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Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
We often see around the forum new topics asking questions like: "can I shower with my 8000m WR watch?" or "can I be at the pool with my 100m WR watch?"
Unless these questions are a sort of preemptive excuse to get a new tuna (in which case I fully support it and would answer "no! Are you crazy? You NEED a tuna for your pool party!), I always thought the risks and effects of water on watches have been extremely exaggerated within our community.
We often hear about dynamic pressure (which I think is BS) and other hazards.
I had no way to prove my point so I decided to make a test myself on my recent dive trip to key largo.
Enter the Casio A158W-1, a 30m WR watch available on Amazon for less than 15 bucks:
(pic stolen).

So I set up an prepare to get wet:



Since it is common knowledge that a Rolex DSSD is about the minimum you need to stand a hot tub, I am sure my Casio will stop working as soon as I jump into the wat...



Oh.

Well, it is sure a matter of time, the light seals can probably stand a couple minutes but certainly after a while everything will break and the watch will fail...



Uh?

Time goes by...



I go through my dive and the watch keeps ticking...



Well, that didn't go as expected really.
Back on the boat I was puzzled, and quite sure that the watch will eventually burst into flames at night, succumbing the unbearable effort it went through during the day.

In the morning I woke up, and to my biggest surprise, the $15, 30m WR Casio was still working.

Upset by its arrogant will to live, I decided to give it a lesson: I was about to dive the USS Spiegel Grove, a ship wreck situated in approximately 30m of water.

How dare you cheap watch resist the hardship of the deep? Why did you upset the gods of water resistance and dynamic pressure?
We will see how you handle 20m!



Mumble, pretty well apparently.
How about 24m?



This is not going as planned.
30m!



30m for longer time!



Well, I am starting to feel uncomfortable, so cut to the skx009 to distract me a second



Midway through the dive and this little bastard is still alive.
I am now convinced this watch is capable of black magic, and start to fear its wrath.



Back on the boat, surprisingly the Casio did not explode tearing apart my arm in the process to punish me for having tested it.
I consider myself lucky I am alive (I should probably say that it let me live)



This morning, it was still there, defiantly working and keeping great time.
I will sacrifice small animals to it in order to avoid his vengeance.



So, what can we conclude?
While obviously 1 test cannot mean ALL 30m WR watches can stand diving (that was not the point of this test), I think we can confidently say that fear of water in 100m WR watches and above is probably overblown.
I have learned, to my utmost surprise, that a 30m WR watch is water resistant to... Uhm... Approximately 30m (WHO KNEW?).

Thanks for reading and cheers from Seppia!

 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
Absolutely one of the best threads started in some time. Is it going to put an end to the goofy "can I shower with my dive watch posts", or the even more absurd "unless you have lume on the bezel and center seconds hand, have a lume pip, etc, etc, etc, you don't truly have a dive watch" nonsense, unfortunately you know it won't. The irony will be ignored by most.
I always wanted to respond "no, no, nooooooo!" to all the "at least 261836383m WR for your shower" posts, but never had any "evidence" to support any of my claims, except from my experience.
When I was 5 years old (sadly, 30 years ago), my dad gave me a swatch (a regular, 30m WR one) for me to learn how to read time.
I wore that watch till I was 15, day and night, and swam with it in the lake (I am from lake Como in Italy), in pools, showered with it, etc.
it went through two battery changes, it was never pressure tested or anything obviously, and it never failed due to leaks.
So I decided to do this test, and keep it light hearted.
I picked a $15 Casio for two reasons:
1- as much as I was confident it would not fail (at least the first shallow dive), I would not have done this with my speedmaster reduced (I am a financially average guy)
2- wanted to prove it with the cheapest possible watch
Happy it worked, it was fun for me and now I will finally be able to respond to the users that claim you need a screw down crown to brush your teeth directing them here :)
 

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Discussion Starter · #19 ·
I'd like to see it go beyond 30M until failure.
I wanted to, but I was diving on Nitrox so couldn't go any deeper than 34m for security reasons.
The plan is to bring this same watch on all my future diving trips and see how it performs.
Next February I'm probably heading to Turks and Caicos and I'll bring it to 40m.
:)
 

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Discussion Starter · #21 ·
I'm jealous. I was in Key Largo just about a year ago exactly and the wind kicked up halfway through the week and it got too rough to dive. I was supposed to do the Spiegel Grove at the the of the week but never got the chance. Interesting that your computer is set up for meters instead of feet, and you need a new wetsuit...
Sorry for your dive, hopefully you'll be able to do it in the future, the Spiegel is really majestic.
If you are a low consumption guy I would recommend you pick your partners well: I am not a pro by any means but had to get back to the ascent line with 1800 psi because a couple of divers were already at 1000.
If you are overweighted and do not have good buoyancy control the current will have you suck air pretty fast.
Not a big deal because you obviously always dive the weakest profile but I would have liked an additional 5 minutes, it's that great.
Yes I use the metric system because I'm European, I have been living in the U.S. five years now but still my genetics refuse to assimilate the imperial system, I just like the simplicity of the 1-10-100-1000 much better :)
As for the wetsuit, I love to travel light so it's always rental for me. Since I don't live in a dive area (nyc) I think the additional costs of service and transport outweighs the advantages of having my own.
 

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Discussion Starter · #26 · (Edited)
.

The buttons on your ZOOP are very dressy, Ive been looking for a good dress dive computer , this may be a good choice if it fits under my french cuffs.

