Why combine Sidemount with Nitrox?

Nitrox giant stride sidemount diving thailandFor a regular diver making an average dive on a single (12 litre) cylinder will usually be able to make an hour time underwater. This will decrease substantially when diving deeper or in a current, where you quickly will become restricted by your gas supply.

A way to accommodate for this build-up of air consumption is to increase your cylinder size. This by using a 15 litre cylinder or choosing to dive with doubles. However, finding this option on your dive travel or holiday is not always easy.

When we dive with sidemount configuration we usually dive with two cylinders. Not only will this double up your gas supply, but “normal” size cylinders are used everywhere, making it great way to make longer dives on your holiday.

However, diving longer and deeper dives on air is not always a healthy option. If you are making several dives during the day or spend great time at depth on a wreck dive, your nitrogen load might become an issue.

By switching gas in your cylinders to Nitrox or Enriched air we can almost double up the bottom time, due to the lesser nitrogen. Combine this with two cylinder sidemount, you have the perfect recipe for longer, deeper dives on your favourite spot.Nitrox surface sidemount diving thailand

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Sidemount diving – why fix it, if it ain’t broken?

Sidemount diving thailand ao nang krabi koh lantaThe diving community is growing and getting older and we divers are finding new ways to keep inspired. One of the latest trends is to strap two cylinders on the side, reconfigure regulators & hoses and put a small bladder on the back, all put together with black rubber bands. I’m talking about Sidemount diving, an old cave diving method now adapted to be a recreational open water option.

Was there a problem having a cylinder on the back, why this change? Is it a cry out for attention, a way to gather likes on social media, or is it to show off new shiny gear? Probably all three, as divers are very much human too.

Well, new gear, new methods and new skills, keep divers diving. So this means that the biggest reason divers change something that works already, is the challenge to develop and perfect.

The reality is, after a while, most divers will find a sense of boredom after visiting the same dive sites and seeing the same marine life over and over again. This is not likely to change, so let’s change the way of diving and we will keep on submerging ourselves as soon as there is chance to.

So, even as parrotfish and sea anemones are beautiful to look at, a lot of divers find more stimulation in perfecting technique and equipment configuration. Yes, this seems very nerdy, but think about it. When you reach perfect balance, streamlining, buoyancy and trim, you can´t help feeling a sense of achievement.

So, are you a diver that is up for a rewarding challenge?

20 days left…

Kon-Tiki Krabi receives TecRec Centre Rating

PADI Technical Diving Center Krabi Thailand Kon-TikiWe are proud to announce that our dive center in Krabi has received the prestigious PADI TecRec Centre authorization. This season the Ao Nang destination will add to our range of technical diving courses. If you are ready for a new challenge on your holiday and traveling to Koh Lanta or Krabi this season, tec diving might just be your new found activity.

Keep an eye out for our new Cavern, Sidemount, Self-Reliant and Tec courses that will be announced soon!

 

 

Kon-Tiki launches PADI Sidemount Diver Course

Learn a new and different way to dive with the PADI Sidemount Diver course!PADI Sidemount diver specialty course thailand

Sidemount is an equipment configuration which has diving cylinders mounted alongside the diver, below the shoulders and along the hips, instead of on the back of the diver. It began as a configuration popular with advanced cave divers, as smaller sections of cave can be penetrated and tanks can be changed with greater ease. The same benefits for operating in confined spaces were also recognized by divers who conducted technical wreck diving penetrations.

Sidemount is now growing in popularity within the technical diving community for general decompression diving and is becoming an increasingly popular specialty training for recreational diving.

PADI Sidemount diving training with proper Side Mount Configuration offers:

  • an alternative way to streamline yourself and the equipment in the water
  • easier cylinder logistics on the surface
  • reduced lower back strain
  • provides redundant gas supply
  • ability to monitor all regulators, valves and gauges because they are in front
  • increased gas supply for longer dives

During the course you will learn:

  • Equipment configuration and preparation
  •  Body posture and trim
  • Propulsion techniques
  • Gas management
  • Proper Sidemount diver procedures and emergencies

Take a new, fun and challenging course on your next holiday to Thailand!

