PDA

View Full Version : Diving in very cold water



Bobco
03-02-2013, 04:52 PM
It's cold in there at the moment watch out for freeflows.


5 degree water is very testing, both to the diver and their equipment.

Feel free to add your own Do's and don'ts.

My one for today is that if your buddy suffers a very small hiss through one of his second stages, it may result in a very short dive.

Looks like the photo to go with this will not load ( must try harder )

https://www.facebook.com/photo.php?fbid=10151694227693625&set=a.264902688624.183196.650338624&type=1&relevant_count=1

Jase
03-02-2013, 05:04 PM
Dived yesterday and today in 3 degree water. Pleased to say we had no equipment issues. It was a bit parky on the fingers post 30 mins in but quite comfy overall.

Take the point about cold water and free flows though. Look after your kit and it will look after you...

BluDL
03-02-2013, 06:37 PM
The usual cold water advice: store cylinders in house the night before so they dont get near 0deg. Min breaths before going underwater to minimise ice crystal build up. This also applies to drysuit and bcd inflator. Learn to turn pillar valve on and off to stem a freeflow. Use a coldwater rated 1st and 2 nd stage. Wear enough thermal pro to offset cold but also think of extra weight needed. If you are getting cold, head back. Don't wait until you are cold as you could end up hypothermic by the time boat/ exit point is reached. Think about extremities. You may need thicker gloves or lobster mitts. Hood too. Alot of heat lost thru head. Keep warm and dry before dive. Have a hotdrink and eat before u dive. Porridge is great. Hot drink after and spare warm dry clothes. If your suit is a bit leaky get it fixed. Be aware of increased bend risk in cold water so dont push it.

Vanny
03-02-2013, 06:41 PM
Great points, I've got lobster mitts which are ace, but where can I get the hood too?

Ta

WFO
03-02-2013, 07:57 PM
The usual cold water advice: store cylinders in house the night before so they dont get near 0deg.

Why?

anvill72
03-02-2013, 10:22 PM
My one for today is that if your buddy suffers a very small hiss through one of his second stages, it may result in a very short dive.

Had this happen to me as I got to the Provost jet at the botton of Gildenburgh today in 3-4C water. My Oceanic EOS second stage started to hiss constantly. Turned the breathing resistance adjustment down and it went away, thankfully.

Porridge in the morning is indeed very good. Cocolate for the surface interval.

If like me you prefer not to doff the dry suit in between dives, close the exhaust valve so the warm air stays in.

Wear a hat while on the surface.

BluDL
03-02-2013, 10:39 PM
Great points, I've got lobster mitts which are ace, but where can I get the hood too?

Ta

Haha lobster hood? I use a bare 'dry ' hood. Not quite dry but the smoothskin around neck and face really reduces flushing.

Paulo
03-02-2013, 10:47 PM
Waterproof's 7mm bibless hood is great in cold water

GLOC
03-02-2013, 11:17 PM
L 5mm Fourth Element hood was fine for an hour in 2C water this weekend, even with -13C air temps :)

Regards

Jase
03-02-2013, 11:56 PM
L 5mm Fourth Element hood was fine for an hour in 2C water this weekend, even with -13C air temps :)

Regards

-13C Pray tell?

GLOC
04-02-2013, 12:01 AM
Ottawa :)

Ice diving...

Regards

wonderiter
04-02-2013, 08:15 AM
I have cold water regs, Apeks, but after having a free flow on my pony reg a couple of years ago I fitted a free flow control switch to it. I switch the air back on when I'm under water so my buddy doesn't have to think about it. When I fitted it 2 people refused to dive with me.

jturner
04-02-2013, 08:36 AM
Why?

Not sure of the "official" reason but it seems to make the breathe warmer for at least the first dive IME. Makes sense I suppose - that's a lot of metal and gas that isn't going to cool down instantly. Seems to keep it nice and dry too, especially the regs.

Hellenic Diver
04-02-2013, 09:27 AM
Why?

Ideal Gas Law

Basically as gas expands it cools. Hence why first stages cool and ice up, and aerosols etc get cooler as you use them.

The warmer everything starts, the less likely you are to have an issue.

Paulo
04-02-2013, 09:31 AM
Ideal Gas Law

Basically as gas expands it cools. Hence why first stages cool and ice up, and aerosols etc get cooler as you use them..

Is that not Charles Law?

Hellenic Diver
04-02-2013, 09:57 AM
Is that not Charles Law?

