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Thread: Traveling with a rebreather?

  1. #21
    RBW Member jkaterenchuk has a reputation beyond repute jkaterenchuk has a reputation beyond repute jkaterenchuk has a reputation beyond repute jkaterenchuk has a reputation beyond repute jkaterenchuk has a reputation beyond repute jkaterenchuk has a reputation beyond repute jkaterenchuk has a reputation beyond repute jkaterenchuk has a reputation beyond repute jkaterenchuk has a reputation beyond repute jkaterenchuk has a reputation beyond repute jkaterenchuk has a reputation beyond repute jkaterenchuk's Avatar
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    Re: Traveling with a rebreather?

    Quote Originally Posted by Buck-O-Five  View Original Post
    - I took my KISS CLASSIC as carry on baggage the last time I travelled, with my computer, DSV, put other parts in my scrubber. Just be prepared to take it all out and show them EVERYTHING.

    Sometimes it is just easier to ship everything, with insurance.

    I would be careful with the carry on solution. I suspect its only a matter of time before the US airlines are weighing carry either randomly or in all cases. I know it has started on international flights as I go hit with a $125 extra bag charge on my last flight to Thailand when they weighed my legal size carry-on. I think the weight limit for a carry on was some insane low amount like 5 kgs/11 lbs. Heck the carry on suitcase weighs 4 lbs.

    On my recent flight to Cozumel we checked in with 3 bags. With the home scale they all were under the limit of 50 lbs. On check-in US Air had them at 48.5, 51.0 and 51.4 lbs. They would not let the bag that was 1.5 lbs slide thru and they made us take something out of it.

    John

  2. #22
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    Re: Traveling with a rebreather?

    Quote Originally Posted by Amarok  View Original Post
    Just got back last nite myself after another two weeks doewn in PDC. No problems with gear or two sets of tanks - maybe they are getting used to the bags by now!!
    You are now a regular with the airlines now Amarok. Just keep flashing TSA the $$'s and you'll have no probs at all. :p ;) :p ;)

  3. #23
    RBW Member Shawn has a spectacular aura about Shawn has a spectacular aura about Shawn has a spectacular aura about Shawn has a spectacular aura about Shawn has a spectacular aura about Shawn's Avatar
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    Re: Traveling with a rebreather?

    Quote Originally Posted by mbelair  View Original Post
    Was this how you carried it?

    Which airline where you on?
    Sorry, I just saw your post. I took everything as carry on.

  4. #24
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    Evolution, Side-mount Meg

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    Re: Traveling with a rebreather?

    Quote Originally Posted by Shawn  View Original Post
    I would like to hear more on this subject from those who have traveled from within the US....

    Friday I plan on catching a flight from KC to Chicago with my head and plenum, and than back to KC Saturday. The last thing I need is for my Meg to get siezed for some Dumb a$$ reason...

    Any advise on this would be great!!!

    Thanks
    I am traveling to Bonaire in Aug and have spent some time researching this issue:

    According to TSA's website they wil allow scuba cylinders as carry-on as long as the vavle is removed.

    But I have still heard of tanks being pulled from luggage or simply not let on due to other restrictions-differnet countries, diffeent airports, TSA's ability to do whatever they want.

    Other individuals have carried them on the plane as carry-on luggage i.e. Paul Heinerth, Jeff Bonzanic and had mixed results with some locations allowing them to do so while other airports would allow it. (ie Spirit Airlines in Ft Lauderdale-denied)

    Therefore I am renting tanks but if this wasn't an issue i would ship these ahead as well as my case and carry on the head unit and bail-out regs, backup computer, etc...


    Hope this helps

  5. #25
    Mature mouth breather silent running has a reputation beyond repute silent running has a reputation beyond repute silent running has a reputation beyond repute silent running has a reputation beyond repute silent running has a reputation beyond repute silent running has a reputation beyond repute silent running has a reputation beyond repute silent running has a reputation beyond repute silent running has a reputation beyond repute silent running has a reputation beyond repute silent running has a reputation beyond repute silent running's Avatar
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    Re: Traveling with a rebreather?

