-2008, 19:26
in this way, scuba is kinda like cars...

some people are new and have lots of knowledge on certain portions - typically the stuff they have when first starting out - typically these "newbies" even know more than the old timers just because they've done the research more recently...

and at the same time, some people that have been in the game FOREVER are set in their ways, and not very open about newer ideas, and don't really care about the newest thing out, just what they know works...

I'd agree. When I went to get my gear, I researched everything about it and could rattle off the specs no problem as well as the reviews on all of it. The owner of my LDS is an old timer and he doesn't have a single computer in his shop. The guy can talk about diving and how gear has evolved, but was amazed when I explained the dvt on my first stage. This guy has been diving for 50+ yrs, but I knew more about the new stuff than he did.

mm2002
02-23-2008, 19:27
just because you are into them doesn't mean you are qualified to make any kind of recommendation...

I really wanted this thread to last a while before it came down to the final truth....but you kinda ruined that for me now didn't you? :smiley36:

FishFood
02-23-2008, 19:30
The more scuba equipment you've used, and more dives the better.

My Dad is 67, and has owned nothing but Corvettes since he was in his late twenties............he still to this day couldn't tell you how to change a spark plug.

And im sure there are Vette owners that could perform engine swaps from day one....

Does that mean Im going to value someones input that has 1000+ dives as much as I am someone that has 0-24 dives? Most likely not. And if I do, its probably because of the way they presented themselves in the post.

Experience usually equates into knowledge. You can toss extreme examples of contradictions around all day long, but they are the MINORITY.

mm2002
02-23-2008, 19:34
And im sure there are Vette owners that could perform engine swaps from day one...."

"Experience usually equates into knowledge. You can toss extreme examples of contradictions around all day long, but they are the MINORITY."

Nah, unfortunately, the majority of Vette owners can't change a spark plug, but that's a different thread! :smiley36:

FishFood
02-23-2008, 19:35
And im sure there are Vette owners that could perform engine swaps from day one...."

"Experience usually equates into knowledge. You can toss extreme examples of contradictions around all day long, but they are the MINORITY."

Nah, unfortunately, the majority of Vette owners can't change a spark plug, but that's a different thread! :smiley36:

Hehe :smiley32:

cummings66
02-23-2008, 19:57
#1. Is technical knowledge of diving equipment directly related to the quantity of dives that a person has logged, or how many years that person has been involved in diving?

I don't think so entirely for either one, technical knowledge can be had without any dives at all.



#2. When questions arise regarding advice about a particular piece of gear, does it matter more that a person has experience with that particular piece of gear, or that they have more knowledge of scuba equipment in general?

Both come in handy, but I belive a more general knowledge is better than specific to one brand.



#3. Is it possible for a person with 20 dives to have more technical knowledge of a particular piece of scuba gear than a person with 1000 dives?

Certainly possible, you could have 0 dives and still have an intimate knowledge of it. Suppose you were a service technician for the big company that makes it, you'd probably know more about it than Joe Diver would.



#4. Is it possible for a person who has logged 1000 dives to not have any real technical knowledge of scuba gear at all?


Entirely possible, some people just dive to get wet and don't care about anything other than it works. I'm sure that at 1000 dives, as long as it's not done over a 30 year period, they would be able to sense things that a diver with 20 dives couldn't feel.

I can for example tell when I'm doing things right because it feels good to me, I can tell when it's not right for the same reason. I am sure that the clues I use are different than that of a new diver. I feel the dive and buoyancy during the glide portion of my kick, it tells me what I'm up to and how it's going for example. I know when my drysuit has too much air in it because I've learned the feel of it.

When it comes to regulators it's different. I can tell you which one I like best and why, but I don't think I could tell you which of the models is technically the best because I don't service them, yet.

mm2002
02-24-2008, 10:07
Thank you cummings66, exactly what I was looking for. I think some of us are technically minded, and some of us are not. Those that are not into the "technical" aspect of the gear they use could easily dive all their life and never really understand exactly what makes a particular piece of gear click. All they really know or care about is that it works. Would I ask that person technical advice about a certain piece of gear? Probably not. Would I ask that person for advice about actual diving? Yep, I'm all ears!

Suther2136
02-24-2008, 14:37
Can you be a repair technician for regulators and not be a diver? I would say yes. The best authority is likely someone who does both. A pure tech might not get the diver issues and a diver only knows what he or she has experience with.

MLenyo
02-24-2008, 15:05
just ask joe and larry.

mm2002
02-24-2008, 17:24
just ask joe and larry.

Oh now that was cold! :smiley36:

68raggtop
02-24-2008, 18:26
Reading through a thread in the “regulators” section sparked my interest on this topic, so here goes. I’d be very interested in your opinions on this subject.

#1. Is technical knowledge of diving equipment directly related to the quantity of dives that a person has logged, or how many years that person has been involved in diving?

#2. When questions arise regarding advice about a particular piece of gear, does it matter more that a person has experience with that particular piece of gear, or that they have more knowledge of scuba equipment in general?

#3. Is it possible for a person with 20 dives to have more technical knowledge of a particular piece of scuba gear than a person with 1000 dives?

#4. Is it possible for a person who has logged 1000 dives to not have any real technical knowledge of scuba gear at all?

What do you all think?

