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So, after much DIY/Teach yourself/learning off mates, I finally gave in and did some courses on the start of my push for Trimix this year.  Quite sensibly, you can’t just roll up on a Trimix course without the prior build-up courses (although that didn’t stop me looking
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TDI for me have the right attitude and good course materials and having done my previous courses through them, it wasn’t a tough decision to continue TDI.  The next questions were “who” and “where”.  “Who” was easy.  One name keeps cropping up on this board (and others) and when choosing a course, the advice is to choose the instructor carefully first.  I’m happy to think I chose the best – and reading the other posts, I’m in good company.  That also took care of the “where” – for those who don’t know, Andy’s courses are extremely good value, very, very competitive. So much so that it was worth me driving practically the length of the country to do them.

An e-mail conversation answered my queries, showed my diving history to Andy and before you know it a deposit was on its way to him, to be passed in the post by the course manuals and accommodation info coming my way.

The beauty of the TDI manuals is that you get them early and can get the brain-ache dealt with in advance.  This cuts down on classroom time and allows for a more remedial style of tuition rather than just the usual lectures.  So, Day 1 and I found myself in a brand new training suite in the unlikely location of a farm just outside Sedburgh,  which itself could be straight out of “Last of the Summer Wine”.  Andy also has a new compressor building opposite which houses the compressor, the Haskell pump and the various Js required of O2 and He.  The farm itself has good access to the M6 and allows for a good choice of inland and sea dive locations.

Day 1.  Hardcore classroom day.  What’s to stop someone getting hold of the manuals and just learning from them?  Nothing, in fact I’ve had some copies for a while now.  What you don’t get is the additional information and explanations – I took NINE A4 pages of notes and diagrams!!!  Here was the opportunity to make sure the academic bit had sunk in and to work on the weak areas. There were TDI PowerPoint presentations as you would expect, but the white board was soon plastered in additional info, from gas prices to DIY P-valves.  Unable to restrain myself, I was delighted to mug Andy for as much info as I could and he was generous enough to give it.  So much so that it was gone 7.30 by the time we finished!

Day 2. Capernwray. My intro to a place I’d only heard about on YD.  Like a (smaller?) Stoney, but with much nicer shop and restaurant IMHO.  Drills and general practice, including shut-downs, mask removal and swim (cold or what!) and diving tables.  Informal review of gear, stage removal and re-fit on the move and blob deployment. Both computers on gauge mode was new to me too and there were other various drills sprung by Andy throughout the dive.  I liked the place actually – I’ve dived worse puddles!  Two dives, with a good lunch in between.  And the first time I’ve used the Porg Juice I bought when I met her at Stoney – great stuff!  

Day 3. Wastwater. Fabulous place in the middle of nowhere, huge hills surrounding what is in fact a very deep body of water. You can see pictures of the place on Digger et al’s review of their course.  Deepest dives of the course and no, I wasn’t narked, there really were Gnome Gardens down there!  Dive profile strictly by tables.  Lovely dive with Andy on his YBOD and Phil on OC. Second dive to check SAC and other drills.  Dived WreckTreckie’s OMS wing (cheers mate!), very nice.  Back at the training room it was Phil’s turn to instruct.  Gas Blender being a bonus for me, I was delighted to be able to do the course at the same time. Theory and then practical in the compressor room. Another late finish. Andy must be the hardest-working instructor around – he was still teaching (local pool, rebreather training) at gone 11!

Day 4. More gas filling and then Ullswater. Final dives on the Lakes. Another fantastic location, deep and dark.  More of a desert at the bottom due to the deep silt and spongy clay.  Lots of interesting things to find given people’s habits of chucking things in the lake to get rid of them. The hessian sack with the rocks and bones in was a choice find… More drills and more deco practice. Course and exams summary and then end of course, time to go home.  

Summary: Hard(?) work and very enjoyable.  Exceptional value for money.  The highest quality instruction possible from the top of the UK TDI training tree at interesting and varied dive locations.  Andy will travel to NDC if there is a group of you and maybe further a field should his plans come to fruition! Watch this space…  I’m already saving for the Trimix course.  Thanks again to Andy and Phil.
 
 

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nice report , makes me wish i had asked andy for the manuals prior to my advanced nitrox this weekend!
jules:D
 

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Cheers!  

Oi, Timing - can I tempt you to joining us for the Trimix later this year?  You know you want to...


Sorry to hear you haven't got your manual yet Jules.  Don't worry, it really isn't rocket science I promise!  You'll find your experience with diving will take some of the pressure off - more time for bookwork.

The Bull is pretty much in the centre of Sedburgh.  The Dalesman up the road seemed to do good food too.  It is a total timewarp, brilliant really.  If you don't get to the chippy by 8, you've had it!
  I kid you not...  Great scenary - I wish I'd had time to get out on the hills.

Best of luck - if I can be of more help (formula stuff etc), just let me know.
 

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<font color='#0000FF'>mdemon,
enthusiasm and information hand in hand,impressive reading that confirms the importance of good instructors.
glad you took the time to post the details.

cheers
barrie
 

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<font color='#000F22'>There are many on the boards who have been lucky enough to do courses with Andy.

I pleased to say I'm one of 'em and as Tim says ... I almost wanna go back and do the mask-off swim in Hodge Close all over again.
 

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John mate,

Top report and every bit as true as I remember it.

I turned up for the craic when Tim, Gav, Davey Willo, Jay, 2Tanx, Stevie W, Ben et al all did theirs in Hodge Close and Wastwater a coupla years ago, as the wife and I had already done it - in fact I was directly below both Tim and Gav when they did their line-swims, sans mask, and their faces were an absolute picture - The Cape? Not a patch on Hodge for temp in late October


Good luck on your Mix course squire. I've yet to do mi Deco Procs with Andy, but will hopefully get it squared away this summer.

Jules, you'll love it - you're in the best of hands.
 

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ooo oooo and i think i have persuaded ms Mutter to come too....hope she can make it. she wants to really...
 

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[b said:
Quote[/b] (Julia C @ April 15 2004,08:34)]ooo oooo and i think i have persuaded ms Mutter to come too....hope she can make it. she wants to really...
I'm going!!!  I'm possibly in deepest doo-doo at work (Nothing quite like booking time off at the last and most inconvenient possible minute), but I'm coming up tonight!!!

HM  
 
 
 
 

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<font color='#0000FF'>jules watch out for those yellow turtles
they swim past you and pinch things off you
and no i wasnt narked ask digger
 

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Hey, Bren, I'm sure deco procs could be done alongside Trimix...  Come join the Mix party!


Ah, another convert, HelenM!  One more of us, one less of them...  
 
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