Kon-Tiki Thailand and PADI at the Similan Islands

diving thailand management team technical diving

Kon-Tiki Thailand’s Management team caught a chance for follow up on a PADI Business seminar right at the start off the high season. Members of the Krabi, Koh Lanta & Phuket Branch joined forces to meet with the rest of Thailand’s elite to share business ideas and experiences.

The journey started in different parts of Thailand on Friday afternoon, so when the last email was send, a taxi ride to Khao Lak and we could finally meet up with our other friends from PADI. There was a great turn up from both east and west coast, so soon after greeting everyone, the volume of talking reached 100%.

After a short transfer to Khao Lak Scuba Adventures very own liveaboard Manta Queen we enjoyed a delicious dinner and got our program presented with all the members ready to learn even more.

In the night the boat started its long journey to the Similans and it was announced that we would not only be diving at the Similans, but actually going all the way to Richelieu Rock, which made the whole group extremely happy – Yeah Scuba diving at Richelieu Rock!!!! Thank you Stefan and Mr. Oh for being so generous.

Onboard there was opportunity to try twin set diving, side mount diving and Poseidon’s new Rebreather and with a lot of PADI Diving Instructors onboard wanting to try all the new toys, it is just to get in the line.

Next morning we woke up to clear blue skies and an absolutely calm Andaman Sea, what more can one ask for?! With a couple of twin tanks on our backs we started our descent into the blue blue water with excitement to what this dive would bring. All teams made their way around the site several times shooting away with go pro, video and digital cameras. This dive site is literally covered in beautiful soft corals in all the rainbows colors. You will find groups of fusiliers all over the place and many different species of parrotfish, triggerfish and clownfish hiding. With two dives at Richelieu Rock and the boat just parked above us, made it a perfect day. We finished early afternoon, having time to work on the tan between the dives and fill our stomach with the great food served onboard by the helpful Thai crew. Last dive was a Koh Tachai Pinnacle and we made it back for another snack and a sunset presentation from our favorite PADI Regional Managers Mr. Tony Andrews and Tim Hunt.

diving thailand green turtle similan islands

Next morning at Hin Leuang, right by Koh Bon it was back in the water again and all the divers were waiting with excitement to see the Manta Rays, which this dive site is so famous for. It is quite a deep site and covered in yellow tube corals. We could see as far deep down to the bottom and just saw a leopard shark disappearing even deeper. During the dive a couple of curious green turtles passed us closely, so we could get our cover photo.

diving thailand rebreather similan islands

Next dive was to try out the Poseidon Rebreather. After a presentation, which PADI instructor Kevin Black from Kiwi Divers in Phuket gave, we were ready to get under water and try out the new toys! What a feeling! In the beginning there was a strange approach to the buoyancy, but after a few minutes we got the hang of it. The fish came a lot closer and just dancing in front of our cameras. After a half an hour try out, we had to let others give it a go, but definitely something worth doing again. Curious after what else was to find at this dive site, we strapped on the twins again and made our way down to the mooring line to check it out. Furthermore we got to investigate the dive sites of the north Similan Island and night diving in Donald Duck Bay.

diving thailand padi sidemount similan islands

We also got a chance to try sidemount diving. This way of configuring your cylinders keeping them on your side, gives a whole new experience of freedom. Even as this has been a standard for some cave divers for long, it has a lot of benefits for us recreational divers as well, like passing through small swim throughs!

As diving is the best part of Similans, let us not forget the powder-white beaches and the amazing boulders, which they are famous for. As the 3rd evening approached we got the experience one amazing sunset, where the skies were in all different nuances of pink!!!

With 9 dives in the log book, this concluded the PADI Business Seminar follow up 2012 for Kon-Tiki Thailand’s Management team. We would like thank PADI Asia Pacific Tony Andrews and Tim Hunt for arranging the great event, Khao Lak Scuba Adventure for making it happen, Coral Grand, Sairee Cottage, Buddha View, Bans Diving Resort, Planet Scuba, Sail Rock Divers, Sunrise Divers, Triton, Ocean Geo, Kiwi Divers and all others for making it such a successful weekend.

diving thailand sunset similan islands

Malene Jensen

General Manager, Kon-Tiki Krabi