It looks like I have found all the people that over-bid me on e-bay for the vintage regulators I have been trying to buy.
Anyhow, I am a member of the Sea Lancers Diving Club out of Hickam AFB on the lovely island of Oahu, and we are celebrating our 50th anniversary this year. That makes us the oldest military dive club and the second oldest in existence.
I understand that in the earlier issues of SKINDIVER, there were club articles and announcements. I was wondering if someone could dust off a couple of issues and scan in the articles and covers.
We have found 4 or 5 of the founding members and I am working on a power point presentation to run during the banquet in September.
There are two members of this board that live in Oahu. Turtleguy9 & justleesa are both Vintage Equipment divers and have their own Dive business in Waikiki called Oahu Scuba Divers. Check it out at the following link: www.oahuscubadivers.com/index2.htm
Post by Glenn "Whitebear" Kennedy on Sept 22, 2006 10:13:15 GMT -8
I'm kinda late in this thread, but congrats to the Sea Lancers on the 50th anniversary, from an oldie moldie that learned to scuba dive courtesy of that great club. Dad was stationed at Hickam in 1964/5 and the the Club operated under the Hickam Central Base Fund(CBF) as a recreation activity for the active duty troops. They allowed dependents on a space available basis, and I was lucky enough to take my NAUI Basic Scuba class from the club. Leon Albritton was our instructor, and it was a great class and way ahead of its time as a club. Lots of swimming, lots of ditch-and-don practice, lots of buddy-breathy, and lots of harassment drills back in that era ... but the end result is you were confident in the water.
One of the cool things I'm remembering as I have this nostalgia attack ... all of the tank harnesses were just that - harnesses. So there was this elaborate ritual for students learning how to make the "quick-release" buckle/strap work ... out and back through the buckle, then the free end back through the buckle so you could pull it free ... then we stepped it up a notch and figured out you could put an after-the-fact twist in the loop to keep it from accidentally quick-releasing .... this sounds way more complicated than it was ... but we checked each other for quick releases as seriously as jumpers check chute harnesses.
Standard issue was USD two hose regulators and twin 72s once you were certified and out of class. The club had a great compressor/air bank system and operated out of an old, but nice quonset hut on the base. A lot of the diving was on the North Shore ... I know everyone thinks of huge surf but thats usually winter. In the summertime you can get flat calm days where you literally step off the lava ledge into crystal clear water (hopefully it still is).
The early techno claim to fame was the required use of emergency flotation. Someone (probably the Personal Equip/Parachute people) got a hold of a bunch of Mae West vests when the AF switched to the underarm units. The MW were actually two complete bladders and CO2 assys covered in light canvas-type material and stitched together. The club rec activity was to use a seam ripper and carefully take them apart and then somehow (?) they mysteriously got that stitch redone on an industrial machine (of course it wouldn't have been done on AF equipment Then they were handed out free to club members, after you demonstrated the ability to wash, disassemble, silicone and reassemble the CO2 assy after every dive. Obviously they were for emergency swim-back after a weight belt/tank ditching, and this was way before the days of using them as buoyancy compensator's ... they would have sucked for that with the little inflators, plus riding up around your neck. But it was early in diving, we weren't in wet suits and the club rightfully thought it was pretty hot technology
I'll peek in by "scrap" boxes, 'cause I think I still have my original cert card, and I may have a Sea Lancers patch from back then.
Again, Congrats and keep up the good work.
Glenn "WhiteBear" Kennedy Born in Alaska Raised as an Air Force Brat
Thanks for your post. If you have no objections, I would like to put it in the next Sea Lancers' newsletter.
We had our 50th Anniversary Banquet last Saturday. Myself and a couple of other members had taken an old tank, cleaned and painted it up with our logo for one of our members who was a member for around 47 years. I asked him if he could bring in one of his old regs, and to my surprise he brought in a non-magnetic DAAM.... granted it had seen some better days, but it was awesome to see the old reg and hear it's history from the original owner.