Category: Scuba Tech Philippines News

Technical Wreck Sidemount Equipment Primer 1

Technical Wreck Sidemount Equipment Primer eBook For Students I’ve written an equipment ‘primer’ that will be available free to all of my sidemount, technical and wreck students. The aim of this eBook is to provide advice and guidance on equipment selection and preparation, in advance of training. The eBook covers all elements of  wreck, technical [...]

sidemount custom hardware 1 reels

Sidemount Hardware Custom Upgrade With SUMP UK   Andrew Goring, at Sump UK, has been busy designing and producing some clever custom hardware for sidemount and rebreather systems. This metalwork can enable sidemount divers to carry out some nice modifications, tweaks and refinements to their sidemount rigs. His sidemount hardware products include custom off-set D-rings, [...]

sopras sub sidemount 3 soprassub

Sopras Sub Sidemount Release at DEMA 2015 Czech company Sopras Sub are releasing two sidemount systems at DEMA 2015.  The first is a dual-purpose ‘universal’ sidemount/backmount system, the second is a dedicated recreational sidemount rig. Universal Sidemount System The dual-purpose system allows the user to switch between single-tank backmount and sidemount configuration by adding a [...]

Hollis SMS Katana

Hollis SMS Katana – Pre-DEMA Sneak Peak Hollis  have announced they are to unveil a new sidemount system at DEMA 2015; the SMS Katana! I was shared a photo today that is believed to be a sneak peak at the SMS Katana system.  At first glance, the system looks like Hollis are finally producing a [...]

sidemount diving book

Sidemount Diving – The Almost Comprehensive Guide  book release by author Rob Neto Rob Neto, the highly regarded sidemount and cave instructor is releasing his first book, ‘Sidemount Diving – The Almost Comprehensive Guide‘ in the next few weeks. The book looks likely to be the first comprehensive and technically insightful publication released on sidemount [...]

choosing scuba regulator diving tips

8 Factors To Consider When Purchasing Your Scuba Diving Regulator Scuba diving regulators are one of the biggest purchases you will make as a diver.  There are many factors to consider when deciding what is best for you.  Don’t choose something you might regret later…. here are 8 factors to investigate when making your diving [...]

XDeep Stealth 2.0 Modifications Waist Buckle

XDeep Stealth 2.0 – Modifications – Low Profile Waist Buckle This is a relatively cosmetic modification to the XDeep Stealth 2.0, but it’s something I’ve done on all my different sidemount rigs (6 and counting…). I got the idea after using the Razor 2, which has a two-piece low profile buckle.  Most other sidemount BCDs, [...]

XDeep Stealth Modifications Crotch Bungee 2

XDeep Stealth 2.0 Modifications : Crotch Bungee Whilst I am a big fan of the XDeep Stealth 2.0 sidemount system, I always though that the crotch bungee method of securing the bottom of the wing was less than ideal.  With thin exposure protection it could be uncomfortable (thinking board shorts here….).   I sought a [...]

technical diving philippine asia
XDeep Stealth Modifications 1

XDeep Stealth 2.0 – Modifications – Redundant Buoyancy The XDeep Stealth 2.0 is a very highly regarded sidemount BCD system.  Unfortunately it does not come with an option for redundant buoyancy, which is a feature that some wetsuit / warm-water technical divers might desire.  It is also a requirement, absent the use of drysuits, for [...]

doc deep garman fatal world depth record attempt scuba diving accident

A Fatal Attempt: Dr Guy Garman’s World Depth Record 2015 Analyzing The Psychological Factors That Can Lead A Team Into A Destructive Goal Pursuit.  On the 15th August 2015, the technical diving community received sad news that the latest World Depth Record attempt, to 1200ft/365m) had ended in tragedy when the participant, Dr Guy Garman, [...]

technical diver

The Technical Diver We do precision guess work, based on unreliable data, provided by those of questionable knowledge…         Learn technical diving with Andy Davis

seven deadly sins of technical diving

The 7 Deadly Sins of Technical Diving       Get your technical diving training with Andy Davis

technical diving mindset

A Technical Diving Mindset Seek quality training Get the right gear Practice, practice, practice  Dive progressively  Account for skill fade  Strive for perfection  Don’t compromise  Pay your dues!     Get your technical diving training with Andy Davis:

12 Steps for Technical Diving Instructors

12 Steps for Technical Diving Instructors     Get your technical diving training with Andy Davis…  

Regulator hose diving emergency

Nylon-Braided Regulator Hose Diving Emergency WARNING! On Wednesday, 22nd July, I had to complete an emergency air-sharing ascent (real) with a technical diving student because neither of his regulators was delivering sufficient gas. The Out-of-Gas Incident Both of my student’s cylinders were full and valves fully open. The regs (Apeks Tek3) were functional and clean. The [...]

