h2operations
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Re: Ignorant Dive Shop people (A rant)

Sat Oct 20, 2018 12:51 pm

It is apparent that breed of shop owners of late do not realize they are creating their own demise.
I often stop into local shops as I travel coast to coast and amazed by the attitude and arrogance( maybe ignorance) that I get met with.
I do admit that they have a time coming ahead of them with the boom in e-commerce but more the reason to be friendly, knowledgeable, and courteous.

I recently went into a local shop looking for some black snorkel keepers. I was told by the shop owner that no one makes them in black. That was quite a surprise to me since me and some associates wear them across our watch faces in the old swatch fashion. It's function more than fashion if you going "What" . More interesting was the look on his face when I pointed to the one I had.....
The next closest shop gives a bit of attitude when I take gear in to get serviced trying to push the buying of the latest gear. Hence my joining the forum and the diving into DIY.

Soooo It appears that local shops are becoming more of an outlet for learning? Do they teach basics? or the theory of follow the computer.
Is it truly learning or cattle car cash collecting?

I needed to get my recently turned of age children their C-Cards for an upcoming trip. I spent a lot of time and found a shop 2 hours and 4 shops away that seemed the best due to others I contacted acting like total A Hs. Most interesting was when my 12yoa asked in class if they were going to go over dive tables..... He was told NO they are only referred to for historical purposes. My 13yoa who was in the class with him said to the instructors ( shop owners ) what if your computer dies??? She was told that's why we can sell you an extra computer... REALLY ???????

I will admit that they have been under the sea for several years and were taught basics and tables from the start. The shop owners wife started to yell at me when she found out they had already been diving. More over I think my kids were surprised and put off by the response ; buy a second computer.

Does this same attitude come from the pushing of classes vs dive experience ??? Have you seen, heard, or experienced this? I have over heard the newly crowned divers asking when the next class is so they can obtain their MASTER DIVER ....

So here is the question : what do we do as an industry to correct their misguided behavior? or Do we ?
Thank you for letting me rant as well.
Thank you for sharing of your knowledge on gear and history.

OLD SCHOOL is Still a School !

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tripplec
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Re: Ignorant Dive Shop people (A rant)

Sun Oct 21, 2018 8:40 pm


simonbeans wrote:
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.
Before our lds went under, my cousin and I were notorious for coming in with 25+ or - psi. One dive club meeting, the owner tells everyone there will be a $20 visual on all empty tanks. So every time I brought one in, I would crack the valve in front of him just "to make sure". Later on when I started an attempt at setting up a compressor, I set up a fill hose that I now use to transfer extra air from a not so empty tank to the empty one before taking it to the current dive shop.

Sent from my SAMSUNG-SM-J320A using Tapatalk


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SurfLung
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Re: Ignorant Dive Shop people (A rant)

Tue Oct 23, 2018 10:00 am

- I understand it is hard for a dive shop to make a profit when competing with discounters and eBay. But that's the case for all retail stores as well as the internet companies that compete with other internet companies. That's competition. What gets me is that the areas where the dive shop has an advantage are tank servicing and filling. So why do so many of them put up barriers when you come in to purchase these services?
- Why the "Empty Tank" prejudice? What is it about an empty tank that is so bad? From my experience with my compressor, the biggest negative is that it takes a lot longer to fill an empty tank than it does to fill one that already had 500 psi in it. Are they concerned that you didn't leave enough reserve air at the end of your dive? Is there something about an empty tank that can damage it? I have a dive buddy that I tease a lot about not getting his money's worth from a fill when he leaves 500+ psi in his tank.
- Insisting on a Visual... If a dive shop insists on a visual on an empty tank, what's the big deal about spinning off the valve and giving a quick check to the inside when you are dealing with a tank that is in current hydro? It can't take more than a few minutes and its not mandated by any law.

