Archive for ‘Expeditions’

Caring for your Equipment

By , 24 May, 2015, No Comment

As anyone that has got seriously into diving and bought the full gear, it is not the cheapest sport to get into. But how do you maintain it in all it’s pristine glory, without having to resort to using shop gear whilst you wait for your regs to be repaired?

There are a few tricks of the trade that you can use that will prolong the life of your equipment saving you a few precious pennies, which can be put towards your next dive holiday!

General advice

One of the first things you are taught on the Open Water course is to rinse all your gear off with fresh water after your day’s diving is done. By doing this you are removing all sand, salt and chlorine, which are corrosive and will start to destroy your kit, particularly if you won’t be using it for a while afterwards. Another good idea is to dry all kit properly before it is stored away to prevent any mold growing. Nothing is more devastating that getting your kit out of the attic (loft) only to find that it’s now covered in mold!

Regulators

By pressing the purge valve whenever you open your tank, this will extend the life of the HP seat within the first stage of the regulator. Once this wears away you will start to notice a small free flow from either of the regulators, and it is time to get it changed.

Tank

Whenever you turn a tank on, turn the valve slowly to avoid particles hitting closed valves at high speeds which can be sources of ignition (think KABOOM!) Also keep your tank out of the sun and have it visually inspected every year, as well as servicing the tank valve. Whenever you have tanks stood around avoid leaving them in direct sunlight for prolonged periods. Tank pressure will increase/decrease by 1 bar for every degree of temperature change.

 

So there you have it. By looking after your equipment it will last longer, and you won’t get into any nasty situations underwater with malfunctioning kit! At Davy Jones Locker in Koh Tao we have Shop Ops course, which will teach you more about servicing your own kit, which will save you a bit of money and also give you opportunity to earn some extra cash by doing it for others!

chris n picture

Caring for your Equipment

By Chris N.

 

Post to Twitter Post to Facebook

The Sattakut

By , 19 May, 2015, No Comment

 

The HTMS (His Thai Majesty Ship) Sattakut has everything; history; eerie-ness; marine life in abundance; penetration points with natural daylight; penetration points with no natural daylight; depths up to 30 metres and correct punctuation from us here at Davy Jones Locker.

It was originally a landing craft infantry vessel commissioned by the US Navy in 1944, and was involved in three battles in World War II; the liberation of the Pilau Islands, the battle of Okinawa, and the battle of Iwo Jima.

In 1946 the US Navy decommissioned it, and it was purchase by the Royal Thai Navy. It lived out its service as a patrol boat, until they decommissioned it in 2011. Shortly thereafter, the Thai Department of Marine and Coastal Resources (DMCR) purchased the ship with the intention of donating it to Koh Tao to act as an artificial reef, in order to promote tourism. The vessel was stripped of it’s engines, furniture, electric cabling and thankfully it’s ammunition! After being cleaned and sent to Koh Tao, it was sunk on the 18th June 2011.

Unfortunately because a storm came in as it was being sunk, it ended up on its side in the middle of a channel; hardly an ideal location. So in July a salvage team was brought in to right the vessel and move it to a more suitable location.

It currently sits upright in around 30 metres of water, with the bow facing roughly North. The location is perfect, as it sits around 10 metres to the South of a dive site called Hin Pee Wee. This has obviously helped to bring marine life to the wreck, which is evident today- all over it! There is currently a huge Jenkins whip ray that lives underneath the hull. There are huge spotted snapper and giant groupers sheltering from the current near the conning tower, and if you have good eyes you will be able to find some Jan’s pipefish in the rusting railings. Moray eels also like to find places to sit and watch the underwater world go by. For those that want to venture inside, apart from disturbing a number of giant groupers from their hiding places, you will see lots and lots of shrimp.

The vessel is perfect for conducting technical training dives on which we provide here at Davy Jones Locker. There are many places on the main deck to practice reeling skills and teach communication in simulated no-visibility. Plus, there are numerous places to penetrate the wreck, and they vary greatly in terms of how quickly and how badly they silt out, so practising exits in zero visibility can be made progressively more challenging. The wreck is also a great place to conduct decompression procedures training dives, as there are plenty of reference points to use when ascending to meet run times, undertaking deep stops, and gas switching.

But it’s not all about training. Let’s not forget that this wreck has an amazing history, and sometimes it’s just great to go for a long deco fun dive around it, or a penetration fun dive inside it! The ship is the closest dive site to Davy Jones Locker on Sairee beach, and we use it a lot!

Lots of Love from James

HTMS SATTAKUT!!!!

