I am sure most of us have tales of woo in relationship to modern dive shops so my story will probably be just one of many. Nevertheless, here is my latest event. Rochester has 2 dive stores, one on the east side and another on the west side. The east side store is the “old style” with old gear displayed, a make shift pool and a rather not-great-people person owner. But it is the easiest to work with in any way. I was a dive master with them for years and was able to fill my tanks always. However, I have acquired so many tanks that the “visual” tests were being bothersome and expensive. Thus, I took the PSI class, got certified and do my own tanks as well as those that came into the store occasionally as part of my “job”.
Friends would also have me vis their tanks, and thus the west side dive store comes into the story. Seems that store would not fill tanks with MY PSI stickers, including my certification number on it. “He doesn’t have liability insurance, so we can’t (won’t) fill them.”
I have moved in the past two years, further westward and away from the east side store. So recently when I needed a fresh hydro on 4 tanks, I went to the fire equipment company that does hydros for the west side dive store. They also vized them and put their sticker on my tanks.
Due to procrastination on my part, I went back to the west side store to get them filled. To my surprise, the store didn’t want to fill them as they were empty (really? Just out of hydro) and wanted to do another visual inspection, of course for a fee. If it wasn’t that I got a couple of PADI certifications from that store, that the woman owner just warned me about bringing in tanks with very low pressure and the need for another visual.
Needless to say, that the west side store with all the modern visual effects and marketing ploys has permanently lost me as a customer and others that I can persuade. Oh, not to name them, but they are a SP store (interesting, huh?)