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New to BP/W Diving
JeffNColdWater - 4/10/2017 11:03 PM
Category: Equipment
Replies: 8

I just updated my bcd from an entry level jacket to a Hollis BP/W. The manufacture of the old rig went out of business and the wing just seemed to make more sense because most of my dives are in the chilly waters of the Pacific Northwest. So is there anything different I should expect? My first dive with this gear is probably going to be a boat dive and I don’t want to be the idiot who jumps in and nearly drowns because he didn’t know what to expect from his gear. Thanks.
ELLOCODIABLO - 4/10/2017 11:19 PM
I would try to hit a pool and trim your rig before an ocean dive.
UnderwaterMartini - 4/11/2017 7:53 AM
I think you’ll find it easier than a BCD. But if you can get into a pool or quarry, that would be nice.

-Use your heaviest fins and/or set your tank a little low, or your wing a little high. So your trim will err towards feet down at first, then work on it.
-let air out of the wing slowly. BP/W’s sink quicker than foamy BCD’s.
-I jump in the water with my wing fully inflated, but you have to let air out of the wing to sit upright at the surface. The "wings make you tip forward" nonsense is from people that overinflate their wings.
LatitudeAdjustment - 4/11/2017 8:04 AM
The biggest change is the more air you add on the surface the more the wing will push you face down. On the surface just add enough air to get your face out. You want your weights low and as back as you can get them. My steel cold water BP weighs 6 pounds so that takes care of that problem :)

It could be more of a problem on my plastic travel BP that only weighs ounces but on tropical dives I tend to swim into the shallows and stand up, no added air needed, Enjoy!

jtjacobs2000 - 4/12/2017 9:39 AM
I think you’ll enjoy how much easier it is to get into trim, rather than floating face up under water. I also like the simplicity of the system. I’ve found that on dive boats, where they set it up for you on the tank and tie the tank down until they escort you to the rear of the boat, it’s impossible to get the crotch strap on, so I usually put it on after entering, before descending. If your plate is steel, you’ll need less weight as well.
UnderwaterMartini - 4/12/2017 11:50 AM
Are there 2 d rings on your crotch strap? All I do is lean forward so it swings forward from that weight, and then grab it.

I love how easy it is to get into a BPW. There’s just too many straps, belts, and danglies on a regular BCD. If I have the option, I just throw the whole unit overboard and put it on in the water. Get a few weird looks from other divers fighting to get their gear on. But if the boat allows it, and the waters calm, I toss my unit overboard and just swim to it.
jtjacobs2000 - 4/12/2017 1:20 PM
I don’t have a ring on the crotch strap itself, but after hearing you mention it, I think that’s a fantastic idea. I have a ring just below the buckle of the waist strap, but not on the part that runs back to the plate. I’ve been diving the rig with a weight belt, have you put pockets on yours? Or do you use any tank weights for trim?
LatitudeAdjustment - 4/12/2017 3:04 PM
From UnderwaterMartini: Are there 2 d rings on your crotch strap?

Two, mine only have one but that’s for hooking to the DPV so you can go scootering one handed :)
UnderwaterMartini - 4/12/2017 4:06 PM
I have one dring on it by my tail bone, a hands length from the plate. Can clip reels there. And my other dring is on the front for scooters, I guess. Although I don’t see how that’s going to be comfortable. That little bit of weight from the ring and triglide allow my to just swing the belt forward and grab it.

I have a SS plate and the DSS 10# weight plates. That’s usually plenty. Any more goes on a weight belt on me. Otherwise my rig wouldn’t float on it’s own. And if I put all of my weight on the rig, ditching all of it at depth, would turn me into a rocket.

I like the weight belt. Can’t think of a scenario where I would have trouble dropping it, where I wouldn’t also want my waist belt undone. It doesn’t get in the way, and I can make sure my rig, and myself can be reasonably balanced even when apart.