Dive Rite Nomad LTZ 1

Review of the Dive Rite Nomad LTZ by Oliver J. Albrecht A couple of weeks ago, I came to the conclusion that my current sidemount rig for steel tanks was not working perfectly for me anymore. While for the most part it did just fine with two main tanks and a stage, once I added multiple [...]

sidemount modifications bungee hooks 1

Sidemount Modifications Bungee Hook Triglides Agir-Brokk have released a good modification/upgrade option that will work with any sidemount BCD that uses torso bungees as a means of securing the wing to the diver (i.e. X-Deep Stealth 2.0, Razor etc) The bungee hooks replace standard D-rings on the upper rear crotch strap and the waist.  They [...]

gradient factors

Gradient Factors by Matti Anttila Ph.d Remember your first diving classes and the lesson about bubbling soda bottle and too rapid ascents? No matter how deeply you study the decompression theory, this soda bubble analogy is still valid. However, it’s time to introduce some more fundamentals of the issue. But let’s start from the history: [...]

aquamundo sidemount system for sale philippines

Product for Sale: Aquamundo Sidemount System *available for shipping in the Philippines and internationally. The  Aquamundo Sidemount system is full-feature sidemount system, complete with everything you need to conduct enjoyable and safe sidemount dives.  Suitable for recreational and extended-range technical divers. This sidemount system has been proven for it’s durability and functionality over 2 years [...]

deep diver course philippines

Deep Diver What You Really Need to Learn to Become a Safer, Capable Recreational Deep Diver    Deep Diver training is offered by most scuba training agencies and typically qualifies the diver to progress to deeper depths, up to the recreational maximum depth of 40m/130ft.  The purpose of this article is to examine that actual [...]

Apeks WSX-25 sidemount

APEKS WSX-25 Sidemount Pre-Release Review Apeks are due to soon release the WSX-25 Sidemount BCD and harness.  Early promotional photographs and details of the rig show what may be a very promising and popular sidemount BCD once it reaches the commercial market. The Apeks wing offers 27lbs / 12 kgs of buoyancy, making it suitable [...]

MDS sidemount pouch

Equipment Release News MDS Technology Sidemount Pouch MDS technology have released a well designed sidemount pouch that will keep most sidemount divers happy.  It is made by Michaël Verlinden-Doumont. For storing wetnotes,back up mask,smb,spool,2 eazycuts,deco slates,back up torch,double enders,zipties etc etc without any problems… x  For more information, visit the MDS Technology Facebook Page

aquamundo sidemount philippines

Aquamundo Sidemount  - Diver Review by Andy Davis, TecRec and ANDI Advanced Sidemount, Technical Wreck Instructor   I received the Aquamundo sidemount shortly before its release in October 2013 for testing and evaluation. The trial model was in lightweight 420 denier cordura nylon and produced initially to equip safety and rescue teams.  After the official [...]


 Marine Salvage Equipment and How It’s Used to Find Shipwrecks Understanding the science behind recovered wrecks and marine salvage. By Michael Bernzweig Millions and millions of dollars worth of gold, silver, and other valuables has been lost at sea over the centuries.  Luckily, today, marine salvage equipment has become much more advanced allowing underwater treasure [...]

Freedom Sidemount System

The Freedom Sidemount System This new sidemount system from Israel is causing a stir amongst cave and technical sidemount divers.  It has some innovative solutions to wing mounting on the harness and plate design.  Their website is currently under construction – but should be up and running soon.  In the meantime, they have an active [...]

xdeep stealth rec wing

New xDeep Sidemount Systems Rec and Tec Versions   XDeep sidemount, manufacturer of the hugely popular ‘Stealth 2.o’ sidemount BCD has announced the released of two new sidemount systems in the near future. These will be the ‘Stealth Rec’ and the ‘Stealth Tec’. Both wings can be integrated onto the existing Stealth harness.  Many thanks [...]