    Quote Originally Posted by jkaterenchuk  View Original Post
    I would be careful with the carry on solution. I suspect its only a matter of time before the US airlines are weighing carry either randomly or in all cases. I know it has started on international flights as I go hit with a $125 extra bag charge on my last flight to Thailand when they weighed my legal size carry-on.
    John

    Hi John, what airline in Thailand was it that weighed your carry-on? I will stay away from them.

    Just got back from Indonesia on Cathay Pacific-Bali-HK-NY-and my legal sized roller bag was not weighed. I take my entire Prism minus the cylinders and cowling in it. I've never had it weighed on an international flight and only had it weighed on a domestic flight once in Indonesia.

    My feeling is that the major international airlines will not be able get away with weighing every carry-on due to the time constraints of check-in at busy international airports, at least for the near future.

    Also, after 12 overseas trips with my CCR I've never had a problem transporting sorb or cylinders, as long as the valves are off.

    However, I would caution anybody who has to fly on the Indonesian airline Merpati as they have no uniform rules about excess baggage charges, even when you are flying in the reverse direction on the same route. My guess is they get to keep some or all of the excess charges they collect and you would do well to sharpen your bargaining skills before dealing with them as they are at best stupid and at worst greedy. When I asked the Merpati manager in Bali why they had more than doubled the per kilo cost of excess baggage in the 4 months since I booked my ticket, she told me that people were bringing too much excess so they raised the price. Apparently, they are not willing to put any effort towards distinguishing between 4 divers traveling to a remote place in Nusa Tenggara to spend $5000 and somebody trying to bring in a bunch of consumer goods to sell to his buddies. Not exactly visionary thinking. In short, Merpati is run by a bunch of genius assholes who allow their regional mangers to treat each territory as a personal fiefdom. I will go out of my way and pay more money to avoid dealing with these squalid clowns in the future.

  6. #26
    Shearwater Copis Diver Gill Envy has a reputation beyond repute Gill Envy has a reputation beyond repute Gill Envy has a reputation beyond repute Gill Envy has a reputation beyond repute Gill Envy has a reputation beyond repute Gill Envy has a reputation beyond repute Gill Envy has a reputation beyond repute Gill Envy has a reputation beyond repute Gill Envy has a reputation beyond repute Gill Envy has a reputation beyond repute Gill Envy has a reputation beyond repute Gill Envy's Avatar
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    Re: Traveling with a rebreather?

    We were on the trip to Indo as well. What has worked for me so far:

    -I put as much dense, heavy stuff in cary on as possible and keep carry on out of sight as much as possible while checking in, even leaving them at a distance... rollers help keep the weight discreet.

    -some airlines like EVA offer slightly larger seats and baggage allawance for a surprisingly low additional fee, something between business and economy class and give a further discount if you buy on line. Call and ask before booking then go on line.

    -keep an extra duffle handy, just in case they force you to weigh everything. I've had carry on weighed twice ... an extra bag generally costs less on big airlines than overage on either cary on or stowed overweight bags. EVA charges $109 for an extra bag up to 50 lbs, 60 inches or $300 for each bag over the weight limit, even if only by a few pounds. remember you will be a lot lighter on the way back. it helps if one of the stowed bags is a compressible duffle and light, so that you can bring it back inside one of the others.

    -be psychologically prepared to pay overage, bargain for a while if outisde the US and then just suck it up and pay...it's not worth the stress of getting really bent about it, be thankful that you are even able to pull this kind of expedition off at all.

    -think ahead on arrival to an airport where you are switching airlines with different weight limits (particularly international to domestic) and have access to curency exchange, get enough local currency to pay for overage before leaving arrivals, as all to often departures are a good distance and may not have cash machines or money exchange... you will be taken advantage of on the exchange if you don't have the local currency. local small airlines are the worst... having the dive operation make the reservations ahead and stress that we are divers and will go overweight seemed to help greese the skids on our last trip. It seems that it's best to be up front about this.

