Combined Advanced Wreck / Deco Diver Course

Upcoming 2020 Combined Advanced Wreck/Deco Diver Course Dates

 

April 5-9, 2020, Palm Sunday through Thursday

May 18-22, 2020, Monday through Friday

September 7-11, 2020, Monday through Friday over Labor Day

Combined Advanced Wreck/Deco Diver Course

The Advance Wreck/Deco Diver training course is a comprehensive five-day program for divers who already have some experience in diving Back Mounted Doubles, or Sidemount Cylinders, and want to learn the fundamentals of decompression diving and shipwreck penetration for deeper wrecks. In this course we train students to dive and penetrate wrecks utilizing time proven wreck diving techniques, combined with a modern perspective on Decompression diving physiology and human psychology. 

Wreck diving is not cave diving, it is wreck diving! Anyone who treats a wreck like a cave, simply does not understand shipwrecks. Cave diving techniques work great, in caves. It is as simple as the two diving environments are different. Wrecks were ships. This is what we teach, and how we dive. It is more than what you read in the texts. 

As a rule, shipwrecks are deeper dives, and this is especially true of Big Steel wrecks. The ability to plan and execute dives requiring mandatory decompression makes longer, more complex wreck penetration dives possible. Shipwreck penetration and decompression diving are almost inseparable. Incorporating them into the same training course is not only exciting, it is a natural pairing. 

We train students to look at shipwrecks the way we look at shipwrecks. It is all about perspective and mindset. We cover fundamental skills, equipment, surveying, navigation, decision making, philosophy, and wreck penetration techniques. At the same time, divers learn how to plan and execute multi-level decompression dives with proper accommodation for contingencies and a full understanding of the limitations imposed on them by decompression, oxygen exposure, and gas supply.  

 

Prerequisites  

  • Minimum Age: 18 
  • Minimum Previous Certifications: 
  • TDI Intro to Tech or equivalent (OR proof of experience in chosen gear configuration) 
  • Advanced Open Water Diver or equivalent 
  • Nitrox Diver or equivalent 
  • Wreck Diver Specialty or equivalent (or Cavern Diver) 
  • Proof of at least 50 open water dives 
  • Dive Accident Insurance
  • A level of fitness appropriate for Technical Diving using Doubles.

 

 Safety  Statement 

Underwater environments are inherently dangerous, withdives requiring mandatory decompressionbeingeven more so. Our first priority has to be diver safety, both on the boat, and in the water. We expect student divers to do their best to contribute to our safety goals by minimizing distractions, staying situationally aware, and making mature decisions.  

 

Administrative 

  • Liability Release - This is the link to the TDI Liability Release. Please download the Release, print it out, and consult with your attorney or family members as you see fit. You will have to return the signed Release back to us, prior to starting class.   
  • Medical Statement - This is the link to the TDI Medical Statement. Please downloadit, andtake it to your physician for completion. Technical diving is rigorous, and we all want to make sure you do not have any health issues.  
  • Deposit - Once we decide on dates for your class, we will send you a PayPal Invoice to your email where you can get us a non-refundable 50% deposit, pretty much any way you want, PayPal, credit card, or mail us a check.  

 

Schedule - 5 Days of training, and 10 Ocean Dives 

     Day 1 Classroom session in the morning, followed by Two Open Water Ocean dives in the afternoon on the wreck of the Captain Dan (Hollyhock) 

     Day 2 – Two Open Water Ocean dives in the Morning On the RSB-1, with a Classroom session in the afternoon.  

     Day 3 – Three Open Water Ocean dives in the Morning on multiple wrecks, with a Classroom session in the afternoon.  

     Day 4 – Two Open Water Ocean dives in the Morning on the Newtown Creek, with a Classroom session in the afternoon.  

     Day 5 – A single decompression dive in the Morning, on the wreck of the Hydro Atlantic, with a Classroom sessionand detailed debriefin the afternoon. 

