Vintage Scuba FAQ

Can you repair my double hose regulator and how much will it cost?

If your double hose regulator was manufactured by US Divers, Voit or LaSpirotechnique I can get your regulator back in top diving form.  Regulators manufactured by other companies I do not work on due to lack of available parts and or service information.
As to the cost please click on the link for more details.  Regulator repair service.  I will always give you a written quote before any work begins and I back all my work up with a 100% customer satisfaction guarantee.

How much is my double hose regulator worth?

I no longer give my opinion of regulator value. If you would like an in depth, detailed report on your regulator including my opinion of it’s value please E-mail me for prices and options.  If you are interested in selling your regulator please send pictures include the price you are asking for it.

Can I use a pressure gauge with a double hose regulator ?

  • A Banjo adapter attaches to your pressure gauge hose and fits between the regulator and the cylinder valve. This was used on double hose regulators since the 50’s with varying results. Your regulator will need to have enough clearance for the adapter to fit. If you are considering purchasing a regulator and want to use a banjo adapter you need to ask the seller if it has a long yoke on it. If in doubt you can send a picture of the regulator and I will do my best to determine it for you.
  • Some cylinder valves came equipped with a high pressure port on them that allowed you to attach or remove your pressure gauge. Dacor was the most popular but others were out there.
  • The Voit Trieste, Nemrod Snark and some La Spirotechnique Royal Mistral regulators have high pressure ports on them for attaching pressure gauges. Some were easy to use and others will require special adapters to work with current pressure gauges.
  • Phoenix first stages can be added to most 2 stage US Divers or Voit double hose regulator and will give you 3 high pressure ports and 3 low pressure ports for additional attachments.

Can I use a double hose regulator on cylinders 3000psi or higher?

  • The US Navy used double hose regulators with 3000 psi cylinders from day one.
  • Using regulators on high pressure cylinders MAY cause your high pressure seat to wear more quickly. (I have been using my current regulator for the past 5 years on 3000 and 3400 psi cylinders and have no abnormal wear on the seat. Your results may vary)
  • The Navy regulators had standard yokes on them while being used with 3000 psi cylinders.
  • Non balanced single and two stage regulators breathe a little harder when cylinder pressures are 2500 and above. 2250 to zero they smooth out and work of breathing is greatly reduced.
  • The most obvious failure point concerning the yoke/valve/pressure scenario is from the O-ring extruding and letting air escape.
  • Valves (or yoke adapter inserts) with the small diameter o-ring place less force on the yoke than valves with the larger O-rings so are preferred at higher pressures.

7. It is the individual divers choice as to what cylinder pressure they choose to use with their equipment.

What double hose regulator should I buy?

Before jumping off the deep end of Vintage Equipment Diving take some time to get to know all the options that are available to you. The majority of these regulators at least 35 years old. There are many out there but few that have parts and service available for them. Your best bet is to go with a double hose made by US Divers or Voit. Reason being is both companies produced massive quantities of regulators and both shared many of the same design features. Many were identical mechanically with only cosmetics separating the two companies. Currently there are reproduction parts available for almost all regulators in their product lines.  Below are a couple of safe bets for anyone and these are regulators that most every enthusiast has one or more of.

DA Aqua-Master. Unbalanced 2 stage regulator.  It was produced for 16 years and in large quantities. Parts and service are readily available and it is a very rugged and reliable regulator.  DA’s made after 67 have a long yoke and allows use of a banjo fitting with pressure gauge. All years have a hookah port that allows you to use a hose for your BC or attache a safe 2nd stage. With a 3 way fitting you can use all at once if you like. This regulator can also be adapted to use the Phoenix nozzle with no permanent modification.

Voit Navy is exactly the same regulator inside as the DA Aqua-Master and only the shiny bottom can and large Voit Navy label separate the two. The Navy was made in much lower numbers and is a favorite of the Voit collectors.