- I saw a neat dive shop video by Alec Pierce. He's a Canadian that retired from a successful dive shop and now makes videos and does shows on Sea Hunt memorabilia. Anyway, I've met Alec and he is a charming guy. This video shows how to treat a customer.
SurfLung
The Freedom and Simplicity of Vintage Equipment and
Vintage Diving Technique are Why I Got Back Into Diving.

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antique diver
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Re: Ignorant Dive Shop people (A rant)

Tue Oct 23, 2018 10:58 am

I don't know for sure who started the Bovine Scat about having to leave 500 psi in your tank, but I have a couple of suspects that i won't mention yet.

If a tank comes in for a fill and only has 5 psi left there is no way that H2O (that's water for you dive boutique morons that think it could) could get inside past that!

When an occasional tank came to us totally empty we would just politely say we were going to look inside for them at no charge while they wait to be sure their tank was still dry and clean inside. No point in making a big deal about it.

Can't temember a time that someone didn't appreciate and probably learn a little from that common courtesy!

Is there some inherent character flaw in dive shop owners and employees that has caused them to forget the basic courtesy of treating others as they would like to be treated?

That edict has been around for a documented 2000 years. If you are not sure where to find that, let me know and I will happily direct you to the exact page. It's a good way to live your life.
The older I get the better I was.

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ScubaLawyer
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Re: Ignorant Dive Shop people (A rant)

Tue Oct 23, 2018 12:06 pm

antique diver wrote:
Tue Oct 23, 2018 10:58 am
I don't know for sure who started the Bovine Scat about having to leave 500 psi in your tank, but I have a couple of suspects that i won't mention yet.
I have heard a number of different grounds for the leave 500 psi at the end of a dive mantra.

The only one I was ever taught that made any sense was regional in nature. It was drilled into me by literally everyone who taught me anything about diving that the reason for surfacing with 500 psi was in case you surfaced and found a kelp bed between you and shore or boat. That 500 psi was for ducking back down 10 feet where the kelp stocks weren’t so thick and making a compass course for home. I used that 500 psi many many times for that exact purpose.

Mark
"The diver who collects specimens of underwater life has fun and becomes a keen underwater observer. .. seek slow-moving or attached organisms such as corals, starfish, or shelled creatures." (Golden Guide to Scuba Diving, 1968) :D

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antique diver
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Re: Ignorant Dive Shop people (A rant)

Tue Oct 23, 2018 1:01 pm

ScubaLawyer wrote:
Tue Oct 23, 2018 12:06 pm
antique diver wrote:
Tue Oct 23, 2018 10:58 am
I don't know for sure who started the Bovine Scat about having to leave 500 psi in your tank, but I have a couple of suspects that i won't mention yet.
I have heard a number of different grounds for the leave 500 psi at the end of a dive mantra.

The only one I was ever taught that made any sense was regional in nature. It was drilled into me by literally everyone who taught me anything about diving that the reason for surfacing with 500 psi was in case you surfaced and found a kelp bed between you and shore or boat. That 500 psi was for ducking back down 10 feet where the kelp stocks weren’t so thick and making a compass course for home. I used that 500 psi many many times for that exact purpose.

Mark
That's the kind of thing that the 500 psi thing was intended for, and I agree with that and other safety margins!

Somehow some dive dufuses have distorted that into being bad for the tank, bad for them, and another cause of global warming.

I would say "screw them", but that would not be consistent with the spirit of my previous post here!
The older I get the better I was.

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antique diver
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Re: Ignorant Dive Shop people (A rant)

Tue Oct 23, 2018 1:33 pm

I should clarify my rant about the 500 psi thing!

I was NOT expressing opposition to saving appropriate air pressure for the safety or convenience of the diver and his companions! It was about illogical and unfriendly mental collisions sometimes encountered about fills at some dive businesses.

