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Regulators. Objectives. Describe the regulator most commonly used for recreational scuba. Compare a single hose regulator to a double hose regulator. Compare an open circuit system to a closed or Semi-Closed system. Contrast upstream valves with downstream valves.

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Objectives
Objectives

  • Describe the regulator most commonly used for recreational scuba.

  • Compare a single hose regulator to a double hose regulator.

  • Compare an open circuit system to a closed or Semi-Closed system.

  • Contrast upstream valves with downstream valves.

  • Describe the operation of a pilot valve regulator.

  • Identify and describe the function of the:

    • First Stage

    • Primary Second Stage

    • Octopus/Extra Second Stage (ESS)

    • LPI hose

    • Console

  • Explain why it might seem harder to breath while laying on your back.

  • Give 4 reasons why the regulator might breathe “wet”.

  • Explain why a regulator might free flow.

  • List considerations for a pre-dive check of your regulator including the significance of a discolored 1st stage filter.

  • Describe proper care and maintenance of your regulator.


Most common regulator
Most Common Regulator

  • Single Hose

  • Open Circuit

  • Demand


Single hose
Single Hose

  • First Stage mounts on the cylinder valve

  • Second connected by a single hose

  • Air exhausts from the second stage


Double hose
Double Hose

  • Both stages in a single housing mounted on the cylinder valve

  • Mouthpiece is just a mouthpiece

  • Air exhausts from the housing behind the diver


Open vs closed circuit
Open vs. closed Circuit

  • Open circuit

    • Gas exhausts into the water

  • Rebreathers

    • Semi closed Circuit

      • Small volume of gas periodically escapes

    • Closed Circuit

      • No gas escapes

    • Typically used by technical divers

      • Require more

        • Training

        • Equipment

        • Preparation


Valve design
Valve Design

  • Upstream valve

    • Forced closed by air pressure

    • Failure can shut off the flow of air.

  • Downstream valve

    • Air pressure acts to open the valve

    • Failure typically results in free flow

  • Pilot valve

    • Uses air pressure to both open and close the valve.


First stage
First Stage

  • Reduces Cylinder Pressure to a working pressure of approximately 125-140 psi.


Piston first stage
Piston First Stage

  • Simple design

  • Few moving parts

  • Piston is exposed to the environment

    • Sealing kits are available


Diaphragm first stage
Diaphragm First Stage

  • More complicated design

  • More moving parts

  • Critical components are sealed from the environment.


Balanced vs unbalanced
Balanced vs. Unbalanced

  • Unbalanced First stage

    • Intermediate pressure will drop with cylinder pressure

    • Breathing resistance increases

  • Balanced First stage

    • Intermediate Pressure remains stable throughout change in cylinder pressure

    • Breathing resistance remains the same

  • Can be either Piston or Diaphragm



  • Yoke System

    • Typically used for lower pressure systems

    • May be easier to use

    • More common in USA

  • DIN System

    • Typically used in High pressure systems

    • O ring is contained/more secure

    • May not be as convenient in the USA


Second stage
Second Stage

  • The second stage delivers air at ambient pressure and volume.

    • Primary second stage

      • Used by the diver during the dive

      • Custom Mouthpieces


2 nd stage features
2nd Stage Features

  • Balanced vs. Unbalanced

    • Balanced allows use of a lighter spring

    • Easier breathing resistance

  • Adjustable

    • Adjust breathing resistance

  • Air flow/Volume

    • Adjust air flow/volume based on need


Trouble shooting
Trouble Shooting

  • Regulator breathes hard when supine

    • Pressure difference between 1st and 2nd stage

  • Regulator Leaks water

    • Torn mouthpiece

    • Torn Diaphragm

    • Inverted position

    • Exhaust valve problem


Trouble shooting cont
Trouble Shooting cont.

  • Regulator Freeflows

    • Second stage lowered purge down

    • Sand in purge

    • Sand behind lever “ears”

    • Low pressure seat problem

      • Immediate

    • Intermediate Pressure problem

      • Intermittent


Octopus extra second stage
Octopus/Extra Second Stage

  • Octopus/Extra Second Stage

    • Used in the event another diver runs out of air

    • offers slightly more breathing resistance than the primary.

      • reduces the likelihood of a free flow while diving.


  • LPI Hose

    • Used to add air directly from the cylinder to the BC


  • HP Console

    • Typically contains

      • SPG

      • Compass

      • Depth Gauge

    • May be an SPG only


Care and maintenance
Care and Maintenance

  • Keep the interior of the first stage dry

    • Have the dust cap in place when the regulator is off the cylinder valve

  • Fresh water rinse after diving

    • Ideally rinse with flowing water while on the cylinder

    • Soak with the dust cap in place.

    • Make sure to rinse the quick release mechanism on the LPI

  • Annual service


Purchase performance considerations
Purchase/Performance Considerations

  • Can the regulator meet demand at depth or high levels of exertion?

  • Can the regulator deliver high flow rates at low cylinder pressure?

  • Breathing adjustment

  • Flow/volume control

  • Exhaust resistance

  • Budget

  • Durability


Pre dive check
Pre Dive check

  • Mouthpiece

    • Check for tears or holes

  • Hoses

    • Check for cracks, holes, soft spots, bubbles

    • Slide the stress relievers away from the 1st stage

  • Filter

    • Check for discoloration

      • Green = salt water in regulator

      • Rust = rust in tank

      • Oil = oil from the compressor

      • Black dust = carbon from the compressor filter

  • Inhalation check

    • Should not be able to inhale easily with your thumb over the filter opening in the 1st stage.


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