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Old 15-10-2020, 08:34   #1
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Thoughts on buying used SCUBA gear

I am brand new to SCUBA diving, I am taking lessons right now. I purchased a mask, snorkel, and fins from my local dive shop where I am taking classes. I am borrowing the rest for the moment from the dive shop.


Is there any reason why I shouldn't buy the BCD, dive computer, and regulator used? Are there certain pieces one would buy used and others one would never buy used?



It looks like the savings is significant. The dive shop is says there is still $2500 worth of equipment to buy. I have seen complete sets on FB Marketplace for $1000 or less.



My hang up on the new investment is I don't think I will be using the equipment very often for the next few years.
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Old 15-10-2020, 08:45   #2
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Re: Thoughts on buying used SCUBA gear

I used my last set of gear for 12 years and only replaced because parts were hard to get. I replaced with second hand gear and have used that for 5 years. Only buy good quality and popular brands for ease of service.

However, have it serviced by a registered dealer before using.
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Old 15-10-2020, 09:12   #3
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Re: Thoughts on buying used SCUBA gear

For recreational diving, and if you only plan to dive sporadically, I would recommend renting the gear for each trip to start off.

Other than a mask, definitely buy your own.

Concerning buying used gear, you should have the buyer agree to have it inspected by your competent dive shop prior to purchase. Poorly maintained gear can be a problem you don't want to buy into.
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Old 15-10-2020, 09:32   #4
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Re: Thoughts on buying used SCUBA gear

2X the above advice. Never dive along, so if something DOES go wrong your 'Buddy" is there to help ! My 02.
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Old 15-10-2020, 09:51   #5
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Re: Thoughts on buying used SCUBA gear

I bought all used equipment and had no problems.
I would advise to have them serviced to be sure nothing has dry rotted or anything.
Many shops sell used serviced equipment.
I have had old hoses blow out....back ups and buddies are very important!
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Old 15-10-2020, 10:40   #6
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Re: Thoughts on buying used SCUBA gear

I've bought second hand as new. My 2c, get new bcd and mask, the rest can be second hand stuff. What comes to bcd consider backplate as it can be upgraded with reasonable price to different configurations if (when) you progress and need to, and if one part fails (the bladder/vent) you need to replace only that..
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Old 15-10-2020, 10:56   #7
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Re: Thoughts on buying used SCUBA gear

I’m an avid cave diver and buy a lot of (used & overstock) equipment here..

northeastscubasupply.com
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Old 15-10-2020, 10:56   #8
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I would be leary of tanks ,make sure they have been recently inspected and passed. The rest just check it out, lots of people get into diving then quit so there are some good deals. Never lend your mask it molds to your face and will stop leaks. Stay safe and enjoy the deep...
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Old 15-10-2020, 11:05   #9
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Re: Thoughts on buying used SCUBA gear

+1 on replace all hoses on used equipment and have it all inspected/serviced by a reputable shop. I eventually settled on a new first stage and hoses, used 2nd stages, used BCD, and new suit/mask/fins/lights. Do not bother with used tanks. By the time you get through the recommissioning inspection you are 1/4 the way to a new one.
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Old 15-10-2020, 11:05   #10
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Re: Thoughts on buying used SCUBA gear

I recently bought a used BCD which clearly had not been frequently used. The price was about 25% of the new price.

IMHO, the most critical piece of equipment is the regulator - someone in this thread recommended having it inspected before completing the purchase - good idea. In any case, I would have the regulator serviced before using it. I would do a lot of research on the regulator brand and model unless I already knew from similar research which brand/model I wanted. As someone suggested above, renting and trying out different kinds of equipment to find what works best for you could be helpful in ensuring that you get what you want when you decide to purchase.

I really wanted a particular brand of regulator after trying one. Unfortunately they were out of my price range. So I asked a lot of dive guides about their favourites and ended up buying the top end of that particular brand. Twenty years later it is still going strong.
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Old 15-10-2020, 11:28   #11
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Re: Thoughts on buying used SCUBA gear

No problem with second hand kit but avoid ex hire or school kit, likely well used and not taken care of. Also avoid high end Italian or Swedish kit as its expensive to service. When I have up serious diving a decade ago I sold off the expensive regulators and bought ScubaPro. Its basic but has a reputation for being the AK47 of the regulator world. Take your time to build up the stuff you really want and with winter coming, its a good time to buy. Late Spring being the worst as everyone suddenly decides to go diving.

I keep a simple set on board with a small 5L (about 50cuft cylinder) and stab jacket.
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Old 15-10-2020, 11:43   #12
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Re: Thoughts on buying used SCUBA gear

I have bought a lot of used gear without problems. There's lots of barely-used stuff out there, though it may hot have been well-cared for. Figure any used regulator is going to need servicing immediately, and consider that cost - though there are some dealers selling freshly service ones.
A lot of the stuff I bought in college, I ended up out-growing before long, so the used pieces were actually the better value. But the regs I bought 40 years ago are still working fine.

A sad fact is that economics of dive shops pretty much require them to sell over-priced stuff to a constant supply of noobs. It's a tough business model. Back In The Day, my roommate and I would go into Deep Sea John's shop (John from the "Blackfish" movie) and look wistfully at expensive gear... until he'd break down and bring out some old piece of rental gear, "Well, I guess I could let you have this..."
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Old 15-10-2020, 11:47   #13
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Re: Thoughts on buying used SCUBA gear

You can always rent gear for what will be substantially less than buying new gear. Used gear is fine with the caveat that BCD's will tend to dry rot with age not necessarily by use. Most people (around 70%) that get certified do not dive after about 2 years with some taking it back up after a few more years away from it. There is always a ton if used gear on the market. It may be a secret but dive shops are in business to sell gear not sell classes. If you are buying used have it checked out by a reputable dive shop or knowledgeable dive professional. Good quality gear can last years. You can get well over 2000 dives out of a good bcd and set of regs.
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Old 15-10-2020, 11:49   #14
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Re: Thoughts on buying used SCUBA gear

Find a dive shop that is larger and routinely repairs stuff. Ask if anyone is upgrading gear. ScubaPro stuff lasts and can be repaired. Pass on used tanks unless perfect. You donít need a dive computer at this stage.
Police dive teams and military divers upgrade a lot. Ask them. Itís sad, but the huge dive shops have great deals at end of season. Top quality equipment will save you money in the long run if you take care of it.
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Old 15-10-2020, 11:55   #15
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Re: Thoughts on buying used SCUBA gear

Quote:
Originally Posted by Manateeman View Post
Find a dive shop that is larger and routinely repairs stuff. Ask if anyone is upgrading gear. ScubaPro stuff lasts and can be repaired. Pass on used tanks unless perfect. You donít need a dive computer at this stage.
Police dive teams and military divers upgrade a lot. Ask them. Itís sad, but the huge dive shops have great deals at end of season. Top quality equipment will save you money in the long run if you take care of it.
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What's a perfect tank look like?



Sherwood is also a good choice if you are worried about parts availability and quality.
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