“IF ONLY YOU KNEW THE
POWER OF THE DARK SIDE…”
trips and adventures
@SOUTH WEST TECHNICAL DIVING
We love to go and do our own diving. If you are looking to build experience or just need a team-mate get in touch. We’d love to have you along. Unless you retain us to teach or guide there are no charges for joining a trip
Welcome to The Dark Side!
Here we go, issue 4 and we are right in the middle of the Covid 19 / Corona Virus challenge – read on for some things to do
What's going on?
Latest news from us and the Padawans, Sith and Jedi
So as I type this I have just been notified of four hotel and one flight cancellation due to Covid 19. As disappointed as I am not to be travelling and meting friends and doing some cool fives, I totally understand. As a fit and active diver, Covid 19 would be a short term inconvenience, but for others at risk I could carry the virus and directly or indirectly infect someone who could not cope and survive. At best they would need to put pressure on the health care system that will be coping as best it can under the load.
As such I have to respect the need to stay home and isolate. Multiply my risks by the whole population and it’s easy to understand why staying at home is the best option.
So what can I do instead, here are some ideas.
1. Book for the future and if you can pay a deposit (not for us but for the dive centres we go to who will be badly affected by the lack of divers and deposits could ensure they are here when we want them / need them.)
2. Sort and Service your gear, we will be offering some kit review days so bring them in to us if you aren’t confident yourself. Social distancing and disinfection protocols will apply.
3. Do some reading, study or preparation for your next course. We have books and / or e-learning so get in touch.
4. Work on your fitness, physical and psychological, check out @PSTforDIVING for the mental training tips
Divesoft Narrow Primary Reel.
This reel is a thing of beauty, the quality and materials are superb. You want one, just because of that, but let me tell you why you really want one and why that old ratchet reel has to go in the bin!
Primary reels for cave diving and line laying are un-ratcheted sidewinders for a reason, they lay line cleanly and easily, do not jam and are light and easy in the hand. If you are laying line form a shot or into a wreck, the same reasons apply. A line laying reel works better when it is side would and isn’t weighed down by a locking mechanism that can jam.
Now, for SMB’s. First point, use a spool not a reel. Easier, lighter and simpler. for almost all recreational AND tech divers you will rarely shoot an SMB from depth, if you do you have made at least two errors / poor decisions, so carry a 30m – 45m pocket spool, properly would with all holes showing and in 20 seconds you have a fully inflated SMB at the surface. If you need o use the reel from depth the Divesoft reel is light enough and easy enough to have clipped behind you and 5 seconds to attach. It will not jam, stick or cause problems and locks easily to mark stops.
Ratchet reels are yesterdays tech!
Featured Dive Destination
Agean Tec, Greece
Yes Greece, you read that right! Greece and in particular Athens is a hidden paradise for deep wreck diving. At AegeanTec they provide technical diver support, including CCR. They also provide high quality travel services to a number of Tec Diving destinations in Greece. High standards of safety, professionalism and logistics support required for your Tec diving needs are guaranteed.
Their main location on the coastal area of Athens provides high standard gear for deep diving, a gas blending station offering air, nitrox and trimix gas fills and is close to a variety of shipwrecks and spectacular reefs. It offers exciting exploration opportunities to both divers starting out in technical diving looking for their first deeper experiences as well as to seasoned technical divers ready to explore new pristine dive sites that only a few divers will ever see. We can’t wait to show you what Greece has in diving as well as an amazing welcome from a very professional team.
See more pics and get some information here https://www.facebook.com/events/784224755320944/
Training and Diving Tips
Ok, another image from Agean Tec, mainly because they are so cool! If you are going to do wreck penetrations here is what you should know
1. How to survey and risk assess
2. How to line lay
3. How to mark navigation points so you can literally exit blindfold
4.How to manage Light Failure, Lost Teammates and Lost Lines
5. Appropriate Gas reserves and how to carry and stage them
Otherwise wrecks are still pretty cool from the outside!
Another stunning image from Agean Tec in Greece. As in the points above, wrecks are pretty cool, but penetration requires care, training and specialist equipment. We offer an advanced wreck course, really only suitable for teaching abroad as wrecks here in Ireland that can be penetrated are generally at the more ‘advanced’ level.
Psych Skills for Diving - Article of the Month
The Role of Ego in technical (and recreational) diving
I read a blog recently that suggested our egos could be responsible for many of the casualties that technical diving regrettably suffers. Sadly my comments on this blog never made it past the moderator. As a scientist and psychologist I am somewhat protective of terminology used to describe human thought, emotion and behaviour, and the author of this blog fell into a common trap in how they described ego.
Upcoming Trips and Courses
Here is what is booked for 2020 so far
21 Feb, Go Diving Trade Day in Coventry
7-8 March, Irish Dive Show in Limerick
22-25 March, Divesoft Factory Training & Visit, Prague
18-19 April 2020, Tech Vision 2020 Scubadive West – Try tech, CCR and DPV
1-8 May, JJ-CCR Mod 1 and MOD2 Crossover – Gozo Technical Diving, Gozo
9-13 May, Sidemount Essentials – Gozo
13-18 May, In Gozo, What do you want to do?
20-31 May Athens and Rhodes exploration and wreck ID project (hypoxic CCR)
21-26 June: 10 awesome Wrecks in 5 Days
7-14 July: Discover Portugal’s Caves, Lisbon based
7-21 September: Cave Training in France, OC and CCR – 2 places available