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communication during record attempt

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New Member
Apr 5, 2002
During Tanya's last world record attempt in Turks and Caicos we tried using wireless communications for our safety team. Whilst it seemed to be a problem getting the correct equipment for the rebreather divers it actually worked out very well in the end. The surface could talk to the divers, all of them could hear and only a selected few could talk. Limited amount of equipment. We also used our traditional methods of bang sticks as well.

Any thoughts on using wireless comms.

As a commercial diver I have used the hard-wired OTS system a lot, and I did try on of the wireless recreational systems a few years back as a rec scuba diver. If OTS is making a wireless system, then it's probably decent stuff.
I do know that a lot of the problems caused at competitions in Canada were due to lack of ability to communicate with the judge and safety scuba guys at the bottom. Real time comms would have saved quite a few BO's from happening (tags and plates not being at the correct depths, etc).
Do you guys have a sponsored supplier for your comms? It might be a prudent move for a comm company to supply you with a few sets and an operator to work with.
Erik Y.
I've used some of the wireless VOX, voice activated, systems with mixed results.

You have to make some sort of a noise before you start to talk, like a "ggg" sound, otherwise the first part of your sentence gets cut off. It also didn't work very well for some women with higher pitched voices, they couldn't get the unit to turn on when they spoke!:head

The hardwire and push to talk systems seem to work out a bit better. They limit your mobility a little bit more because you either are attached to a wire, or you have to manually push the button to speak.

In a pinch I have also just put my regulator second stage right on my buddies head and yelled at them.;) This works out best if they have no hood on and it is actually quite effective in getting a message across. It's very important to make sure that your second stage is actually touching their skull to get the sound transmitted most clearly.

I would think that rebreathers would work quite well for talking to eachother underwater without any extra electronics on them at all. It wouldn't give you surface contact, but you could certainly talk to your buddy without much of a problem.


As far as i know wireless comunication is ok on shalow depths (you don't need hi-tech) but is far more dificult (and more expensive) if the depth is greater.

Personaly i think it is great to use wireless in the terms of safety.

We had comms on our deep divers as well although the static in the ear piece was a problem so they took the ear piece off the ear and on the side of there heads. I have to say that it was not the most complete system available but made communication with the safety divers SO much easier and thereby safer. They all had a pair of bang sticks as well (the old fashion way) for communication for Tanya and in the event of an emergency. I think this is definately the way forward in terms of safety for all divers concerned in record attempts.

I like the idea of using morse code. It is rapidly fading out in almost every other use and it would be great to keep it alive. The huge advantage of code, simplicity, might work out. I wonder how much power is needed for a 600 foot range?
Don't know if this is the right forum but if Paul is here it'll work. Reading the 'World Record Diary' from Turks & Caicos was fun. Wish I could have been a safety diver over there.
Not sure that Morse code would work or even needed. The signals need to be very simple. Tanya used to have certain divers tap 3 times as she passed them, different divers on the way down and up. When she left the surface the boat captain would speak into the mic and would tell all the divers that Tanya was on her way down and the various divers that could talk would just say "passing Mike" as she went down and the same on the way up. If there was, and we did not have it, a problem then the first thing is continuous tapping on the sticks, and all can hear them very clearly even from 525 feet to the surface and some minimal communication to tell all what is happening. No random talking, very disciplined and regimented. Then when Tanya got back to the surface the Captain told all the divers she was back and OK. That is all part of the training, its not only for Tanya but for the safety team as well so they know what is likely to happen and can react to it in avery professional manner.

Thanks for reading Tanya's diary.
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