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Diving Safety, Accidents and Incidents Post here to discuss accidents, incidents, ideas, gear, or anything else to improve spearfishing safety. Memorials and condolences threads should be placed in that separate forum.

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Old 08-18-2017, 12:09 PM   #46
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Re: Zeagle Regulator Blows at 180 ft

I should probably add something to this discussion. Several people have mentioned feathering the valve ( basically open it half a turn, get some air and shut it off while you slowly exhale).


The rate of air loss in my situation was epic. I had around 2400 psi when it occurred, I shut it off in maybe 30 or 45 seconds and when we got on the boat the tank seemed pretty low on air. It was leaking faster than I would think could happen with the valve open and no regulator. The air was blasting out so fast that the second stage was giving me resistance. The effective intermediate pressure must have been low due to all the air being vented from the first stage before it could travel down a hose for my use.

Feathering a valve can work great for a freeflowing second stage or probably some other problems, but I doubt it would have worked well in this particular situation. Come to think of it _ a few weeks ago that exact thing happened with a buddy's pony bottle I borrowed for use on a freedive trip trying to recover a lost gun or fish. Luckily I was holding the tank in my hands, so I had easy access to the valve _ when I couldn't get the second stage to stop freeflowing by normal means.
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Old 08-18-2017, 05:35 PM   #47
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Re: Zeagle Regulator Blows at 180 ft

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An update, a zeagle representative has contacted me requesting the regulator for some forensic analysis. I am glad to hear that they were concerned enough about the failure to want to take a look.

They have also been more than fair with the disposition of the regulator. It took a little while, but in the end, they exhibited excellent customer service - even though I was up front about the fact that I was not the original owner and the reg was overdue for scheduled maintenance.
I heard through the grapevine/rumor mill that Huish was going to discontinue the Zeagle brand. Sad if they do as Zeagle was a great line for many years. Again, just a rumor, but since Huish recently acquired Oceanic/Hollis their regulator line is getting pretty crowded since they also own Atomic.
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Old 08-19-2017, 09:12 AM   #48
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Re: Zeagle Regulator Blows at 180 ft

This incident is also a good lesson on why it may be a better option on deep dives to have doubles with an isolator valve. In this instance JfJf could have just as easily shut down the offending regulator and had access to all of the remaining gas in both tanks. Plus, shutting down a left or right post on doubles (I find) much easier than shutting down a single tank valve. Just a thought.

Notice, I have not championed H-Valves, I have yet to see an H-valve set up that is as easy to isolate a regulator as you can with doubles. Some are down right impossible based on the angle of the valve. And I have used and trained with H-valves. IMO, with H-valves the regulators are so close you cannot effectively distinguish which regulator is failing, even if you could shut them down, with doubles, it is extremely obvious which regulator has blown.
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Old 08-19-2017, 10:42 AM   #49
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Re: Zeagle Regulator Blows at 180 ft

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This incident is also a good lesson on why it may be a better option on deep dives to have doubles with an isolator valve. In this instance JfJf could have just as easily shut down the offending regulator and had access to all of the remaining gas in both tanks. Plus, shutting down a left or right post on doubles (I find) much easier than shutting down a single tank valve. Just a thought.

Notice, I have not championed H-Valves, I have yet to see an H-valve set up that is as easy to isolate a regulator as you can with doubles. Some are down right impossible based on the angle of the valve. And I have used and trained with H-valves. IMO, with H-valves the regulators are so close you cannot effectively distinguish which regulator is failing, even if you could shut them down, with doubles, it is extremely obvious which regulator has blown.

Yea, but talk about cumbersome...It's over kill for that kind of diving IMO. A pony seems adequate. Maybe a little larger pony at those depths. Had Jim been near the end of the dive that happened...it could've been a different story.
BUT, I guess there is the option of using smaller tank sizes for what you describe. That would be about equal weight.
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Old 08-19-2017, 11:16 AM   #50
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Re: Zeagle Regulator Blows at 180 ft

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Yea, but talk about cumbersome.......BUT, I guess there is the option of using smaller tank sizes for what you describe. That would be about equal weight.
Couple things with doubles, with a back plate they are closer to the body which gives you better balance and weight distribution. As, as you said, matching gas capacity, couple of smaller tanks, with same total cu ft, would be nice.