Ideal gas law is a combination of Charles and Boyle.

Logun
04-02-2013, 10:01 AM
Ideal gas law is a combination of Charles and Boyle.

Charles Law is just Boyles for a constant temperature.

henrik
04-02-2013, 10:04 AM
The usual cold water advice: store cylinders in house the night before so they dont get near 0deg.

Diving in -1˚C water has been more or less the rule here in the Oslo fjord the last month. I've stored my tanks outside in up to -15˚C, and haven't had any problems with them. But rule #1 still applies: be cautious when breathing in your regs above water. And make sure that you get DRY GAS from your LDS. I would bet that gas with too much moisture is the primary reason for freeflow.

Here's a graph from a refreshing dive 31th January:

http://db.tt/6ksKAETg

(Graph from Subsurface (http://subsurface.hohndel.org))

Mark Chase
04-02-2013, 10:09 AM
If you need a knife or may ned a knife, have it on a lanyerd


I had an incident where i was v cold end of dive, virtualy no deco 30m but i got my guide reel tangled and needed to get back to the shot.

My hands were so cold i droped the knife several times trying to cut my self free of the mono line.

Fortunatly it was on a lanyard

Also allow extra time for incidents. The incident above took several times the amount of time it needed to deel with it than it would have done with warm hands.

Frankly I wouldent dive in 5c water out of choice again unless it was something special like ice diving or that dive in Iceland with the amazing viz.

Diving is suposed to be fun, and my days of finding 5c fun are long over.

ATB

Mark

JakobJ
05-02-2013, 03:35 PM
The usual cold water advice: store cylinders in house the night before so they dont get near 0deg. Min breaths before going underwater to minimise ice crystal build up. This also applies to drysuit and bcd inflator.

Why???

Only a problem if you fill water in your cylinders first ;) Just use proper dry air and its not a problem. Did 50 minutes in 0 degress sunday. Tested all regs and feeders above water. No problems.

/Jakob

WFO
15-02-2013, 03:17 PM
Ideal Gas Law

Basically as gas expands it cools. Hence why first stages cool and ice up, and aerosols etc get cooler as you use them.

The warmer everything starts, the less likely you are to have an issue.

As a counter argument, despite the hot air from getting the bollocking from leaving twinsets and bits of rebreather in the kitchen...

By the time that nice toasty tin has been yomped... up the driveway... 200 miles in the back of a practically unheated van... into the 3 degree water... an hour out (now wet) on the boat... and then back into the water to de-ice it before the dive.
Toasty!

I reckon it will make no difference at all and you'd be better off just being careful to blow any possible water out of the valves before you put the regs on and tricks like that you should probably do anyway.

WFO
15-02-2013, 03:17 PM
Ideal Gas Law

Basically as gas expands it cools. Hence why first stages cool and ice up, and aerosols etc get cooler as you use them.

The warmer everything starts, the less likely you are to have an issue.

As a counter argument, despite the hot air from getting the bollocking from leaving twinsets and bits of rebreather in the kitchen...

By the time that nice toasty tin has been yomped... up the driveway... 200 miles in the back of a practically unheated van... into the 3 degree water... an hour out (now wet) on the boat... and then back into the water to de-ice it before the dive.
Toasty!

I reckon it will make no difference at all and you'd be better off just being careful to blow any possible water out of the valves before you put the regs on and tricks like that you should probably do anyway.

Ainsley
15-02-2013, 05:39 PM
Ive dived in 5 degrees in Stoney that felt much colder than the 2 degrees I experienced in Iceland.

Probably due to the 3m vis in Stoney verses the 100m vis in Iceland taking my mind off the cold :)

So the moral of the story is: if its worth diving, its amazing how cold you can go.

Chantelle
15-02-2013, 06:04 PM
Ottawa :)

Ice diving...

Regards

Yep... and we're still waiting for your trip report. :p


http://i570.photobucket.com/albums/ss148/Chan77album/Diving%20Too/Feb%202%203%202013%20Gareth%20Tim/150935_4430415035440_1063811856_n.jpg

CROOKY
15-02-2013, 06:35 PM
2 degrees in Iceland those big jessies our local quarry is currently 2 and i have recorded 1 in it but god that is cold.

Sent from my GT-S5830i using Tapatalk 2

r4e
18-02-2013, 01:05 PM
I've been diving twice a week 70-90 minute dives in close-to-zero degrees fresh water. First a nice 15 minute swim under ice to the mine entrances. The water under the ice is between -1 and 0 degrees until the depth of 20 meters. Then 45 minutes inside the mine tunnels beginning from 28 meters depth, where it is relatively warm: 2-4 degrees plus!. Then back to the ice cold water and a total of 30 minutes swim back plus deco before exiting through the small hole in ice.

