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Architeuthis

DIR long-hose configuration for UW photographers?

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I have to perform the every two-year service on our Apexs regulators. In my set, I will also exchange all hoses (I do so every six years (after unpleasant experiences with exploding hoses))...

Upon several occasions, when I needed to give air to a dive buddy, I noticed that the standard hose length is uncomfortable for both me and the buddy hanging on the octopus (quite short). I plan now to cahnge to the DIR configuration, where one regulator hose is at 210cm. This should make air spending more comfortable (see enclosed image for example of DIR configuration with the long hose):

Marsa_Alam_10_2019_152.thumb.jpg.7411804bcf1a75cc93db217f993259f0.jpg

 

My question is whether there are any concerns/recommendations why UW-photographers should use/ should not use DIR configuration?

 

 

Thanks, Wolfgang

 

 

Edited by Architeuthis

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I finally switched to the long hose but haven’t dove with it yet. I needed to order a new drysuit, my old one can’t be repaired.

Sharing air while holding a large camera housing with strobes will always be a challenge and can be dropped in either configuration but I like the concept of the longer hose in just about any scenario, possibly even more so if sharing air in a controlled way with a calm diver that would allow me to keep hold of my housing and comfortably complete the dive.

These videos are entertaining and informative.

 

 

 

 

 

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I am not sure about the "complete the dive" part. In most out of air situations I would clip the camera to my BC and the two of us would go up as reasonably fast as possible. I understand the long hose story if you are teaching but for most photographers, I just don't get it. We have been on approximately 24,000 person dives (4000 dives with an average of 6 divers per dive) and have had one issue. The back o-ring on a DIN-Yoke adapter blew out at depth so my buddy and I shared air (via an Air2 no less) and went up, did our safety stop and all was well. No thought though of completing the dive.

Bill

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I think it is generally a good idea with a couple caveats (I'm not an instructor but I do a lot of technical diving):

The first is that, as with any new equipment configuration, you should practice switching regulators yourself on a "regular" basis until you develop muscle memory. It is a different configuration than what you were taught. 

Second, your buddy should know how the system works. You would be donating a regulator that you are currently using and this is different than the "standard" spare regulator configuration. Your buddy could forget to signal you and then come over and try to "find the yellow hose and/or regulator" and not realize that you are currently using the regulator he/she is going to need. Panicky divers do crazy things....

If you have a regular buddy that you dive with, then practice donating gas with that configuration. 

Third, consider hose length. Long hoses generally come in 60, 72, and 84 inch lengths. If you are only doing open water dives (i.e., no overhead environments), then the 7 foot hose length might be overkill. Make sure that whatever length you use, find good hose routing to minimize hoses dangling out in the open water where they can get snagged.

- brett

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51 minutes ago, bvanant said:

I am not sure about the "complete the dive" part. In most out of air situations I would clip the camera to my BC and the two of us would go up as reasonably fast as possible. I understand the long hose story if you are teaching but for most photographers, I just don't get it. We have been on approximately 24,000 person dives (4000 dives with an average of 6 divers per dive) and have had one issue. The back o-ring on a DIN-Yoke adapter blew out at depth so my buddy and I shared air (via an Air2 no less) and went up, did our safety stop and all was well. No thought though of completing the dive.

Bill

Sorry I wasn't clear, I was thinking about safely ending the dive including a safety stop if possible.

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I've been diving long  hose (7 ft) since 2003 when I dive bubbles. Never had any issues and I've also been taking a camera underwater since about the same time. Again, no issues, even with big DLSR housings and strobes.

There are single tank configurations that use a 5ft hose but the standard doubles config was a 7ft hose which is what I've always used, even with single tank setups.

I do have a long bungee that has a d-ring clip on one end and is securely fastened to the camera securely (i.e. arms or tray). This is my 'backup bungee'. I also have a loop on the housing and a double-ender to clip the camera off close to my harness. The long bungee is just there if I have to drop the camera in an 'event' so I don't lose it. Once the event is sorted, you can just pull back the camera and carry on or clip it off. I've had this system on every camera I've taken underwater since my second camera.

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I've been diving with plenty of photo folk with DIR systems. 

I've also personally assisted another diver in an out of air situation where both of us had DSLR rigs equipped for wide angle and a standard hose length octo rig. It would have been "more comfortable" if I had a DIR length for my second - but comfort not what I was thinking about at that moment.

Fundamentals of diving are just that. Emergencies are not "planned events" so rescue situations need to be handled with equipment you are comfortable and familiar with.

