The Proper Scuba Dive Weighting
Guidelines for Proper Weighting. We all know that most new divers tend to need a bit more weight than seasoned ones because Buoyancy Control takes several dives to master. Common types of weights include pouchstyle with lead pellets (left) or solid lead style.
Here is the best rule of thumb for weighting:
Swimsuit or DiveSkin- Begin with 1 to 4 pounds / 0.5/2kg
Thin 3mm wetsuits or Shorty- 5% of your Body Weight
Medium Thickness 5mm suits- 10% of your Body Weight
Cold Water 7mm with hood/gloves- 10% of your Body Weight plus 3-5 pounds / 1.5/3kg
Neoprene Drysuit- 10% of your Body Weight plus 7-10 pounds / 3-5kg
Shell Style Dry Suits w/o under garment – 10% of your Body Weight plus 3-5 pounds / 1.5/3kg
Shell Style Dry Suits w/ heavy under garment – 10% of your Body Weight plus 7-14 pounds / 3-7kg
The undergarments vary quite a bit as they can realy add allot surface area to you thus increasing the amount of weight needed to stay neutrally buoyant.
Salt Water Diving (add to above calculations for Fresh Water)
100 to 125 lb (45-56kg) add 4 pounds (2kg)
126 to 155 lb (57-70kg) add 5 pounds (2.3kg)
156 to 186 lb (71-85kg) add 6 pounds (3kg)
187 to 217 lb (86-99kg) add 7 pounds (3.2kg)
Always do a buoyancy check before beginning your dive and also factor in that if you are diving with an aluminum 80 tank you will need to add a little more to compesate for the tank toward the end of the dive. If you are diving with a steel tank the same holds true except you will need less weight. That is why it is so important to perform a neutral buoyancy check before beginning your dive.