My Basic Trimix Diver Training meets all of the standards for the TDI Trimix certification course, however I integrate what I feel are the core elements of the TDI Extended Range course into this training as well. IMHO, there are important lessons to be learned by diving air to deeper depths (around 180′), prior to assuming the additional responsibilities of deeper dives on more complex gases. Students who successfully complete this training should be able to competently plan and conduct decompression dives on air or Normoxic Trimix, up to a depth of 200 fsw.
This class is offered independently by me in my home town here in Florida, Fort Lauderdale, and we will be diving out of Pompano Beach. Assisting me will be my friend and fellow Instructor, Howard Ehrenberg. The course consists of three days of training, ideally with lecture and diving each day. There are 4 required certification dives total, conducted two air dives on Day One, a single deep air dive on Day Two, and a single Normoxic Trimix dive in the 200′ neighborhood for the third day. The planned lecture morning/dive afternoon schedule may be rearranged to accommodate the best weather conditions.
This is a fun class. It is fun for me to teach, and a great experience for students. Dives requiring mandatory decompression are fun, but in general they are serious, deeper dives, no matter what gas the diver is breathing. Technical dives are more challenging than mainstream recreational dives, so divers need to be reasonably fit. This is an intensive three day program where we cover a lot of diving theory, but we also put in a lot of bottom time working on skills, and in deep water.
Long, mandatory decompression dives, with gas switches can be intimidating. We counter this intimidation with knowledge, preparation, and experience. This builds a foundation for justified confidence. You need to know what you are doing. However, in three days we simply cannot make you an expert at deep air, or Trimix diving. What we can do is to provide you with the tools to continue to learn, and acquire further experience in deeper diving, beyond the course.
All of the training dives will be on local area shipwrecks. The first day of diving we will work on skills in the 100′-120′ range. On day 2, we will be diving air in the 180′ range. For the last day, we will be conducting a Normoxic Trimix dive on a wreck up to 200′ deep.
Students that complete the requirements of the program will receive the TDI Trimix certification. However, participation in the program is no guarantee of successful completion and getting a certification. Divers must earn their certification, by meeting all of the TDI requirements, including a written final exam.
The class text will be the TDI Extended Range/ Entry Level Trimix Manual. Student divers will be required to read the text completely prior to the beginning of the class. I will mail or deliver the books to you as soon as you register for the class. Students will also be required to watch the YouTube video documentary on the Dave Shaw fatality, The Last Dive of Dave Shaw, in advance of the class. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mF4iFJ-G74o An analysis of this accident will be made during the lectures.
In addition to meeting all of the Prerequisites, students will be required to read and sign the TDI Liability Release, complete the TDI Medical Form, and fill out the Diver Information Sheet for use in an emergency.
The summer weather is typically great in Florida, and that’s why they call this the sunshine state, however there are bouts of bad weather, and even hurricanes. It is entirely possible that we could lose one or all of our dive days. If the advance weather forecast is undeniably terrible, as in the case of a hurricane, I will make a decision to cancel. If we lose dive days due to weather, I will make them up with you, on mutually agreeable dates. If you are flying to Florida, you may want to consider travel insurance? DAN now offers travel insurance, and I recommend that you look into it. At the same time, the weather is the weather and we will try to do the best we can to get you to complete your dives. If you miss a dive, you have 12 months to complete the dives for the certification.
- Students must be at least 18 years of age.
- Students must be certified as an Advanced Nitrox and Decompression Procedures Diver.
- Students must show a minimum of 100 logged dives.
- Students must have dive accident insurance.
- Students must possess a level of physical and mental fitness suitable for the pressures of diving in the wreck environment to a depth of 200 fsw.
At this level of diving, I expect you to have most of what you need for this class. Bring the minimum required, bring what you have, and bring lots of questions. I have some additional equipment for you to try and compare.
- Double cylinders with a manifold are the best primary cylinder setup for deep diving. Twin K Valves can work as well. You will need cylinder(s) with volume(s) appropriate for dives planned to 180’, considering your individual SAC rate. Cylinders can be rented for this course in Florida, if you like.
- Nitrox cylinders need to be labeled for Nitrox.
- Two Deco Cylinders are required for the class, rigged to carry. Bring whatever size you want, with an appropriate stage regulator. I have some different cylinders for you to try.
- You will need a Primary and a Primary Backup regulator on your Bottom Gas supply.
- You will need two deco gas regulators.
- You need an SPG connected to the first stage regulator, for each gas supply.
- You will need a “Necklace” or lanyard to hold your Backup Second Stage Regulator.
- You need a Buoyancy Compensator suitable for the Open Water environment, and your particular cylinder setup. A typical “Wing” setup for doubles will have 35-65 pounds of lift.
- You need one Primary Dive Computer, or Bottom Timer and Depth Gauge combination, plus a back up means to measure depth and time, in the event of a failure. Regardless of your system, you should be intimately familiar with the operation of at least your primary computer.
- You will also need a means to plan your dives using your dive computer, Smart Phone, laptop, or tablet. Examples of popular dive planners are IDeco, and MV-Planner.
- You will need lights:
- One Primary Light.
- One Back Up Light.
- You will need to bring with you at least one Ascent Reel with a minimum of 230′ of line on it, and at least one SMB (6′). Bring everything you already own, but don’t buy a bunch of new reels and SMB’s.
- Two Line Cutting Devices are required, and they both need to be sharp.
- A usable underwater slate, wrist slate, or notebook, and a writing implement are required.
- Bring two spare carabineers, or double dog clips, for attaching accessories, but no gate clips.
- You need a wetsuit or drysuit, with hood, suitable for the water temps for the dates of the course. Feel free to call me for a better handle on water temps and further advice.
- You need gloves to protect your hands. You can use neoprene dive gloves if you like, but rubber coated garden work gloves are adequate for the warm water environment as well. Up to you.
- You need a comfortable mask, and a backup mask with a way to carry it.
- You need comfortable fins, for longer dives.
- If you need to wear lead weights, make sure you bring a belt or harness to hold them. The lead weight you can get here.
Prospective students who meet all of the requirements, may reserve a place in class with a $550 non-refundable down payment. If you have any doubts about your ability to participate in this class, please do not make a commitment to attend until you are sure the class fits you, and your schedule. This class is not for everyone. The balance of $550 is due on the first day of class. Checks, cash, credit cards, and PayPal are all accepted.
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