Even though I'm in Texas I was
lucky enough to have received a lot of valuable Instructor training from the likes of west coast course directors such as James Stewart, Glenn Egstrom, the intense Art Ulrich and others. I mention this as a reason that I too included in my courses the kelp situation as one of the multiple reasons for reserving a reasonable supply of air for unforeseen events.

Seems funny for a Texas program to discuss kelp, but we traveled and ran trips everywhere.

Thanks for reminding me Mark!

BTW, I was not being critical about "intense" Art. I had great respect for him and his desire to see things done well.
The older I get the better I was.

uwstlth
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Re: Ignorant Dive Shop people (A rant)

Wed Oct 24, 2018 12:10 am

h2operations wrote:
Sat Oct 20, 2018 12:51 pm
It is apparent that breed of shop owners of late do not realize they are creating their own demise.
I often stop into local shops as I travel coast to coast and amazed by the attitude and arrogance( maybe ignorance) that I get met with.
I do admit that they have a time coming ahead of them with the boom in e-commerce but more the reason to be friendly, knowledgeable, and courteous.

I recently went into a local shop looking for some black snorkel keepers. I was told by the shop owner that no one makes them in black. That was quite a surprise to me since me and some associates wear them across our watch faces in the old swatch fashion. It's function more than fashion if you going "What" . More interesting was the look on his face when I pointed to the one I had.....
The next closest shop gives a bit of attitude when I take gear in to get serviced trying to push the buying of the latest gear. Hence my joining the forum and the diving into DIY.

Soooo It appears that local shops are becoming more of an outlet for learning? Do they teach basics? or the theory of follow the computer.
Is it truly learning or cattle car cash collecting?

I needed to get my recently turned of age children their C-Cards for an upcoming trip. I spent a lot of time and found a shop 2 hours and 4 shops away that seemed the best due to others I contacted acting like total A Hs. Most interesting was when my 12yoa asked in class if they were going to go over dive tables..... He was told NO they are only referred to for historical purposes. My 13yoa who was in the class with him said to the instructors ( shop owners ) what if your computer dies??? She was told that's why we can sell you an extra computer... REALLY ???????

I will admit that they have been under the sea for several years and were taught basics and tables from the start. The shop owners wife started to yell at me when she found out they had already been diving. More over I think my kids were surprised and put off by the response ; buy a second computer.

Does this same attitude come from the pushing of classes vs dive experience ??? Have you seen, heard, or experienced this? I have over heard the newly crowned divers asking when the next class is so they can obtain their MASTER DIVER ....

So here is the question : what do we do as an industry to correct their misguided behavior? or Do we ?
Thank you for letting me rant as well.
Thank you for sharing of your knowledge on gear and history.

OLD SCHOOL is Still a School !
Hey Paul, if you are in Sandy Eggo we don't have much to choose from any longer. The big dawg Ocean Enterprises is a cattle mill operation focused on luxury travel and getting people through all the PADI courses they offer, I wouldn't take a class there if they paid me to do so. San Diego Divers is not much better and has so much tech-repairman bullshit ego I've stopped going there which is a shame because they are the only shop in town that does on-site hydros and O2 cleaning - both of which are a nice service and important to me but the guys are complete assholes there so they loose getting my gold. Then there's Beyond Land Adventures in the Midway area which seems to be ok but they are still young (they bought the Point Loma Sport Chalet compressor and bank for air fills when they went bankrupt so it's a solid unit). I don't have any experience with IB Divers so can't comment on them. I remember a time not so long ago when scuba manufactures would not allow their gear to be sold online, some like AL and SP clearly stated that if you purchased your gear online you lost their support and warranty. This was done to protect the brick and mortar stores... guess the almighty $$$ prevailed and I believe this is the single biggest contributing factor to the demise of the LDS. Now that you can get scuba certified online with PADI (WTF?) and buy yer gear online, I bet soon the dive store will be a thing of the past. Replaced by trucks in parking lots at dive sites pumping air into tanks like at the Casino on Catalina. I hope the coursework goes well for your kids, the water has been epic this year, have you been out with the sharks and turtles at Marine Room/ Devil's Slide this year? El Nino is knocking on our door so get wet while it's still good. -Kevin

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antique diver
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Re: Ignorant Dive Shop people (A rant)

Fri Oct 26, 2018 9:08 am

I finally caught the LDS open after a few days of vacation closure. I had been looking forward to walking in with my complete homemade Diving Lung rig, and asking for my "Oxygen Tank" to be filled.

