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I recently took my spare Regulator in to a local dive shop for a service.  Wanting a "proper" job done I confirmed that they were authorised dealers and could service this particular make and model.  When I handed it in over the counter the member of staff gave it a look of contempt,( its quite an old model) but not been abused and not had much use. I was told depending on what parts were needed it would be between£30-70, as the Technician was away it would be a couple of weeks.

A couple of weeks later I had a message left asking if I could ring to discuss the servicing of my regulator.
I rang the shop and spoke to a member of staff, who was trying to decypher a note left by the service Technician,saying the second stage is beyond economical repair, and to use his words it was "mashed" and it would be cheaper to buy a new. I found this explanation of its rapid demise a little odd as I had been using the Regulator with it performing faultlessly over a recent diving weekend. Peace of mind was the dictating factor it getting it serviced. When I mentioned this in conversation it was pointed out he was only reading what was wrote down. Not wanting to pour good money after bad I requested no further work be done on it and would collect it.

I turned up at the diving shop,unfortunately the Technician wasn't in. I explained the situation to one of the female Sales staff and she produced the regulator minus the second stage, telling me there would be a charge of £40.  "FOR WHAT" was my first thought, the Technicians report was produced shedding a little bit more light,  it read "second stage shattered during dissassembly", my thoughts were having brought a regulator in working now it wasn't. The second stage of the Regulator was described by the manufacturers a high impact plastic,strange having coped with the rigours of British diving ironically it's demise was on a Technicians bench!!!.  

My opinion is that it was obviously damaged whilst being taken apart.In the defence of the Technician I'm realistic enough to understand that things can go pear shaped when trying to take things to bits,a bit too much pressure in a vice or screwdriver especially with plastic components and you have damage. There's two sides to this the Technician would argue that the second stage damage occured due to some sort previous abuse or lack of care whilst I am off the mindset that he damaged it admittedly by accident.  To cut to the chase after the staff phoned the Technician I found out that the £40 charge actually referred to the work done on the First stage, which had new parts and had been serviced, in something of a Catch 22 situation.
The shop in fairness said that they could offer me a second stage at a "reduced" price aprox £70, a few comparisons with other retailers showed this wasn't such a great deal and could get the second stage cheaper at most other places. I slipped up in this experience as I didn't have the damaged second stage part returned to me,would have been interested in what the manufacturers had to say.

This isn't the first time I had a negative experience in regulator servicing, already having had one previously butchered during a annual service and returned to me in bits following the attention of a "Technician".
Luck of the draw a lot of the time as competency varies so much person to person. Makes me wonder who many people have had a similar experience   sometimes (especially as a newbie) all to easy to accept things on face value and buy a replacement.

I won't be taking any more kit to to this particular retailer for servicing maybe a one off!! but I'm not prepared to take the chance.

Tony
 

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Ultimately the answer is to do it yourself if you are confident and competent enough as a lot of people are.
I have seen far too many "technicians" that were spotty kids and I wouldn't let change a tyre on my Jeep never mind service a bit of diving kit.

 You should have got the bits back, most shops give you the old parts back as some sort of guarantee that the work was done and to see what state it was all in.
 

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I've no intention of taking my regs in for servicing again - I'll do it myself or, if it's really bad, send them back to the manufacturer.

But they certainly should have returned the 2nd stage. What regulator was it? There's a chance it's still under warranty and they should replace the parts free..
 

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Does anyone have a source to get the spare parts from? My understanding is that this is the limiting factor.

Back to Tony's shambles of servicing : £40 for a 1st stage service !!! you can buy a brand new 1st stage (Apeks DS4) for £70 !! What a rip off.
I think I'll just use mine till they're FUBARed then bin them and buy new ones, will be cheaper in the long run...
 

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Yes, but as normal it doesn't get spread about where to make sure I keep it. You can quite easily get the various manuals on the net and the service tools can be bought without any hassle. It can take a long time to get a source of spares and most people protect the source in case a problem ends it.
The only ones I have a problem getting are Scubapro due to the way they set up their service net and I suspect most people are the same. or does anybody know where i can get service kits for R380 second stages?
 

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Trouble is guys that if it goes bellyup on a dive you just have to have an alternate source. I know most (all?) of us do so its not such an issue I suppose on this site.

Anyway Tony has had a rotten service and its difficult to see him winning as the 'technician' will claim that it fell apart as he service it due to previous damage etc.

As an aside i took my Oceanic SP4 in for annual service, it took quite a while to get it back, which was a surprise as the other one was done really quick and it was converted to DIN whilst in. I was a little surprised at the time it took but its sort of spare so it didnt matter too much, on looking into it I now know why. It received a new second stage body underwarranty, obviously this took some while to come through, the dearler hadnt mentioned it. Oceanics have a lifetime warranty so long as you get them serviced as required in the warranty i.e. annually
I think that was a good piece of servicing and not mentioning the new body strikes me as a pretty laid back attitude thats oK by me. I didnt get the oh I've done a real good job here attitude,  I expect a good job to be done - it's life support kit after all.
Deep Dive - Luton.

Matt
 

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I can get service kits for prety much any reg you want. I've recently had an interruption in supply due to my supplier going on holiday of all things. I can get kits for Scubapro Rupert, if you want some, let me know.

I sell at RRP for the kits because that's what I get them at. Postage is very little on these things. There's not a lot to them.
 

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And I protect my source because he runs a business, and it could be very interesting for him if certain manufacturers and so on were to try and make their life difficult.

They don't want us servicing regs, and they're tying to stop us, but there's nothing legally to stop us buying and selling them amongst ourselves as far as I know.
 

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I've also had probs with getting my regs serviced....but this is on the continent and not UK.

Fortunately not the problems described above as the technician I know at the local shop has always done a good job and I'd rather he did it than myself.

The problems I've always had is the length of time that a service takes, the excuse being that the service kit takes so long to arrive....that's for my Beuchat VX 10 Ice...one of the reasons I chose it in the first place was that it is made on the continent and so thought that parts etc would not be an issue.....oh well. The last time took 10 weeks....bloody ridiculous. Having said that, I always get offered a like for like loan in such cases but as I have a selection of set ups I've never had to use the loan offer.

My dive shop has always been up-front with me and apart from delays with orders I've never had any issues with them as I know them so well....

Not much consolation for you parahandy....

My full service, first and second stage with returned replaced spares (which have gone into the tool box for emergencies) was 36 euro - 20 quid.

Cheers for now.

Graham
 

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[b said:
Quote[/b] (Digger @ Nov. 25 2003,13:02)].

They don't want us servicing regs, and they're tying to stop us, but there's nothing legally to stop us buying and selling them amongst ourselves as far as I know.
There is no law against even buying them straight from the manufacturers, they are just using H&S to keep the service and dealer network happy and protect themsleves from lawsuits. In saying that this argument could be quite easily used for car brake parts

 Digger, could you PM me with cost including P&P? I only need R380 second stage kit/s as I can get everything else and these are the only Scubapro bits I have.
 

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Digger,
Could you see if you can get me the tool to take the front plate off Apeks ATX second stages? as I have a couple that are just too tight to undo the way I usualy do. (I promise I won't whinge about the cost!)

Cheers
Simon A
 
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