How to Choose Scuba Diving Accessories
From clips, lanyards and catch bags to gear markers and underwater slates, the accessories you choose can offer new possibilities to your diving trip. Certain accessories, such as regulator mouthpieces, valve o-rings and fin and mask straps, must be replaced regularly as you wear them out. Other accessories, such as writing slates and lightweight mesh catch bags, can provide years of continued use.
Jot Down Your Ideas Underwater
A diving slate provides a smooth surface for writing underwater and may attach to your wrist, weight belt or buoyancy compensator with a Velcro strap. Whether you're diving for pleasure, research or professional exploration, an underwater slate helps you organize your thoughts as they come to you. This simple and intriguing accessory is fun to use and should be a part of every diver's gear. For occasional use, choose a slate that fits in your exposure suit or BCD pocket.
Label Your Gear
When you dive on a team, your gear inevitably becomes mixed with other divers' gear. Label your equipment with a waterproof gear marker to prevent your labels from fading after repeated dives. Gear markers are specially made to write names, notes or reminders on scuba diving fabric and equipment so that your writing remains legible underwater or on land. A gear marker can last a few months to a year or more, depending on how often you use it. When labeling your equipment, consider whether to make labels easily visible or hidden when wearing your gear.
Bring Home Your Catch
A catch bag is made from material that creates very little drag underwater. Since it has a small surface area and is made of synthetic material, a catch bag dries quickly following a dive. The lightweight mesh allows wet clothes and towels to air-dry without causing mildew or odors, although you may want to wring out excess water before storing wet items in your catch bag. Attach the bag to your wrist by its lanyard and take it underwater to carry items you discover on the sea floor.
Replace Spare Parts
A worst-case scenario when you're on a dive is that you have to stay above water due to a worn-out valve o-ring or mask strap. Scuba diving accessories that must be replaced due to wear and tear include rubber straps, mouthpieces and gaskets. Add several of these spare parts to the inventory stored in your gear bag for any last-minute contingencies that may arise. Other tools on which divers frequently rely include scuba knives, cable ties and folding multi-tools, which resemble Swiss Army knives.
Secure Your Equipment
Scuba clips and lanyards attach to your wrist, exposure suit or BCD to ensure you don't become separated from your belongings. While these may be some of your smallest items, they are among the most important as they are designed to withstand corrosion and abuse. Brass or stainless steel clips include a quick-release lever that can easily be open and shut with one hand, making these accessories essential for underwater safety.