Today I finally tracked down the diving helmet I built and left up here 4 years ago. It’s in pretty good shape considering I stored it in a rubbermaid bin outside, all year round for 4 years. Minnesota’s seasons don’t fuck around either. The hots are hotter and the colds are colder than in Oregon.
I’m still storing it in the tub on the end of the dock for ease of access, and to prevent sun damage to the plastic that the helmet itself is made from. It’s already pretty scuffed up and the paint is flaking off, but the tub did an admirable job of keeping snow and animals off the goods.
I tested it out today, running off the battery with the solar panels hooked up. 10–15 minutes of diving took the battery from 99% full down to 94%. The panels don’t replenish the charge faster than the air compressor depletes it, but it offsets much of the compressor’s usual energy consumption.
Here’s the compressor itself. A little undersized compared to the one I have back home but it does the job, providing I don’t over-exert myself while submerged. It’s continuous duty, electric, oil free and has a moisture trap. All critical qualities for a compressor one intends to use for diving purposes.
Anyway my underwater camera battery ran out before I could take some underwater selfies, sadly. There’s an old one above, for the curious. I also appear to have left the charger for the special battery format it uses back in Oregon. I’ll work on figuring out some way to charge it, and try to get you guys some helmet diving footage before the vacation is over.
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