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Old 5 September 2018, 14:56
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anachranerd anachranerd is offline
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Mermet Springs/Open water diving

Hi all,

So over the labor day weekend I finished my pool sessions and am ready to go to open water.

We will be going to Mermet Springs in IL(link below). This place looks pretty neat. They have the actual plane from the movie "US Marshals" there at 60 ft depth. Lots of other stuff to see underwater. Apparently the owner of the resort likes to play rock music underwater.

https://www.mermetsprings.com/

Any SOCNETters been there?
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Old 6 September 2018, 15:16
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I quit diving when I stopped getting paid for it. Just make sure that you plan your dive and dive your plan. Do not depend on someone else to monitor your time and depth. It appears that they have pre-planned dive trips to various platforms. The dive should start when the first diver goes subsurface and ends when the last diver leaves the bottom. The closest chamber is about 165 miles from the site just west of ST Louis. If you are in ST Louis, drive to and from or wait 24 hrs to fly, especially if you are close to a dive table limit. It looks like a good time. They have a decent emergency plan. My concern is the other people that go there to dive and that will dive with you. If you have never dove with one of these cats, take some time to go over hand and arm signals. Make sure the divemaster knows this is your first open water dive.

Have fun and be safe. Let us know how it goes.
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Old 9 September 2018, 21:55
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Originally Posted by The Fat Guy View Post
I quit diving when I stopped getting paid for it. Just make sure that you plan your dive and dive your plan. Do not depend on someone else to monitor your time and depth. It appears that they have pre-planned dive trips to various platforms. The dive should start when the first diver goes subsurface and ends when the last diver leaves the bottom. The closest chamber is about 165 miles from the site just west of ST Louis. If you are in ST Louis, drive to and from or wait 24 hrs to fly, especially if you are close to a dive table limit. It looks like a good time. They have a decent emergency plan. My concern is the other people that go there to dive and that will dive with you. If you have never dove with one of these cats, take some time to go over hand and arm signals. Make sure the divemaster knows this is your first open water dive.

Have fun and be safe. Let us know how it goes.
Appreciate the advice Sir.

It went really well. I was blessed to have just 2 instructors and myself, plus my best friend who is training to be a dive master. They've helped me through the whole process from pool to open water. We spent about 6 hours total in the water yesterday with 3 dives, and drilled the hell out of skills.
Jesus, it was surreal. We were on the 20 foot platform working on hover techniques- I finally got it down, and looked up and there were HUGE catfish around me, plus a bunch of other little bluegill etc. Unbelievable!. Today we had the free dive early, then the instructors certified me and took off. My buddy and I then decided to do another dive, and we went to about 50 feet to visit the submerged airplane.

I was in a 3mm suit with no hood or gloves, and damn that got cold- so we didn't hang along very long, went up to 20 ft and went fish chasing

I'm hooked.
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Old 9 September 2018, 22:59
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We would do deep dives to 130 ft in Key West, just off the reef. At about 300 feet or so, you could see massive hammer heads and Bull Sharks swimming around. They never came up and bothered us, but pretty cool none the less.

Be careful with the go to 50' and then linger at 20'. I am sure they have computers for this now, but back in the day of manual dive planning, we dove the entire dive at the 50' settings.

If you like to hunt, spear fishing was always a great time as well.
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Old 9 September 2018, 23:33
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Originally Posted by The Fat Guy View Post
Be careful with the go to 50' and then linger at 20'. I am sure they have computers for this now, but back in the day of manual dive planning, we dove the entire dive at the 50' settings.
Glad you mentioned that- I read many of the threads here debating dive computers vs. tables, and brought that up to my instructor today. I mentioned I wanted to learn to use tables before the computer, and he said that was a good idea but table diving doesn't allow for multi-level dives so we could be sacrificing bottom time using tables.

I told him that I'm not opposed to using a computer, but I want to learn to dive using nothing but tables with analog gauges, watch, and notepad.

The computer is a nice luxury, I just don't feel comfortable depending on it with my beginning dives.
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Old 10 September 2018, 07:07
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I dive with both a Perdix and uwatec gauge, if i had only one I'd use the perdix.

Definitely learn the tables, they're super easy and it's good to reinforce the patterns you'll dive. You need to plan your dives before hand anyhow.

Not long ago dive computers were less reliable, but nowadays a good quality one will not likely give you any trouble, if it does you just ascend and end the dive and replace the batteries.
Even the gue guys i dive with are using computers nowadays.

I'd suggest focusing more on learning to dive in a horizontal position with good trim and buoyancy control than spending too much time on manual tracking and calculations.
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Old 17 September 2018, 19:03
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Originally Posted by mdavid View Post
I dive with both a Perdix and uwatec gauge, if i had only one I'd use the perdix.

