Hollis Explorer & Prism Demo Summer Party

On the 22nd of August DiveStyle will be holding a Hollis & Prism demo and best of all we will have a free BBQ!

19:00 – 20:00 – Intro
20:00 – 21:00 – BBQ
21:00 – 22:30 – CCR + CCR = CCR!

Spaces are limited to 30 so if you want to come along you will need to get your name down to gain entry to the demo and the BBQ. First come first served!

Everyone that attends will have access to an exclusive one time package offer, not to be repeated!!!!!

Come along and see the Hollis Explorer and Prism demonstrated by the experts

Come along and see the Hollis Explorer and Prism demonstrated by the experts

To secure a place, please email jc@divestyle.co.uk

Side-Mount, The Way Forward?

Hollis, leading the field in side-mount diving

Hollis, leading the field in side-mount diving

More recreational divers are discovering the advantages of sidemount scuba cylinders.

Historically, sidemount diving was for extreme, technical divers who used the configuration to penetrate small sections of caves. But its adaptability and advantages have been discovered by divers of varied experience levels, and that, coupled with advances in equipment and greater availability of training, has made sidemount diving an increasingly common application. It’s not just for cave divers anymore.

Sidemount is a gear configuration in which a diver wears a tank on each side of his body instead of mounted on his back. Sidemount tanks lie parallel to the body, below the shoulders and along the hips. Since the tanks are not connected by an isolation manifold, as they are in a backmount configuration, the diver has two separate and redundant sources of gas and will breathe first from one tank and then the other, switching back and forth between two independent regulators throughout the dive. The clips on the bottom of the tanks are attached below the hip, and the top of the tank is secured with a bungee system, which allows the tanks to ride along the side.

The advantages of sidemount diving first resonated with advanced and technical divers who realized that wearing tanks on the side of the body created a lower profile in the water than traditional backmounted tanks, thereby allowing access to, and the exploration of, small spaces without disturbing the environment. Less silt equaled greater access. Wreck divers discovered they could push a tank ahead of them into a small hatchway by simply unclipping the bottom portion of the tank from the buttplate. Cave divers saw the same benefits when working their way through low, overhead passageways. Reef divers, too, implemented sidemount diving to improve the navigation of tight coral canyons while hopefully reducing unintentional coral contact.

But whether diving a wreck, cave or reef, every specialty recognized the safety benefits of sidemount diving. A sidemount configuration gives a diver easier access to tank valves in an emergency. Some divers carry sidemount “bailout bottles” specifically for this purpose. Sidemount rigs make it easier when divers need to swap out extra tanks staged along a tagline or the floor of a basin. The position of the tanks also gives the diver’s head greater range of motion for enhanced vision and comfort.

One final advantage for sidemount enthusiasts is simply the management of what can be a heavy load. Considering the average technical rig weighs approximately 130 lbs., it’s easy to see the appeal of a system that allows for the placement of tanks in the water ahead of the diver, allowing him to enter the water in nothing more than a basic harness system. The tanks then clip in, but with the weight burden significantly reduced through buoyancy. Of course, when the dive is done the process is easily reversed, allowing divers to exit the water with the same ease. Older divers and petite women are two dive demographics increasingly embracing sidemount diving for these very reasons.

Sidemount configurations are proving a good fit with the increasing popularity of rebreather diving. Because of the cluttered front presented by rebreather hardware, the sidemounted “bailout bottles” provide an unobtrusive way to carry an emergency air supply. The sidemount tanks also provide a ballast of sorts, creating a more streamlined profile and manageable center of gravity.

To Train Or Not To Train

Like all forms of specialized diving, divers should seek training to learn about sidemount diving. Experienced technical divers already accustomed to gas management and dealing with multiple cylinders and the rule of thirds will likely figure out how to sidemount with the help of a good workshop emphasizing the ergonomics of the system. Even then, it will likely take quite a few dives to balance the rig just right and to make the operation intuitive. Every diver must decide if these adjustments are a puzzle to solve on his own or a special skill set to hone with the help of an instructor.
Divers who are not technically trained yet want to get started in advanced diving with sidemount should take a structured course. Proper training will include removing a bottle underwater and swimming while pushing the tank in front of the body, donning tanks while floating at the surface, air sharing, gas management and deploying a surface marker. Working with an instructor will help the diver configure the finer nuances of the rig, set up the tanks properly and make sure the trim is correct in-water. Courses are typically run over two days.

Divers should choose an instructor who is familiar with their intended dive environment. There are differences between sidemounting from a boat or a cave or a wreck, and the best instruction is scenario-specific. Divers come in a variety of shapes and sizes with a variety of needs; ensure your instructor is knowledgeable on the various sidemount options and can teach you what you need to know.

How To Choose

There are dozens of sidemount rigs on the market; the diversity can be bewildering. As with all diving equipment, it’s important to define your own needs and fit your unique body type. What works for one diver won’t necessarily work for another, so do some homework before buying.