 

 Student  Costs 

  • Tuition - $2,000 which includes all charter fees for the dive boat, TDI certification fees, and the TDI online training for Advanced Nitrox, and Deco. 
  • Tips– Tips for the boat crew run $10 to $20 per dive day, depending on the level of service.  
  • Gas – We have a discount Class Fill Rate at Force E of $30 per day, for Nitrox Doubles, and Nitrox Deco Gas.  
  • TDI Advanced Wreck Textbook – If you do not have it already on your bookshelf, you need to purchase the Advanced Wreck Textbook from TDI.  
  • Rental Equipment– If you do not have all your equipment yet, you can rent equipment. 

 

 Required Equipment 

  • Wetsuit – Depending on the time of year, and personal preference, either a 3mm or a 5mm wetsuit. Personally, I also like a hooded vest. 
  • Gloves – Simple hand protection is what you need and if you already have gloves, that will probably work best?  I prefer simple Gardening gloves or cut-resistant gloves, like Dyneema 
  • Fins and Booties – Long blade Freediving fins are not suitable.Open heel fins  workbest.   
  • Mask – A good mask that fits you, is essential.  
  • Backup Mask – You need a Backup Mask, and a way to carry it, because mask straps can fail. I use a  Vertical Zip Bellows Pocket  or  Zip Cargo Pocket  glued to my thigh on my wetsuit, but you may want to use another style, or not feel comfortable gluing anything? Some divers really like the Tech Shorts, like the Apeks Shorts? 
  • CylindersIMHO, back mounted double steel cylinders with a manifold are the best primary cylinder setup for Open Circuit deco diving. Side mounts, or Twin K Valves will also work. You will need cylinder(s) with volume(s) appropriate for dives planned to 150’, considering your individual SAC rate. All cylinders are to be labeled according to TDI Standards, which means Nitrox cylinders need to be labeled for Nitrox. An O2 clean Deco Cylinder is required for the class, rigged to carry. Bring whatever size you want, but most students use aluminum 40's. Typically, I will utilize an AL72 for classes. TwinFaber LP85's, and HP120's cylinderswith an Aluminum deco cylinder can be rented for this course here in Florida, through us. 
  • Regulators 
    • You will need a Primary and a Primary Backup regulator on your Bottom Gas supply. 
    • You will need an O2 clean deco gas regulator. 
    • You need a single SPG connected to the first stage regulator, for each gas supply. It is not\ necessary to have two SPG’s on your Bottom Gas  
    • One of your second stage regulators needs to be on a "long" hose that is 6' or more in length. If you do not already have a long hose, you can borrow one from me, for free. 
    • You will need a “Necklace” or some other way to hold your backup second stage regulator in place around your neck. I prefer using simple 1/8" bungee and not the rubbery, store bought ones where the regulator keeps falling out. A bungee necklace just works better.  
  • Wing – You need a BCD suitable for the Open Water environment in your particular setup. A typical Wing will have 45# to 65# of lift, and IMHO 45# is ideal for most divers. I like the Dive Rite Rec Wing in 45# and the Hollis C45LX, both with dual bladders. For deeper dives, divers really need an alternate ascent plan, in the event of a Wing Failure. Your best options are dual bladder, Drysuit, or dedicated SMB/Lift Bag, in that order. 
  • Backplate – You need a backplate with straps or harness. Backplates come in Stainless Steel and Aluminum. Stainless is heavier, and to reduce weight, some have cutouts. In general, Drysuit divers want heavier plates, and Wetsuit divers want lighter plates. Brand is not so important. Personally, I like Straps over Harness, for a variety of reasons.  
  • Dive Computer– For this class, aShearwater Dive Computeris mandatory. You also will need a backup computer or depth gauge.TheTericis okay for backup, but not acceptable as a Primary as it does not give you all the dive data of the Perdix/Petrel.In class, we will download your dives on the Shearwater, and dissect them. This makes the Shearwater a valuable learning tool for you, and it will make a definite difference in the way you dive. If you do not have a Shearwater, you can rent one. 
  • Dive Planner – You need a means to plan your dives using your dive computer, Smart Phone, laptop, or tablet. The algorithm of your planner should match the algorithm of your dive computer, and we will use Bühlmann ZHL16-C GF. If you want to get Multi Deco, get Multi Deco or you can try MV Planner for free. It is by the same Multi Deco guys, but no-frills shareware.  Try playing around with it. 
  • Lights– One Primary, and one Backup are required. I like theBig BlueTechnical lights. 
  • Strobe Light – A strobe is a critical piece of equipment. Bring at least one. We will show you how to use it. I like the Tektite Strobe 6. 
  • SMB– You will need a good SMB.I prefer an open bottom SMB so I can fill it with the Inflator from my wing without removing my regulator.I like theCarter #35. 
  • Spool and Reel – This is to use with your SMB, and for wreck penetration. Do not buy a Stainless Steel spool. Personally, I love the Apeks 150' Spool, and the simple Dive Rite Slide Lock 250' Reel. You can buy your own aluminum spool on Amazon, and put your own line and swivel, if you feel creative. Bring everything you already own, but don't buy a bunch of new reels, spools, and SMB's ahead of time. You will know more of what you want, after a couple of dives with us.  
  • Cutting Device– Bring a knife, not “like a knife”. Something sharp. 
  • Slate or Notebook and Pencil – We want to make notes on our dive plan, like Bottom Time, Run Time, @+5, First Stop, Depth of Gas Switch, and other stuff. I like the Pilot Croquis 6B pencil.  
  • Jon Line – We will supply you with a Jon Line, you supply the Bolt Snap. Feel free to bring your own Jon Line, if you like.  
  • Bolt Snap Clip – Bring two spare “Double Enders”, “Double Dogs”, Bolt Snaps, or whatever you want to call them. I used to say, bring a one, but you really need two.  
  • Weight – In theory, you will not need any weight if you are diving wet? If that is untrue, we will deal with it. If you are diving dry, bring a belt or harness, and we have weight.  

