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Old 02-22-2013, 01:07 AM   #1
bconge
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Beginner - Saying hello/looking for advice

What's up everyone. I am just starting out and thought I would introduce myself and see what advice I could get to improve and gather more gear. I live in Ventura County and I usually head out anywhere around Malibu. Right now I am just working with my 4-3 surfing wetsuit, bodyboard fins, and a polespear or hawaiian sling if I can get it working. I've also got a knife and weights. I've been going out around County Line/Leo Carrillo lately to see what I can see and I am loving it. Any recommendations on places to go? Any advice for a noob? Or, any advice on what my next investment for gear should be--hoping to put my tax return to good use. Thanks in advance!
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Old 02-22-2013, 02:38 AM   #2
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Re: Beginner - Saying hello/looking for advice

I don't know about places to go since I'm not from the area, but I was in your situation at one point and I'd say the biggest improvement for you would be getting new fins. Doesn't even necessarily need to be nice freediving fins, but anything longer than body boarding fins will be a huge improvement.
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Old 02-22-2013, 10:29 AM   #3
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Re: Beginner - Saying hello/looking for advice

^x2.. I used to wear my vipers and the bouyancy worked so much against me. Take a look at omer stingrays. I love them and very comfortable. How long can you stay in the water before you get too cold? My buddy wears a 4.3 surf suit and is perfectly fine with it. Lastly what's wrong with your pole spear? I'm not a pro by any means, but I have recently upgraded from a 3.2 suit, viper bodyboard fins. And it's night and day.
Also welcome to the board! Have respect for the seasoned spearos and avoid drama as much as possible.
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Old 02-22-2013, 10:48 AM   #4
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Re: Beginner - Saying hello/looking for advice

Buy the cressi gara 2000 and get used to your surroundings. Try to find another diver in the area in order to not be diving alone.
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Old 02-22-2013, 12:07 PM   #5
bconge
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Re: Beginner - Saying hello/looking for advice

Thanks for the replies so far and for the advice. It is all very much appreciated! Actually after going out this last time I was more convinced that I need to do something about my fin situation so I will definitely look into that. Also, as far as warmth in my suit I haven't been too cold at all. I have booties and a hood for winter surfing that seem to do me fine for now. Thanks again for the help!
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Old 02-22-2013, 12:18 PM   #6
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Re: Beginner - Saying hello/looking for advice

How old are you?

I was using some bodyglove (i think) snorkeling fins for a year before i bought freediving fins, if your budget is ok go ahead and buy FD fins, otherwise you can get away with better than what you have now but without spending $100 in fins.

I paid $15 ay play it again sports...you can also look for used FD fins if you want to save some money.
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Old 02-22-2013, 09:03 PM   #7
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Re: Beginner - Saying hello/looking for advice

No one seems to be emphasizing the DIVE BUDDY part! Its no use upgrading if you drown the first time out with it, but if you have a buddy i suggest getting a pair of long blades asap. The difference is huge, you put little to no effort in kicking around with them. So go to a local freedive shop and buy the most reasonably priced one that fits you the best.
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Old 02-22-2013, 10:38 PM   #8
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Re: Beginner - Saying hello/looking for advice

x2 on the best fitting. If the hurt your it will be difficult to fully enjoy the expirence.
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Old 02-22-2013, 11:08 PM   #9
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Re: Beginner - Saying hello/looking for advice

Please read up on shallow water black out and Y it happens and how to prevent it from happening to you. I wish some one had told me sooner.
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Old 02-22-2013, 11:42 PM   #10
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Re: Beginner - Saying hello/looking for advice

Take an FII class, level 1, or an equivalent. It just might extend your life expectancy. Everything else will fall in to place. The longer you will dive the better you will be able to pick the gear that works best for you. However, a good freediving suit and the correct amount of lead = proper buoyancy for the depth you are diving; this will greatly improve your safety and diving experience.
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Old 02-23-2013, 01:41 AM   #11
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Re: Beginner - Saying hello/looking for advice

