Posted on July 21st, 2016
By Wes Clayton PADI MSDT
After single tank recreational diving for the past 10 years, I thought it was time to take the plunge into twinset, and where better to do it that at Dive-In Larnaca?
After setting up my equipment the night before I was ready to go on the day.
Sitting on the boat with a bit of anxiety I made the necessary checks and rolled in. Doing a bubble check at 6m Chris and I were ready to go.
First impression of the twinset was that the maneuverability was very different and will take some getting used to but it was fun to practice swimming through some of the archways and windows in the wreck with a different profile.
The ascent also posed a new challenge doing a swap to the stage then using the wing to do a gradual free ascent in the blue to improve my buoyancy in the new rig.
Back on shore I had a debrief with Chris who gave me lots of positive feedback and said my trim was good for the first time on twins.
All in all it was a great experience and I am now looking forward to starting my first Technical course.
Posted on July 16th, 2016
Posted on July 6th, 2016
An interesting article written by by Josh Stevenson at Master Divers:
Throughout the history of diving, decompression limits have been calculated using standard No Decompression Limit (NDL) Tables, the first of which were developed in 1908 by John Haldane after several experiments exposing goats to pressure. Since then, tables have been re-developed and re-defined to provide a model for safety limits within diving based on depth and time. There are several different variations based on different decompression research, however recreationally we typically use the quite conservative Recreational Dive Planner (RDP).
NDL Tables act as a mathematical model to predict how much nitrogen our bodies will absorb during a dive based on maximum depth and bottom time. Providing we stay within the parameters of the table, do not approach the limits and follow the rules such as maximum ascent rates, we can theoretically avoid decompression complications whilst diving. However, with technological advances introducing dive computers into mainstream diving, is it still important to use dive tables?
One negative of dive tables is that their NDL limits are based on a square dive profile, assuming we will be descending to our maximum depth at the beginning of the dive and remain at that depth for our planned bottom time. This actually limits our dive time as in reality we rarely stay at our deepest depth for an entire dive, but instead step up throughout the dive to reduce the effects of pressure and extend our useable air. It is possible to plan multi-level dives using dive tables, however this can sometimes be complex to calculate and it still means you are left with a fixed dive plan with strict depths and times. Computers on the other hand periodically calculate your current time and depth throughout a dive and therefore calculate a real-time NDL based on your actual dive. This benefits divers by extending out NDL times by crediting a diver for ascending to a shallower depth at lower pressure, but will also penalise and alert a diver who is approaching their NDL limits.These constant updates allow for more flexible, yet also more controlled and safer diving.
The most basic dive computers will calculate real-time NDL limits based on time and depth, which will then be used to plan surface intervals and future dive limits per individual diver. However more advanced models can also calculate EANx dive limits and oxygen exposure, multiple gases and gas switching adding extra safety to technical diving. Some models even have digital compasses and wireless transmitters calculating real-time air consumption. Not all of these features are necessary on every dive, but each provides a real-time safety parameter that NDL tables cannot.
Due to their benefits, dive computer use has now become so engrained in modern diving that certification organisations such as PADI no longer require instructors to teach NDL tables as part of the Open Water course. But does that mean they are obsolete, or shouldn't be taught? No. Understanding dive tables and NDL limits is a vital part of understanding dive theory, dive planning and diving safety. Without the knowledge and comprehension of decompression theory and NDL limits it is difficult to understand or respect what a dive computer is telling you. Understanding what a dive computer shows is important, but so is understanding why. These principles can be taught without tables, or by demonstrations shown on computers, but the best way to illustrate the functionality of NDL limits is through learning how to use original dive tables.
That is why we will always go through the effort of teaching dive tables to make sure our students fully inderstand how decompression effects diving and how to dive safely within the NDL's. We'd still always recommend diving with computers for the added benefits and safety which current tech and future developments provide, just make sure you understand teh theory and if ever you are without a computer, revert back to the tables. Dive tables will also never run out of batteries!
Posted on May 28th, 2016
What is eLearning ?
eLearning is an online program that lets you complete the knowledge development sections of selected courses online. Most SDI/TDI courses are available online – including the SDI speciality courses and TDI Advanced Nitrox, Decompression Procedures and CCR courses. PADI also offer the theory for their courses online and in particular the Open Water course is especially popular.
The Advantages of eLearning
1. Come to the dive centre prepared: As students can do all the theory for the courses before they come to the dive centre, they are better prepared for the in-water work. They can study at their own pace too rather than spending a day in a classroom doing all the theory at once, so they will retain their knowledge better.
