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Hi all,
Never posted a trip report before, thought I'd bore you all with my hardcore wreck diving to 20mtrs!.
First a bit about me, joined Eastbourne BSAC last July having never dived before, got about 16 dives to my name, almost completed Sport Diver.

I wanted to dive with a nitrox mix for this dive, you train for 32 and 36 per cent during Ocean Diver now and I have dived it a couple of times before. I had not filled my cylinder with Nitrox before so a member met me in the shed and showed me how (cheers Jimbob). My cylinder was very cold from draining it down so the mix turned out a bit rich (38%), which gave me a mod of 27mtrs, I knew this wreck was max 20mtrs so was satisfied that it was safe.

I was diving a fairly new membrane drysuit from Hammonds which I'm very happy with. I've been in Vobster for a few dives with it and had done a buoyancy check in the harbour at 6 and 3 metres with 30 bar in my 15ltr and 3ltr pony and found I could hold a stop no probs.

We were going to dive the HMT Gambri about six miles off Eastbourne in 20mtrs. The Gambri went down in Jan 1918 having hit a mine, its quite small (38mtrs) and fairly well broken up.

After a short rib ride to the wreck in very pleasant, calm blue seas (alright I'm flowering it up a bit) my buddy, Gary, and I kitted up. The shot went down and held, and we were the second pair in. At this point I was feeling a bit anxious, combination of still being pretty new to this diving malarkey and first sea dive of the year. Gary had a small problem with his reg leaking a bit and we sorted it on the surface whilst holding on to the shot.

We then descended down the shot and I could see the viz was going to be crap, 1-2mtrs if we were lucky. I had warned Gary that I sometimes struggled with my ears so asked him to bear with me. I cleared them early and we stopped at 5mtrs for a bubble check and to sort ears, mask etc. I like this moment to gather myself.

Gary later said I wizzed down the shot, but it felt slow to me, this is the bit I don't like, descending down into a black hole with no reference points, it's about now the thought "swim to the surface as fast as you can" crosses my mind!. I kept control of my unease and checked my computer (Gekko) to see we were at 16mtrs , I thought I could make out a black shape below me, but wasn't sure.

The shot suddenly went slack, I think it came free, and as it floated around me I lost my bearings briefly. It tightened up again and I continued down, quickly seeing the sandy bottom. Within seconds of seeing something (bottom, wreck etc) my anxiety goes and I quickly get into "ooh look at that" mode.

A couple of puffs into my drysuit and I was set. We slowly moved uptide away from the shot and started to see a debris field of pipes and stuff. We then came across the wreck which was more a series of plates lying on top of each other. I didn't see any creepy crawlies, few pout and wrasse, but no crabs or lobbys.

After about 15 mins I was feeling chilly (9c), I was also aware of being slightly floaty, something I've not really experienced before. I dumped a bit more air and carried on. At 30 mins Gary thumbed the dive as agreed (80 bar left for me). I clamped my legs around the wreck and got my DSMB out, Gary unfurled it as I untangled the reel, once I showed him my thumb on the release he sent it up.

At this point I dumped all the air from my BCD and drysuit, I like to start off negative, but was aware I was still a bit floaty and was thinking I was going to struggle to hold stops. We had intended to stop at 10, 6 and 3mtrs, but already at 10 I was having to work my arms to stay stationary. I had no air left to dump and was now facing the fact that I was underweighted.

1min at 10, then up to 6 and I was virtually having to fin down to stay still, Gary dives a wetsuit (brr!), and was enjoying the clown show that I was now giving him, all flailing arms and legs!. After about twenty seconds I gave up, my computer showed no deco required, and I knew my 38% would be helping. I gave Gary an "Ok" as I lost him in the gloom and had a slow ascent to the surface.

Couple of mins later Gary joined me and was concerned to see a bit of blood in the nose of my mask (this seems to be normal for me). We had a good de-brief on the boat, and I explained my issues to Gary. I was a bit miffed at myself for not holding the stops, something I'm normally quite good at, and surprised because I thought I had done proper buoyancy checks. Nothing had changed with my set up so I'm not sure why I was underweighted.

I'll be adding 2 kilos (which will take me to 11) and trying again in the harbour shortly. I later worked out my sac was a little higher than my norm (20ltrs per min) at about 25 but it's obvious why. I still enjoyed my day, I hope the inital anxiety will get better the more of it I do, I'm glad I discovered I was underweighted on a 20mtr no deco dive!. Cheers Ming
 

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Tonton Flaneur
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You certainly had some beautiful weather, shame the viz wasn't a bit better. Blood in the mask sounds like it may be a sinus thing, I used to get that if I'd had trouble with sticky ears. I found that Beconase spray was helpful. Hope you get the weight issue sorted.
Wonder where the "creepy crawlies" are? Graham can't have got them all, surely?
 

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Glad you had a nice day and the anxiety will get better the more you do. I used to get quite anxious about ascents but have chilled out a bit now. I also occasionally give a clown show too with arms and legs everywhere but practice makes perfect eh!

You did a weight check in the harbour so maybe your weighting was ok and being a bit anxious made you breathe in more which makes you go up? I may have been a tad underweight on my second dive too yesterday or it might be that I just need to work on my dumping technique to get that last little bit out. Perhaps another weight check in the harbour would help before adding any? Just check that you werent breathing out to stay down on the first one you did. I would try this before adding any weight as being overweight will just make ascents even more difficult.
 
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