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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Can I spent 24 hours underwater? I mean 24 hours continuously i.e. without the namby pamby five minute surface breaks every hour.

Seriously, I'd like to raise some money for charity (RNLI) and I (or rather member of my club) was considering spending 24 hours underwater.

Thought we'd have the 24 hour diver + a support buddy pair under at any one time with pairs going down with extra cylinders for him hourly for those with twinsets or half hourly for supporting pairs on single tanks. So at change over there'd be five of us underwater. I'm considering asking Wraysbury (I live nearby) if they'd like to have us - just to 6m down and ought to be nice and warm in the summer. Unless you know somewhere better.

Here's what I need technical advice on:

Using a switching block for changing cylinders underwater - Anyone know one I could beg/borrow/steal kit from somewhere?
Suitability of a heated vest/underclothes as it'll get cold.
I thought regular equipment would be best so that our diver could eat and drink. Unless you can take a full face mask off underwater to eat???
Since what goes in must come out - anyone used a p valve? Or his dry suit will end up particularly manky ...
If you have a suitable reg could you sleep underwater?

Thanks!
 

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Can I spent 24 hours underwater? I mean 24 hours continuously i.e. without the namby pamby five minute surface breaks every hour.

Seriously, I'd like to raise some money for charity (RNLI) and I (or rather member of my club) was considering spending 24 hours underwater.

Thought we'd have the 24 hour diver + a support buddy pair under at any one time with pairs going down with extra cylinders for him hourly for those with twinsets or half hourly for supporting pairs on single tanks. So at change over there'd be five of us underwater. I'm considering asking Wraysbury (I live nearby) if they'd like to have us - just to 6m down and ought to be nice and warm in the summer. Unless you know somewhere better.

Here's what I need technical advice on:

Using a switching block for changing cylinders underwater - Anyone know one I could beg/borrow/steal kit from somewhere?
Suitability of a heated vest/underclothes as it'll get cold.
I thought regular equipment would be best so that our diver could eat and drink. Unless you can take a full face mask off underwater to eat???
Since what goes in must come out - anyone used a p valve? Or his dry suit will end up particularly manky ...
If you have a suitable reg could you sleep underwater?

Thanks!
All of the above can be done.
Heated undersuit... hot water suit
Drinking underwater.... try a KB helmet
Use a P valve and daipers
 

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Using a switching block for changing cylinders underwater - Anyone know one I could beg/borrow/steal kit from somewhere?
Suitability of a heated vest/underclothes as it'll get cold.
I thought regular equipment would be best so that our diver could eat and drink. Unless you can take a full face mask off underwater to eat???
Since what goes in must come out - anyone used a p valve? Or his dry suit will end up particularly manky ...
If you have a suitable reg could you sleep underwater?
Why a switching block? Probably best to use stage-mounted cylinders, and just keep swapping the whole stage off - and keep a single on your back in case a stage is delayed getting down to you or something so you don't have to abandon the attempt.

Battery life of heated undersuits is likely to be the biggest problem. The FaMi ones however use an external battery (like a torch battery), and its possible to get wet connectors, so a couple of batteries should be fine - charge one while you use the other.

Don't think you'd want to sleep underwater - just make sure you're prepared and had some sleep before so you don't need to sleep underwater.

David
 

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Also be aware of the possibility of "immersion shock" when getting out - some information here (it's on page 7) - although I do seem to recall seeing on TV images of divers being recovered after having been left bobbing around in the Red Sea for several hours and they seemed to trot up the ladder by themselves.
Best of luck!
 

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Why a switching block? Probably best to use stage-mounted cylinders, and just keep swapping the whole stage off - and keep a single on your back in case a stage is delayed getting down to you or something so you don't have to abandon the attempt.

Don't think you'd want to sleep underwater - just make sure you're prepared and had some sleep before so you don't need to sleep underwater.

David
I'd say he was asking about a switching block because he would want to be using a FFM. But the KBM 48SM would get around this problem

And 24 hours is a long time not to sleep, I would say plan some sleep into it, as long as you are on a FFM and there is a support diver watching over you then go for it.

Also underwater MP3 players etc etc will come in handy I imagine

just my £0.02

HTH,

Dan
 

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Sleeping underwater can be done.... basically tie yourself down and inflate your suit slightly to become positive.

Use a "loose" loop to control your legs and arms.

Also have someone watch over you as you sleep and wake... just think of your reaction if you wake up and find the shock of being underwater.

Food can be those energy bars, bananas etc

Another point is...deco!!! just think of the requirements of you spending 24 hours at lets say 5 meters.In this case it's not the depth... it's the time.
 

