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Thread: buying first tank?

  1. #1
    TadPole sapperw5's Avatar
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    buying first tank?

    im new to diving and am now looking to buy because renting all season doesnt make sence. i will be driftdiving and diving primarilly aroung niagara, and lake erie,maybe canada. any suggestions on tank size and type? also aluminum or steel? i hear alot about both. i just dont want to make the wrong choice. thanks
    dive right.enjoy what life has. thank a vet.

  2. #2
    Grand Master Spammer Founding Member
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    Aluminum is cheap, but needs more lead (they're floaty) and doesn't hold a huge amount of gas.

    Steel is expensive, but much heavier, so you actually don't need to carry as much lead. Plus they're available in much larger capacities.

    As to which one is better, that depends on you (what size are you, a huge hulking dude who can carry a water heater on his back, or a petite female who prefers the smallest lightest tank possible), how cold the water is you dive, salt water vs. fresh, what depths you plan to explore, whether you're schlepping the tanks on hikes down cliffs for a shore dive, or rolling them on a dolly onto charter boats.

    My generic answer is it's hard to go wrong with the HP100 galvanized tank for nearly all divers in all conditions. Give us more info and I'll tell you why.

  3. #3
    Barracuda
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    With CD on his generic answer too. HP100 "galvanized tank" is the way to go for me.

    The fabers are okay, but the rust gets under the paint and for a white tank, it become scratch plus some people love to draw silly stuff on my tank too.
    Now a trimix diver!

  4. #4
    Fo those of you who hate the Faber triple coated tanks I recommend you take a trip to the Himilayas and find a guru who can teach you how to stop worrying so much. My tanks will probably still be here when I'm long gone even if they do have few paint scratches.

  5. #5
    Barracuda
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    Quote Originally Posted by BouzoukiJoe View Post
    Fo those of you who hate the Faber triple coated tanks I recommend you take a trip to the Himilayas and find a guru who can teach you how to stop worrying so much. My tanks will probably still be here when I'm long gone even if they do have few paint scratches.
    The cost of going to the mountain on the plane is more then just buying another faber tank.
    Now a trimix diver!

  6. #6
    Quote Originally Posted by RoyN View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by BouzoukiJoe View Post
    Fo those of you who hate the Faber triple coated tanks I recommend you take a trip to the Himilayas and find a guru who can teach you how to stop worrying so much. My tanks will probably still be here when I'm long gone even if they do have few paint scratches.
    The cost of going to the mountain on the plane is more then just buying another faber tank.

    There is that. LOL

  7. #7
    Barracuda
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    Quote Originally Posted by BouzoukiJoe View Post

    There is that. LOL
    The worst part of owning a faber tanks is.....



    I get vandalize by my mom, dad, sister, and girlfriend because they Keep drawing stupid pictures on my tanks from smile faces to rocket ships. Its all in permanent makers too.
    Now a trimix diver!

  8. #8
    Grand Master Spammer Founding Member
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    Quote Originally Posted by BouzoukiJoe View Post
    Fo those of you who hate the Faber triple coated tanks I recommend you take a trip to the Himilayas and find a guru who can teach you how to stop worrying so much. My tanks will probably still be here when I'm long gone even if they do have few paint scratches.
    I don't hate them. I own a pair. (hp100 doubles, to be precise)

    I still prefer the galvanized coating on my Worthingtons, though, for rust-proofing reasons. Especially on the bottom of doubles, which take a beating.

  9. #9
    Quote Originally Posted by sapperw5 View Post
    im new to diving and am now looking to buy because renting all season doesnt make sence. i will be driftdiving and diving primarilly aroung niagara, and lake erie,maybe canada. any suggestions on tank size and type? also aluminum or steel? i hear alot about both. i just dont want to make the wrong choice. thanks
    Do you have your AOW? Are you really at 0-24 dives? You might want to hold off buying a cylinder or just go with an AL80 for now with plans to add something else later.

    Maybe I'm wrong but when I was at your stage of diving I had no idea what I needed in terms of a cylinder. I was quite surprised how much there was to consider when buying a cylinder. What you need is also going to depend a lot on you. As CompuDude has eluded to, your physique will have a lot of bearing on your cylinder. My instructor is something like five foot nothing. She dives an HP100 because it is shorter than an AL80. She can pick the HP100 up by the valve and it doesn't drag. With an AL80 it is too long; she cannot pick it up with one hand and it hits her thighs. She is also fairly buoyant so the extra weight of the steel helps.

    You might want to search the Tank forum for messages. I have been getting a lot of help from CompuDude, Rainer, BouzoukiJoe, etc. on this very topic.

    You'll be diving the same lakes as me.

    Also, is renting really that bad? If you rent, the cylinder is usually full for the rental price. If you purchase you have to pay for the air fill. Your pricing might vary but I found it to be:

    AL80 rental = $10 (full tank). Purchase is $150 plus $5 for a tank fill.

    AL80 * 30 rental = $300.
    AL80 + 30 fills = $300.

    However, you have to pay for a visual inspection every year and a hydro every five years. I estimate it costs more to buy if you dive less than 35 times a year (depends on taxes too). If you go with steel it is worst because the cylinders are $300 to $500 for steel and tank fills are often more for the larger capacity cylinders.

    Looking back on it, I would have been okay buying an AL80 then selling it later. I'm thinking about buying steel because if the convenience and renting HP100 or HP119 is not possible in my area.
    Last edited by scubadiver888; 03-17-2009 at 20:54. Reason: added the rent vs. buy

  10. #10
    Quote Originally Posted by CompuDude View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by BouzoukiJoe View Post
    Fo those of you who hate the Faber triple coated tanks I recommend you take a trip to the Himilayas and find a guru who can teach you how to stop worrying so much. My tanks will probably still be here when I'm long gone even if they do have few paint scratches.
    I don't hate them. I own a pair. (hp100 doubles, to be precise)

    I still prefer the galvanized coating on my Worthingtons, though, for rust-proofing reasons. Especially on the bottom of doubles, which take a beating.

    That's what boots are for!

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