HTMS

 

 

Post to Twitter Post to Facebook

SEA SNAKES

By , 4 May, 2015, No Comment

Although all snakes can swim, sea snakes live mostly in the water.  They do need to come up for air but can stay under water for up to an hour! Since they need air regularly they are usually found in shallow waters of the Indian Ocean, and warmer areas of the Pacific Ocean.  They eat fish, fish eggs and eels that they find under rocks and in reefs.

There are about 30-50 different types of sea snakes and they belong to the Cobra family.  The average Sea snake grows to about 2 meters long and has a smallish head for its body size.  Their tails are flattened to make fast swimming possible and flaps over their nostrils close when they are underwater.

Sea snakes are very poisonous. Fortunately, these snakes have short fangs and they are unable to bite through diver’s suits very easily.  They are not likely to bite unless threatened.

Eels are sometimes mistaken for Sea Snakes. Eels are part of the fish family and have gills for breathing.  Sea snakes do not have gills but lungs instead and need to go to the surface for air.

Sea Kraits are one of the few sea snakes that go to land to lay their eggs while most others, like the Olive sea snake will give birth in the water. snake                                         Sea snakes do not have gills but lungs instead and need to go to the surface for air.

By Sophie

Post to Twitter Post to Facebook

Dicks Top Tips !

By , 29 April, 2015, No Comment

This month we shall look at 4 ways to stop your Mask from fogging. A foggy mask ruins an entire dive. Fog blocks a diver’s view of the awesome underwater. It is possible to prevent any mask from fogging up, by using one of the following top tips!!! The Toothpaste Trick: Squirt toothpaste on the inside of the lens and rub it around with your finger or a soft cloth for a few minutes. It may help to leave toothpaste in the mask overnight. The Flame Trick: Run the tip of a flame over the inside of the lens until the glass turns black, the flame will burn the residue off. A lighter or a tapered candle works well. Once the inside of the mask lens is totally black, wait for the mask to cool and wipe away the soot with a soft cloth. Repeat this process two or three times until it is difficult to get the glass to turn black. Spit: Spit on the inside of the mask and rub it around with your finger and dunk the mask briefly into the water. The goal is to leave thin layer of saliva on the inside of the glass. Spitting does not work well if the mask dries out before diving, it is best to use this technique just before you are ready to desend. Baby Shampoo: Baby shampoo can be used just like commercial defogging solution. A few drops rubbed into the lens and then briefly rinsed out will keep a mask from fogging. Baby shampoo is preferable to standard shampoo, as it is generally hypo-allergenic, less irritating to eyes, and biodegradable. Also who doesn’t love the smell of a new born baby!!! For more ideas and for the best masks in the business, pop into the shop at Davy Jones Locker Koh Tao and speak to one of their Awesome Instructors, for help with not only fitting, but also which ones look good! Or visit www.davyjoneslocker.asia for all your dive needs!!! Don’t Worry Dive Happy!! Dick x And rememeber the all inportant rule number two of Scuba Diving………. Always Look Cool!

GetAttachment[1]

 

 

 

Don’t Worry Dive Happy!

Post to Twitter Post to Facebook

Unicorn Wreck

By , 25 July, 2014, No Comment

 

It has always been rumored that at the time of it’s sinking in 1989 the 60 meter long Unicorn was sunk on purpose as an insurance scam. Local Koh Tao inhabitants said that the ship just pulled up off shore, around a mile north of Koh Tao and over the next couple of hours slowly sank after an explosion on the vessel. No-one was hurt in the sinking. An Insurance fraud was immediately suspected, insurance investigators were sent to investigate the cause of the sinking and to confirm the cargo which was listed as expensive Tuna Fish. Divers descended to examine the wreck, and discovered that the holds contained nothing but low-grade animal Feed (Dog-Food) un-fit for human consumption, NOT expensive Tuna fish as listed on the manifest. hence the nickname it later aquired – the “dog food” wreck.

 

Lying around 12km north and 20-30mins off Koh Tao and in 50 meters of water the vessel lies, mostly intact, on it’s port side at an angle with the top of the bow at 38meters, and the keel of the bow area several meters above the seabed, allowing divers to swim under this area of the hull. Fishing nets have been removed from the wreck allowing some moderate penetration. Big schools of jacks, batfish and barracuda patrol the area directly above the wreck with a pair of large groupers residing inside the wreck. Here at DJL we often dive the Unicorn as part of our Technical diving program, especially the Tech 45 course. Due to the depth and location it is always quiet and diver free. I dived the Unicorn for the first time in march last year, as the visibility was very good the wreck appeared to have an eerie greenish around the outline of the wreck (maybe just narcosis) and was enthralled by the always curious bat fish.

Mike S
bremen

Post to Twitter Post to Facebook