2. Maximize their time: Students can fit the studying around their lives, doing a section every now and then and don’t have to spend a hot sunny day of their holiday in the classroom.
3. Maximises knowledge retention. The instructor receives a detailed report of any areas where the student has not fully understood a particular area and so can help the student overcome any problem areas.
With SDI/TDI eLearning you can complete the sections as long as you are online, some PADI courses eg Open Water are available for phones and tablets thus allowing students to be offline whilst studying.
So if you are thinking of either learning to dive or taking a speciality course just get in touch with us at Dive-In Larnaca and we can help you choose the right eLearning package for you.
Posted on May 24th, 2016
If you use your holiday to explore new places – add the underwater world to that list of places to visit:
Learning to dive is not difficult
Learning to scuba dive is often viewed as being difficult – IT’S NOT and once you have mastered it you will find it difficult to stop!
You need to find a professional dive centre, instructor and properly maintained diving equipment. You can find all that under 1 roof at Dive-In Larnaca.
Don’t forget to complete the medical form and then sign up for PADI eLearning – so you don’t have to spend days of your holiday in a classroom – do it all before you get here.
Your Instructor will go through all the safety procedures and will be sure you are comfortable with each dive before moving onto the next.
The real ocean will astonish you
The ocean takes up about 71 percent of Earth's space, yet a whopping 95 percent of that ocean is completely unexplored. Scuba diving gives you the opportunity to explore a small part of that underwater world and come face to face with some amazing creatures.
There are also places like Zenobia wreck, one of the best shipwrecks in the world and just 3 minutes boat ride from the Dive-In Larnaca centre and is a magnet divers.
Scuba Diving is Unique
There is nowhere else on earth where you feel weightless and float like you are in space. And whilst only a handful of people will ever go into space, scuba diving is just about available to anyone!
These are just a few of the reasons for learning to dive, the only way to find out the rest is to have a go and learn to dive. So contact us at Dive-In Larnaca for more information.
Posted on May 11th, 2016
Within minutes of landing at Larnaca we found ourselves discussing the days ahead with Mus whilst eating delicious and very large Cypriot kebabs filled with sheftalia, pastourma, haloumi, chicken and pork and washed down with our beer of choice for the trip: KEO. Mus’ enthusiasm for diving the Zenobia was only beaten by his enthusiasm for the food he had planned for us to eat, in particular the burgers at San Pedro’s burger shack next to the dive centre, though for himself he assured us ‘the diet starts tomorrow’ since after two weeks on Cyprus his drysuit was too tight and trousers too small.
At 7:30 next morning we were all at the dive centre signing forms and putting our kit together. Heads and bodies were a little jaded given our food and dive discussions had continued through a few more KEOs. But before long we were sat in the big yellow 10m RHIB, Eleni R, with its two 300HP engines making very short work of the the mile or so ride out to the Zen.
Dive-In is a great operation. Our twinsets, stages, and Mus’ rebreather were taken from us once gasses were analysed and regs assembled at the dive centre. They were put onto our backs moments before we dropped in to the refreshing 18 degree deep-blue water of the Mediterranean. Our only task was to walk the two minutes from the dive centre to the harbour.
Dive 1 took us down the bow shot line where most of our dives ended in deco. around the trapeze maintained by Dive-In. This dive took us on a tour of the outside of the Zen down to the seabed at 40m then winding back up and along the superstructure peering through windows and doors at what lay beyond. Visibility was at least 25m and it was easy to get a perspective of the wreck’s layout.
The Zenobia was a 178m RORO ferry with three cargo decks and an accommodation level. She capsized in 1980 on her maiden voyage due to problems with the computerised ballast system. No lives were lost as the ship had been evacuated. She lies on her side so floors and ceilings are now walls and walls are now floors and ceilings. The 106 trucks and one car on the Zen are either piled up on the port side of each cargo deck or hanging precariously from chains on a wall that was once the deck. Trucks on the outside decks tumbled to the seabed. Very little has been salvaged from the wreck so these treasurers occupied our remaining five dives.
Dive 2 was to be our first inside the wreck. But first we descended the stern shot line onto the two huge prop’s and made our way around the stern to the trucks lying on the seabed. These include the famous egg lorry whose ovoid cargo is piled up on the seabed with barely a crack… though somehow all of us swam right by without noticing all the eggs. Our eggselent guide, Alan Timmins, couldn’t believe it. The following day after another spotting failure we forced him to take lessons in the kind of underwater signage we expect in order to notice the blindingly obvious. After the trucks, we ascended the superstructure and entered the accommodation block at the top of the wreck. We followed a corridor through the ship back to the bow with cabin portholes and bathroom fittings above us. As we approached the bow this corridor opened into a deep space below us that had been the restaurant. A soft blue light could just be seen through the windows at the front of the superstructure lined up below us.
