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Winter plumage: undersuits + Kwark

Discussion in 'General Scuba Diving' started by Wibble, Dec 24, 2019.

  1. Wibble

    Wibble Fish don't talk
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    Last dive I did in my winter plumage was horrid. Way too many layers. Felt trussed up like a mummy. Layers inner to outer: light cotton vest; FE tech vest; Santi heated vest; FE vest; FE long sleeve rash vest; FE arctic expedition.

    Lost most of my dexterity. Only benefit was I was warm.

    Have tried a Santi BZ400 in the past, but it didn't fit my legs (I'd probably need a MTM one to get the knees in the right place). It also was very tight in my drysuit.

    So, Kwark undersuits look good and have a good reputation.

    What do you wear under them?
     
  2. jb2cool

    jb2cool Moderator
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    Daren used to have a Kwark and really wasn’t impressed with it but I’ve known others that really rate them.

    I myself will stick to thinsulate
     
  3. John F

    John F Active Member

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    I have my neoprene dry suit and a forth element Arctic and that’s it, can do an hour and not get cold.
     
  4. Doomanic

    Doomanic Dinosaur Wrangler
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    Cotton is a very poor choice for a base layer as it doesn't wick; any sweat gets held in the material and will drop your temp, meaning you need more layers to keep warm.
     
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  5. Vanny

    Vanny Active Member

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    I count 6 layers. If you need that , including elec vest , I doubt Kwark will help much. Shorter run time maybe , or a neoprene suit :geek:
     
  6. Wibble

    Wibble Fish don't talk
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    I'm probably being too cautious and adding too much insulation. This is driven by the length of time I’ve been spending at deco for most of my dives this year, often more than an hour. Being cold, really cold, at 6m with the clock showing more 30 mins is not a good place to be.

    I like the heated vest but I’ve also learned not to rely on it as I’ve had too many failures in the past: batteries, connectors and cables all fail.

    @Doomanic - good point about the wicking abilities of cotton. Is comfy though. I do normally use it the other way around: FE Tec Vest as the inner layer.

    @Tribal Chestnut - what do you use under your Kwark when diving in the cold?
     
  7. Tribal Chestnut

    Tribal Chestnut Well-Known Member
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    Just been using thin and tight motorbike thermals with a fleecy vest.

    Ok for a couple of hours at 8degC, but not much fun. When really cold (2-5degC) it’s the hands which end the dive. No good carrying on if I can’t use my equipment. This was emphasised when I couldn’t add O2 a few weeks back and needed to use a pebble to push the MAV. Won’t be letting that happen again.

    Have added a heated vest and one of those Fourth Element vests too, but will drop the other fleecey one this winter.
     
  8. Tribal Chestnut

    Tribal Chestnut Well-Known Member
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    Also been considering a BZ400 for a while now. Will have to be M2M though.
     
  9. Dave Whitlow

    Dave Whitlow Super Moderator
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    I have a heated vest. It is nice when I use it.

    I also like CCR diving. The gas I inhale is warm and any heat I add to the gas is returned. I stay warm. I do wonder why anyone does longer dives on OC. I await an answer.
     
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  10. John F

    John F Active Member

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    Because I can’t justify the cost of a ccr for the type and amount of diving I am doing
     
  11. Wibble

    Wibble Fish don't talk
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    CCR — IMHO — will need a budget of circa £10 to £12k and a year of practice to get back to the 60ish metre dives I’m currently doing. But I totally agree as the gas bills are getting silly.

    Still trying to flog the sailing boat. That market's definitely bolloxed by Brexit.

    I know I could move to CCR cheaper than that, but it’s not the point. Need to sell the boat so I can spend time practicing and also doing some foreign dive trips, such as Mexico, Egypt and other warmer locations.