Definitely learn the tables, they're super easy and it's good to reinforce the patterns you'll dive. You need to plan your dives before hand anyhow.

Not long ago dive computers were less reliable, but nowadays a good quality one will not likely give you any trouble, if it does you just ascend and end the dive and replace the batteries.
Even the gue guys i dive with are using computers nowadays.

I'd suggest focusing more on learning to dive in a horizontal position with good trim and buoyancy control than spending too much time on manual tracking and calculations.
Thanks for the advice Sir.

I took the buoyancy class yesterday and it was a hell of a lot of fun. Swimming through hoops, hanging around on the platform fucking off. My instructor demonstrated hovering and this lady is amazing, she had herself so still in the water I thought she was dead.

I certainly realized that buoyancy is everything in SCUBA, so definitely going to practice the hell out of it. The local club has a pool night on thursday, so I'm going to go join them and play around in the pool, work on buoyancy... it has a nice 30 ft deep end.

We did the class at a place called Quail Run Quarry in Rolla, MO. It's a nice little dive site if you are in the area and looking to dive. The couple that owns it aren't divers so the platforms etc, dont get regular maintenance. Pretty slimey. Still a nice dive though. 35 ft depth max. Sorry for the facebook link but its the best they have.

https://www.facebook.com/quailrundiversquarryrolla/

Thanks again for all the advice gents!
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Old 19 September 2018, 08:30
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I dove mermet springs a couple of different times in the late 90's.. It was only a about a 3 hour drive from where I lived at the time and was a good place to get a deeper dive in than the local lake/river options where you were typically limited to 30 feet or less before visibility went to zero and there was nothing to look at anyway..

Its probably a bit of a drive for you.. but if youre into the quarry dive thing.. check out Blue Water Scuba in Pelham, AL.

dive depths up to 140' (plenty to see as deep as 100'.. after that its pretty much just cold, murky water...).. winter visibility up to 100'.. summer visibility is typically about 25-30ft (not bad for a fresh water quarry).. and like Mermet springs, they have sunk a lot of stuff all over the place you can go swim around and explore.. have tons of fish in the quarry swimming around, etc..
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Old 19 September 2018, 08:52
8654maine 8654maine is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by The Fat Guy View Post
We would do deep dives to 130 ft in Key West, just off the reef. At about 300 feet or so, you could see massive hammer heads and Bull Sharks swimming around. They never came up and bothered us, but pretty cool none the less.

Be careful with the go to 50' and then linger at 20'. I am sure they have computers for this now, but back in the day of manual dive planning, we dove the entire dive at the 50' settings.

If you like to hunt, spear fishing was always a great time as well.
Can't stress this enough.

I always leave a safety margin.

It is not better to bend than break.
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  #10  
Old 19 September 2018, 21:51
Azatty Azatty is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by anachranerd View Post
I mentioned I wanted to learn to use tables before the computer, and he said that was a good idea but table diving doesn't allow for multi-level dives so we could be sacrificing bottom time using tables.


With all due respect to your instructor, multilevel absolutely can be done on tables. You can do it in your head using basic math. That line is what instructors are taught in their IDC (and I sat through to get my instructor ticket) which to be absolutely honest, encourages them to point out benefits of buying equipment.

You’ve been shown the tip of the iceberg. Just understand that there’s a whole lot of theory and learning in addition what you’re taught in Open Water, and you won’t find a lot of it in any classes you can take at the local dive shop.

BTW, tables aren’t gospel truth, either, and you can get bent diving them.
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  #11  
Old 19 September 2018, 22:13
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Originally Posted by Azatty View Post




You’ve been shown the tip of the iceberg. Just understand that there’s a whole lot of theory and learning in addition what you’re taught in Open Water, and you won’t find a lot of it in any classes you can take at the local dive shop.
Any suggestions on where to learn more? I'm currently just practicing buoyancy as much as possible, as a matter of fact I just got back from the pool and have another practice scheduled saturday.

I started reading the U.S Navy Dive Manual....Jesus, the military can take the fun out of anything...
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Old 19 September 2018, 23:21
Azatty Azatty is offline
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Worry about the fundamentals first. Get some experience diving before you take on the heavy academics. GUE publishes some good materials on getting to the next level.
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  #13  
Old 26 October 2018, 16:44
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I've made many dives at Mermet. The visibility is usually not too great, especially above the thermocline during the summer when lots of dive classes are in the water stirring up the muck. In the deeper parts of the quarry the viz isn't too bad but then you deal with 42 degree water. There has been a few deaths there over the years. One needs to pay attention for sure.
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