New To Market: The FinnSub ‘Fly Side’ Sidemount BCD  The FinnsSub Fly Side sidemount is a tear-drop shaped bladder based upon a DIR harness with metal backplate. The BCD can be purchased with either an aluminum or steel (3mm or 6mm) backplate; or you can use an existing backplate/harness if you own already.  The purpose [...]

how to prepare for technical diving training 1

Ten Tips On How to Prepare for Technical Diving Training By Andy Davis, ANDI and TecRec Instructor, Subic Bay, Philippines I teach a wide range of technical diving courses, including deep diving decompression, technical wreck penetration and advanced overhead environment sidemount training. Of all those diverse and challenging courses, the one I see students struggle [...]

sidemount technical wreck philippines

Kick-Start Your Diving Development in 2015 with Personalized Scuba Mentoring Workshops  In addition to a wide range of specialized diving courses, I also offer personal scuba mentoring workshops that provide divers with access to expert coaching on scuba skills.  This coaching identifies and progresses the student’s goal to become an all-round better diver and/or develops [...]

Advanced Sidemount Wreck Restrictions

Advanced Sidemount Wreck Diving: Passing Extreme Restrictions  Advanced sidemount diving techniques present a vast spectrum of new opportunities for wreck divers to safely explore previously unpenetrable sections of shipwrecks. The training for these activities is typically only available to fully qualified technical wreck (and/or full cave) sidemount divers. This reflects the high challenge involved with [...]


Advanced Sidemount in Action  A photo from recent ANDI Advanced Sidemount training dives, held in Subic Bay, Philippines.   The Advanced Sidemount course is open to qualified Technical Wreck and/or Full Cave qualified divers.  It covers multi-stage penetration protocols and techniques for passage through major-extreme restrictions.   CONTACT ME to discuss enrolling on an Advanced [...]

Dive Truk Lagoon    Appeared in DIVER August 2014 (by Rod MacDonald) Ask wreck-divers where in the world they would most like to be, and the answer ’Truk’ would come as little surprise. Wreck expert ROD MACDONALD has taken time out from Scottish wrecks to write a guide to the iconic diving destination in Micronesia [...]

shipwrecks and the submerged world course

Shipwrecks and Submerged Worlds: Maritime Archaeology  Shipwrecks and Submerged Worlds is a free four week online course offered in conjunction with FutureLearn, starting on the 6th October 2014.  It  gives you a unique opportunity  to gain an insight into the fascinating world of maritime archaeology, in an open access and engaging format. Drawing on the expertise of the staff [...]

Subic Bay

The Subic Bay Story A series of 4 videos detailing the development of Subic Bay following the Mt Pinatubo eruption and the closure of the US Navy base in 1991. x x x

technical sidemount course subic philippines

Wreck and Tech Course Photos – Subic Bay Jan – Apr 2014  Some photos and commentary on the spectrum of technical, wreck and sidemount diving courses run by Andy Davis in Subic Bay during the first quarter of 2014.  I run courses throughout the year for individuals or small groups (max 3) – so please [...]


Sidemount Course Photos – Subic Bay Jan-Apr 2014  The first quarter of 2014 was a very busy period, crammed full of sidemount, technical and wreck courses at all levels.  In particular, sidemount courses are more popular than ever, with a large number of students attending training at either basic or technical levels.  Here are some [...]

hog sidemount

HOG Sidemount Video HOG have released a promo video of their new sidemount system for TEK DIVE USA of their new sidemount rig.  The rig has approx 45lbs / 20kgs of buoyancy and is expected to challenge the Halcyon Contour and Hollis SMS75 in the market-place, as a mid-capacity, tech-capable sidemount BCD, suitable for cold/warm [...]

Hollis SMS75 Sidemount

Hollis SMS75 Sidemount The SMS75 is an evolution from years of sidemount development, which started with the SMS100. A product that has been copied, modified and a benchmark for technical sidemount for years. Even more popular has been the lightweight SMS50 line. These two have taken sidemount mainstream and the building blocks this new harness. [...]

seac ks01 side mount

SEAC KS01 Side Mount Promo – Video Released Seac have released a promo video to showcase their new KS01 side mount system: Buoyancy jacket dedicated to side mount diving for all levels: from beginner to expert “cave diver”. The jacket’s light weight and freedom of movement are enhanced thanks to the exclusive “Quick Adjusting System” [...]