 You are free to bring anything else you would like, other than cameras, as they are distracting. If you have any equipment questions,which you will,please feel free to ask.  

 Equipment Rental 

  • Doubles and Deco Cylinder(rigged to dive)– per day $20 
  • Backplate & Wing– per day $10  
  • Shearwater Computer – per day $10 
  • Regulators – per day $10 

 

 Weather 

We love South Florida, and this is the Sunshine State!! However, as technical divers we realize that we are at the mercy of the weather and if the weather is not suitable for diving, we might have to cancel the class, as in the case of a hurricane. Typically, this happens once or twice a year.   

 It is also possible that we could lose a day or more to bad weather? In this case we might have to move things around in the schedule. We promise to do the best we can to get your dives in, but we cannot compromise your safety to do that. You might want to consider Travel Insurance, or travel dates that leave you some wiggle room?  

 

 Certification 

Upon successful completion of this course you will receive the TDI Advanced Wreck Diver, Advanced Nitrox Diver, and Decompression Procedures Diver certifications. Your Tuition is for the class, not the certifications. The certifications must be earned. If you do not meet the standards set by TDI, we might require you to do another day of diving, or more,depending on the situation, but we will not give up on you!!!    

 

 Insurance 

  • We require student divers to have Dive Accident Insurance, and we recommend DAN Insurance fromDivers Alert Network. Personal Health Insurance, although good, is not sufficient for our requirements.   
  • Travel Insurance, and Dive Equipment Insurance, are not bad ideas, but are not required by us.  

 

 Preparation 

  • Welcome Email – We send you a Welcome Email with information on logistics, information on lodging, your TDI Intro to Tech Online Class code, and a bunch of supplemental online study materials, consisting of things like informational videos, articles, and scientific papers. 
  • TDI Advanced Wreck Textbook – If you do not have it already, you need to order the Advanced Wreck Textbook directly from TDI. Students are required to read and answer the questions prior to the start of the class. 
  • TDI Online Intro to Tech Class – This Online Class, with the online exam, must be completed prior to the start of class. It is online training, it is not that difficult, and it is included in your Tuition. We send you a Class Code in the WelcomeEmail andhelp get you online.   
  • TDI Online Advanced Nitrox CourseThis Online Class, with the online exam, must be completed prior to the start of class. It is online training, it is not that difficult, and it is included in your Tuition. We send you a Class Code in the Welcome Email and help get you online.  
  • TDI OnlineDecompression ProceduresCourse– This Online Class, with the online exam, must be completed prior to the start of class. It is online training, it is not thatdifficult, and it is included in your Tuition. We send you a Class Code in the Welcome Email and help get you online.  
  • Half Day Prep – We offer an optional Half Day of Prep at the pool, prior to the scheduled start of class, at an additional cost of $300.  

