Tuesday, 12 June 2012

What do I need to start spearfishing? Part III

Part III. The Snorkel: In this part we will try to give you all the information you need so that you can choose the right snorkel.

3. Snorkel
The most important feature to consider when choosing a snorkel is the material of the mouthpiece. It’s highly recommended that the mouthpiece is made out of silicone to provide the most comfort.

When it comes to snorkels there are three main types of snorkels. You have standard snorkels, semi-dry snorkels and dry snorkels.

- Standard snorkels are either straight “j-tubes” or slightly curved / angled and come without valves.

- Semi-dry snorkels come with a water deviator on the top of the tube which helps in reducing the the amount of water that can enter a snorkel while at the surface. They also have a valve near the mouthpiece that assists in expelling water making it much easier to “clear” the snorkel.
- Dry snorkels are snorkels that have a valve on the top of the tube which should prevent the entry of any water into the snorkel tube. Most of them also have a valve near the mouthpiece that assists in expelling water in case it does manage to make its way past the dry valve.

There are two popular types of fasteners for snorkels. Rigid plastic with quick disconnect and simple silicon fasteners with loops at each end (similar in shape to the number 8). The later, silicon fasteners, are more popular among freedivers again due to the reduced drag. The plastic quick disconnect versions are more popular among SCUBA divers do to the ability to simply attach/detach the snorkel from a mask.

An example of a good Snorkel is the Mares - DUAL Unbreakable Snorkel with Orthodontic Mouthpiece

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