Andy-Davis-Technical Sidemount Diving

Sidemount Divers Going ‘Back’ To Backmount  A re-post of Steve Martin’s excellent article on the state of current sidemount training provision, initially published on Scubaverse.    This is important reading for divers who are considering sidemount training…. and an eye-opener for those who’ve taken sidemount diving training and have been disappointed by the results…  By [...]

Nomad LT extreme sidemount

New Release: The Nomad LT EXTREME DiveRite have released an “EXTREME” version of their popular Nomad LT sidemount system… The major difference with the Extreme version of the Nomad LT is increased wing buoyancy capacity to 35lbs/16kg.  This offers more options to technical divers and cold-water divers using heavier steel cylinders and stages, whilst still [...]


Top 5 – Sidemount Adapter Systems The increasing popularity of mainstream sidemount diving has seen a plethora of dedicated sidemount systems enter the market in recent years.  However, many new sidemount ‘converts’ already own back-mounted wing BCD systems – and the seek the opportunity to customize their existing wings for sidemount use.    DIY back-mount [...]

amphibian gear sidemount

Amphibian Gear – Sidemount Transformer  The Amphibian Gear Sidemount ‘Transformer’ comes from Russia. It is a modular system, similar to the OMS ‘Profile’ adapter, whereby an anti-taco rear cover/butt-plate configuration that can be used in conjunction with varied wing and harness options. The picture above shows a 30lb ‘donut’ wing and ‘comfort’-style harness,as options.  This permits a [...]


The Tecline Sidemount 16 The Tecline is a new Polish manufactured sidemount system that offers 16kg/36lb of buoyancy, with a removable harness and three integrated weight pockets concealed behind removable foam padding on a soft backplate. It has a single triangular wing, reminiscent of the UTD Z-trim, without baffles and with an integral butt-plate. Buoyancy: [...]


Sea Monster Sidemount Adapter The Sea Monster is a Polish manufactured sidemount adapter. It works in conjunction your choice of  regular back-mount ‘donut’ wing – trapping the wing between the harness and an anti-taco ‘cover’. The harness accepts many types of wing and has an integral butt-plate.  The anti-taco cover bolts through the backplate and [...]


PADI Deep Diver versus the Tec40 Course  In this article, I will compare the PADI Deep Diver and Tec40 courses in detail.  Both courses are available to moderately experienced recreational divers and both courses are equal in respect of  the number of training dives and the qualification depth limit. So, what differentiates these courses… and [...]

technical wreck course, subic bay, philippines

Technical Wreck Course Video Subic Bay, Philippines 2013  In September 2013, I managed to get some good footage from an ANDI Technical Wreck course, run in Subic Bay.  The course took place over 5 days and was 6 dives (although we did some extra too!).   My student, Alex (Zen Diver) had previously completed technical [...]

Jascon 4 diving rescue video

Amazing Rescue Diving Video The Jacson 4 Wreck Rescue  I felt compelled to share this awesome video (scroll down) showing the actual rescue of Harrison Okene, aged 29, from the wreck of the Jacson 4 tug-boat, which sank 15km off the Nigerian coast. It is perhaps the most amazing diving video that I have ever seen. [...]

sublevel sidemount

The Sublevel Sidemount  This is a new sidemount on the market, sold in limited quantities directly by SubLevel. The Sublevel sidemount is designed purely as a recreational/open-water sidemount system, with a design emphasis on lightweight, low-bulk, travel. It has 3 integrated weight pockets on the inside of the wing, each of which can hold 2lb [...]

scubapro x-tek sidemount bcd

The New Scubapro X-Tek Sidemount System   The Scubapro X-Tek sidemount is a modular system, available with two bladder sizes and an optional top-cover for increased durability in overhead environments. Modular approach Compact independent aircell Aircell size: 12 liters (25 lbs) or 20 liters lift (45lbs.) Soft Airnet finished backpack Compatible with current X-TEK Steel [...]

typhoon haiyan yolanda malapascua philippines

 Typhoon Haiyan / Yolanda – Malapascua Island Flattened  I thought I’d share these photos, to help raise awareness of the impact of super-typhoon Haiyan / Yolanda on the island of Malapascua.  The island of Malapascua holds a special place in the heart of divers who have visited it, and I have many friends on the [...]

