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PADI Open Water woes...

Discussion in 'New to Scuba Diving' started by VintageGt, Aug 31, 2017.

  1. Wibble

    Wibble Fish don't talk
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    AOW isn't advanced; it's additional. To get you on the boats it's a good thing.

    We get this dahn sarf as well (Brighton-ish); the OW people are restricted pretty much to drift dives.

    You're rather caught in a quandry; until you've selected your club, you don't know which agency to go with.

    Personally I'd consider doing the AOW anyway, just to get it out of the way. Then if you're ending up with BSAC, you'll just go in on the Sports Diver sylabus and re-do some of the skills (and there's nothing wrong with that!).

    With UK diving, you really do need to be able to dive to 30 metres and be pretty comfortable in low-vis conditions which can suddenly happen if someone kicks up the bottom. More importantly you don't want to be too dependent on your buddies and be able to happily ascend on your own with an SMB. Tip: always volunteer to put the blob up.
     
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  2. Vanny

    Vanny Active Member

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    Good news re BSAC club. Hopefully you Can get to meet them and do some dives and poss get hold of a dry suit and get them to help you become acquainted with it. No need for a formal course as such just time to familiarise yourself.
     
  3. VintageGt

    VintageGt Member

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    I think I'm going to do that @Wibble. I can get the AOW under my belt for around the 200 notes mark and then as you say, redoing some skills during a BSAC sport diver course can't do any harm at all. By then I'll have more dives under my belt after finally getting on boats and getting some experience. Seems like a plan. :thumbup:
     
  4. VintageGt

    VintageGt Member

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    I've managed to get a dry suit so just need a chance to use it really. Its a used one in very good nick and fits well but needs some pool time to make sure it actually stays dry and I don't shoot to the surface feet first! :eek:
     
  5. Wibble

    Wibble Fish don't talk
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    Excellent news!

    Can you squat down in it (release the air from the neck) without it garrotting you?

    Can you reach behind your head, down your neck?

    Can you reach up "superman" style?

    If so, it's not too small! Slightly larger is preferable to too tight. In the winter you'll pile on the undersuit layers.

    And are the boots tight or loose? These can be changed if necessary -- either boots or socks (which I prefer as the gas doesn't migrate into your feet). When changing boots they can adjust the leg length too.

    Oh, and is it dry! Remember neck and cuffs can be changed; they're like consumables.
     
  6. VintageGt

    VintageGt Member

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    It is affirmative on those movements! I took it down to my local club and tried it on and they gave it the once over and had me do all of the above and the consensus was it's spot on. As you say, plenty room for freedom of movement and a substantial under suit where required.

    The boots are a size 8, I'm a size 7 (yep, small feet!) so again, they are roomy enough to get a good pair of thick socks on, or the feet of a full under suit, and fit just right.

    The cuffs and neck seem fine and in good condition, until I ripped one whilst trying it on! Hence, it now has a new one in its place.

    I've been very lucky indeed, it was given to me free by a colleague who no longer dives along with some weights, weight belt and a Seemann gear bag.

    When he gave me it the zip on the suit was totally seized solid so he said I could have it on the proviso I'd have to fettle the zip. One bottle of Zip Slip and half an hour later, good as new.:D
     
  7. Vanny

    Vanny Active Member

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    I'd just hang fire on the AOW. Wait till you've had a chance to meet and talk to your BSAC club. If they sound positive with regard to getting on sports diver then go with that. It'll save £200 & get your dry suit sorted. The winters coming so your not gonna miss too much quality diving. If it was spring then yes maybe crack on. If you don't get anywhere in say a month or so then revisit AOW ?
     
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  8. VintageGt

    VintageGt Member

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    Aye, good points. The issue I have is the BSAC club I contacted have very little kit to hire new divers so I'd have to get me and the Mrs pretty much fully kitted up with our own stuff which is an expensive proposition over Christmas. Plus, by the time we get all that kit together it'll be spring at the earliest anyway.

    I'm fine with getting my own kit, already well on the way, but I suspect it may be a flash in the pan with the Mrs and once she's dived with the cute and cuddly seals once or twice, her interest may well wane. If we do AOW, with full kit hire included, then nothing is lost as we can use those quals to dive abroad when we go away.

    Although it'll cost a bit more in the long run, I'd be happy to do AOW and then do Sports diver also next summer by which time I'll have all my own kit and we'll see whether 'er indoors is still as keen as she is now.

    If that makes sense...
     
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  9. hawk

    hawk Doing It Rong
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    Doing AOW does make a lot of sense as it gives you instant access to 30m dives - which is where most of the BSAC clubs dives will be - and so you can dive with your BSAC club (when you join)using your PADI qualifications and cross over at the same time.
     
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  10. VintageGt

    VintageGt Member

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    Yeah, agreed. It's the boat training I would like also and AOW will give us that as one of our final dives on the course.
     