The owner saw me approaching the full glass entry door and came toward it, obviously looking with interest at the strange contraption I was toting. As I entered I got a friendly query of "what do you have here?" An employee and another customer also gathered up to see what was going on, and all were very interested to know what this odd thing was. Had a good chat about the purpose and origins of the DIY diving equipment that cropped up during and after WW II, and on into the early 1950's.

Well, I didn't get my Oxygen, but seem to have made some friends there. :)
The older I get the better I was.

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USdiver
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Re: Ignorant Dive Shop people (A rant)

Tue Oct 30, 2018 11:36 am

I am very fortunate that in Southwestern Ohio we have not only a large percentage of vintage equipment divers, but many of us are extroverted gregarious fools, who work at a LDS or two, and have therefore inoculated the LDS in our area so that there are relatively few ignorant dive shop peeps.

I can take my 1950s -1980s manufactured cylinders [steel or aluminum - with eddy current tests] to most of the LDS for air fills. We have provided a vintage equipment table during LDS equipment night functions, to show newbies what diving equipment used to be like, as well as demonstrating its use at local quarries, all with no, or very few, confrontations with scuba police types.

Occasionally, during open water maneuvers, we may encounter a village idiot who proclaims that it is impossible to dive without a BC or some such nonsense, but through a demonstration of our superior buoyancy control skills [diving like harbor seals around the unbeliever] we have succeeded in either embarrassing the dupe or exposed him for the charlatan that is his nature.

Our traveling circus is available to assist you with your LDS issues, all we ask for is quality craft beer and ale in payment. :wink:
Too DAAM Many double hoses, It's not a hobby, it's an addiction.

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rhwestfall
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Re: Ignorant Dive Shop people (A rant)

Tue Oct 30, 2018 1:54 pm

I'm in an "impossible place"... Shops here are problematic over technical equipment as well as vintage.......

Basically, their mantra:

And put in your earplugs
Put on your eye shades
You know where to put the cork....
Bob

No Longer Awaiting my Kraken.....

h2operations
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Re: Ignorant Dive Shop people (A rant)

Tue Oct 30, 2018 6:43 pm

USdiver wrote:
Tue Oct 30, 2018 11:36 am
I am very fortunate that in Southwestern Ohio we have not only a large percentage of vintage equipment divers, but many of us are extroverted gregarious fools, who work at a LDS or two, and have therefore inoculated the LDS in our area so that there are relatively few ignorant dive shop peeps.

I can take my 1950s -1980s manufactured cylinders [steel or aluminum - with eddy current tests] to most of the LDS for air fills. We have provided a vintage equipment table during LDS equipment night functions, to show newbies what diving equipment used to be like, as well as demonstrating its use at local quarries, all with no, or very few, confrontations with scuba police types.

Occasionally, during open water maneuvers, we may encounter a village idiot who proclaims that it is impossible to dive without a BC or some such nonsense, but through a demonstration of our superior buoyancy control skills [diving like harbor seals around the unbeliever] we have succeeded in either embarrassing the dupe or exposed him for the charlatan that is his nature.

Our traveling circus is available to assist you with your LDS issues, all we ask for is quality craft beer and ale in payment. :wink:
You are a very fortunate soul.

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Ron
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Re: Ignorant Dive Shop people (A rant)

Wed Oct 31, 2018 4:30 pm

This will be a self-correcting problem. Between LeisurePro, Ebay, and Amazon, any dive shop with a crummy model will go under eventually. At this point in my life, I've worked as a retail employee at 2 that went under after I left. I've only worked at 4 shops.

