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davehicks last won the day on August 27

davehicks had the most liked content!

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About davehicks

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    Manta Ray
  • Birthday 04/25/1967

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    Seattle, WA USA

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  • Camera Model & Brand
  • Camera Housing
  • Strobe/Lighting Model & Brand
    Ikelite DS-161's

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  1. There are old threads on this topic. Look them up for more details. TLDR; NiMH batteries work better for this application. There are some strobes designed to work with Lithium battery backs, but not AA cells.
  2. Yes, you need one. Depending on the lighting conditions you will find your camera may not autofocus without one.
  3. Contact a Nauticam service center. The board is shorting out if it's burning batteries sitting idle.
  4. Backscatter promptly replaced my 2nd dead MF-1 strobe. In their reply they indicated the my strobe had a covered defect, and replaced it with an MF-1 that has "Updated Circuitry. Given that I had two strobes fail with an indication of a charging error, they probably had a flaw in their design that resulted in lower reliability than expected. I'm glad to see that they have made improvements in response. I tested it last week, and dove it a couple of days ago. It's working as expected now, no issues. I'll give Backscatter an A+ for service and responsiveness. My strobe was replaced and returned in about a week, shipping included. Bravo!
  5. I went to Cabo at the end of May for a dive trip to Socorro. Several people from our boat got hit by the tax, some up to $400 for high end Nauticam housings and Ports. I managed to get through with out getting caught. I tried to be a bit sneaky and it worked. I was carrying two rebreathers and my DSLR gear. I put the rebreathers in pelican cases, and packed my camera gear in a standard suitcase. I went through the customs gate first with the two pelican cases with just dive gear. Of course the agents zeroed in on the Pelicans and had my open them. Meanwhile my wife slipped through unbothered with the suitcases full of camera gear.
  6. Opps, my Backscatter MF-1 strobe died again on a dive last week. I did a first dive where it worked normally. I think I forget to turn it off between dives. When I began the second dive it would no longer fire. I figured maybe the battery died? After getting it home and recharging / reloading the battery it no longer fires at all. The led indicator flashing in the pattern for Charging Error. I'm mailing in back again today, fingers crossed on a repair and more than 4 months of operation...
  7. Where are you moving to in the PNW? You were wise in choosing the one of the best locations for diving in North America! We have great diving in Puget Sound and British Columbia, with much of it accessible from shore. Amazing animals, big and small, and beautiful colorful reefs. If you are ever around Seattle I'd love you meet you for a dive. Cheers & Congrats!
  8. I often use a plastic food container for my dome ports. They are available in many sizes and provide more rigid protection than a padded bag. And are a lot cheaper. Just add some microfiber towels that you might use to dry your camera on the trip as padding. Amazon.com: DecorRack Food Storage Container, 5 Quarts, Plastic, Food Grade Safe, Heavy Duty Dry Storage Containers, Round Large Food Container with Airtight Lid (1 Bowl): Home Improvement
  9. This is good enough for most people @ $60.00. Very bright, common battery, very robust. At this price buy a Pair. DGX 600 BUTTON Handheld Light Kit | Dive Gear Express®
  10. My buddy recently bought a Subal D850 housing and the Subal basic TTL board had two broken connections to the LED's out of the box. A third solder connection to the LEDs failed while repairing the first two, only being held in place by the shrink tube. The quality and design of this subal flash trigger was alarmingly poor.
  11. Eneloops should be okay after three months, but I would still remove and put in fresh charged cells before diving. What if three months turns to six?
  12. A buddy just bought a brand new Subal D850 housing and started diving it this last week. It came with a basic LED trigger installed. He was having issues firing one of his strobes on his dives, just one LED port was working. Today he opened it up and showed me that one of the ribbon cables to the LED had become detached. Looking at the trigger module I was pretty shocked at what I saw. Each LED has a short, stiff ribbon cable soldered to the hotshoe module's circuit board The solder joints to the board were very sloppy There was NO strain relief on the cable. Just flimsy 1/2 millimeter wires on the ribbon cables holding it all together. Both wires on the non-working LED were disconnected I extended the broken ribbon cable and re-soldered it the LED. Reinforced with some heat shrink tubing. I put it on the camera to test, and my fixed LED worked fine. But the other LED was now dead! On inspection one of those solder joints was loose and slid right off the LED. Only the shrink tubing had been holding it on. A few more minutes of soldering and I had the whole thing working. I was pretty shocked as the poor quality of this trigger. It was DOA out of the box and looks like it would not hold up to normal wear and tear. Does anyone have any experience with these Subal LED triggers? Is this out of ordinary? Did he just get a unit that skipped quality inspection?
  13. I did this a few years ago on a Small Ship cruise in south Alaska. The boat was called Island Spirit and takes about 25 passengers. We had great bubble net feeding shows right off the bow with 8-10 whales. I don't like cruise ships, but a small boat made for a great trip. Kayaking and hiking every day, and every night was spent in some remote and secluded bay.
  14. The primary risk of traveling with the camera in the housing is the stress on the camera mount. It may result in misalignment of the buttons and controls between camera and housing. I experienced this myself on an Ikelite housing in the past. Aperture and shutter speed wheels no longer engaged reliably.
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