  11. Wibble

    Wibble Fish don't talk
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    That's good to hear that the AOW isn't all quarry based. Need that guidance on boat etiquette.
     
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  12. Vanny

    Vanny Active Member

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    Fair enough.
     
  13. JohnL

    JohnL Well-Known Member

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    My BSAC club has finally made contact - while my contact was away for weeks (which I knew), the Training Officer resigned! There was a committee meeting a couple of days ago, so hopefully I should hear what's going on soon. I had done my homework, it was recommended by a BSAC regional guy and I've been to a club night. Cross fingers that I can get Sports Diver sorted before we move!
     
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  14. VintageGt

    VintageGt Member

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    Nice one. Good luck John, keep us posted
     
  15. snowman

    snowman Active Member

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    Sports Diver is a really good course (Speaking as someone who's done it AND AOW), that prepares you well for the kind of dives you'll (probably) get the most enjoyment from in the UK.

    Hope things go well for you - One of the great virtues of BSAC is the opportunity to talk and dive with like minded people - A good club (for you) will deliver that, others won't, so don't be too dissuaded if your first experience isn't as great as you (and I) hope.

    M
     
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  16. 60plus

    60plus Member

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    Hi, This is my first post although I have been looking at this forum for some time. Firstly I would be extremely wary of linking quality of instruction / instructor to any particular organisation. So far all my training and that of another family member has been with PADI and the standard of instruction has been excellent. The instructors were genuine diving enthusiasts with an interest in marine conservation and all had many 1000s of dives experience in many locations. However I have also come across an instructor who in my opinion (as a qualified teacher and engineer) was not fit to be an instructor. He did not understand trim and the consequences of moving weight about, He interfered with my (own) gear telling me it was wrong and mis adjusting it, when in fact he did not know how it worked. He was not actually my instructor, he just took it upon himself to interfere, whilst my instructor had gone to get changed. PADI is to a large extent a commercial teaching set up whereas BSAC etc are primarily enthusiast / club based.
    Whether you chose to learn with PADI or one or the club based schemes probably depends on what "sort" diving you intend to do. I chose to do PADI abroad and my experience since has confirmed it was the right choice for me. Spending hours chugging round a shallow pool all winter did not appeal. By choosing PADI abroad I had done a 33 minute sea dive to 11m and seen a lot of marine life on the first day. Somebody doing the PADI OW with all their training in the sea and a few more dives afterwards on the same holiday is a far more experienced and all other things being equal a far more competent diver than someone who has done BSAC only in sheltered / freshwater conditions. That's not to denigrate BSAC in anyway (I might do sport diver with BSAC), its just an example of how location and type of instruction has far more influence than the certifying organisation.
     
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  17. Tel

    Tel Super Moderator
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    Don't confuse agency with location :p

    Both PADI & BSAC will use freshwater sites in the UK, with a typical open water course taking two days
    and commonly done over two weekends. In both cases the number of hours in the water is the same.

    Overseas in the warm and on hols everyday is a weekend + sheltered water can also be in the sea, so
    yes it will be quicker and you will see more stuff than in a pool etc. then back in the UK. The agency though is
    irrelevant, both PADI and BSAC run schools and often will be the same Instructor, many of us have
    multiple agency tickets :)
     
  18. John F

    John F Member

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    It’s often said that if you can dive in the uk, you can dive anywhere, as conditions are very often much harder then tropical waters.
    I would far rather learn and practice in the harsher environment and then the warm water and endless vis is so easy and enjoyable.
    John
     
  19. Tel

    Tel Super Moderator
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    Not quite, it's an often quoted phrase, but it's not very accurate :)

    While it's true that UK divers who learned in adverse conditions will be better if such conditions appear overseas,
    that doesn't mean they can dive anywhere. Plenty of so-called UK dive ninjas have come a cropper by not paying
    heed to local conditions :p

    As for training sure if you've got no choice/can't get away then UK is fine, but no question for entry level much better
    to learn overseas.

    UK progression is poor from pool/BC to Open water/Drysuit and is also kit intensive with extra layers, hood, gloves etc.
    Overseas in warmer climes the progression is much better with pool/BC or even sheltered water leading to open water/BC
    using a semi-dry or less and no hoods or gloves etc.
    Movement and dexterity is better as is time to get ready and options for multiple dives often with little to no tidal constraints.
    Divers who learn overseas often do the course in a much shorter time + more dives after, hence honing skills.

    Once back in the UK the new diver already has the skills, so the addition of a drysuit and hoods/gloves etc. is easy to
    master.
     
  20. John F

    John F Member

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    I agree. I was really thinking I f the vis. It’s not uncommon in the solant to have vis 1m, if a diver has done all his work in 30m they can be uncomfortable with what is a new experience for them eg: trying not to lose you buddy.
     

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