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Member Since 26 Jun 2006
Offline Last Active Aug 21 2015 03:30 AM

Posts I've Made

In Topic: storing fins between trips

20 August 2015 - 03:38 AM

When the fins shipped from Mares, they had inserts in the foot pockets and tabs on the end of the fins to keep the shape. Two tabs for each fin. If the dive shop didn't give these to you, so back and ask for them. If you bought them on line, you're probably out of luck.

I used to work for a dive shop and sold Mares for years. We stored the fins flat with the pockets and tabs installed and always gave them to the customer with instructions on how to use them.

I own quattros (both FF and OH) and love them. Take care of them and you'll get many years from them. Mine are going on ten years with about 100 dives a year.

In Topic: DS161 strobes don't stand still

17 August 2015 - 03:14 AM

I had a set of 125s, but got rid of them due to weight. I found that using the ULCS arms that have o-rings installed in the balls hold better, but slippage is still a problem. I made some small elastic bands to run between the clamp at the housing and the clamp at the strobe. I had two arms on each side. These bands held the strobes in place when handling the rig above water. Once UW, I'd release the bands and all worked well. But the Ike strobes are just too heavy. I went to S&S YS-D1s which are lighter and easier to handle above water. Plus the controls are easier to work UW IMO. The new D2s are even easier to operate.

Also I did not care for the heavy, proprietary Ike batteries. The D1s use AA. Love them.

In Topic: Sea & Sea YS-D1 Strobe Failures

24 July 2015 - 04:50 AM

I bought a pair about 12 months ago. No problems to date. Before I bought them, I did much research and vaguely recall reading that there was some problems with early production units, but that these problems were addressed and solved by S&S. Some units needed to be returned for repairs. You may be able to find info on WP or other places.

I bought my YSD1s through Bluewater Photo in CA and were assured that they were current production models. No problems after about 100 dives.

In Topic: Galapagos "naturalist" cruise after liveaboard?

22 July 2015 - 02:33 AM

About ten years ago, we did the non-diving naturalist trip aboard a National Geographic/Lindblad ship. Excellent trip, but pricy. My wife is a naturalist and does not dive, so this was really her trip. The ship held about 150 passengers and was first class all the way. At the time, because it was NatGeo, we were permitted to land on areas/islands that were not open to most operators. No idea what the restrictions are today. As you know, the park authority tends to change regulations on a whim.

Look on the NatGeo website for info on these trips. I see that they now advertise special photo trips. On our trip, there were 5-10 NatGeo experts who lectured each day on variously related topics. Looks like they have cut back on that part of the package.

Great trip, but pricy.


In Topic: Diving trip to Batangas-Anilao+Poerto-Gallera.....few questions PLZ(my first...

21 July 2015 - 02:43 AM

As an alternative in Anilao, consider Crystal Blue as already mentioned. Mike Bartick is either an partial owner or in the management chain (or both). He's a well known pro photog and has a lot of influence on how the place is run. It's really set up for UW photogs. One of the best camera rooms I have ever seen.


Four (or fewer) divers to a boat with a guide. And the guides are excellent.


Mike does periodic dedicated photo trips/classes and is an excellent instructor if that works with your schedule.


The only downside is that the only spaces that are air-conditioned are the guest rooms and the camera room, if that makes any difference to you. Not sure it that's the standard in that area as I have not stayed anywhere else in Anilao.


Have only been there in April/May timeframe and conditions have been excellent.


PM if you want more info.