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Old 06-24-2022, 10:59 PM   #53
popgun pete
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Re: Full face snorkels

Diving pioneer Commandant Yves Le Prieur patented a full face mask for snorkelling at the surface and shooting fish below with his rollerspear. Le Prieur was also involved with air supplied deep diving using commercial equipment of his devising, but this mask is not designed for submerging and the multiple snorkels have no water shut-off valves, although there are flow directing valves inside the mask. So even back then attention was paid to having large snorkel bores, something that modern designers seem to have forgotten. Few would want to dive with this monster on your head, but one has to remember when this was designed there was nothing else except modified firefighters' anti-smoke goggles and Alexandre Kramarenko’s patented mono-goggle.

Le Prieur designed this mask as a form of underwater observation chamber for swimmers, in fact he made the comment that the air capacity of the mask could support the head of the swimmer in the manner of a salvage buoy (!), so the mask was not for diving down. It is a variation on the ideas for his free flow air scuba or "scaphandre" mask. The snorkels have one way valves where they enter the mask (clapets 11) which only allow air in, not out. Exhaust air was via the lift off of the flexible side flanges of the mask skirt, a method borrowed from his air cylinder suppied scuba mask, or via a separate valve 16 in the side of the mask. Any water that seeped into the mask was pumped out via a small bulb operated hand pump 13 that would be at the low point of a mask looking downwards.

At the time of his invention in 1938 there were only underwater goggles and Kramarenko's monogoggle which was designed to make use of his 1937 spring gun.

Last edited by popgun pete; 06-26-2022 at 11:07 PM. Reason: more info, numbers refer to items on the patent diagram
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