Day 1 diving was complete so eating could start. Since San Pedro’s is closed on Sundays we made do with a huge lunch of lamb kleftiko, red mullet, pork chops, bread, hummus and taramasalata washed down with KEO. A short siesta later we reconvened in town for beers, cocktails and a small dinner that was anything but small. Away from the most touristy areas we found cool bars and a friendly bustling atmosphere that kept us going longer than the 7:30am start next morning warranted. Luckily right next to Dive-In is a 24-hour coffee shop, The Coissanterie, which, amongst other assorted delights, serves delicious triple chocolate croissants as well as strong sweet coffees which were very much required.
Dive 3 took us into the darkness of Zenobia’s cargo decks. The upper deck is entered at the bow though a post box opening that was once a door to the forward deck. It took a minute or two to get accustomed to the dark cavernous space lit up only by our torches and the occasional flash of my camera’s strobes. We descended into the dark onto the colourful wreckage of trucks and cargo below. This wreckage continues unabated all through this deck. Eventually a large blue opening materialises in the distance where the upper deck once opened to the elements. What looks like a gantry lies across this large blue window. But it is actually the remains of a truck that was carrying cattle carcasses and the bones of those cattle are piled up deep on the floor of this truck. To Alan’s bemusement none of us saw them despite him swimming slowly over them and shining his torch on them. Following this dive we ‘helped’ him develop the signs none of us could misinterpret for the next must-see items.
Dive 4 took us right into the still darkness of the enclosed middle cargo deck. It is entered by the small Pilot’s door on the vast starboard side of the Zen that is now a sunny meadow populated by tasty looking Bream. After a bit of a squeeze through the entrance and a minute or two to get accustomed to the dark we descended to the wreckage and wound our way towards the stern between the trucks and their cargo. At the end of the deck is a forklift truck. Alan made the agreed signs and we all saw both that and the jumper that is lying against one wall. Surrounded by darkness the colours of the trucks, their tarpaulins and cargo are still vivid after all these years under water and are now mixed with the inevitable bright orange rust.
We had truly earned our San Pedro burger and as promised it was dive food extroadinaire. And large. The siestas that afternoon were a little longer and the need for evening food a little less. But that didn’t stop us heading to a fish restaurant where a fish mezze was more than a challenge for just us and so the local stray cat population happily joined our feast. Don and Joli proved a very soft touch when it came to fluffy animals with big feed-me eyes.
Dive 5 was an adventurous tour starting at the bottom of the restaurant and ascending past the serving station with its tray rails, coffee machines and food bays still in place, and the brightly coloured tartan carpet still mostly in place on the floor that is now a wall. At the top we rejoined the accommodation block corridor from the second dive. But a little way along this we tuned back down into the wreck and picked up a lift shaft which took us through to the upper cargo deck again. With an obvious and slightly rude sign agreed for ‘bone’ we headed back to the beautiful blue window at the stern end of this deck and duly took in all the cattle bones before returning the length of the upper cargo deck looking at features on the deck’s starboard walls that are now the roof. These include a cargo of blue plastic bottles that have floated from their containers and are trapped bobbing against the roof.
Our final dive was back into the darkness of the middle cargo deck. This time we turned towards the bow of the ship and passed through more colourful wreckage including a cargo of sleeping bags mostly still rolled up. Our target was the only car on the ship, the captain’s blue Lada, which luckily ended up on top of all the trucks instead of below them. None of us missed it as it emerged from the darkness. The atmosphere on this dive was more intense because of the amount of diesel floating like smoke in the water giving a distinctly other-worldy feel. The contrast as we emerged out of the little Pilot’s door into the blue Mediterranean was vivid.
Three days wasn’t enough. The Zenobia is huge and there is so much more to come back for. Mus had been there for a week and also saw the lower cargo deck, main engine room, auxiliary engine room and tool shop. Most of our dives inside the wreck maxed out around 35m and outside the wreck at 40m. Dives are an hour long with 5 to 10 minutes deco on 50% nitrox.
All that remained on this trip was more food. Lunch at our new favourite restaurant, Portokalis, which is run by a man from Mile End, included the largest pork chops I have ever seen, more chicken kebabs and a rich Moussaka. A long siesta prepared us for a night out with Cypriot friends of Don’s after a ‘light’ meal of the hugely delicious and deliciously huge kebabs, washed down by some with a bottle of Zivania and by others with KEO. The night was long and probably memorable.
