Mostly Everything

Really great customer service from Nautilus

Nearly a year ago I bought my first BCD, a humble Aquatec Atlas for PHP 10,000. It was highly recommended as a good entry level buoyancy control device and the reviews I read from the Internet were mostly positive save for some warning of the dump valves not being sown in sturdily. For ten grand, I got integrated weight pockets and a built in horn!

Sure enough, after more than 70 dives it gave way. After Pescador island, the horn got lost. After last month, the right shoulder valve ripped, which I only noticed after the dive.

I took it back to Carol in Nautilus along Pasay Road to be repaired. Last weekend, we did a weekend trip to finish Chie’s advanced course. I had planned on renting a spare BCD from Nautilus which Jan, my instructor had picked up. Lo and behold when he got to Eagle Point, he had with him a brand new BCD which wasn’t a rental — it was a full replacement!

This is the new model:

The Atlas Pro is more or less the same thing, but comes in a more attractive black and orange scheme. The integrated weight pockets are more sturdy as they use a combination of velcro and a locking mechanism.

Carol replaced my old BCD with the new 2010 model. She even fixed my horn! This is really great customer service coming from a dive shop and it’s something that makes a big difference for me as a consumer. I’d definitely recommend (well I always do) her shop to anyone who has started taking lessons and needs equipment.

They don’t screw around — it’s all about your life!

Mostly Everything

Show and Tell: My Diving Gear

A number of blog readers I meet in person have asked about my dive equipment. Here’s a quick rundown of my complete gear, acquired in the course of 14 months. Most of the critical gear was recommended by my instructor Jan Acosta, alongside my frequent “Sweet Divers” dive group. I left out the rash guards and swim trunks.

Click on for the full rundown.