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Thread: Station wagon effect?

  1. #1
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    Station wagon effect?

    Yesterday my dive buddy & I had a great dive on a 100+ year old steam tug in Lake Michigan. We made a very rapid decent in order to maximize bottom time. About the time we hit the deck, I started to develop a small gurgle. As time went on it got worse to the point that I thumbed the dive about 3 min. prior to the planned run time. Deco was uneventful beyond my blowing about one or two liters of water thru my exhale CL’s OPV. Leak was quickly traced to a small cut in the mouth bite once I surfaced.

    Not until discussing the dive during the 2 ½ hour ride home did we discover we both had begun to feel a bit “off” during the dive. I was to the point, right after I had thumbed the dive, I took a couple of sanity breaths off my BOV; he had done a complete dil flush and considered taking a sanity breath from his deep bailout. PPO2s were spot on at 1.2. We both noticed little improvement from out actions and also remembered we felt fine once above 200 ft. We talked about it again today at lunch time and decided it was worth a post.

    Dive specifics: Average depth 260 to 280 ft. Setpoints 1.2 & diluent 10/55 gave a roughly 100 ft EAD. Scrubber was freshly changed 8-12 from different partially used, in-date kegs. Helium was ultra-high purity 5-9s from a very reputable supplier. O2 was aviator’s, same supplier. Air was from a professionally maintained compressor certified to supply even the emergency response team SCBAs at a nuclear power plant. Bottom temps 39F. We both prebreathed about 8 to 10 minutes.

    About the only thing that was non routine was the wait before splashing. The mooring on the wreck needed to be changed out so a single diver went down the old one & did what needed to be done while we motored away for 10, maybe 15 minutes tops. Dive buddy & self were at aft end of boat & remember smelling mild exhaust fumes but nothing overpowering. My question to those who know far more about this sort of thing than I do: Would a very low level dose of CO in the blood that’s a non-event at the surface become significant enough at 9 ATA to cause such an “off” feeling?

    Experiences, comments, explanations?

  2. #2
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    Re: Station wagon effect?

    Mempilot had a CO hit taking in a lung of fumes then going on the loop... it ****ed up and spun his world.... His telling of it made it seem like it took every fiber of will to not bolt.... This was a dive to ~110' or so If I remember correctly...

  3. #3
    Supporting Member Dsix36 has a reputation beyond repute Dsix36 has a reputation beyond repute Dsix36 has a reputation beyond repute Dsix36 has a reputation beyond repute Dsix36 has a reputation beyond repute Dsix36 has a reputation beyond repute Dsix36 has a reputation beyond repute Dsix36 has a reputation beyond repute Dsix36 has a reputation beyond repute Dsix36 has a reputation beyond repute Dsix36 has a reputation beyond repute Dsix36's Avatar
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    Re: Station wagon effect?

    If I am remembering Mempilots event correctly, it was not a CO thing but rather a carbon monoxide issue from the exhaust.

    There is nothing in the loop designed to removed carbon monoxide from the gas and any little bit will just be recirculated and breathed over and over causeing poisioning from it.

    During my initial Rebreather training (I was still smoking back then) my instructor insisted that I didn't smoke for at least 1 hr prior to diving in an effort to prevent a similar issue from the residue in my lungs.

    here is mem's original post:
    http://www.rebreatherworld.com/showthread.php?t=14108
    Last edited by Dsix36; 29th June 2009 at 23:11.
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    Quote Originally Posted by kwinter  View Original Post
    I could just be blowing smoke out my butt.
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    Re: Station wagon effect?

    Quote Originally Posted by Dsix36  View Original Post
    If I am remembering Mempilots event correctly, it was not a CO thing but rather a carbon monoxide issue from the exhaust.

    ????

    CO = Carbon Monoxide

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    Re: Station wagon effect?

    Quote Originally Posted by Dsix36  View Original Post
    If I am remembering Mempilots event correctly, it was not a CO thing but rather a carbon monoxide issue from the exhaust.

    There is nothing in the loop designed to removed carbon monoxide from the gas and any little bit will just be recirculated and breathed over and over causeing poisioning from it.

    During my initial Rebreather training (I was still smoking back then) my instructor insisted that I didn't smoke for at least 1 hr prior to diving in an effort to prevent a similar issue from the residue in my lungs.
    Don - CO = Carbon Monoxide.... geesh, did you drop out before Chem in High School....