    At the moment I can justify the OC diving costs as it’s an incremental increase in skills that will apply to CCR and the gas costs, whilst high at £100 to £200 per dive, don’t require new kit or skills. Last few dives I've been using a twinset and bottom stage with two deco stages. Bloody heavy though,
     
    #11 Wibble, Dec 25, 2019
    Last edited: Dec 25, 2019
  12. Dave Whitlow

    Dave Whitlow Super Moderator
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    £10-12k!! It doesn't cost anything like that much. A friend of mine just bought a second hand Vision for £2.7k and it is serviced and ready to dive.

    I spent about 5k in my first year of CCR diving, including second hand unit and mod 1 (48m trimix version), and I recovered about a thirds of that selling my twinset wing, twinset regs, a couple of twinsets and a VR3.
    A rebreather with 4 x 3 litre cylinders, 2 x AL80s and a scooter is also pretty heavy!
     
  13. Dave Whitlow

    Dave Whitlow Super Moderator
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    Does everything in life require a justification?

    if it comes to having to justify the cost of diving then snorkelling is cheaper and also avoids the cost and time of those trips to the dive shop to collect gas!
     
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  14. Wibble

    Wibble Fish don't talk
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    There is one point about CCR diving: it’s a lot more complex than open circuit and needs a lot of practice especially to get back to the same competence as on OC with far greater overheads in all ways; cost, time and effort.

    Agreed that an older box can be bought for £3k. I’ve only a few more years of diving left, so want to go for only one box that’s light for foreign trips but will let me do the kind of UK diving I enjoy. Current favourite is rEvo, but will evaluate a Kiss Sidewinder.
     
  15. Tribal Chestnut

    Tribal Chestnut Well-Known Member
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    If you think you only have a few years left, but that there is a lot to learn and become skilled at with CCR, then surely you’d be better off taking the plunge now, rather than prevaricating further?

    As has been said, get a ‘cheap’ Inspo and sell the plan to the other half by pointing out the other assets that you’ve sold to fund it......

    And bin the Sidewinder idea.

    Getting a little deja vu here.
     
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  16. splinter

    splinter Active Member

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    Got to agree with the above. Theres was recently a Vision on Facebook for £2600 that's ready to dive (I know, you dont do Facebook). It was on ebay but the listings ended.

    Loads of people travel with inspos. You might need an extra checked bag, but that's no biggie.

    Get the vision, learn to dive it and get the process started. In a couple of years, if you've sold your boat, buy the unit you want and just do the crossover. You'll be that much further ahead than if you wait until you can afford the ideal unit. You've talked about it long enough!

    Sent from my SM-G950F using Tapatalk
     
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  17. Wibble

    Wibble Fish don't talk
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    Am honestly hoping for the boat to go early next season. Will drop the price too as the annual overheads are the cost of a new rebreather.
     
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  18. Dave Whitlow

    Dave Whitlow Super Moderator
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    There is nothing complex about diving CCR. The main differences are that buoyancy is constant throughout the dive (not overweight due to gas you'll breathe) and there is minimal scope for using lungs to adjust buoyancy (it is possible but the diluent cost makes it a poor plan), Gas planning and gas logistics are much simpler and there is no contents gauge that needs monitoring.
    Why only a few years? Barring serious afflictions, it isn't the years that count it is how healthy you remain. I'm 62 and have no plans to stop CCR diving for a while. I use sprint triathlons as the measure of the fitness to maintain so I keep myself busy cycling, running, swimming and other water-sports (windsurfing is the plan for next year).

    As others have said stop making excuses, forget the esoteric options and just get a cheap Vision. They are easy to own, the spares simple to get and people take them all over the world.
    I know one guy who sold his rEvo as it was too negative to dive with a thin wetsuit (he was going to Bikini).
     
  19. Griffalo

    Griffalo Active Member

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    Back on the original subject, I’ve using a fourth element xerotherm base layer under my Qwark. I forgot it yesterday so just used the qwark and was fine. A buddy was also using a qwark without a base layer and had a bad leak in his suit but still managed a 45 min dive (NDAC 9 degrees).
     
  20. John F

    John F Active Member

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    Nice to know NDAC is still that warm, we will be there on the 18th.
     

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