scubaone mangusta sidemount

Introducing the ScubaOne Mangusta Sidemount Italian manufacturer Scubaone now offer the ‘Mangusta’ sidemount in an 18kg/40lb variant for use with double steel cylinders of 7-15 litre capacity.                 The Mangusta and Mangusta18 are sidemount systems from  Italian manufacturer ‘Scubaone’. Designed for’ sidemount cave diving, and also to appeal [...]

scubaone m90 sidemount

ScubaOne M90 Sidemount BCD Italian manufacturer ScubaOne have created the ‘M90′ sidemount for both cave diving and leisure diving.  It has an innovative stainless steeel butt section, and offers a clean profile. Buoyancy:  12kg / 26lb Material:    Cordura® 1000 deniers with polyurethane inner Weight:  Not known Manual: Not available Manufacturers Link:  ScubaOne M90  

Audaxpro Sidemount System

The AudaxPro  Sidemount ’Point Break’ BCD The Italian manufactured ‘Point Break’ from Audaxpro sidemount is available in 9 colors (red, yellow, blue, black, white, orange, gray, turquoise and fuchsia) and provides 8kg of buoyancy. Buoyancy: 18lb / 8kg Material:  Outer: nylon TEXTANE A / B 210 with polyamide coating HT Inner: nylon TEXTANE A / B 210 Weight:  1.9kg / 4.2lb Manual: [...]

HOG sidemount

HOG Sidemount BCD at DEMA  A first sneak peak of the new HOG sidemount, that was unveiled at 2013 DEMA.  Many thanks to Wayne Fisch for the photos! The HOG sidemount is aimed for ‘technical divers’ and originates from the USA caving community.  It shares a common approach with the Hollis SMS100/75, Halcyon Contour and [...]


SEAC Sidemount BCD released SEAC have released a new sidemount system for November 2013.  Initially available in Europe, it is expected for world-wide release soon. It is called the SEAC KS01. It looks like a warm-water configuration.  I am expecting circa 20lbs of buoyancy – putting into the competitive group with the Hollis SMS50, UTD [...]

IST Sidemount System SMB-21

IST Sidemount Systems Released  Here are the first release details of the two newly released IST sidemount systems. From  IST: New for 2014, these side mount bladders are the result of hundreds of side mount dives in real world conditions by experienced side mount divers and cave explorers. IST’s SMBs are the lowest profile; streamlined [...]


First Peak: The Hollis SMS75 Prototype First sneak peak at the prototype Hollis SMS75 sidemount BCD, due to be unveiled at DEMA 2013.  Thanks to Wayne Fisch, from The Scuba Connection, and Tony Cooper  for sharing these photos. Having seen only this photo of the prototype Hollis SMS75, it looks like a nice compromise between [...]

Technical Diving Theory Sidemount Diving

Gradient Factors for Dummies By Kevin Watts (Article from RebreatherWorld.Com) This article attempts to provide a user’s view of gradient factors, an Erik Baker derived method of calculating decompression schedules. The title is not meant to be derisive, but simply an indicator that this article is meant to be a primer. Back to Buhlmann Everything [...]

best ascent speed for scuba diving

Best Ascent Speed for Scuba Diving Disclaimer: The opinions expressed in this article are those of the author, and they do not reflect in any way those of the institutions to which he is affiliated. Information presented in this article is not intended to advocate breaching the Safe Diving Practices taught by your scuba training agency. [...]

Aquamundo Sidemount BCD

A List of Modern Sidemount Diving Systems There are an increasing number of commercial ‘off-the-shelf’ sidemount systems available to purchase.  These typically fall into one of two categories; minimalist (Hogarthian-inspired) rigs and cold-water rigs. The minimalist rigs, sometimes called “British configurations” typically feature a base harness that uses lumbar and shoulder plates, to which a flat [...]