To find the rig that works best, a potential sidemount diver needs to do a thorough assessment of his dive environment and understand how personal body type and buoyancy characteristics affect a rig. Don’t try to squeeze custom needs into a “one-size-fits-most” configuration. What are your rig lift needs? Do you need your rig to be easily adaptable, or do you need one highly specialized for a specific environment? A cold-water diver may wear heavy steel tanks and need a rig designed for that environment, including a wing with enough lift for the tanks, materials that are cold-water friendly and adjustment points that can be handled with thick gloves. Cave divers in Florida may need something entirely different, and deep wreck divers off New Jersey may require something else again.

Pay attention to safety features: Do they meet the needs of your dive environment? If you plan to sidemount from a boat, you should make sure your rig is designed with the proper safety clips in case you have to enter or exit the water with the tanks attached to your harness. (This can happen when a boat encounters rough seas and transporting the tanks one at a time, unattached to the diver, can be difficult or dangerous. Rather than stress or snap the bungee system, the diver uses the clip located on the neck of the tank to clip into something more robust, like a harness D-ring.)

Divers planning to squeeze into restricted spaces with protrusions need to pay attention to the placement of the inflation hose and bungee system, along with other potential snag points. A buttplate tucked beneath a wing would be a potential problem, and the inflation hose should have a protective sleeve and a low profile. A continuous, one-piece bungee system is not necessarily considered the safest alternative; the prevailing trend these days is two separate bungees. That way if one bungee is sheared, you won’t lose control of both tanks. Keep in mind that safety and redundancy in advanced diving is critical.

Both recreational and technical certification agencies now offer sidemount training, making it easier to find an instructor. More and more sidemount divers are seen on boats and at dive sites; as part of your due diligence, ask their opinion on why they choose to sidemount and what safety features are critical to the dive environment. There’s a wealth of information eagerly disseminated amongst those early adapters of the equipment. For while it’s not necessarily mainstream just yet, sidemounting has definitely come out of the cave and into the light of day.

© Alert Diver — Summer 2010

Summer Sizzler

Discover Scuba Summer Sizzler!! Offer ends 31st August 2013.

SummerSizzler

What better way to cool offwith a friend doing a Discover Scuba in a refreshing swimming pool for only £12.50 per person!

Don’t miss out, book now by contacting the dive centre on 01189 761729 or info@divestyle.co.uk

You can even book it all online! Click Here 

10% Discount On All GoPro Accessories – In Store Only

10% Discount on all GoPro accessories until the end of July 2013!

No matter what accessory you need we are here to provide it!

When you think of a HD Video camera that exceeds all your expectations, then reach for the GoPro Hero 3!

When you think of a HD Video camera that exceeds all your expectations, then reach for the GoPro Hero 3!

Go anywhere, attach anyhow, shoot anything!

GoPro remains at the pinnacle of sports-oriented compact video cameras.
Watch any broadcast of a daredevil stunts show or extreme sport and you will doubtless spot a little box attached to an appendage or vehicle. GoPro is the go-to guy of sports cameras.
GoPro’s 2012 line up of HERO3 cameras has been split into three: the White, Silver and Black editions all sport different megapixel counts and frame rates. The Black Edition is the top dog with a twelve-megapixel sensor capable of shooting larger images and with enough processing power to snap bursts of 11MP images at 30 frames per second.
All HERO3s come with Wi-Fi built-in, plus a redesigned casing with a flat lens which has led to two improvements over its predecessor, the HERO2.

 

 

 

 

 

Amazing Oceanic OCS Dive Computer Deal

OCEANIC OCS NOW ONLY £440.00 (SRP £445.00) – Buy Now!

OCS_billboard_new

The OCS Dive Computer is the latest release from Oceanic. A watch sized unit that has been designed to be a stylish everyday watch as well as a fully featured dive computer.

A split standard LCD and dot matrix display provides a clean and clear screen to see all the essential information pre, during and post dive. The housing is made froma lightweight but strong composite material with a stainless steel back cover and bezel.

The major features include Oceanic’s Dual Algorithm technology to allow the user to adjust the computer to perform the same way as the majority of other dive computers currently on the market. Great if you regular swap buddies who have different makes and models of computers. The OCS also accepts up to 3 nitrox mixes which are switchable during the dive and a digital compass provides easy navigation underwater.

Dive profiles can be downloaded to your PC with the optional interface.

Features

  • Watch, Norm (Air / Nitrox) Gauge, and Free Dive
  • 4 Push Buttons
  • Wrist watch
  • Water or Push Button Activation
  • Dual Algorithm®
  • Personal Conservative Factor Adjustment
  • 12 Tissue Compartments
  • Automatic Altitude Adjustment
  • Deep Stop
  • Automatic Safety Stop Prompt
  • Audible Alarm
  • Alarm Acknowledgment (U/W Deactivation)
  • Ascent Rate Range
  • OceanGlo Backlight
  • Diver Replaceable Batteries
  • Low Battery Indicator (Graphic)
  • Calendar / Clock
  • 24 Hour Time to Fly Countdown
  • Calculated Desaturation Fly Countdown
  • OceanLog PC Download (Optional Extra)
  • Pre-Dive Planning Sequence
  • Temperature Display
  • Nitrogen Tissue Loading Bar Graph
  • Oxygen Loading Bar Graph
  • Variable Ascent Rate Bar Graph