I'm not sure what it is though. Maybe divers make bad business people. I've never seen a group so ready to not allow someone to give them their money.

I told a dive shop in Florida one time, "I'm trying to give you 300 dollars, and you won't let me. This is insane."

My bet is by the time I'm old that shops will be gone save for a few large ones with big internet presence. Compressors will be shared via webpages like biodiesel or charging stations, like this:

https://www.plugshare.com/

Everything will be ala carte. Instructors will teach without shops, compressors will fill without teaching, and boats will run on their own.

If you really think about it, a dive shop is a matter of convenience. You can buy gear online, swim at the YMCA, learn from an instructor, get your tanks hydro'd, and mail your regs to any of 100 places online who will fix them for you.

Plus, unless you have a large internet presence or you have government contracts I don't know a single dive shop that makes a profit.
The impossible missions are the only ones which succeed. -JYC

uwstlth
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Re: Ignorant Dive Shop people (A rant)

Wed Oct 31, 2018 6:02 pm

All solid points. Ron, especially yours since you've been on the other side of the counter. I used to think dive shops were modeled like car dealerships:
1- only place to buy equipment
2- didn't really make much $$ on the equipment sales margin
3- were set up to sell you gear and then make their $$ of the SERVICE side of the sport as well as training.

But that service and training side is so "screwed up" (pun intended) now that we have started to do our own. I was lectured by a "tech turd" (yes, that's a technical term) in a service dept at Ocean Enterprises here is Sandy Eggo about not being able to get some part from AL, he said they don't make that any longer. So I went online, purchased it directly through AL and then had it sent to my local authorized dealer for pick up: Ocean Enterprises. When I picked it up that same tech turd was the guy who handed it to me. I asked if he remembered me and he said yeah. That was an awkward moment for him. Remember that scene from Pretty Woman in the clothing store after Julia Roberts spent a mint at another store...

The main point is in today's economic climate, especially with a leisure sport like scuba, ya gotta be the guy who says I CAN DO THAT, not I can't. One other thing I'd add is shops seem to be heavily into travel. Guess they think there's $$ in that. It's bummer really, I'd much prefer to go into a shop, try crap on, chat a bit and have a good experience. It just doesn't happen anymore, the people in these shops are weenies who think they are experts but are really just good at managing their fakebook and pinstawhatever accounts.

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Ron
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Re: Ignorant Dive Shop people (A rant)

Wed Oct 31, 2018 9:57 pm

Solid points to your credit as well. I would add that travel agency type stuff in general is dead. That's a relic of antiquated systems where each company or hotel or airline had its own management information system. The Internet instantly killed travel agencies, and dive shop travel for anyone born in the last 50 years.

I think one of the main problems with the dive shop model is that most of the margin is made on things you physically sell that you mark up.

Examples:

-A dive computer purchased for 150 dollars and sold for 300 MSRP.
-A BCD purchased for 350 dollars and sold for 700 MSRP.

Nowadays, the Internet killed any individual shop's ability to get a volume discount. No matter how many BCDs the shop in Seattle sells, LeisurePro sells 4x that number of BCDs, therefore they can sacrifice margin for volume. That single-handedly killed the primary way in which dive shops made money.

We would routinely make 1500-3000 dollars off an open water student in just gear sales ten years ago.

If shops want to stay open, then they need to become service based in my opinion. Either that or have an awesome Internet presence and tons of technical efficiencies and global reach. I have a bunch of ideas about that, but I don't consult for free and I'm certainly not foolish enough to buy a dive shop.

I had a totally automated smart phone based scuba tank filling service I tossed around a while back, but it turns out when you can make a 2.9 billion dollar ride sharing app making 300 grand a year filling scuba tanks isn't exactly sexy lol.
The impossible missions are the only ones which succeed. -JYC

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