Some advice:
- If it is colder than -5 centrigrade on the surface, preferably keep your twin set in warm place until last moment. I keep my 2x18L set in the car overnight, but, I fill it up just before the dive. Consequently I get cool (not cold) gas plus an optimized cave fill.
- Make sure your tanks don't have any(!) moisture in them.
- Be sure to dry your wing and hose throughly after dive.
- Minimum 3 regulators (twin set plus atleast one stage). Check all your regulators by breathing them for two breaths underwater - that includes the first stage as well. Do not let the first stage to get under zero. Or, allow it to "warm" up sufficiently in the water before test breathing and diving.
- Before the dive, it is better to place all stages in water where it is warmer than in the air. I used to have freeflows before this practise, not anymore (knock on wood).
- Separate Argon fill. It is better to flush all the air from inside the drysuit and get it replaced by argon, i.e. not just topping up with argon.
- Be prepared to disconnect BC or drysuit hose any moment and to control buoyancy with remaining device. After a couple of minutes you can reconnect again. Practise doing this with gloves. If you are not fast enough in disconnecting the hose, the connector becomes ice covered in a minute and then you will not be able to disconnect it anymore and you must close corresponding valve.
- Be prepared to close any of your valves anytime.
- After the dive, open your zips and rock boot shoe laces before they freeze.
- If your first stage is not fully closed/protected, shake the water from the inside before it freezes. I use the Poseidon Cyklon 5000, and consequently I make sure to get rid of the water.
- Consider the asymmetrical effect of cold water to your on/offgasing. Due to the cold, your blood circulation to extremities will decrease and this affects the offgasing.
- Consider dry gloves and heat vests.

Ainsley
18-02-2013, 02:08 PM
r4e - where and why were you doing those sorts of dives ?

(good advice btw)

r4e
18-02-2013, 02:56 PM
r4e - where and why were you doing those sorts of dives ?

(good advice btw)
Ojamo.
I am just a "Ojamo L1" beginner with 30 dives at Ojamo. I respect very much the more experienced L2/R2,L3/R3 divers who do "proper" dives...

The answer to "why?" can be seen here:
Ojamo Helmet 6.9.2012 on Vimeo (http://vimeo.com/49537393)

http://vimeo.com/49537393
I was there last Saturday, and going back tomorrow, and again on Wednesday.

Johnr
18-02-2013, 05:42 PM
Ojamo.
I am just a "Ojamo L1" beginner with 30 dives at Ojamo. I respect very much the more experienced L2/R2,L3/R3 divers who do "proper" dives...

The answer to "why?" can be seen here:
Ojamo Helmet 6.9.2012 on Vimeo (http://vimeo.com/49537393)

http://vimeo.com/49537393
I was there last Saturday, and going back tomorrow, and again on Wednesday.

Cool video:)

Ainsley
22-02-2013, 09:14 AM
Brilliant - I need to do that.

BluDL
23-02-2013, 07:05 PM
I have worked with industrial compressed air for 20yrs. There is no such things as completely dry air. That is why i dont store my tins in cold locations for all the above mentioned reasons. Feel free to ignor my advice as i have ignored most of the anti advice to my opinion. It is only that- as everything on here- an unqualified opinion.
Why???

Only a problem if you fill water in your cylinders first ;) Just use proper dry air and its not a problem. Did 50 minutes in 0 degress sunday. Tested all regs and feeders above water. No problems.

/Jakob

MSargeant
24-02-2013, 09:41 PM
The cold weather is why i love my dry gloves :D

Ruffy
24-02-2013, 10:01 PM
Too cold for oc diving :fubar:

JakobJ
25-02-2013, 06:06 AM
I have worked with industrial compressed air for 20yrs. There is no such things as completely dry air. That is why i dont store my tins in cold locations for all the above mentioned reasons. Feel free to ignor my advice as i have ignored most of the anti advice to my opinion. It is only that- as everything on here- an unqualified opinion.

I know there is no such thing a completely dry air. But filtering it proporly will take you a long way. We use two Bauer P61 filters and no one ever experiences any problems during winter.
Out this weekend in water between -1 and 1 degress. And tanks stored outside in a shead. No problems at all - except with my lips ;)

/Jakob