as of 05/07/13
All current production DESCO helmets
Commercial and Pool Cleaning Masks
Light Duty Diving Outfit
DESCO Two Diver Telephone and available communications options
Third party dry suits
sold by DESCO
Composite Beat Engel Demand Helmet
as of 05/07/13
& Viking price lists.
Product warnings and
What gear it takes to dive.
What goes into making a diving helmet
Real or Replica?
Features of the various helmet models
Magazine or News articles related to diving.
Links to online diving videos.
How DESCO started
Those who built DESCO
DESCO Product Information
General product history. Catalogs, significant orders, etc.
DESCO A, B, C Rebreathers Recirculating Helmets
SCUBA Lungs, Water Skis, and Miscellaneous Water Sports Products
DESCO company photos
and photos from our archives
Commercial Diving Photos supplied by customers
Classic equipment &
hobby diving photos
Photos of helmets from
Photos of equipment in museums
Photos from some of
our repair projects
DESCO Historical Item Collection
Miscellaneous Photos, Old diver and/or equipment photos
On this page we will provide information on the methods, equipment, and history of surface supplied diving.
Surface supplied diving as opposed to SCUBA uses a air compressor and hose to deliver breathing gas to the diver. This type of diving is more complicated than SCUBA in that the diver in most cases requires a tender to operate and monitor the compressor and umbilical lines. While surface supplied diving does restrict freedom of movement (particularly vertically in the water column) the advantages are full communications capability with the surface, and duration only limited by the diver's endurance. It is superior in contaminated water as the diver remains completely dry, and with a free flow system is unlikely to get back flow through the exhaust valve. The heavy weight of the diving outfit which is a impediment on the surface, becomes an asset when working underwater on fixed objects. Where a diver in SCUBA remains near neutrally buoyant a heavy gear diver can virtually anchor him/her self to the bottom. This allows for more natural use of tools as leverage can be applied easily.
Setting up and dressing in a heavy gear diver is
a complex process. Below are some
interesting videos on You Tube:
Deep Sea Diving: "The Diving Dress" pt1-3 1943 US Navy http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vsMNENXOues
Deep Sea Diving: "The Diving Dress" pt2-3 1943 US Navy http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xFm2jwlCFFg
Deep Sea Diving: "The Diving Dress" pt3-3 1943 US Navy http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XhaEZmWoAHU
Deep Sea Diving: Assembling the Deep Sea Suit pt1-2 1963 US Navy http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yp0JLRnA1mA
Deep Sea Diving: Assembling the Deep Sea Suit pt2-2 1963 US Navy http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5s0CeqeT60I
Surface Supplied Diving Equipment
In surface supply the helmet gets all the glory. Collectors worldwide have made the US Navy Mark V Diving Helmet an icon. The Mark V helmet is probably the most collected and widely available diving helmet. No serious collection would be without at least one Mark V.
A diving helmet is useless though without all of the other gear that makes up an "outfit".
Excerpted from the 1959 USN Diving Manual