Bruco And The Door-Stop

Designed by Australian, Ted Eldred, the ‘Porpoise’ became the world’s first single-hose, open-circuit regulator.

A major disadvantage of the early models was the lack of a mechanism to purge water from the second-stage chamber should it become dislodged from the mouth and flood.

This inconvenience was solved by South Australian divers, the late, Bruce Thompson (who later became the XO of Australian Clearance Diving Team One before joining the Sultan of Oman’s Navy – see Nektonix profile article ) and his wife, Felice Cooper.

Drilling a hole in the regulator’s metal face-plate they discovered that by inserting a rubber door-stop that could be depressed at will, they were able to flush water from the chamber.  Failing – like Ted Eldred – to patent the idea, the purge valve became a standard fixture of all future single-hose regulators.

(The 1965 picture shows – then – Leading Seaman Bruce Thompson {wearing an open-circuit rig with Porpoise regulator} briefing the Australian Minister for the Navy,   Mr Fred Chaney, on the Clearance Diving Breathing Apparatus set rigged for O2 diving.)


Categories: History

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