Appreciate your thoughts. Do you have any opinion on what you think other people may think of me if I wear this in the board room?
It dosnt say professional on the dial - that worries me a bit as Id hate to be thought of as an amateur?

PS - that whole "diving" thing looks like fun, I'd like to try it one day, thanks for the pictures.
Thanks again for your reply Matthew.
Regarding your concerns:
- I have had my tailor fit me a custom shirt with special 10.5" diameter cuffs, now the zoop slides under it like a champ, problem solved!
- I agree the silver buttons seem quite dressy, I am thinking about a customization (have them made of solid gold) to give this subtle timepiece the punch it needs to be recognizable from 3km (approximately 2 miles) away.
- no "professional" on the dial: major downside, I agree with you, but I've solved this by wearing my wetsuit and tanks above my dress.
Customers are sometimes puzzled by my outfit, but there's no confusing me with a n00b now
Kind of like this: https://alligatorwine.files.wordpress.com/2013/09/http-makeagif-com-media-9-27-2013-8try92.gif

What a fun read and love your humor!!! To say I'm jealous that I'm not there diving also would be an understatement. I to have often rolled my eyes at all the "can my 200m watch withstand a warm shower posts". By the way WHERE"S YOUR TUNA IN THE WILD PICS???:)
I dove with it last December, I had to baptize the skx009 this time :)
 

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Discussion Starter · #45 ·
hi seppia, i see youre a man of both business and leisure and i agree with having to carry clothes for both while on holidays is hardly ideal, perhaps this may interest you. youll be able to look professional in and out of the water |>

Only in Japan (even if the brand is QuickSilver:) ).
That's so awesome

Nice!

Fill it up with extra virgin olive oil and you will increase your waterproof rating by 954.5m !!!!

Here is how
See? Black magic, there's no other explanation.
That test puts mine to shame though, great post
 

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Discussion Starter · #63 ·
Hi
I don't think it proves you can consistently dive with a 30m WR watch, but that was not the point.
The point was to
1 have fun
2 "prove" that fear of water leaking in watches is definitely overblown.
According to some, it is not safe to swim in the pool with a 100m watch.
If a 30m can stand, well, 30m, maybe we are exaggerating a bit.
Obviously it would need a lot more tests to be a "proof", I am not claiming anything like that.
But it's an indication I think.
I will run this test again in the future with other similar watches (next candidates are a swatch and an snk805), and the more data, the more we will be able to conclude.
 

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Discussion Starter · #93 ·
Already looking forward to your report of that, if you'll do one! :)
If everything goes according to plan, my next dive trip should happen before Christmas.
I am definitely going to keep this up and test a different (cheap) 30m WR watch every time I go diving, which unfortunately doesn't happen nearly as often as I would like.
:)
 

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Discussion Starter · #99 · (Edited)
As promised a while back, I will try keep this up with additional tests.

Unfortunately I don't dive nearly as much as I would like, but I always manage at least a week long dive trip (usually in winter, in the Caribbean), a 2-3 days dive escapade somewhere between April and August, and (great perk coming with working in sales) I also sneak in one or two one-day trips by just taking an additional day off work before or after a dive trip to Miami.

Reminder: my purpose here is simply to light heartedly ridicule and belittle as much as possible all of those brands (and people) who try to convince you that 100m WR is not enough for showering, or that the absence of a screw down crown basically prevents you from wearing your watch on a rainy day.

I try to do this by scuba diving with the cheapest possible 30m WR watches, and and trying to see when they will eventually fail.

Unfortunately this time my dive trip was pretty disastrous.
We had planned a pretty intense 4 dive day, including a deep dive in the morning (Spiegel Grove) outside of key largo, but first the other divers that were supposed to dive deep cancelled, forcing us to join the shallow dive boat, then my buddy suffered some nausea in the second morning dive, leading to aborted afternoon dives.

So this time the test could not be as extensive as the first time.

So we have our old contender, nicknamed Poseidon Lord Of The Depths, protagonist of the first dive test.
This is the possessed Casio A158W-1



Here seen in action while spanking most 40000m WR divers around the Spiegel grove in April:



The second is a recently purchased, $59 snk805 automatic from seiko, also a 30m WR watch, featuring an absolutely non screw down, minuscule wobbly crown, a plasticky feeling display case back and the overall feeling of a watch that could not survive an accidental beer splash at your typical barbecue party with multiple drunk friends (I happen to do this a lot, if you don't please don't judge. Also, I have an awesome life so you should probably consider inserting some more beer induced drunkness among your circle of friends).



So how did they perform?

We weren't able to dive below 9 meters unfortunately (still approx 20 times deeper than a hot tub though), but....

Beginning of the dive:



Later



My dive buddy (he has a DSSD but he obviously thought 9m was too much so he went watchless)





After an hour:



So again, to the surprise of nobody who ever actually dove, a relatively new, cheap 30m WR watch from a respectable brand survived a dive.
The Casio on the other hand survived after having already endured multiple dives a few months ago.

I expect them to fail sometime obviously (all watches will fail eventually), but will continue to test them till they do.

On my next dives, probably happening this coming winter, I will bring both the Casio and the seiko, plus a new test specimen.

Do you have any 30m WR, cheap watch from a respectable brand to recommend? I was thinking a swatch.

Here's the two test survivors after a thorough rinsing

 

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Discussion Starter · #100 ·
I was trying to link the post above in the first post, to keep the reading easy for new readers (maybe with something like "second test" then the link) but cannot edit the first post.
Maybe a mod can help
 
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