O2 Clean Mask?


There I was, doing my deco at Ginnie the other night, when my mask began to leak - again - and I realized that I had forgotten to shave before the dive. And then luckily I started thinking about the O2 cleaning debate before I cleared my mask.....

As the water level inside my mask rose I thought about the fact that I was breathing 100% O2 and that my exhaled breath was certainly pretty close to 100% O2 as well.

As the water level continued to rise I went on to think that I would be displacing the water in the mask with my breath and therefore filling my mask with nearly 100% O2!

As the water level passed the halfway mark inside my mask I realized that I had forgotten to wear my O2 clean mask - you know, the one with the Viton skirt. What was I going to do? I had almost 30 minutes of deco left. Did I want to suffer through a face full of water for 30 minutes or risk blowing my head off by filling my mask with O2?!?

Then the mask was almost full of water as I realized that I had forgotten the covers for my teeth. You know, the caps to cover my metal fillings so that there is no chance of a spark inside my mouth with the O2 present (Lucky for me I don't have braces or O2 deco would be out of the question!). Well, I had survived so far with those fillings exposed so I decided to be a daredevil, to take a real chance, and clear my mask.....

As I started to exhale through my nose I saw a strange flash of light! Did I just explode? Did my mask go into meltdown?!? Nope. The water gurgled harmlessly from the mask as I found my light shining directly up into my face from where it was clipped to my harness. I had stared certain death in the face once more and survived. Such is the life of a cave diver.

The moral of the story? Well, more of a question than a moral... For all of you that are really anal about O2 cleaning - what do you do about your masks since they would be exposed to nearly the same O2 environment as the inside of your tank or your deco regs? Hadn't thought about that one? Gonna' call TUSA and demand that they start producing an O2 compatible mask with a Viton skirt? Gonna' visit the dentist and have all your fillings changed to a non-metallic type? I really am curious.

Please advise the list as to how we should handle this potential hazard.

Forwarded to us from Kent Hirsch, maybe an ad for some denistry work? -Darth

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