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Thread: Advice

  1. #1
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    Advice

    Hi, Iím thinking of learning side mount. Looks like a great way to dive. Flexible ect. Im currently o/c norm trimix, PADI dm. Dive a twin set and stages when needed. Any advice would be great with regards to training , what kit kit , what to expect would be great. I live in Devon
    Thanks


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    1) Take twinning bands off twinset
    2) Get some bungee, clips, one of those odd looking wings
    3) Contemplate the items in front of you
    4) Buy a rebreather



    There are a couple of instructors I see recommended fairly often. Most of them are into cave / mine type of stuff. If you've got as far as OC trimix I'd have a think about what you're trying to acheive. If your interest is going to involve getting into some tighter places then go for it. I'm sure someone will be along to point you in the right direction

    If not, you may just be investing in some kit that is less versatile than your current twinset + stages.

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    Sidemount is a terrific tool for the right job but can sometimes get in the way, especially on a small crowded dive boat.

    Diving in Sidemount is amazing, so flat, streamlined and stable. Not to mention everything in front and accessible.

    For those benefits thereís a massive drawback... the staggering amount of faff to set up and adjust your kit - dozens of dives.

    To mitigate this faff, get yourself a *good* experienced Sidemount instructor WHO DIVES IN SIDEMOUNT.

    Happy to recommend Mike Thomas whoís a very pragmatic cave diver and excellent instructor/mentor.

    A Sidemount course is about learning how to configure your kit, itís not about collecting a a ticket

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    Cheers for the replies.
    Yea Iím definitely looking to go in some tighter spaces as well as just expanding my skills. Im not about ticket collecting , I just have no experience diving with anyone on side mount so looking for the right places to get quality advice .
    After shoulder surgery my valve shutdowns arnt as slick as Iíd like and I like the accessibility of sidemount system as well as the streamlined position.
    Thanks


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    Established TDF Member Chrisch's Avatar
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    Ian France is a very good person to talk to for instruction. http://ianfrancetechnical.co.uk/

    Personally I think open water sidemount is a dumb idea for the reasons given above, but if you need to tight spaces it is the thing to do. Ian is pretty straight talking about the technique. He does the IANTD and the PADI options. I looked at it for caves but it is not for me.

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    My inspo has very nice to reach valves.

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    Coastal Member dwhitlow's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by NWdiver View Post
    My inspo has very nice to reach valves.
    Mine has too. The valves on my bailouts are also easy to reach.

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    I messed around with sidemount a few years ago due to a back injury, only used it for rec depth open water stuff.
    I had to build my own set up as at the time there wasn't much kit easily available and it Took a lot of dives to get it sorted, (thats what winter and quarries are for). But have to agree with Wibs it is absolutely lovely to dive. I even did a few dives with stages and even sticking a Ali 80 and 40 into the mix it was great.

    The biggest downside is the, often pointed out, faff on boats etc.

    My advice would be to find and insructor who can lend you the kit and do a decent amount of dives with it before making the jump but keep in mind the way the price and availability helium is going anything techy is going to be impossible without a box so if you are going to pay the money for new kit and the put in the time and effort retraining than I'd go bubbleless.

    I have not dived much over the last couple of years due to heath issues and life changes but planning to get back into it next year and as I have a fooked shoulder and dont think i am going to much more than rec depth stuff I may well a switch to sidemount.

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    Thanks for all the replies itís given me a bit to think about.


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    Quote Originally Posted by Spudkook View Post
    Cheers for the replies.
    Yea I’m definitely looking to go in some tighter spaces as well as just expanding my skills. Im not about ticket collecting , I just have no experience diving with anyone on side mount so looking for the right places to get quality advice .
    After shoulder surgery my valve shutdowns arnt as slick as I’d like and I like the accessibility of sidemount system as well as the streamlined position.
    Thanks


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    Mike Thomas specialises in "broken" divers. Recently extended a friend's diving career by a few more years with some very pragmatic config changes due to his shoulder and back injuries, such as inward-pointing valves to ease access using the opposite arm.

    I was impressed with his suggestion of using a stage-mounting kit so there’s a top clip so you can carry the sodding cylinders using your harness (not good carrying tins using bungee) — this is a common sump diving technique I believe.
    Last edited by Wibs; 13-08-2019 at 07:30 PM.


 
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