Edited by DocTock

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37 minutes ago, DocTock said:

Fundamentals of diving are just that. Emergencies are not "planned events" so rescue situations need to be handled with equipment you are comfortable and familiar with.

This. Also, If it makes you feel safer then 100% go for this setup.

I'd add that your dive partners need to be familiar with this setup as well and you need to make sure not to get entangled with the long hose when you donate if you have a housing with long arms and strobes deployed. Make sure you are trained/train yourself with this setup.

(realistically, in an out of air situation, you'll never have time to stow neatly your housing and strobe arms).

Also, make sure your buddy KNOWS and understands your setup. Most divers will look for a yellow regulator.

--

I personnally dive all the time with long hose during Tx dives except on liveaboards when i travel alone where i go for the classic main reg + octopus setup (not betting on other divers to know my setup). Plus with main reg + octo I can save 1kilo on a first stage for my suitcase, it's a bonus photo accessory hehe

Edited by waterpixel

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While getting my regs and BC serviced I finally had them install the long hose and bungeed secondary. I was planning on doing it many years ago but never got around to it and then medical issues kept me out of the water for over 4 years. My neighbor is my normal dive buddy and we have discussed my hose changes and will practice until second nature. 

I’ve also set up a session or two with a local GUE instructor to confirm proper equipment configuration and to practice long hose routing and air share. In my case I use a can light and plan on tucking the long hose under it. He wants me to enroll in his fundies class but I’m not sure I want to go through it at this stage of my diving. I’ve heard it can be exhausting. Regardless, I do want to take some custom classes from him that cover many of the same concepts and could care less about a card.

The can light may complicate a one-handed donation and switch to my secondary while holding the camera, if safe to do so, even if I need to donate after clearing the hose from behind my neck but before untucking the primary hose, I would have as much room as a traditional setup and can untuck the hose once we are both safely breathing. 

One consideration depending on how strict divers want to be under covid protocol is not donating a primary I have been using. One suggestion was to use the neck bungeed secondary and clip off the long hose to the chest d-ring to donate if needed. I also don’t think anyone is going to worry about that when out of air.

I still need to figure out a workable lanyard solution. I’ve tried a few and have never been satisfied.

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I have been diving long hose configurations for many years. 

One of the key parts of doing so successfully is that the long hose is ordinarily breathed from by the donor and is donated to the OOG diver. Simply put, for the the long hose set up to work, the donor needs to be aware of the OOG diver, and be responding before they can attempt to secure a gas supply for themselves. This level of situational awareness is as critical for using a long hose safely as the gear configuration itself.

In order to allow the hose to stow around the light canister, the hose needs to be 7ft (2m) . The original application of this length was to allow OOG divers to be positioned in front of the donor in order to exit restricted passages, but it is also a very nice length when dealing with OOG divers in general. 

In terms of deployment, the focus in dealing with an OOG diver must be to supply them with gas as swiftly as possible. Once they have gas, the second step is for the donor to switch to their back up regulator. It is important to stress that this needs to be bungeed in tight under the donors chin. The holder shown in the picture above allows the back up to move about, and can delay access to it. Once both divers have gas, then the donor will deploy the rest of the long hose. It is important to stress that (with some training and practice), this can/must be accomplished with one hand. In a cave environment, one hand is normally used to reference the guideline to ensure a safe exit, but we can apply this to keeping hold of our cameras while we sort out an OOG situation.

I did a GUE Fundamentals class 20 years ago, and despite being a PADI Course Director, a trimix/tech instructor and a qualified rebreather diver at the time I took it, still rate it as the single best diver training experience I have ever had. It is definitely not based around certification, but will put your diving skills and abilities under a microscope. This can be hard on the ego, but is very good for your diving!

I do not always dive in a DIR compliant way, but I use some of the skills and lessons that I learned on the course on every dive that I make!
 

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If you dive with your camera on a lanyard, then think about where you attach the lanyard.

I always dive with my camera permanently attached on a lanyard. I usually have it attached to a right shoulder D-ring. On the occasions when I have dived with a DIR style rig, I moved my camera lanyard to a left shoulder D-ring so there was no risk of it getting in the way of long hose deployment. Left shoulder isn't as convenient for getting to my BC inflate, but so be it.

AFAIK, DIR purists would not use a lanyard and attach the camera to a crotch or butt D-ring when not in use. I am not a DIR expert, so will leave clarification on that to those who are.

The main point for anyone considering a long hose configuration is that the rig is holistic. It only really works if you set up everything DIR. Sometimes just picking pieces of it and leaving the rest can be counter productive or even dangerous (such as mixing a long hose with a camera lanyard attached to a right shoulder D-ring).