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its only after 8-10m you start to onload gas, so no deco should be racked up
 

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bleedingheartliberalpcgon emadtreehuggingdogooder
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As someone who's done something similar - I once did a 12 hour sponsored dive with my ex for charity, the one thing that no one's mentioned so far is boredom .
We managed our dive but towards the end we were so bored it was untrue. There really are only so many games of noughts and crosses and hangman that you can play on a slate. Underwater frisbees lose their appeal really quickly and you can't even sit and read a book!

For our dive we had surface support who would drop down a full set of kit, (bcd, tank, regs) which we'd swap for the one we were wearing, inflate the bc and send the old one up.

You can eat and drink underwater. Little squeezy cartons of ribena are good, the ones you stick the straw in. As long as you maintain pressure on the carton, water doesn't leak in when you stop drinking to breathe and we took down a weighted box with mini mars bars (although the wrappers do start to dissolve a bit and pepperami sticks. (Mmm nice combo!) My advice would be to take things which don't need too much chewing - you don't want to be breathing mars bar into your reg, it's a bugger to clean out!

We didn't have any problems with waterlogged skin, but that may be because 12 hours wasn't long enough. Yes we were very wrinkly when we got out - but no lasting damage.

Cold wasn't a problem for us as we used our local club dive pool which was heated - toasty and warm - we started off wearing 2 piece hired suits (neither of us had our own at the time) but pretty soon jettisoned the top jacket laye as we were too warm. As we were using the club pool though we did allow ourselves 5 min breaks every 2 hours - that way we didn't have to pee in the pool which wouldn't have been pleasant for the rest of the club!

Good luck with the dive.
 

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Looked at this a couple of years ago. It's doable but it isn't a record. Might be a decent job to do for charity, but then if you're going to the trouble of doing 24 hours you might as well step it up and go for a few days.

Personally I'd be looking at drysuit, drygloves, dry hood, FFM and a decent anchoring system with quick releases. You could sleep easy enough, and just go surface supplied. All you need is a platform to do it on, and as shallow as is physically possible. I would be looking for 2m deep at the most. Reduces the shock to the body when you finish.

Number 1s are ok, it's the number 2s you've got to worry about. You've also got to get in some practice eating and drinking underwater, plus bailing on and off FFMs. One cocked up switch and you're going to end up at the surface having failed.

Dive centres are usually ok with the publicity, but don't have the insurance for this sort of thing. There is also normally the cost of getting staff to cover the site in the meantime, as well as potential problems with divers using the site.

I would probably go for a lake somewhere that is as warm as lakes get, and which isn't a managed site. I would then setup a scaffolding frame and start practicing. Spend 6 hours in the water, then try 12. I can deal with 3 hours easy, but beyond that I think I'd start to be a bit bored with the whole thing.

Is that 5 days thing the current record in open water? That isn't all that long thinking about it. The more time you can pass sleeping the better, and you'd probably want to get a waterproof housing for a TV and playstation :)

Digs.
 

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Imodium Plus has to be the best solution for No.2 - works a treat before any festival to avoid the need to use the portable toilets. Would have no problems with a 24 hour dive :teeth:
 

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Discussion Starter · #19 ·
Thanks so much!

You guys are brilliant! Thanks so much for all the useful tips!

Though I think 5 days is a little excessive...

Genius idea of Imodium!

In terms of boredom I was thinking of laminating books, magnetic boardgames (monopoly takes forever), laminated cards ... I hadnt even thought of underwater frisbee!

This is actually starting to look possible ... I'll post more info as I get closer to making it happen!
 

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bleedingheartliberalpcgon emadtreehuggingdogooder
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You guys are brilliant! Thanks so much for all the useful tips!

Though I think 5 days is a little excessive...

Genius idea of Imodium!

In terms of boredom I was thinking of laminating books, magnetic boardgames (monopoly takes forever), laminated cards ... I hadnt even thought of underwater frisbee!

This is actually starting to look possible ... I'll post more info as I get closer to making it happen!
I'd agree that 5 days might be a little excessive - unless you want to go for the record - but the boredom factor then really would be an issue.

We took down some cards which had that sort of plasticky finish to them, thinking they'd last. They did....for about 10 minutes, then it wasn't so much a game of 'snap'' as a game of 'sludge'

We also had some little magnetic 'travel' games. Chess, draughts, snakes and ladders, that sort of thing. Just make sure you have dice which sink not float! I think we got them from WHSmith - only a few quid each and a godsend after 8 or 9 hours....

Really, don't bother with the frisbee... :D
 
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