And with all the new wings, you could have the same profile just about.
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Old 08-19-2017, 11:21 AM   #51
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Re: Zeagle Regulator Blows at 180 ft

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Couple things with doubles, with a back plate they are closer to the body which gives you better balance and weight distribution. As, as you said, matching gas capacity, couple of smaller tanks, with same total cu ft, would be nice.

And with all the new wings, you could have the same profile just about.
And the likelihood of the H valve blowing which would be a catastrophic fhttp://spearboard.com/showthread.php?t=193916ailure, I presume from my limited knowledge?
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Old 08-19-2017, 12:16 PM   #52
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Re: Zeagle Regulator Blows at 180 ft

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I heard through the grapevine/rumor mill that Huish was going to discontinue the Zeagle brand. Sad if they do as Zeagle was a great line for many years. Again, just a rumor, but since Huish recently acquired Oceanic/Hollis their regulator line is getting pretty crowded since they also own Atomic.
That's VERY unfortunate. It's very hard to make anything fool proof, as a company. BTW, this isn't an attack upon Jim's actions. A company really has to consider the actions of such users so that they don't become liable or get a bad reputation.
That being said, it's almost impossible to prevent your brand from getting sullied by users that disregard the recommended maintenance/service. All you can do, as a company, is find root cause and implement corrective action in order to protect your brand.
What this sounds like here is that the equipment was inadequately serviced and not the fault of the supplier. Yet...the supplier is having to defend itself and losing market share due to the such an incident...when it's not really the supplier's fault.
BTW, I'm just explaining this due to the fact I deal w/ these types of issues in my engineering job all the time...and I'm just calling it like I see it...no offense to any party intended. I've certainly have violated such before so I'm surely not passing judgement.
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Last edited by Marcus; 08-19-2017 at 12:36 PM.
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Old 08-19-2017, 01:24 PM   #53
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Re: Zeagle Regulator Blows at 180 ft

Well, the Zeagle rep has indicated that he would let me know what their examination reveals. So we don't really know anything.

I doubt he thinks I would keep it secret, so when I hear, i will provide a follow up - maybe next week?

Thus far, Zeagle seems to be exhibiting excellent product support --- I can't even say customer support - because i was not their customer.

I'm not so sure something like this should or would affect sales, obviously this type of failure is very rare, they are taking it seriously and the end result may be something that is entirely outside of their control.

To be honest, when I see Dan use Zeagle to plus 400 ft... that is pretty much good enough for me. I felt comfortable buying a used one and it worked well.. until it didn't.

Maybe 6 Years ago, I bought some cheap generic first stage off the internet (a new regualtor) - which also had a diaphragm. I think it was like $45 or something. Used it for maybe 25 dives and then one day... I was inhaling and POP.. I could feel something changed in the regulator and I think it started to free flow a little. It was a small pop and I think I kept going on the 80 or 100 ft dive since I had redundancy. No air loss that I can remember, other than a slightly bubbling second stage.

Took the reg to a shop, they said the seat (not the diaphram) had cracked or something and they fixed it and wanted $45 for the repairs. I had thought it might have been cheaper and decided I was no longer a fan of that reg so i offered to just give them the reg in exchange for the work they had done. They were very agreeable to it and I have been using primarily Scuba Pro (piston) first stages for like 20 years I think.

These two incidents are the only times I can remember me having a sudden issue with a first stage.
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Old 08-19-2017, 11:30 PM   #54
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Re: Zeagle Regulator Blows at 180 ft

WOW. Glad you are OK. Great job. Keep us posted.
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Old 08-22-2017, 01:57 PM   #55
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Re: Zeagle Regulator Blows at 180 ft

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Glad you bad a good outcome, that's one of he reasons I buy a new reg every year or 2.Rebuilds at most shops are done by guys I wouldn't take diving much less trust with my life.
Not to mention it's not significantly more expensive to buy new.

Some great second guessing going on over on Scuba board on a thread about you.
Good advice!

