Article by Peter Fear, The Scuba Doctor — November 2005
Melbourne, along with Sydney, offers ideal sites for Trimix diving. Melbourne has a multitude of wrecks to 80mts and wall dives exceeding 90mts. In Mount Gambier trimix is also being used in "The Shaft".
In Melbourne we have excellent trimix instructors including TDI, IANTD and BSAC. Courses can be arranged through us with any of these three agencies. Previously, if you completed a Trimix course, you most likely couldn't get a fill unless you had a friend or contact with a filling program, a fill whip, a compressor, helium and oxygen analyzers along with helium and oxygen storage cylinders at home. A very expensive exercise with monthly rental on cylinders, including high dollar rates for helium because most divers don't use enough to get the best retail rate.
The popularity of trimix diving is slowly increasing. However the amount of enquiries and interest The Scuba Doctor has been getting about technical diving indicates that many more divers would proceed to trimix if they could get cheaper, no hassle fills. The popularity of trimix diving is certainly on the rise.
At The Scuba Doctor we have designed and built our own modern mixed gas fill panel with the aim of providing trimix fills at an affordable rate for divers and to encourage those considering trimix to participate.
Previously, left over fills after a trimix dive are either topped up with air or dumped to atmosphere to make way for the next fill. Both these practices waste the expensive helium and oxygen used along with air to make up the trimix. This gas could not be topped up with helium or oxygen for your next trimix dive as all filling is by partial pressure blending, i.e. you can only fill to the pressure of the gas you have in the storage cylinders. This is generally not enough unless you have multiple cylinders. A very expensive exercise considering, monthly cylinder rental and the cost of helium and oxygen.
To overcome the expensive wastage of left over gas, The Scuba Doctor have purchased and installed a helium/oxygen booster pump. This allows us to analyze your remaining mix and along with the cylinder pressure calculate the pressure and amount of helium and oxygen required for your next trimix dive. This can then be added to your cylinders using the booster pump without wasting valuable gas.
The Scuba Doctor have available on our computer, the required mixing and top up programs. We also have a Helium analyzer and two Oxygen analyzers.
We are happy to do your Trimix fills for you, and help you to reduce the cost of Trimix diving. Along with our normal hours, we will also open by appointment after hours if required.
Trimix diving in Victoria has suddenly become much more affordable.