Cracks in first stage body on SP Mk10

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Posted by Dr. Bill Bushing on March 26, 2006 at 17:04:09:

Just took my SP Mk10 first stage in to my LDS for a check. It had been leaking air lately and I was wondering if that could have been the reason my last two pony bottles have evacuated (since I keep the tank valves closed, this shouldn't happen regardless).

Opening the high pressure port plugs we could see a "large" crack on each side of the first stage body (PN 10-500-108). I asked if that could be the cause of the whistling sound I heard when I used it as my main reg in Belize and he said yes.

My LDS's owner and tech were surprised there would be two cracks in this part. I was wondering if anyone out there has experienced or heard of this occuring. I'm especially interested in what might cause this to occur.

This is not the same as the cracks that developed on SP Mk20's. It is my understanding those cracks were on the outside surface of the first stage body. These are on the inside. Each crack is at least 1/4-1/3" long and wide enough to see all the way through.

The interesting things is that the reg breathed "fine" when I used it as my main reg, and when I tested it on my pony during skills practice.

Of course I'm pretty "rough" on my equipment, doing 250-350 dives a year, mostly in "cold" (never below 48-50 F) water.

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