I usually get mine serviced every 8 to 9 years, not because there seems to be anything wrong with them, it just feels like the right thing to do. Anyway, only problems I've ever had was right after servicing. First time was a Poseidon Odin: first stage failure towards the end of a 100' dive. Air was coming out the 2nd stage so fast I did run out at about 15' from the surface. It motivated me to invest in a pony rig - have not dove without it since.

Second time was recently, nothing dramatic, but aggravating none the less. Bought a Zeagle brand new in 2008, still working fine, but figured the O-rings are probably getting tired, so had it rebuilt. First time out the 2nd stage freeflowed after one breath. Turned off tank, turned tank back on, and freeflowed after one breath. Dive shop re-adjusted 2nd stage seat - seemed OK, so went offshore again, and started freeflowing again after 1st drop. I had downloaded the service manual a couple of years ago, so followed Zeagle's directions and adjusted seat myself. Have not been diving at depth to test it, but works fine with no freeflows in the pool.

Instead of servicing it again 8 or 9 years from now, I think I'll just replace it

Jim, glad you made it back! That had to be an uncomfortable experience!
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Old 09-06-2017, 10:40 PM   #56
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Re: Zeagle Regulator Blows at 180 ft

I had a pretty detailed talk with their engineer who looked at the failed regulator. Since it was partially dis-assembled by the local shop, his ability to identify the issue precisely was limited. He said the diaphragm looked pretty old and the edges were torn.

Remember, this was presumably serviced just two years ago by Jupiter Dive Center.

More interesting, is that he says Zeagle no longer support the regulator. They do not sell parts, they do not have a recommended source for parts and I asked about people who had tried to maintain the life time warranty.. What happens to them? He was nice, but said that was a good question.

He explained that the DS-IV was not really made by Zeagle, it was just a rebranded Apex reg that was made for Zeagle. Apparently this is no longer the case with their current regulators, but he said it was true on this particular model.

I asked if he thought maybe people are putting in diaphragms from some older model of Apex? He said he didn't know and had no suggestion on how to service the first stage.

So I said basically all your customers are screwed with a regulator that they can not get serviced since you no longer "support" the regulator ,,, but you have never told your customers this fact?

It obviously makes them vulnerable to technicians who must be using old parts or substituting pieces that are not sourced from Zeagle. Possibly this is what happened to the previous owner of the regulator I bought?

I failed to ask a critical question: When did Zeagle stop supporting this regulator? Perhaps legitimate parts were available 2 years ago when the last service was performed - perhaps not?

It is interesting because I actually have another DS-IV first stage in my regulator box that has not been used for several years. I asked what am I supposed to do with this regulator? Nobody can perform authorized service on it? Answer: "Good question".

I think it is unfortunate that Zeagle would offer a lifetime warrranty and then have a policy that fails to honor it.

So since the regulator was unservicable and they wanted to examine it, they sent me a newer current regulator as a replacement. It looks pretty similar on the outside to me, but supposedly it is different.

I can't complain about how they treated me - especially since I was not the original owner and it was overdue for service, but on the other hand,
it seems that they intend to "take advantage" of their existing customers..at the very least i would think Zeagle would be concerned that their customers are apparently keeping their regs in service by getting maintenance done at dive shops - who must not be using the proper parts.

Maybe there are available some equivalent generic parts that work more or less, but I have to wonder if my failure was associated with this type of situation. In any regard he said "the failed diaphragm was not one of ours".

Also of note, when I took the reg into my local shop, who sells Zeagle, the technician offered to service the regulator for me. I almost agreed to it and then decided to just leave and thanked him for opening it up for me. He also said the diaphragm had failed, but gave no indication about where the replacement parts would come from and did not mention that the regulator was no longer "supported" by Zeagle.

I guess I will start using the regulator, I have always bought used regulators for the last 30 years or so.

Last edited by jfjf; 09-06-2017 at 10:51 PM.
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Old 10-11-2017, 06:50 PM   #57
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Re: Zeagle Regulator Blows at 180 ft

The local shop technician remembered this recall - so I looked it up. Maybe I had one of the regulators that was recalled? Zeagle has the reg now so who knows?

https://www.diversalertnetwork.org/d...?a=news&id=302
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