Aquamundo Sidemount BCD

Aquamundo Sidemount BCD – New Release Oct 2013 I was pleased to be asked to conduct pre-release trials on the Aquamundo Sidemount BCD during Sept 2013 and this is my review of the  newly released rig: The sidemount BCD is a complete system, designed on a minimalist harness that is ideal for tropical diving with [...]

ccr rebreather safety advice

CCR / Rebreather Safety Resources A collection of online resources relating to the topic of CCR / Rebreather Safety. CCR Aware Video: Safety Advice for New and Prospective Rebreather Divers Improving Rebreather Safety: First in a series of reports on Rebreather Forum 3, by Michael Menduno. Why so many deaths? What’s the real story behind 18 [...]

ccr rebreather safety advice

CCR Aware Video Safety advice and information for new and prospective CCR divers Other CCR safety resources: Improving Rebreather Safety: First in a series of reports on Rebreather Forum 3, by Michael Menduno. Why so many deaths? What’s the real story behind 18 deaths on rebreathers worldwide so far in 2010?, by Steve Lewis Rebreather diving: [...]

diamond sidemount system

 The Diamond Sidemount System The DIAMOND Sidemount system was released in June 2013 and is a fully CE certified sidemount system. The Diamond is available in a range of bladder sizes to suit different diving conditions/tank choices. The Diamond sidemount wing is made from an outer cover of 1000 denier Cordura and an inner bladder constructed [...]

Agir-Brokk Ratatosk sidemount BCD

Sneak preview: Agir-Brokk Ratatosk sidemount BCD  First pictures of the new sidemount BCD offering from Agir-Brokk, the ‘Ratatosk‘. Reminiscent of the UTD ‘Z-Trim’ BCD, the Ratatosk is certainly of the lightweight family, following on the tails of the Razor 2.0 and X-Deep Stealth. Low weight mini harness complete (backplates, 2 shoulder D-rings, 4 hip D-rings, [...]

Halcyon Contour Sidemount BCD

New Halcyon Contour Sidemount BCD is revealed Halcyon have finally released their much anticipated sidemount offering: the Halcyon Contour.  Whilst sidemount diving has not (yet) been accepted for inclusion to the GUE syllabus, this does signify a potential future ‘DIR’ sidemount aspect amongst GUE (Jarrod Jablonski has opened the doors to this future possibility in [...]

Advanced Wreck Diving Courses Philippines

Subic Bay Wreck Diving Photos from September 2013 Some photos illustrating the wreck diving and training carried out during the month of September 2013, here in Subic Bay, Philippines. Having completed Tec40/45/50, Alex undertakes the ANDI Level 2 ‘Techniques of Wreck Diving’ course – the photo above shows Alex surveying the upper deck of the [...]

technical-wreck-courses philippines

ANDI Wreck Diving Course – Penetration Dive Photos  Following the confined water skills training, the ANDI Level 2 ‘Techniques of Wreck Diving course gets real!  We conduct three actual wreck penetration dives of increasing complexity, during which students are able to apply the knowledge and techniques they have learned. Students apply proper reel-handling, guideline laying and [...]

ANDI Techniques of Wreck Diving Course Philippines

ANDI Techniques of Wreck Diving Course Subic Bay, Philippines  Some photos from the first dive of the ANDI Techniques of Wreck Diving course, run by Andy Davis in Subic Bay, Philippines on the 7th Sept 2013.   The course is ANDI Level 2 (advanced recreational) and is very similar in scope and protocols to the [...]


Defining Wreck Diving Restrictions  Very few diving agencies go into detail about wreck diving restrictions. Those that do, tend to limit their definition to either ‘not restricted’ or ‘restricted’.  That definition hinges upon whether two divers could pass through simultaneously when sharing gas.  The intention of this is to prevent recreational divers entering areas that [...]

Andy-Davis-Technical-Diving-Courses Philippines

Teaser Pics: ANDI Advanced Sidemount Course I am currently editing videos and preparing a course report for the A.N.D.I Advanced Sidemount course, that finished today in Subic Bay.  The course was taught by Bruce Konefe (ANDI I.T.D #15). Here are some photos, captured from the video footage: The A,N.D.I. Advanced Sidemount course is focused towards [...]

Autonomous Progressive Scuba Skill Development

 A Guide To Expert Scuba Diving Skills Development Many scuba divers struggle for years to improve their scuba diving skills, becoming exasperated that performance seemingly refined and perfected in a training environment does not replicate in actual open water dives. Even worse, it fails them when they are confronted with the need to apply actual [...]