Huge thanks to Mus for organising the trip, Chris W for being my dive buddy, Don and Joli for being Don and Joli and Go-Pro footage, Alan for being our brilliant guide and lugging our kit around, Dan for skippering us and lugging our kit around, Dave, Robert and Wes for lugging our kit around, and Chris D and Sheri for running such an excellent dive operation.
As I sit here on the plane home following another lunch at Portokalis of tasty grilled Bream with chips, bread and dips, and a hangover beating shandy I can confirm that the diet really does start tomorrow…
Posted on April 29th, 2016
An interesting article from DAN published on AlertDiverOnline
By John Lee, EMT, DMT, CHTQ: When I go on a dive vacation, we often have beers or cocktails after diving. Some in the group are even suggesting drinks between dives — is that a bad idea?A:
Simply put, alcohol and diving are not compatible. Alcohol causes depression of the central nervous system, which impairs judgment and reduces reaction time and coordination. Often the individual is not even aware of the degree of impairment.
A review of more than 15 studies on the effects of alcohol on performance found that alcohol was involved in roughly 50 percent of all accidents in people of drinking age. In Diving and Subaquatic Medicine
(Edmonds C, et al., 2002), the authors report that alcohol is associated with up to 80 percent of all drownings in adult males.
It takes time for alcohol to be metabolized and its effects to wear off. M.W. Perrine and colleagues studied a group of experienced divers and the impact of alcohol consumption on their performance. Their investigation found that the ability to perform skills while scuba diving was significantly compromised at a blood alcohol concentration (BAC) of 0.04 percent, which can be reached by a 180-pound man who consumes two 12-ounce beers in one hour on an empty stomach. The study went on to state that even at a lower BAC, situational awareness and protective inhibitions may be reduced.
Recent alcohol intake (along with seasickness, traveler's diarrhea, excessive sweating, diuretic medications and air travel) is a potential cause of dehydration in divers. Dehydration, particularly when severe, is a potential risk factor for decompression sickness (DCS). Diving can also contribute to further fluid loss through breathing dry air and diuresis caused by both immersion and cold. Some symptoms of dehydration, such as fatigue or drowsiness, can even mimic DCS, leading to possible diagnostic confusion.
Alcohol ingestion may also enhance the effects of nitrogen narcosis. Elevated BAC, dehydration and nitrogen narcosis together may result in otherwise preventable accidents due to decreased problem-solving ability.
Many divers appreciate a cold beer, but drinking and diving can turn a safe activity into a nightmare for both the diver and all those impacted by a rescue or fatality. Think twice before combining alcohol and diving.
Posted on April 15th, 2016
Our website shop is now up and running at the moment it has a small selection of our most popular stock on it. So check out our great prices on Apeks, Shearwater Perdix and FocTec (Tilly Tec) and APD. If you can't see the item you want just contact us
for a price. http://dive-in.com.cy/shop #Apeks #shearwater #tillytec
Posted on April 10th, 2016
Summer is coming and what better time to learn to dive or expand your dive skills - listed below are some of our most popular courses - full details of all the courses we run are at www.dive-in.com.cy
Learn to dive in Cyprus with Dive-In Larnaca. With a maximum of 4 students to each instructor you can complete your PADI Open Water dive course with only 2.5 -3 days of in-water training. You will get more time having fun scuba diving and finish the course as a better and more confident diver.
The PADI Advanced Open Water Diver course helps you increase your confidence and build your scuba skills so you can become more comfortable in the water. This is a great way to get more dives under your belt and includes 2 dives on the wreck of the Zenobia.
The SDI Nitrox course at Dive-In Larnaca is the best deal around for learning to dive Nitrox at just €99 for the online course and tuition – we’ll even throw in a FREE tank of Nitrox for your first Nitrox dive.
Already an Advanced Open Water Diver? Complete your Deep Speciality with Dive-In Larnaca. At just €199.00 including 2 dives on the Zenobia and a qualification to dive to 40m
Deep Diver CoursesFor more information on all these course visit our website www.dive-in.com.cy , email us on firstname.lastname@example.org or call us on +357 24 627 469
Posted on April 1st, 2016
One of the most popular technical diving courses we run here is the TDI Advanced Wreck course on the Zenobia. With no more than 2 students per instructor, it is a really challenging course, as witnessed by Stuart Philpott in his article a couple of years ago:-TDI Advanced Wreck by Stuart Philpott
For more details and pre-requisites of the TDI Advanced Wreck course contact Chris or Sheri at email@example.com
or visit our website at www.dive-in.com.cy