I think that you should buy a Corvette first :smiley2:, then learn to change the plugs.:anim_smash:

As far as the advice goes, the more specific the questions, the easier it should be to sort out the type of experience most suited to answer with credibility. If you ask in generalities, it can be much more difficult. The hard part for me is usually to understand what it is I really want to know, and phrase the question in a way that will get useful results.

(oh, and yes, I can, and have completely disassembled and reassembled every component in my Corvette. :lilguy: )

mm2002
02-24-2008, 18:36
(oh, and yes, I can, and have completely disassembled and reassembled every component in my Corvette. :lilguy: )

Oh yeah, but that's an old one....those are easy. All you need is a 1/2", a 9/16", and a screwdriver, and you can tear that car down to the frame. :smiley36:

mitsuguy
02-24-2008, 18:50
I think that you should buy a Corvette first :smiley2:, then learn to change the plugs.:anim_smash:

As far as the advice goes, the more specific the questions, the easier it should be to sort out the type of experience most suited to answer with credibility. If you ask in generalities, it can be much more difficult. The hard part for me is usually to understand what it is I really want to know, and phrase the question in a way that will get useful results.

(oh, and yes, I can, and have completely disassembled and reassembled every component in my Corvette. :lilguy: )




(oh, and yes, I can, and have completely disassembled and reassembled every component in my Corvette. :lilguy: )

Oh yeah, but that's an old one....those are easy. All you need is a 1/2", a 9/16", and a screwdriver, and you can tear that car down to the frame. :smiley36:[/quote]


and a pair of vise-grips :)

68raggtop
02-24-2008, 19:16
Oh yeah, but that's an old one....those are easy. All you need is a 1/2", a 9/16", and a screwdriver, and you can tear that car down to the frame. :smiley36:


and a pair of vise-grips :)

You forgot my favorite, the :anim_smash: (aka big persuader)

:smiley36::smiley36::smiley36:

mm2002
02-24-2008, 21:52
Oh yeah, but that's an old one....those are easy. All you need is a 1/2", a 9/16", and a screwdriver, and you can tear that car down to the frame. :smiley36:


and a pair of vise-grips :)

You forgot my favorite, the :anim_smash: (aka big persuader)

:smiley36::smiley36::smiley36:


Oh, yep! Forgot about the BFH! :smiley36:

cummings66
02-25-2008, 07:31
Many airplane mechanics are not pilots and they know the plan inside and out, some of the best in the country simply don't care to fly. So I don't think you need to be a diver nor do I think being a diver helps you understand them any better.

About the only thing a diver who doesn't fix them understands is that if they don't work you don't breathe or breathe poorly. That's a gut feeling, if you've ever had it happen you know only that you don't want to do it again. You "feel" that. A tech may know that but doesn't "feel" it like you do. He will however understand that.

It just so happens that all the techs I know personally also dive, it kind of falls in line with it. The funny thing is I know guys that fill tanks but they don't dive.

RoyN
02-25-2008, 10:21
My mom and her husband is for me! :D

Kingpatzer
02-25-2008, 10:32
There are a few areas where I am legitimately an expert. I know more about computers and networks than most people in the industry. I am also a reasonably talented composer and guitarist.

When it comes to music gear, I'm very qualified to give out advice to anyone, because I teach and spend lots of time observing players of all ages and levels using gear, so I can say with confidence that a particular guitar or effect will or will not work for a person of a particular ability -- regardless of if they are a professional performer or a beginning student.

When it comes to computers, I am very much unqualified to give out advice to most people. Few people are running heterogeneous networks with over 50,000 switches, hundreds of circuits, multiple network protocols, mainframe and unix servers and a couple hundred databases with multiple terabytes of data. The average person just wants i-tunes and their favorite game to work for them . . . and frankly, I probably know less about that arena of application than they do. So while I can code the microcode on their cpu to do the job (or at least I could at one point in my career) I have no busines giving them advice on computers for their level of use. I simply am clueless about how the average person uses a computer.

I think that a person with 1000 dives who isn't an instructor or DM may well have no business giving out advice to the average diver about gear. Like me and computers, they may simply have no experience in that space.

On the other hand, if they do spend a lot of time working with or at least observing and talking to (not at) average divers, like me and music gear, they might have great insight.

Being an expert doesn't mean one's views are valid for all people. You have to tailor expert advice to fit the context of the person to whom the advice is given. That piece is highly variable among "experts."

cummings66
02-25-2008, 11:08
On the other hand, if they do spend a lot of time working with or at least observing and talking to (not at) average divers, like me and music gear, they might have great insight.


There's the loophole, it's all about being around the gear and it being used. A regulator that works great at 30 feet (typical depth of OW training) may suck water at 200 meters. Only the guys using them in those applications really know how well they behave.

I do know from tech divers that my Apeks regulators have worked fine down to 200 meters which is way more than I'll ever do. I'll take their word on the matter because they've got the real world experience and I have never done that depth, never intend on doing it either.

rye_a
02-25-2008, 11:38
If this were Scuba Board I would be required to say that I am the "best qualified to give gear advice," but since this is the ST forum I guess I'll have to defer to someone with a lot more experience or expertise than I have. It's like they say, opinions are like A-holes, but only the proctologist's opinion really matters (or something like that).