 

 Class Size  

For this Class, 4 students maximum, with 1 Instructor and/or Divemaster for every 2 students in the water.  

 

 Cameras 

We realize that divers love to take photos and videos,and do things like post them online. However, our job is to make the most of our time together, and your job is to learn as much as you can. Cameras are a distraction underwater, so we request you leave them topside, where you can take whatever pictures you want, when you have time.   

 

 Private Instruction 

Private clients make up about 20% of our business. Our Private rates for this class are $1,100/day ($5,500 for Combination Adv Wreck/Deco), for up to 2 private students, with the clients paying their own charter fees, and we will supply any needed equipment.   

 

 Half  Day  Prep 

Our job is to help you achieve your goals. Some students want to get a little more preparation prior to the start of class? For this course, we offer an optional Half Day of Prep with one of the instructors at the pool, or in the Ocean, the afternoon prior to the start of class. This is open to any of students in the class, at a cost of $300 per student diver, Student Diver pays Charter Fees, if any.   

Prerequisites  

  • Minimum Age: 18 
  • Minimum Previous Certifications: 
  • TDI Intro to Tech or equivalent (OR proof of experience in chosen gear configuration) 
  • Advanced Open Water Diver or equivalent 
  • Nitrox Diver or equivalent 
  • Wreck Diver Specialty or equivalent (or Cavern Diver) 
  • Proof of at least 50 open water dives 
  • Dive Accident Insurance
  • A level of fitness appropriate for Technical Diving using Doubles.