Royal Aqua-Master. Balanced 2 stage regulator. Internally the same as the DA Aqua-Master with a balanced 1st stage that provides more airflow and and easy breathing at any cylinder pressure. Parts and service are available for this model as well. This is a favorite of many double hose divers and was the Best Of The Best in the vintage era of regulators. This regulator can also be adapted to use the Phoenix nozzle with no permanent modification.

DW Mistral.  Often called the AK-47 of the double hose world by divers that use them. Single stage regulator with very few moving parts requiring very little service or maintenance. It will take a beating and still deliver air like the Mistral wind it was named for. After 67 Mistrals has long yokes for ease of use with a banjo fitting an pressure gauge. Since this is a single stage regulator and reduces high pressure air from the cylinder to ambient breathable air in one step there is no low pressure chamber  or port that allow attachment of hoses for BCD’s or 2nd stages.  Ease of maintenance and availability of parts are other desirable features of this line of regulators.  Due to it’s single stage design it breathes the best when used with cylinder pressure 2500 and lower.

There are many other regulators in the US Divers and Voit family that are still used by a great many divers.  Look around the site and the forum and you can read all about them.

Link to my Blog Post on What Regulator Should I Buy?

Regulators made by other manufactures are a shot it in the dark. Parts are few and far between if you need them. Proper service and repair information can scarce to non existent for many.

Can a BCD and Safe 2nd stage be used with a double hose regulator ?

Only if it has a low pressure port. The US Divers DA Aqua Master,Royal Aqua Master and the Voit Navy regulators have a port originally designed for hookah or surface supplies air that is suitable for this purpose but you need an adapter.  The Octopus adapter would be best to feed an air source which gives you BCD filling plus a octopus regulator in one. The Voit Trieste and the Sportsways regulators have the needed ports as well but are difficult regulators to find.

What Regulators had YELLOW HOSES

  • 1959 US Divers put yellow hoses, yellow mouthpieces and yellow Tinnerman clamps on the DA Aqua-Master and the DW Mistral.
  • 1960 changed to yellow hoses with black straight mouthpiece and black nylon hose clamps on both the DW Mistral and DA Aqua-Master.
  • 1961 Only the DW Mistral and the re-introduced DY Jet Air had yellow hoses, black straight mouthpiece and black nylon hose clamps.
  • 1962-1964 The DY Jet Air was the only regulator to retain the yellow hoses, black straight mouthpiece and black nylon hose clamps.

How can I dive without a BCD?

An essential ability of the vintage diver is to dive without a buoyancy compensation device. This is accomplished by weighting the diver properly, and diving the right tanks. Vintage tanks are primarily smaller volumes that their modern counterparts, usually 50 or 72 cubic feet. This means that the amount of “swing” exhibited by breathing in the contents of the cylinder are a lot less than on a modern high pressure 100 cubic foot cylinder. A steel low pressure 72 cubic foot tank, for example, swings about 4 pounds from full to empty. This means that the diver can simply weight himself for the buoyancy of his wet suit, and compensate for the 4 pound swing of gas with his lungs. Another technique is to “split the difference”. If the diver knows that a steel 72 is 4 pounds negative when full and basically neutral when empty, then he can count the tank as being 2 pounds negative (the split of the difference between full and empty). This means that if his wetsuit needs 5 pounds of lead to be neutral, then he wears 3 pounds and counts the tank’s median buoyancy as the other 2 pounds. The average human can easily manage 4 pounds of negative or positive buoyancy (the layman’s kind of buoyancy) by controlling their breathing. Simply put, vintage divers can hover, ascend, descend, and stop at will just like modern divers using a few techniques, a little math, and some common sense.

How Deep can I dive with a Double Hose Regulator?

  • As deep as you dive with any other open circuit scuba regulator on compressed air.
  • The Andrea Doria was 1st explored using double hose regulators w no pressure gauges or bc’s.
  • Your training, diving experience and experience with the equipment you are using should always be your guide when deciding safe diving depth limits.

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