About Richard Devanney
About The Technical Diver
Well then, time to write some words about The Technical Diver. All blame goes to Richard Devanney, which is me- the person writing this. Hello. That was a deliberate attempt to go from the 3rd person to the 1st person so the rest of the page doesn’t sound weird.
I’ve been a technical diving instructor for 12 years, and have held tech instructor ratings with TDI, SSI Xr, PADI TecRec, BSAC, IANTD, and Raid, and diver ratings with GUE. I own a JJ-CCR and wreck diving is my favourite underwater thing to do. Although I’m a full cave diver, I haven’t dived caves for a while and would certainly need a decent refresher in navigation before attempting any circuits again.
I created The Technical Diver for two reasons, to promote the dive training that I offered, and to collate articles and videos that would be useful to technical divers. There is a lot of information out there, but it’s not always easy to find. Over time the website has become much less about my training. This was initially because I moved around a lot and was not in a position to be able to teach. However, since COVID, my employment has involved me being more at sea than under it. I’m still involved in the diving industry, but not teaching as much.
This website is not aimed at any particular diver, there is information that should be useful to all. I should probably point out that there is no substitute for proper training in scuba diving. I don’t necessarily personally agree with every single thing that is in the videos or articles section, but I think it is good to see and hear different perspectives and approaches to technical diving.
I have managed dive centres in Thailand, Iceland, and Indonesia, managed a liveaboard in Truk Lagoon, and managed the rebreather diving on a superyacht– the owner dived on a Revo and we did some interesting diving in Massachusetts, the Bahamas, Antigua, and the British Virgin Islands.
At the moment I manage a dive centre in Norway from March to October and work in Antarctica from December to March. A week and a half after moving to Norway, I managed to break my leg. For my efforts, I received a titanium trim weight. Diving in Norway is pretty spectacular, there are many WW2 wrecks, and marine life is abundant and diverse.
Dive training with The Technical Diver
Courses available range from Intro to Tech and sidemount, to advanced wreck, decompression and trimix diving. I used to teach CCR diving on the Poseidon 6 and se7en, though I really don’t like the build of them. They are great to dive, but getting them to work consistently is not such an easy task- they are frustratingly temperamental. I own and dive a JJ, and there’s a world of difference. I have never not been able to go for a dive after setting up the JJ, it’s just so incredibly reliable.
My courses take longer than at most dive centres and include more dives. If you want to become competent at technical diving, you need time to progress- in water and on land. It’s a waste of time to complete a course and then go home and forget everything. I would rather have the time to embed good habits and diving procedures than smash out a decompression procedures course in only 4 dives.
The foundation courses are the most important by far. Learning good habits from day one provides a solid base for more advanced courses. Unlearning bad habits is way harder to do. I do not believe in military-style teaching methods, you will never have your mask ripped off your face or your gas turned off without your knowledge. In my experience instructors that do things like that do so because they have nothing of substance to offer students. There are better ways to induce task loading and instil effective responses to problems.
Courses at The Technical Diver involve discussion on human factors and the culture of diving. I highly recommend undertaking Gareth Lock’s Human Factors in Diving Essentials class before doing any courses with me.
Finally, although it will be of very little use to most people that read this website, I have written a book for beginner scuba divers. It’s called “Scuba Diving- A short guide to open water training” and is available on Amazon kindle. It’s firmly aimed at those thinking of learning to dive, and provides information to help them understand what they will learn on the course, how they are structured, duration, requirements, and what they will be able to do once qualified.
I hope you enjoy the content on this site.
For information on any of my courses, contact me.
Header image photo credit: Courtesy of Tony Wong