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June 2005 Vol. 31, No. 6   RSS Feed for Undercurrent Issues
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Scubapro MK20 Cracking Problem Reported

Contents of this Issue:
All publicly available

Tobago, West Indies

The Cypress Sea

Nitrox Myths?

Aqua Lung’s “Mistral” Regulator

Dive Computers: Part II

Unfriendly Skies for Divers

No Safe Harbor

Scubapro MK20 Cracking Problem Reported

Flotsam & Jetsam

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Sausalito, CA 94965

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from the June, 2005 issue of Undercurrent   Subscribe Now

Two years ago, a diver for the National Oceanics and Atmospheric Administration reported a crack in his Scubapro MK20 first stage. Dave Dinsmore, Director of NOAA’s diving program, told Undercurrent, that “since then we have discovered essentially identical cracks in three additional NOAA MK20 regulators (out of 298) during routine annual maintenance.”

Cracked MK20 first stage

Cracked MK20 first stage

In March, NOAA ordered all their MK20 models out of the water after a first stage split in half. Six weeks later, Scubapro explained to NOAA that the yoke nut had been tightened too hard, i.e., overtorqued, during routine maintenance.

Dinsmore doesn’t think so. “Both Scubapro and NOAA hired independent experts to evaluate the cracks and assess the likely cause. NOAA’s expert determined that ‘no deformation, thread damage or gouging was noticed at the yoke thread (male) and yoke adapter (female) indicating that the yoke had not been overtorqued’.” Scubapro has replaced all of NOAA’s MK20 regulators with MK25 models, which replaced the MK20 in 2002.

A spokesperson for Scubapro told Undercurrent that the NOAA reports of cracking are the only ones the company is aware of, and that no in-water incidents have occurred.

In a recent Undercurrent Online email to subscribers, we erroneously stated that NOAA had accepted Scubapro’s explanation. It had not.

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