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New Search Tool

Estevan Martinez

Many of us have found it difficult to conduct a search in the ocean, specifically when you have a general idea where the object should be but difficulty keeping your vessel in the proper area to conduct the search. Some dive teams use several anchors to keep the vessel in the same spot, but this method is extremely time consuming and often requires the use of a second boat to assist with the placement of the anchors.

While vacationing I came across a device which is used to anchor a vessel between the shore and shallow water. The device works similar to a slide hammer in that it requires you to drive the tubular handle downward to deliver the spike blade into the shore. There is an eye bolt located on the bottom. A line would be attached from your vessel to the eye bolt.

While inspecting the device, I noticed the upper portion rotated in a circular motion. The top has another eye bolt for attaching a buoy. I recognized the potential of this item being used for dive operations. If another eye bolt was welded onto the rotating half, a diver could clip into this and conduct a circular search pattern from a stationary spot without the use of a tender. The divers location would be marked with a buoy line attached to the top. The device is called The On/Offshore Spike made by Slide Anchor.

I contacted Ryan Dvorak of Slide Anchor and told him about the idea and asked him if he could modify the device. He was excited about the new use for this device and was more than happy to make the alteration. Upon receiving the spike, we put it to the test. The spike was not heavy, weighing only 10 pounds out of the water. It was also relatively easy to hammer into the sandy bottom. We attached a locking carabiner to the rotating end of the eye bolt and started our search using two divers at the end of the line. One diver was in charge of checking the time and air supply, while the other concentrated more on the search.

This method allowed two divers to be used for the search instead of using one as a tender while the other searches. You can start by taking the line out to a desired distance, drop a caribiner or other marker and start your circular search. When you return to the caribiner, you pick it up, move out several feet (depending on the visibility) and drop your marker again.

Prices range from:
Small $49.95
Large $59.95
Extra Large $79.95

But prices may change for the alteration, so contact Slide Anchor at:

(888) 445-4869 Fax (805) 493-0224
1534 North Morrpark Road, suite 114
Thousand Oaks, Ca. 91360

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For information on how you can help, or how RIPTIDE can help you, please contact us at:
P.O. Box 593
Hurley, NY 12443
tel/fax: (845) 331-3383
Created by Dolphin Diving - copyright 990901