Get a cup of tea and put your feet up because this might go on for a bit. Check out the Brexit threads - like a game of tag - no one wants to shut up or back down. It's hilarious.
Do what you want - I do. I get ridiculed and other divers say I will die but I'm still here.
Wait... what is there to argue about spools? I'm totally going to try and find that thread now!
Right - so, quick question... how much should my ballast set me back? Weight Belt, £5, maybe £6 if I want an exotic colours - but when I'm looking at weights, the cost seems to add up pretty quickly. Obviously the exact weight I need depends on how buoyant I am when fully kitted up (which is why I wanted to borrow weights from the club to figure out how much I need to buy).
I know an exact figure isn't really possible since some dive light and some dive heavy - but just as a sort of ballpark figure, how much might a typical diver spend on their weighting?
The reality is there are few wrong solutions (there are some) but there are many different solutions to the deal with survival in the alien world below the surface. So long as the setup works for the user, and everyone gets home, there is no problem with that.
I am over 6' and larger framed and configuration this year were:
twinset/drysuit/salt water (9kg)
CCR/drysuit/fresh water (0kg)
CCR/drysuit/salt water (2-3kg)
single tank/drysuit/sea water (12kg)
single tank/thick wetsuit/sea water (9kg)
single tank/thin wetsuit/sea water (7kg)
It is common to start with more lead than you need and reduce the amount as you relax and control buoyancy better.
There's always someone selling lead on Facebook (UK Scuba Stuff for Sale). Someone just sold about 90 Kg for £70 which is extremely cheap, it generally seems to go for around £3-4/Kg.
Decathlon are selling uncoated weights for £5/Kg, free delivery over £30.
Probably the only thing we'll agree on...
All configurations are wrong and all will kill you if you don't know how to use them. Learn then practice until its second nature. Then practice on every dive.
The corollary to that is that any configuration works as long as you know how to use it -- without relying on or interfering with other divers. "Standard" kit is a lot easier on other divers especially when diving together.