How to Choose your Cylinder

The cylinder has a huge impact on your diving and is a major influence on how much air you use.
There is a lot of woolly information and advice about diving cylinders.

In SA we are encouraged to use and buy the biggest cylinders available. This is wrong!

Aluminium or Steel...

Steel Advantages...

  • Lighter than an Ali Cylinder out of the water
  • Slightly smaller than an Ali Cylinder
  • They are negatively buoyant so you need less weight on our weight belt.

Steel Disadvantages...

  • Negatively buoyant so they tend to roll you over all the time on a dive
  • Prone to rusting especially as in SA we have to stamp the visual inspection every year.
  • Prone to internal flash powdery rust that can damage your regulator

Aluminium Advantages...

  • Neutrally buoyant so great to dive with…. No roll over
  • No rust or corrosion
  • Does not need a bootie

Aluminium Disadvantages...

  • Heavier out of the water
  • Slightly bigger
  • Need more weights on the old weight belt

The Verdict...

We highly recommend Aluminium cylinders over the Steel Cylinders.

The Old Aluminium cylinders used to be incredibly buoyant and so they gave aluminium cylinders a bad reputation about how they make a diver float.
Divetek is a proud importer of the Luxfer aluminium diving cylinders. These cylinders are slightly negative at the start of the dive. During the dive they are neutrally buoyant and towards the end of the dive they are slightly positive.

In a nutshell, I would rather have a cylinder that is neutrally buoyant for most of the dive so that you can fly without being rolled over. Towards the end of the dive and the safety stop, you watch your buoyancy very carefully and then ascend slowly. It takes some practice but once you’ve got it right – you will never dive with steel cylinders again!

Size of cylinder...

The smaller the size the less energy you need to move the cylinder through the water and the less air you will use.

Always try and dive with a smaller cylinder.

Women, youngsters and divers who don’t suck air can use a 7ltr for all but deep dives. The best all rounder will be 10ltr.

The 12 ltrs are really in the large and heavy category and 15s are in the tek diving arena.

Adjust your weighting and try an Ali 7l or 10l and you will have a really great dive. Do this BEFORE buying a larger cylinder.

Our Cylinders...

We stock a huge variety of different cylinders.

  • Luxfer (Aluminium)
  • Faber (Steel)
  • Eurocylinders (Steel)
  • Catalina (Aluminium)
  • Oxygen Cylinders
  • Composite Cylinders

Click on the image alongside to see the full range we have in stock.