Category Archives: Sea Hunt

Scuba Shack Radio #20 11-30-19

In this episode we discuss the Suunto SK-8 compass, Ballast – a five part podcast from Hakai Magazine and another installment of Sea Hunt – It’s Still Alive.

The Suunto SK-8 underwater compass is my compass of choice. The compass is billed as the world’s most popular dive compass. The SK-8 is a liquid filled compass. Suunto claims that both the Northern and Southern hemisphere models can be used over a wider area of the glob based on their upgraded magnets. The compass is 2.58″ x 2.58″ x 1.72″. We prefer to wear our compass on our wrist and you can get it with a wrist strap or a bungee mount. One of the biggest benefits of this compass is its ability to function with a high degree of tilt – +/- 30 degrees. Additionally, the bezel ratchets every 5th of a degree making it turn smoothly in all conditions.

Ballast is a five episode podcast brought to you by Hakai Magazine hosted by Elin Kelsey. It seems like a pretty dull subject but if you listen to the podcast, Elin makes the topic quite interesting. From the history of ballast, to how ballast effects living things, to ballast in skyscrapers, I think you will enjoy. Here is a link to the website for “Ballast”

Sea Hunt season one, episode 35 is titled “The Amphibian”. It was released on September 6, 1958 and was filmed in Silver Springs, Florida. Mike is hired to supervise a group of local skin divers on an outing to an offshore island – San Granata. The local skin diving group includes Queenie Miller(Zale Parry), Courtney Brown (DeWitt Miller) and Jon Lindberg (Jack Padgett) – he is Charles Lindberg’s son. There is a lot of underwater footage of Zale and Courtney. Turns out one of the divers is a bad diver with a scooter and a double barreled spear gun. The bad diver – George Peterson uses his scooter to go into a restricted Navy area to take pictures of a secret underwater rocket launcher. Mike saves the day. A lot of action and some interesting underwater shots. Another great episode of Sea Hunt. We picked this one because it featured Zale Parry who I had the pleasure of talking to at DEMA.

Scuba Shack Radio #17 – 10-19-19

In this episode we discuss Project Aware and the PADI Specialty, Marine Protected Areas, and another installment of Sea Hunt – It’s Still Alive

It is called Project Aware because it started in 1989 as a project with PADI to support ocean conservation. AWARE stands for Aquatic World Awareness, Responsibility and Education. Project Aware focused on 10 ways that divers can protect the underwater environment. These 10 ways have evolved into the 10 tips for divers to protect the ocean planet. In 1992 it officially became a separate entity called the Project Aware Foundation. Listen for more information on Project Aware and the PADI specialty or go to

Marine Protected Areas are any area of the marine environment that has been reserved by federal, state, territorial, tribal or local laws or regulations to provide lasting protection for part or all of the natural and cultural resources therein. MPA came into being with Presidential executive order 13158 signed by President Clinton on May 26, 2000. MPA are managed by the Commerce Department under the direction of NOAA. The executive order supports another law called the National Marine Sanctuary Act first passed in 1972. You can read more about marine protected areas on the NOAA site at

A diver find a sunken Japanese submarine with a lethal nerve gas agent seeping out. That is what season 2 episode 15 of Sea Hunt is all about. “Nerve Gas” premiered on April 12, 1959. Mike and his dive buddy Stan – an LAPD police officer who is a judo expert are dispatched to help a diver who started freaking out after finding a submarine. While trying to revive the diver (Leonard Nimoy), Mike also becomes effected. Turns out the problem is nerve gas leaking from a sunken Japanese submarine. Mike and Stan have to seal up the leaking submarine – but not without problems. Listen to hear more about all the action in “Nerve Gas”

Scuba Shack Radio #14 – 9-8-19

In this episode we discuss scuba tank visual inspections, age and diving, Sea Hunt – the other pilot episode

We learn early on in our training that there are two different types of inspections for scuba tanks – hydrostatic (every 5 years) and the annual visual inspection. Only the hydrostatic test is mandated in the US by the US DOT. The visual inspection is a scuba industry standard. It all came about in the 1970s in response to a study conducted by the University of Rhode Island on behalf of the National Underwater Accident Data Center titled Investigation of scuba cylinder corrosion – phase 1. The findings were powerful enough for our industry to self-regulate on this critical safety inspection.

As we grow older, we are not able to do some of the same physical things that we did in our youth. Diving should not be one of those things. There is a chapter in The Complete Diver by Dr. Alex Brylske that discusses age and diving. There is some great info in this chapter along with the reference to a study published in 2003 that shows that age does not dramatically impact diving as long as we stay physically fit.

Mark of the Octopus was actually the first episode of Sea Hunt that was ever produced. It was a pilot episode used to try and sell the show to networks or syndicators. We are introduced again to Mike Nelson fresh out of the Navy, his boat, and the gadgets like an underwater TV camera. Mike is working again for Marine Land of the Pacific at the start of the show. When two divers go missing he is hired by a mining company to find them. One of the divers turns up dead with octopus like marks on his leg but Mike is skeptical and turns out he is right. Underwater fights, spear guns, regulator hose cuts, feeding eels, capturing porpoise, trying to catch a manta ray make this a must see episode.