Edited by JohnLiddiard
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Posted (edited)

Whatever you do make sure you get trained on how to manage the longhose. I recently had the experience of watching two divers using a longhose to share gas (one of them was low on gas) without knowing how to properly use it and it was not a nice sight. 

Take a fundamentals class it will transform your diving no matter what stage you are in your diving. You can do a fundamentals part 1 course which is more about personal skills (trim, buoyancy, equipment set up, longhose management etc) and then decide for yourself if you want to continue and complete it by taking part 2. Most people I know do continue in the end.

Your benefits from the course will be far more than just managing the longhose. Fine tuning your trim, buoyancy and propulsion will offer a lot in you video/photo game as well.

 

PS: No, the picture is not how you properly manage a longhose :)

Edited by Lionfi2s

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On 12/30/2020 at 4:26 PM, JohnLiddiard said:

If you dive with your camera on a lanyard, then think about where you attach the lanyard.

I always dive with my camera permanently attached on a lanyard. I usually have it attached to a right shoulder D-ring. On the occasions when I have dived with a DIR style rig, I moved my camera lanyard to a left shoulder D-ring so there was no risk of it getting in the way of long hose deployment. Left shoulder isn't as convenient for getting to my BC inflate, but so be it.

AFAIK, DIR purists would not use a lanyard and attach the camera to a crotch or butt D-ring when not in use. I am not a DIR expert, so will leave clarification on that to those who are.

The main point for anyone considering a long hose configuration is that the rig is holistic. It only really works if you set up everything DIR. Sometimes just picking pieces of it and leaving the rest can be counter productive or even dangerous (such as mixing a long hose with a camera lanyard attached to a right shoulder D-ring).

Crotch or butt  d-ring are not a viable option because then the camera hangs below/behind you with no control. Crotch d-ring can be a temporary storing option if you are not using a dpv and you are midwater but again not really the best place. Options are left shoulder d-ring (can be problematic if you are carrying more deco stages and have to do gas switches or move tanks) or right shoulder d-ring. If you are trained in longhose management then there is no problem in deployment while having a camera there, you just have to make sure that the camera lanyard is long enough to allow you to push the camera under your arm but not too long to allow the camera to move around too much.

In the picture you can see what I use. Gives me plenty of options to handle the camera. Happy to explain more if you want.

IMG_0347.jpg

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Left hip D-ring on a short cord loop off the handle. Then park it up on the back of/between your legs.

If using lots of stages, a short stage leash helps extend it a little further around


Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk

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Hi,

I've been diving the long-hose configuration for about 2 years now, before I was with a normal configuration and normal BCD in the water. I have now completely switched to a wing system and never want to go back. For me, the main argument in favor of a wing and the long-hose configuration was the fact that everything is much tidier and that I no longer have any things in my way along with the camera and lamp. Loops from the tubes are history and the danger of getting stuck somewhere or breaking the reef with the regulators.

Greetings from Switzerland,
Tino
 

2021-01-14_20h-17m-44s.jpg

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I have been diving with a long hose and a camera for a few years. My system:

Camera is on a lanyard that is attached to my right waist D-ring using a bolt snap. A D-ring on the right side of the waist is not "DIR" or "GUE-compliant" (I don't believe), but it works - in my opinion, better than clipping the camera to anywhere on the chest, to the crotch D-ring, or on the left. There is no advantage to clipping it to the chest (versus right side waist) that I can see, and with the camera hanging from the chest it has more potential to be in the way if you have to let it go, as well as interfering with long hose deployment. Others have already explained why the crotch D-ring is suboptimal. On the left means that any deco or bailout bottle I'm carrying is on the same side and makes dealing with the camera more difficult. If I have 2 or 3 deco cylinders clipped to the left waist D-ring, adding another bolt snap to that same ring, for the camera, just seems foolish. Deco/BO on the left, camera on the right is how I do it. Clean and simple.

The thing you have to be concerned about is to not do anything that will interfere with deployment of the long hose in an OOA (out of air) situation. For that reason, I do NOT wrap my long hose under anything (like a battery canister). I tuck the hose in behind my waist belt. That way, my camera lanyard and (normally) my reel/SMB that are both clipped to my right side waist D-ring do not interfere with deployment. I can take the reg from my mouth, dip my head as the hose comes over, and extend it and the hose comes right out from behind my belt with no snags. No reaching down to pull it out from under a canister (or camera lanyard or reel/SMB) in order to allow it to fully extend.

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