DIY sidemount technical wreck diving philippines

Adding Weight to a Sidemount Diving Harness This is a very simple, quick and cost-effective for adding weight to a sidemount diving harness.  It’s a technique I now use when initially working with students to add/remove weights in-water, during initial set-up and configuration dives.   It also has an application for travelling sidemount divers, who [...]

homemade diy sidemount rig harness system

Some Options for Homemade / DIY Sidemount Rigs I use several homemade / DIY sidemount configurations frequently when wreck diving in the Philippines.  These sidemount configurations are exceptionally economic – costing significantly less than ‘off-the-shelf’ purchased rigs. The majority of components can be bought ‘over-the-counter’ at a reasonably well stocked dive shop, and/or make use [...]


What It’s Like To Be… A Technical Diving Instructor I was recently interviewed by on my work as a technical diving instructor.  That interview has been published on their website and might prove interesting for those who are considering teaching technical diving, or have a general interest in the tech diving community and lifestyle. Here’s [...]

technical sidemount diving ron burgundy
Sidemount Philippines

New Sidemount Diving Philippines Trailer Not for those with a nervous disposition – sidemount diving Philippines….

William title

Sidemount Course in Subic Bay During March and April 2013, I ran several sidemount courses in Subic Bay – covering recreational and technical diving skills for a number of students.  Divemaster Tim Mathieson joined me to continue his progress in Tec Sidemount towards completion of his Tec50 qualification.  William Kao did a combination Sidemount Diver [...]

Technical Sidemount Diving

 The following commentary was first published as a post on the Scubaboard internet discussion forum. I felt that it provided a very beneficial perspective on the positive and negative aspects of sidemount configuration; particularly in comparison with back-mounted alternatives.  It’s a useful read for those divers, of all levels and backgrounds, who are considering their [...]

Showa L2D Tabby Front-cockpit-section

More photos of the WWII Japanese Showa L2D Tabby transporter wreck  Have been researching for a couple of days and had some good pointers.  There’s still more research to be done (and more dives also), in order to finalize an identification…and hopefully find some definitive physical evidence of the wreck’s identity.  The closest match so far [...]


Diving the Showa L2D ‘Tabby’ Wreck – Subic Bay, Philippines  This week I took several newly graduated technical divers onto an unidentified aircraft wreck in Subic Bay.  Within a short time of descending on the first dive, it seemed very likely that the wreck was some variant of a C-47 Skytrain (DC-3 Dakota). The wreck lies [...]

tec40 sidemount course philippines

Tec40 Sidemount Qualification Dive Brian Ferguson undertakes his TecRec Tec40 sidemount check-out dive. He completed both the Tec40 and Tec Sidemount courses in Anilao, Philippines, qualifying him to make decompression dives with multiple tanks in sidemount configuration.  For the course, he was using the Razor 2 harness and Apeks sidemount regulator set. Dive was 40m/130ft [...]

M-bungee-sidemount rig

‘M Bungee’ Super-Minimalist Sidemount Rig I had some spare time the other afternoon, so I took the opportunity to test-dive a concept I’ve had brewing for a while.  Basically, it is a harness-less sidemount rig, using an ‘M’ shape continuous bungee to secure the upper wing whilst providing traditional mounting points for sidemount cylinder valves.  The wing [...]


Tec Sidemount Course Open Water Dive One Video Congratulations to Marcus Sulander for completing his Tec Sidemount course in February 2013.  This video shows the first open water training dive of the course, Marcus completed a total of 2 confined water sessions and 5 open-water dives, using 2-4 cylinders and simulated decompression. Tec Sidemount courses [...]


Tec Sidemount Course Confined Skills Video Congratulations to Marcus Sulander for completing his Tec Sidemount course in February 2013.  In addition to this confined water session, Marcus completed 5 open-water dives with 2-4 cylinders and simulated decompression. Tec Sidemount courses are 3 days / 2 confined water / 5 dives.  Maximum 2 participants per course. [...]

DIY Sidemount Wreck Diving Helmet

DIY Sidemount Wreck Diving Helmet I noticed, with some surprise, the high cost of cave sidemount wreck diving helmets currently being sold on the scuba market. Light Monkey sell an excellent diving helmet, but the cost (certainly here in the Philippines) was prohibitive for me.  I promote a policy of frugal investment on rugged and reliable dive [...]


