The divers working to the marinas cleaning boat bottoms and other tasks all use hookahs instead of tanks to get air while working underwater.  Since we were going to possibly be out and away from dive services, it made sense to get a small hookah on the boat in case a dive was necessary.

A hookah will be very handy if we have a problem underwater that requires a longer dive than you can do by holding your breath.  In San Francisco we wrapped a dock line around a prop.  It took about 20 dives holding breath to get the rope unwound.  Very tiring in very cold water. With a hookah the task could have been completed in a lot fewer dive cycles.

This hookah setup is smaller and lighter than a regular dive tank, and unlike a tank it does not have to be refilled by a dive shop when exhausted.  The air is supplied by a very small one-gallon air compressor.  The air compressor runs on the same batteries that we use for all of our other Ryobi tools.  The compressor feeds a dive-quality air hose and a standard dive regulator.

Hookah compressor, air filter, dive hose and ‘second-stage’ dive regulator.  Just add diver and cleaning tools!

We are not planning to use the hookah for anything but working below the boat.  It could probably be used at deeper depths than the roughly six foot depth of the boat. But diving deeper has additional considerations that we don’t want to deal with initially.  We both have PADI certs.

Well be testing in a pool or somewhere safe before putting this to work for real.


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