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Wearing a drysuit and shooting macro

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#81 Paul Kay

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Posted 14 March 2011 - 05:44 AM

What does a dry suit have to do with photography?
It's like asking, How can you drive and wear Cashmere at the same time?

A drysuit has nothing and everything to do with photography depending on whether the skills required to master its use have been acquired or not.

I'm not sure that wearing Cashmere requires any training or additional technical skills, so whilst wearing a drysuit should be like wearing a Cashmere, unlike wearing a Cashmere, a drysuit requires training and lots of practice.
Paul Kay, Canon EOS5D/5DII, SEACAM/S45, 15, 24L, 60/2.8 (+Ext12II) & 100/2.8 Macros - UK/Ireland Seacam Sales underseacameras & marinewildlife & paulkayphotography & welshmarinefish

#82 Kimmeineche


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Posted 22 June 2011 - 11:15 AM

Hi James!

One question comes to my mind: How good do your suit fits you? Free/unused space in a drysuit can be a true hell when it comes to trim, etc... since the air is moving around and makes it almost impossible to lay stabil in the water and my best bet on your problem is simply to much air in the leggs of your suit!

For the same reason I use a suit made to meassure (Trilaminate) but since you now have a suit already, it might be a solution with a couble of gaterwraps http://ats-diving.co...p?id_product=17 to keep air away from building up in the leggs.

Just my 10 cent's words!

Best regards and good luck from Kim Meineche

Hi Gang,

I had my first real good taste of drysuit diving this last weekend. This was my first "cold" water trip where I was warm and comfy the whole trip and I loved that. I guess it wasn't too bad because the water was 65, not 56...:-)

In any case, I had a LOT of trouble shooting macro. I have a pretty big camera rig, so one handed shooting is hard but do-able. I usually put down my left index finger on a piece of rock to steady myself and try to get flat in the water to get good composition. I thought I was trimmed out pretty well w/ a backplate BC, weights in the pockets, trim pockets on the tank band, and a 1.5# ankle weight on each leg. I had 14 pounds of weight plus the backplate and camera.

But I was still having a lot of problems staying still in the water. My legs were all over the place! Any tips? Get gaiters? Heavier ankle weights?

That will bring my legs down I'm sure but some other problems I had were that the bubble of air moves around really easily shifting buoyancy when I was trying to set up for a shot. I was wearing fleece pants but I was also getting a big "crushed" in an uh sensitive area...

Wide angle was no problem. I was able to swim pretty fast, even w/ the added drag, and I felt trimmed out pretty well for that...


#83 Kimmeineche


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Posted 22 June 2011 - 11:36 AM

Sorry for my late reply...... just after I wrote my answer, I discovered how old this thread is.

Hope my words can be at interest for some one anyway, sometime!

Best regards from Kim Meineche

#84 traverse_2


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Posted 08 October 2012 - 07:04 PM

I had a similar experience when I started using my drysuit. The drysuit course was in freshwater and went well but I didn't have many undergarments on. Diving in salt water (Queensland, AU) it was extremely difficult - floaty feet, head down which was very frustrating. I had to readjust my weight and started using a weight belt (rubber type) in addition to my intergrated weights (Wing BC). As I dove more it became much more comfortable, but it took around 6 dives to get to that point. I was also able to drop some weight as the number of dives increased. Currently using 24 Lb but still feel like I could drop some weight (~25 dives). I only need 14 lb with a 5mm suit so this was considerably more weight than I was used to.

I use my BC for buoyancy and only add enough air to releve the suit squeeze. I realize this is an old post but I couldn't find any help when I was having difficulty, so hopefully this can help someone else.

#85 Stoo


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Posted 03 February 2013 - 06:06 PM

I'd recommend losing the camera until you are proficient with your bouancy in the Dry Suit. Give it 25 - 50 dives at a minimum to get really comfortable.

I think that this is the best advice in this thread. I have about 3500 dives in drysuits. Bouyancy is an absolute non-issue. I don't even think about it. I also wear a shell suit (Viking Pro and possibly about to change to a DUI FLX Extreme) but I also wear double steel tanks so I have a relatively small weight belt.

The biggest thing in managing buoyancy is starting with the correct amount of lead so that the air needed in your suit is minimal. Our water never gets above 42F at depth, and is frequently colder than that, so I wear thick undies. You don't want to be squeezing yourself for obvious reasons, and you need some air in the suit for warmth. I rarely put air into my wing other than at the surface. My Aquatica rig changes my trim and buoyancy a good chunk, but it's nothing that another puff or two can't make up for...

So get a whack of dives in your suit, and when you have that down "pat" then reintroduce the camera...

Good luck~