Tec Sidemount Course – Subic Bay, Philippines I will be running two Tec Sidemount courses: on the 15-17th Feb and 25-27th March.  Vacancies are available. Tec Sidemount courses are 3 days / 6 dives.  Maximum 2 participants per course. Courses involve full sidemount qualification, plus use of 2x deco stages and simulated decompression dives. Cost [...]

sidemount wreck diving course philippines

Sidemount Wreck Diving Course Subic Bay, Philippines Congratulations to Firdaus Kapadia and Tim Mathieson for completing the dual Sidemount Wreck Diving course in Subic Bay, Philippines. Run over a total of 5 days, Firdaus and Tim completed a total of 10 dives to achieve PADI certification in both sidemount and wreck diving, having completed many [...]


PADI Wreck Diving Course Philippines Subic Bay, November 2012 Congratulations to Jim Cain for completing his PADI Wreck Diving Course in Subic Bay.  The course was run over 2 days and included 4 dives, including the USS New York ACR-2, the USS Majaba (El Capitan), a Landing Craft Tank Mk6 and sunken US Navy docking [...]

advanced wreck diving philippines

Relocating a Lost Guideline – Skills for Wreck Divers Technical Diving knowledge share by Andy Davis This article, by Jim Wyatt, was originally published in Underwater Spelology.  I have reproduced the article here, as the issue of relocating a lost guideline also demands the attention of wreck divers at all levels. In the event of a [...]

wreck diving course philippines

Line Laying for Wreck Diving Penetrations – Video Tutorials Wreck diving courses include line laying practice for wreck diving penetration, however many wreck instructors have minimal personal experience in the finer points of guideline deployment and use.  Proper guideline techniques were refined and perfected in the discipline of cave diving exploration. Those techniques were adopted [...]

ccr megalodon rebreather philippines

CCR Megalodon Rebreather – Preparation Videos Technical Diving knowledge share by Andy Davis   An excellent series of six instructional videos produced by Andreas W. Matthes of  ProTecPlaya for, showing critical preparation steps for diving the Megalodon CCR. Interested in training on the Megalodon CCR in the Philippines or Thailand?   Check out the page [...]

PADI Sidemount-Wreck-Training-Subic-Bay

Sidemount Wreck Training – Subic Bay, Philippines Firdaus Kapadia visited Subic Bay in January 2013, to complete Sidemount Wreck training.  Over 5 days of training, he mastered the basics of sidemount configuration diving, before putting his new equipment to the test on my challenging Wreck Diver course. Several of the sidemount wreck training dives were [...]


Sidemount Technical Diving Techniques – Videos Some great videos that demonstrate technical sidemount diving techniques, as taught on courses, by Rob Steiner. Sidemount Buoyancy Practice Flutter Kick On Sidemount Frog Kick on Sidemount Helicopter Turn on Sidemount Sidemount Trim Cylinder ‘Feathering’ (manipulate valve to breath from free-flowing regulator) Partial Removal of One Cylinder Partial Removal [...]

PADI sidemount diver course presentation

PADI Sidemount Diver Course Presentation I have uploaded the powerpoint presentation for my PADI Sidemount Diver and Tec Sidemount courses run in Subic Bay, Philippines. You can enjoy the presentation on the main website, here:   For more details on Sidemount Training in the Philippines, please check out: Sidemount Courses Overview PADI Sidemount Diver Course [...]

advanced-sidemount-wreck course subic bay philippines

Exclusive certification cards for Advanced Scuba Clinics and Workshops   I am pleased to announce that participants in all future Scuba Tech Philippines advanced skills clinics and workshops will have the option to receive exclusive certification cards to recognize the training they have undertaken.. Here is a selection of what training is on offer:   [...]

sidemount wreck diving subic bay philippines

Sidemount Wreck Workshop 5-11 January 2013 Overview: 3 Day Sidemount Familiarization plus 3 Day sidemount-specific wreck penetration orientation. The Sidemount Wreck workshop provides comprehensive familiarization in 2-cylinder sidemount diving configuration and techniques, followed by basic wreck penetration training. Sidemount topics: Equipment configuration and personalization, overhead environment considerations, gas management and planning, fundamental scuba skills development; [...]

evolution of sidemount diving subic bay

The Evolution of Sidemount Diving Continues. By Jeff Loflin For those of you who are unfamiliar with the sidemount gear configuration, it is simply moving your backmounted gas cylinders to the side of your body. The basic safety advantages of having your cylinders mounted on the side is that all of the gauges, hoses and leak points are always in the [...]