  6. #6
    Supporting Member Dsix36 has a reputation beyond repute Dsix36 has a reputation beyond repute Dsix36 has a reputation beyond repute Dsix36 has a reputation beyond repute Dsix36 has a reputation beyond repute Dsix36 has a reputation beyond repute Dsix36 has a reputation beyond repute Dsix36 has a reputation beyond repute Dsix36 has a reputation beyond repute Dsix36 has a reputation beyond repute Dsix36 has a reputation beyond repute Dsix36's Avatar
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    Re: Station wagon effect?

    OK OK, I broke down and got me readin glasses out.

    Damn, I can really make myself look stupid heh? Don't answer that!
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    Quote Originally Posted by kwinter  View Original Post
    I could just be blowing smoke out my butt.
    Quote Originally Posted by kwinter  View Original Post
    And note the wisdom from DSix36
    MY ADVICE AND POSTS ARE WORTH EXACTLY WHAT YOU PAID FOR THEM!!!!!!
    POLITICAL CORRECTNESS IS SO YESTERDAY AND I AM DONE WITH IT!!!!!

  7. #7
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    Re: Station wagon effect?

    Quote Originally Posted by Dsix36  View Original Post
    OK OK, I broke down and got me readin glasses out.

    Damn, I can really make myself look stupid heh? Don't answer that!
    And you didn't even get wet - this time...

  8. #8
    Supporting Member Dsix36 has a reputation beyond repute Dsix36 has a reputation beyond repute Dsix36 has a reputation beyond repute Dsix36 has a reputation beyond repute Dsix36 has a reputation beyond repute Dsix36 has a reputation beyond repute Dsix36 has a reputation beyond repute Dsix36 has a reputation beyond repute Dsix36 has a reputation beyond repute Dsix36 has a reputation beyond repute Dsix36 has a reputation beyond repute Dsix36's Avatar
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    Re: Station wagon effect?

    Quote Originally Posted by netmage  View Original Post
    And you didn't even get wet - this time...
    Tim, you are required to be nice to me today.
    It's me birthday and all.
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    Quote Originally Posted by kwinter  View Original Post
    I could just be blowing smoke out my butt.
    Quote Originally Posted by kwinter  View Original Post
    And note the wisdom from DSix36
    MY ADVICE AND POSTS ARE WORTH EXACTLY WHAT YOU PAID FOR THEM!!!!!!
    POLITICAL CORRECTNESS IS SO YESTERDAY AND I AM DONE WITH IT!!!!!

  9. #9
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    Re: Station wagon effect?

    Happy birthday

    (I made it big so you didn't need to don the specs)

    Regards,
    Hunter

  10. #10
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    Re: Station wagon effect?

    Ken,

    Not directly applicable but interesting anyway: As a freediver I often spearfish "Live-Boat" out of a 17 foot Boston Whaler. As you know, apnea-diving is usually driven by hypercapnia, not hypoxia, meaning that your trigger to surface and breathe is based on high C02 and not low 02 in your lungs. This due to the chemoreceptors in your system that trigger on the change towards acid in your blood as C02 accumulates. Basically, unless you are very skilled in suppressing the breathing urge for C02, you generally cannot hold your breath until you pass out from hypoxia. This is complicated by the changes in PP02 and PC02 as you ascend from depth, but leave that out for a minute.

    One day last season the boat was drifting ahead of me in the current towards the structure we wanted to dive on (boat uses depth sounder to watch bottom, drifts ahead of the diver, and signals him when to dive). The wind was carrying the boat exhaust plume over my snorkle, and I remember thinking that I could smell the engine exhaust. Boat was perhaps 50 yards away from me.

    To make a long story short, on ascent from several of the dives, I was DEFINATELY seeing hypoxia-sparkles in my eyes as I ascended. I've had this before when I've pushed a deep freedive too long, and it's the same visual disturbance I get in the hypobaric chamber when I do my annual high altitude training for flying the fighters. The retina is the most hypoxia sensitive tissues and I perceive "sparkles" of light *JUST BEFORE* I lose conciousness from hypoxia.

    There's no doubt that I was suffering from a sub-clinical CO poisioning as I lay on the surface in the exhaust plume of the boat. Due to the lack of 02 attached to the hemoglobin, I *was* (for once) literally able to hold my breath until I was passing out, even though the C02 had not risen high enough to drive the breathing urge. It was frightening, and could have very well led to a lethal accident. There was NO OTHER WARNING and I doubt that I would have even thought about it had I not seen it before in both the high altitude chamber and in prior freediving experiences.

    Just a data point for consideration.

    Dave

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