Which Scuba Diving Gears to get first for Beginners!
Written by Kurama,25 March 2023.
Are you a newly certified diver or have you been diving with rental equipment and want to get your own gears but have no idea where to start? Well, you’re at the right place! In the age of Covid-19 where there may be potential risk of viral transmission through sharing gears, do you even need a better excuse to finally get your own gears? On top of that, using gears that fits perfectly elevates your scuba diving experience to a whole new level! If you are worried that it “might” be taxing on the wallet, here are some suggestions on which gears you should be getting first.
Yeah, you read that right, SCUBA DIVING mask, not just any snorkel mask. Even though they might look the same and you might think “why not just buy the cheaper one?”, the quality of the mask differs by quite a bit. Scuba Diving masks are designed to withstand the pressure in deeper waters, from the material of the glass to the silicone skirtings, it gives you the ability to dive underwater without feeling the pressure on your face.
By owning your own mask that sits perfectly on your face, prevents water from leaking into your mask while diving and you don’t have to be clearing your mask underwater as often as you might have experienced with rental mask and the right mask can fix the issue of your mask fogging up. To find out more about how to choose the right mask, check out “Beginner’s Guide to Choosing the Right Dive Mask”. You can pop by to our dive center and our friendly team would gladly walk you through how to pick your own mask too!
Maybe you’ll find it weird that a mouthpiece is listed as one of the first few items to get but trust me it is one of the most essential diving gears to maximize your comfort in diving. I believe the hygiene benefits of owning your own mouthpiece doesn’t require any elaboration unless you have some secret kinks. Apart from that, getting the right mouthpiece can help avoid jaw fatigue from having to bite down too hard and you might have come across mouthpiece that has been chewed through on rental gears, which is like a big “eww”.
Rash guard or wetsuit serves as a protection layer on many layers (pun not intended), from providing protection against corals, poisonous marine life etc. to protecting your skin from UV rays and the water from robbing your body heat. A wetsuit definitely gives you more protection compared to a rash guard as the material used is thicker and specifically designed to keep you “waterproof” and insulate your body heat, so depending on the water temperature where you usually dive in and your tolerance to cold, you could get either.
The next gear that will allow you to maximize comfort and efficiency are fins. Yeah, rental fins might do the trick but if you’ve ever end up with blisters covering your feet or struggled to swim against current, or in a worse scenario whereby the dive center ran out of fins for your size (yes it happens), you would’ve definitely wanted to have your own fins. The two main differentiator of fins for scuba diving would be full foot fins, which are more often used in warmer waters, and open heel fins, where booties are required. Along with the many different designs that come with it such as turtle fins or split fins, you should choose the ones that suit your finning style and suit the conditions that you’ll be mostly diving in.
Getting a dive computer would be on the top of my list and the reason is simple, it provides you the comfort of knowing your own safety. There might be instances where you went too deep or were ascending too fast unknowingly, having a dive com can adjust your safety stop according to your dive profile. Unless you have the RDP table scorched into your brain, there’s no way of knowing whether you’ve hit your decompression limit without a dive com, which is the main factor that might compromise your safety in recreational diving.
This key equipment is the one that allows you to breathe underwater. Frankly speaking, there are no bad quality regulator in the market. The key to getting the best regulator is dependent on your budget, no jokes here. You would want to get a regulator that is able to deliver high volume of air in deeper and maybe even colder waters, basically one that requires less effort to breathe underwater. The main difference in regulators would be the two different connection types, DIN and Yoke, but an adapter can be bought if needed. Some regulators even come with knobs and other features so make sure to do your homework beforehand.
The last but definitely not least, the BCD (Buoyancy Control Device). As its name suggests allows you to control your buoyancy by inflating or deflating it depending on the depth, you’re at. The three main types of BCD are jacket style, backplate and wing, and back-inflate BCD, while it serves the same purpose, they have slightly different features and provide different type of comfort. Depending on the type of diving you’re going into, you would want to try out all the different types of BCD before investing in one.
The first four gears listed above are generally what most divers would get when they start to get into diving, but if hygiene, safety and comfort isn’t appealing enough for you to want to spend the money to get your own gears, what if it actually saves you money as well?
Here’s a general breakdown of how much each item costs.
*Prices listed are for the basic tier for each gear.
On average equipment rental cost RM100-150 per day and a dive trip is usually 3-5 days, so that’ll add up to a minimum of RM300-750 per trip just for equipment rental and if you do just 2 trips in a year, you would be getting our ROI in 3 years! So, owning your own gears is actually cheaper (definitely safer & cleaner) in the long run!
The diving gears listed above are the essentials that you will use in every dive and speaking from personal experience, I regret not investing in my gears in the earlier days as the prices just keeps inflating so hurry up and get it now!
There are plenty of other gears and accessories that you may be interested in getting to up your diving game, so come to our dive center to check out all the variety of gears and accessories that we offer! Also, check out our crazy promo this April ! Don’t miss out on the amazing deals we have!