Basic weight guess for average build individual in salt water — decrease weight somewhat for lean individuals and increase for heavier individuals.
|EXPOSURE SUIT TYPE||START WITH|
|Swim suit/dive skin||1–4 lbs|
|3mm 1piece full wet suit||5% of body weight|
|5mm two piece wet suit||10% of body weight|
|7mm wetsuit w/ hood & gloves||10% of body weight, plus 3–5 lbs|
|Neoprene dry suit||10% of body weight, plus 7–10 lbs|
|Shell dry suit, light undergarment||10% of body weight, plus 3–5 lbs|
|Shell dry suit, heavy under garment||10% of body weight, plus 7–14 lbs|
|THIS IS WHERE YOU START!
If you are diving in the tropics in a full 3mm suit and you are average build and weigh 150 lbs, you start out with 7.5 lbs of lead. You then add or subtract as you feel your buoyancy. (At depth of around 20 ft or so, feel your BC and see how much air you are adding to it to be neutral.)
|FRESH / SALT WATER CHANGE
(This is what you use if you already have been diving and have established your buoyancy in either fresh or salt water. You add or subtract these amounts from what you are currently diving. In other words, if I have been diving in Waldo Lake with 22 lbs, and I go to Hood Canal, I need to add about 6 lbs of lead to compensate for the salt water or vice versa.)
|BODY WEIGHT||Add (going to salt)
Subtract (going to fresh)
(Adventures in Diving Manual, PADI, 2001, p.213)