Required Equipment 

  • Wetsuit – Depending on the time of year, and personal preference, either a 3mm or a 5mm wetsuit. Personally, I also like ahooded vest. 
  • Gloves – Simple hand protection is what you need and if you already have gloves, that will probably work best? I prefer simple Gardening gloves or cut-resistant gloves, like Dyneema 
  • Fins and Booties – Long blade Freediving fins are not suitable.Open heel finsworkbest.   
  • Mask – A good mask that fits you, is essential.  
  • Backup Mask – You need a Backup Mask, and a way to carry it, because mask straps can fail. I use a Vertical Zip Bellows Pocket or Zip Cargo Pocket glued to my thigh on my wetsuit, but you may want to use another style, or not feel comfortable gluing anything? Some divers really like the Tech Shorts, like the Apeks Shorts? 
  • CylindersIMHO, back mounted double steel cylinders with a manifold are the best primary cylinder setup for Open Circuit deco diving. Side mounts, or Twin K Valves will also work. You will need cylinder(s) with volume(s) appropriate for dives planned to 150’, considering your individual SAC rate. All cylinders are to be labeled according to TDI Standards, which means Nitrox cylinders need to be labeled for Nitrox. An O2 clean Deco Cylinder is required for the class, rigged to carry. Bring whatever size you want, but most students use aluminum 40's. Typically, I will utilize an AL72 for classes. TwinFaber LP85's, and HP120's cylinderswith an Aluminum deco cylinder can be rented for this course here in Florida, through us. 
  • Regulators 
    • You will need a Primary and a Primary Backup regulator on your Bottom Gas supply. 
    • You will need an O2 clean deco gas regulator. 
    • You need a single SPG connected to the first stage regulator, for each gas supply. It is not\ necessary to have two SPG’s on your Bottom Gas  
    • One of your second stage regulators needs to be on a "long" hose that is 6' or more in length. If you do not already have a long hose, you can borrow one from me, for free. 
    • You will need a “Necklace” or some other way to hold your backup second stage regulator in place around your neck. I prefer using simple 1/8" bungee and not the rubbery, store bought ones where the regulator keeps falling out. A bungee necklace just works better.  
  • Wing – You need a BCD suitable for the Open Water environment in your particular setup. A typical Wing will have 45# to 65# of lift, and IMHO 45# is ideal for most divers. I like the Dive Rite Rec Wing in 45# and the Hollis C45LX, both with dual bladders. For deeper dives, divers really need an alternate ascent plan, in the event of a Wing Failure. Your best options are dual bladder, Drysuit, or dedicated SMB/Lift Bag, in that order. 
  • Backplate – You need a backplate with straps or harness. Backplates come in Stainless Steel and Aluminum. Stainless is heavier, and to reduce weight, some have cutouts. In general, Drysuit divers want heavier plates, and Wetsuit divers want lighter plates. Brand is not so important. Personally, I like Straps over Harness, for a variety of reasons.  
  • Dive Computer– For this class, aShearwater Dive Computeris mandatory. You also will need a backup computer or depth gauge.TheTericis okay for backup, but not acceptable as a Primary as it does not give you all the dive data of the Perdix/Petrel.In class, we will download your dives on the Shearwater, and dissect them. This makes the Shearwater a valuable learning tool for you, and it will make a definite difference in the way you dive. If you do not have a Shearwater, you can rent one. 
  • Dive Planner – You need a means to plan your dives using your dive computer, Smart Phone, laptop, or tablet. The algorithm of your planner should match the algorithm of your dive computer, and we will use Bühlmann ZHL16-C GF. If you want to get Multi Deco, get Multi Deco or you can try MV Planner for free. It is by the same Multi Deco guys, but no-frills shareware.  Try playing around with it. 
  • Lights– One Primary, and one Backup are required. I like theBig BlueTechnical lights. 
  • Strobe Light – A strobe is a critical piece of equipment. Bring at least one. We will show you how to use it. I like the Tektite Strobe 6. 
  • SMB– You will need a good SMB.I prefer an open bottom SMB so I can fill it with the Inflator from my wing without removing my regulator.I like theCarter #35. 
  • Spool and Reel – This is to use with your SMB, and for wreck penetration. Do not buy a Stainless Steel spool. Personally, I love the Apeks 150' Spool, and the simple Dive Rite Slide Lock 250' Reel. You can buy your own aluminum spool on Amazon, and put your own line and swivel, if you feel creative. Bring everything you already own, but don't buy a bunch of new reels, spools, and SMB's ahead of time. You will know more of what you want, after a couple of dives with us.  
  • Cutting Device– Bring a knife, not “like a knife”. Something sharp. 
  • Slate or Notebook and Pencil – We want to make notes on our dive plan, like Bottom Time, Run Time, @+5, First Stop, Depth of Gas Switch, and other stuff. I like the Pilot Croquis 6B pencil.  
  • Jon Line – We will supply you with a Jon Line, you supply the Bolt Snap. Feel free to bring your own Jon Line, if you like.  
  • Bolt Snap Clip – Bring two spare “Double Enders”, “Double Dogs”, Bolt Snaps, or whatever you want to call them. I used to say, bring a one, but you really need two.  
  • Weight – In theory, you will not need any weight if you are diving wet? If that is untrue, we will deal with it. If you are diving dry, bring a belt or harness, and we have weight.  

 You are free to bring anything else you would like, other than cameras, as they are distracting. If you have any equipment questions,which you will,please feel free to ask.  

 

 Equipment Rental 

  • Doubles and Deco Cylinder(rigged to dive)– per day $20 
  • Backplate & Wing– per day $10  
  • Shearwater Computer – per day $10 
  • Regulators – per day $10 

 Student  Costs 

  • Tuition - $2,000 which includes all charter fees for the dive boat, TDI certification fees, and  the TDI  online training  for Advanced Nitrox, and Deco. 
  • Tips– Tips for the boat crew run $10 to $20 per dive day, depending on the level of service.  
  • Gas – We have a discount Class Fill Rate at Force E of $30 per day, for Nitrox Doubles, and Nitrox Deco Gas.  
  • TDI Advanced Wreck Textbook – If you do not have it already on your bookshelf, you need to purchase the Advanced Wreck Textbook from TDI.  
  • Rental Equipment– If you do not have all your equipment yet, you can rent equipment. 
Contact John