1) Make sure you have a good mask. Fits properly, framed, 1 piece lense is the preferably set up for spearfishing.
2) Free diving fins. I like the mako competetion because they are cheap. Omer stingray and cressi gara's are good also.
3) Free dive wetsuit. I have a mako for the above reason.
4) I dont know if you dive with gloves, but it makes a big difference.
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Old 02-23-2013, 05:35 AM   #12
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Re: Beginner - Saying hello/looking for advice

Quote:
Originally Posted by Land&SeaKahuna View Post
No one seems to be emphasizing the DIVE BUDDY part! Its no use upgrading if you drown the first time out with it, but if you have a buddy i suggest getting a pair of long blades asap. The difference is huge, you put little to no effort in kicking around with them. So go to a local freedive shop and buy the most reasonably priced one that fits you the best.

How old are you is the best question. If you drive and can get down to the Los Alamitos/Seal Beach area, I wouldn't mind taking a day to show you the basics while diving off my boat. I also have alot of loaner dive fins, snorkle and masks sets that you can try before making a choice. I would advise that you try differnt gear and buy exactly what you like, you can always shop for price later. I am available Fridays- lemme know.

How's this for addressing the "Dive Buddy Part?"
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Old 02-23-2013, 11:57 AM   #13
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Re: Beginner - Saying hello/looking for advice

Quote:
Originally Posted by carrasco View Post
How old are you is the best question. If you drive and can get down to the Los Alamitos/Seal Beach area, I wouldn't mind taking a day to show you the basics while diving off my boat. I also have alot of loaner dive fins, snorkle and masks sets that you can try before making a choice. I would advise that you try differnt gear and buy exactly what you like, you can always shop for price later. I am available Fridays- lemme know.

How's this for addressing the "Dive Buddy Part?"
I'm 16 and thanks man thats a real generous offer, as of now i am studying for my drivers exam. Theres actually a guy in my neighborhood who dives and the few and only times I've been out it has been with him watching my back. I'll have to take you up on your offer one of these days.

It was perfect!

See and sometimes there are guys like carrasco who rather take a new guy on his boat than see him in the obituaries.
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Old 02-23-2013, 03:00 PM   #14
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Re: Beginner - Saying hello/looking for advice

I am 30. So driving to places isn't a problem.

Carrasco- thanks for the generous offer! I am currently finishing a graduate degree out of state but am down here quite a bit until I move back permanently in September. Next time I am down here and am able to make it down your way I will let you know.

Again, everyone thanks for all the tips. Exactly what i was hoping for. I was out today with family at Leo Carrillo and it was beautiful. I saw a lot of fish...sadly I'm still working out which ones I saw... Fail. Took some shots with the pole spear but to no avail. Also saw some lobster but they too were too tricky for my inexperienced hands. Big fail. Vis was about 15 ft at some spots maybe a little more. I had a blast though.

I am definitely thinking I need some fins and a warmer suit. Had my eye on some Omer stingrays...we will see though.
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Old 02-24-2013, 12:49 AM   #15
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Re: Beginner - Saying hello/looking for advice

Quote:
Originally Posted by bconge View Post
I am 30. So driving to places isn't a problem.

Carrasco- thanks for the generous offer! I am currently finishing a graduate degree out of state but am down here quite a bit until I move back permanently in September. Next time I am down here and am able to make it down your way I will let you know.

Again, everyone thanks for all the tips. Exactly what i was hoping for. I was out today with family at Leo Carrillo and it was beautiful. I saw a lot of fish...sadly I'm still working out which ones I saw... Fail. Took some shots with the pole spear but to no avail. Also saw some lobster but they too were too tricky for my inexperienced hands. Big fail. Vis was about 15 ft at some spots maybe a little more. I had a blast though.

I am definitely thinking I need some fins and a warmer suit. Had my eye on some Omer stingrays...we will see though.

Oh and something to keep in mind when selecting a pair of fins, if your a bigger guy (im 200# 5'11'') go with a stiffer fin. I havent used many finns but my Omer Milleniums work really nice compared to cressi 2000.
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