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January 2023 Newsletter

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Vol. 51 No. 01

January Speaker: Ocean Rescue Alliance (In Person Speaker)

January's speaker is Shelby Thomas. Shelby is the Founder and CEO of the Ocean Rescue Alliance, a marine conservation and restoration nonprofit organization, that implements innovative techniques to restore marine environments. She is an expert in marine restoration and conservation, receiving her master’s in Marine Ecology and currently completing her PhD in Marine Biology with the University of Florida. She is an environmentalist and marine conservation advocate who hopes to inspire others to protect our environments. She has worked with various restoration projects including coral, seagrass, oyster, sea-urchin, and scallop restoration.

Shelby is passionate about preserving our natural ecosystems and creating a foundation for their appreciation. Her nonprofit combines art to aid in communicating science to the public in impactful ways. The Ocean Rescue Alliance artificial reefs create complex habitat space, enable species specific restoration and serve as ecotourism destinations that combines art and culture to connect the communities they serve. She now has worked with over 25 different restoration projects and continues to conduct research in this field. Through her research and outreach, she plans to assist in conserving, restoring, and better managing our ecosystems. She would like to make a lasting impact, conserving our environments while also improving peoples lives around the world.

Overseas Diving Update

Upcoming trips 2023:

  • Damai 1, liveaboard, Mar 13-24, 2023 - Trip is full
  • Damai 1, liveaboard, Mar 26-Apr 06, 2023 - Trip is full
  • Little Cayman Beach Resort (first time in 4 years) - May 20-27, 2023
    A few spots remains open - please reach out to trip Lead: Roger
  • Bonaire, Divi Resort, 17 boat dives and free beach diving - June 24-July 1, 2023 - this trip will be advertised at the January meeting

Upcoming trips 2024:

  • BVI (British Virgin Islands): Aggressor liveaboard - May 11-18, 2024 - this trip will be advertised at the May meeting
  • Solomon Islands: Bilikiki live aboard, New dates: July 23 - Aug 2, 2024
  • We will start to look at land based extensions before Bilikiki - as a group or individually.
  • If interested, call Nils, or wait for the trip to be advertised again.
Past trips 2022:

Final Trip reports for Fiji (May) and - Cayman (July) and Saba (Oct) are all pending due to Covid-19 and other medical delays...

We just finished the Saba trip - very enjoyable - trip report and pictures soon

Nils Jacobsen
VP Overseas Diving

    Presidents Waves

    Happy New Year,

    I hope everybody is enjoying their holiday season, even if it is a bit chilly for local diving. The Board is very proud to announce that we have secured a new location for our general membership meetings after the Marriott increased our rent again. We will now be holding our meetings at the Aloft Hotel in Delray Beach. Please come join us for another great speaker that Rick Dayan has lined up for us and check out our new location.

    The following are the officers elected to serve on the Board of Directors by our membership. The appointed members will be appointed at the first Board meeting on January 12.

    • President - Chris Hardham
    • VP of Programs - Rick Dayan
    • VP Overseas - Nils Jacobsen
    • VP of Social Events – Open        
    • VP of Local Diving - Ryan Goheen
    • Secretary - Amy Welman
    • Treasurer - Ronnie Farr

    Please consider joining the board as the VP of Social Events. Several of the existing board members have filled this position in the past, the BoD has many great ideas to share and would be glad to help with the position.

    We also need someone to volunteer for the Promotions position to run the Lobster pot at our meetings. Please consider joining the Board. Also, if you would like to donate for the Lobster Pot, any donations would be appreciated.

    To attend a USA function, members must have a valid COVID-19 vaccination as defined by the CDC.

    Happy diving,
    Chris Hardham


    Hospitality Hut

    HAPPY NEW YEAR 2023 

    Greetings From The Hospitality Hut,

    "The Hut" hopes you had a very happy holiday season and are ready to see what the New Year has waiting for us.

    I am happy to report two perspective guests to ring in the New Year. Let's try and get the word out about our dive club.

    If all goes well, and I know it will,  we can all look forward to a new beautiful venue for our monthly meetings.  Its' challenging to find a meeting room to satisfy everyone, so please do your best to support all the effort and work that goes into a very labor intensive task.

    I encourage you to visit our home page  Please click on the calendar and keep up to date on all the diving and non-diving scheduled activities. You may also take a look at the photo gallery and take a peek at past events.

    I wish you all Happy Diving.
    Clare Anthon
    Hospitality Coordinator


    Overseas Dive Trips


    Along with a brand new year, we have a brand new meeting place for our monthly General Membership meetings.  On January 5, 2023, join us at the Aloft Hotel Delray Beach.

    This beautiful new venue is located at 202 SE 5th Avenue in Delray Beach.  Meet up at 6:00 pm, before the meeting, and socialize with friends during Happy Hour for dinner, snacks and drinks in the stylish hotel bar and restaurant.  Hope to see you there.

    At the end of December, the USA Membership Directory will be published.  Please look for your name and make sure the contact information is correct.  If anything needs to be changed, just let me know and I'll make sure it is updated.

    Also, January brings with it USA's annual membership renewal season.  Don't miss out on the action.  If you haven't done so already, please renew in order to maintain good standing in your favorite club. 

    As always, we invite you to browse through our extensive Photo Gallery to take a look at our social and diving activities.

    Local Diving

    • No upcoming local dives

    Educational Blog


    By Mark Gresham and Bill High. 

    This article represents the views of the author.  The article has not been fact checked by myself, the Board of Directors or any member of the USA Dive Club.

    Copyright Disclaimer under section 107 of the Copyright Act of 1976, allowance is made for “fair use” for purposes such as criticism, comment, news reporting, teaching, scholarship, education and research. Fair use is a use permitted by copyright statute that might otherwise be infringing.

    The “80” had a down-side. At 3,000 psig/207 bar, that pressure was a bit high for most compressors in use. Many dive stores could not fill them completely. More importantly, its diameter was slightly greater than the common steel cylinder, so it would not fit into the non-adjustable backpacks.

    Alcan (Luxfer) was not the first to make an aluminum scuba cylinder. In the mid-fifties, the US Navy purchased many aluminum cylinders from Pressed Steel Tank Co. which were not Interstate Commerce Commission (ICC) approved for commercial use. Those cylinders were made by a spinning process that required a plug to close the round bottom. By the 1970s, some of those cylinders found their way into recreational diving; however, they were illegal to fill or transport.

    For several years, the Luxfer “80” was the only kid on the block. In 1981, the competitors Walter Kidde Co. and Catalina Tank Co. began making competitive cylinder models using the somewhat different alloy, 6061. 

    The bright future for the “80” continued into the 1980’s. Adjustable backpacks solved the size issue. Corrosion resistance was evident. Several colors were available. There were two things we did not know. First, in 1982 and 1983, Luxfer produced its cylinders using the 6351 alloy with a somewhat elevated trace lead content. That became an issue later. Catalina and Kidde continued using 6061 alloy. Secondly, a metallurgical issue raised its ugly head.

    For the complete GUE article, Please use the link below

    A Brief History of Scuba’s Ubiquitous Aluminum 80 Cylinder - InDepth (

    Month: January 2023

    Jan 1
    Feb 1


    (Temporarily Suspended)

    USA's Lobster Pot drawings Include CASH prizes, and a variety of PRIZES donated by South Florida Dive Shops,
    other Sponsors or Club Members.

    Funds from ticket donations help to support our many club activities. Congratulations to all our Lobster Pot participants. Be sure to visit our Local dive shops who support us and say 'Thanks'.

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    Place an ad to buy or sell gear, or promote a dive related event that will be of general interest to club membership. Email your ad to

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