    -All tank's valves must be removed. ideally leaving the tank openings free of anything, even tape. clear tape placed over tank openings with a small flashlight taped to a declaration sheet stating 02 clean scuba tanks and inviting them to use the flashlight for inspection has worked for us so far but I've heard of tanks not making it through inspection even with clear tape, I guess they figure having to remove anything could present some kind of unpredictable hazard to the inspector. visually inspect tanks before putting the valves back on and blow out the valves with them open before screwing them back on. technically your O2 cleaning will be void... you need to come to your own understanding about what you are comfortable with in this regard. Any time you can rent tanks at the destination, it's worth it!

    -any time you get questioned, just keep saying "scuba gear". the words "scuba gear for scuba diving" seem to be more universally understood, any other explanation will leave them with only confusion and suspicion and more questions. Remember you are being honest and have nothing to hide, all rebreather related equipment is scuba gear, even the absorbant.

    -make a declaration sheet for the absorbant... cell phone number on each sheet in each bag seems like a good idea at least for the original departure. I've had the declaration sheet wisked away to an official more than once... it usually facilitates a clean bill of health and the reassuring up and down knod, pretty quickly. Using the word declaration sheet seems to ring positive bells as well.

    - If you need to max out weight allowances on each bag, I've found it works best to use a home scale to weigh the bags, then I take one of the bags to fed ex or some other service that can weigh it using a certified scale, then I callibrate my home scale accordingly... if the airlines scales are off a bit, I can be adiment and have some leverage.

    -I carry all electronics as carry on. I keep repeating "it's scuba gear for scuba diving", only get detailed to the extent that the questions get detailed. Frankly I amazed at how little i've been hastled for what must look like some kind of mega bomb on the X-ray.

    -with our megs we put the can with scrubber canister in checked baggage and bubble wrapped the heads for cary on.

    -for two people we took two bail outs, 2 steel dilluent bottles, 4 O2 tanks (we have 13 CF steel tanks...wishing we had 19CF AL so we could bring one each and weigh less. 19's hold more gas than we need typically but when getting low pressure trans fills that are at best 2,000 psi, that extra volume means only having to bring one 02 tank per person instead of two. something to think about if you are trying to figure out what tanks size you need. Aluminum is much better for traveling, though i'm told the new alloy faber steels are surprisingly light.

    - As for the sorb, We used 1.5 kegs of sodasorb (55lbs) per person for roughly 48 hours of diving, 3 dives a day, deepest first, fresh sorb at the start of each day, 3.5-5 hours per fill. would have been fine with a fourth shallow dive or longer total time up to 6 hours but since we rarely did four dives in a day and started the next with a deep dive, we were a bit conservative with the hours on the fills so we had to lug more sorb across the planet. Since we were diving heavy currents we decided that the heavy work load warranted being conservative on the total time per fill.
    To help split up the weight of the sorb between baggages I usually use mini kegs of safnolime so that I don't have to split up kegs, which would require breaking the seal on the can's, something I assume would not bode well with TSA but I do hear of people getting away with it.

    We get "green with envy" every time we go on a trip with Andy/Silent running since his radial scrubber seems to be worth it's weight in gold due to the fact that he gets many more hours out of less sorb, he took less and paid less overage, like 50% less.

    hope that helps!
    Last edited by Gill Envy; 16th May 2008 at 01:08.

    Gill Envy

  7. #27
    RBW Member jkaterenchuk has a reputation beyond repute jkaterenchuk has a reputation beyond repute jkaterenchuk has a reputation beyond repute jkaterenchuk has a reputation beyond repute jkaterenchuk has a reputation beyond repute jkaterenchuk has a reputation beyond repute jkaterenchuk has a reputation beyond repute jkaterenchuk has a reputation beyond repute jkaterenchuk has a reputation beyond repute jkaterenchuk has a reputation beyond repute jkaterenchuk has a reputation beyond repute jkaterenchuk's Avatar
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    Re: Traveling with a rebreather?

    Quote Originally Posted by silent running  View Original Post
    Hi John, what airline in Thailand was it that weighed your carry-on? I will stay away from them.
    Air China or China Air...can't remember which one. It was also a code share with either Delta or Continental. Flying out of JFK. From what I could tell they were weighing a high percentage of carry on's. I assume this since there were many 10 + people in line behind me to pay for an extra bag at $125 ea.

    John

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