Ready to go SCUBA diving? Before diving in, you need to make sure you have all of the right SCUBA gear. There is a fun and exciting side of SCUBA diving, but there is also a technical side that requires a great deal of education and understanding. Some divers will say you are only as good as your gear, whether they are talking about the buoyancy compensator, regulator, octo or dive computer. In reality, you must understand how each of these devices affects your dive and helps you to stay safe.
SCUBA Diving Gear Basics: Buoyancy Compensators
The buoyancy compensator device is known by many names including BC vest or BCD. Regardless of how you refer to this crucial piece of SCUBA gear, you must learn how to use it during your dive. The buoyancy compensator is designed to help you keep neutral buoyancy whether you are floating on top of the water or climbing down to deep levels close to the ocean floor. Inside the buoyancy compensator vest is a small bladder that fills with air to help you while resting and then deflates so you are able to explore the depths of the ocean.
SCUBA Diving Gear Basics: Regulators
If the buoyancy compensator helps you to find the proper level during the dive, then you can think of the regulator as your guide to the best possible oxygen levels. In short, the regulator is attached to the tank’s valves and transforms high-pressure air into air that is at the best range for your continued breath. In conjunction with stabilizing the air pressure, the regulator also reacts to each breath you take by releasing a piston that monitors and controls the flow of air as you inhale and exhale. Further air stabilization is completed in the mouth piece that continues to remove unnecessary air making room for fresh clean oxygen.
SCUBA Diving Gear Basics: Octos and Dive Computers
In case of an emergency, you want to ensure your octo is working at peak condition. The octo is much like a back-up for the regulator in the event the device no longer works or has a malfunction. Many sole scuba divers opt for an octo so they can lower the risk of injury. Also consider this device depending on the type of dive you are about to complete. When going to lower depths, it is smart to bring extra protection including a backup octo. A dive computer is also a practical tool to track your depth and bottom line.
Explore all the diving technical gear today at Sport Chalet and reach out to one of our skilled instructions for further SCUBA education.