Lets see what Chuck says.

Outer Bamnks diving on the Great Escape Southern California Live-Aboard Dive Boat

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Posted by TDI_2 on September 06, 2002 at 16:18:09:

In Reply to: Wet Steel issue response to Chuck posted by Kendall Raine on September 06, 2002 at 13:27:48:

Chuck will probably say the water on the West Coast lends itself to drysuit diving anyway.

Your argument basically mandates aluminum tanks for wetsuit divers, requiring them to bear the burden of the extra lead weighting during their beach or boat entries & exits. At least, if they want to be perfectly independently safe, given a possible B/C failure at depth.

A buddy could help them out of a jam, if it happened.

Another option would be to bring along a lift bag to attach to their harnass in case of a B/C failure, although that is not exactly protocol.

A further option would be to bring a slingable pony bottle, and ditch their steel gear if it came to that, ascending with the bottle. Of course, then they leave a lot of expensive scuba gear on the bottom of the ocean. Not good either.

Since I dont dive in a wetsuit anymore, except during rescue classes, wherein I dont want to get my drysuit ripped up by the students, my advice to divers with wetsuits is not to go very deep, since the result of Boyles Law at depths of around 100 fsw will indeed make their suits less buoyant.

Many divers dont even have B/Cs with lift capacities great enough to lift them off the bottom, when they dive deep with a wetsuit. They weight themselves at the surface, and dont even think about what can happen deep. And in those cases, a larger B/C is what is called for. At least 45 lbs.

A good way to predive-check a B/C is to fully inflate it with the power inflator, listen for leaks, and make sure the pressure releases work. I do that every diving day. And with a twin bladder tech B/C, I do it twice, once with each bladder.

The B/C should work and not fail at depth, if predive tested. So with a wetsuit and steel tanks, I would be more worried about having a sufficiently large B/C [with high lifting capacity] than about a B/C failure at depth.

Youre right about the dilemma of diving wet and steel. Im not sure if this potential problem has ever killed anybody however.

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