Technical Diver Level 2



The GUE Technical Diver 2 (Tech 2) course is the second in a series of three courses designed to develop technical diving excellence, building upon previously learned skills with a focus on extending essential technical diving skills. Tech 2 training focuses on building diving proficiency at increasing depth to 240 feet/70 meters using Helium diving gases with Oxygen enriched decompression gases. These skills include: the use of multiple stages, the use of Trimix, the use of greater percentages of Helium, gas management, Oxygen management, decompression, accelerated, omitted and general decompression strategies, dive planning, and technical equipment configurations. Course participants will gain experience working with a variety of different gas mixtures for use as bottom mix and multiple decompression gases. This course culminates in a true understanding of "best gas" selection in the 100 foot/30 meter to 250 foot/75 meter range.




  1. Must meet GUE General Course Prerequisites as outlined in Section 1.6
  2. Must be a minimum of 21 years of age
  3. Must be GUE Fundamentals and GUE Tech 1 qualified
  4. Must have a minimum of 200 logged dives, with at least fifty (50) dives on double tanks/cylinders; twenty-five (25) of these should have utilized a single stage
  5. Must have a minimum of twenty-five (25) dives beyond Technical Diver Level 1 qualification
  6. Must be able to swim a distance of at least 60 feet/18 meters on a breath hold
  7. Must be able to swim at least 500 yards/457 meters in less than 14 minutes without stopping. This test should be conducted in a swimsuit and, where necessary, appropriate thermal protection.




The Tech 2 class is normally conducted over a 5-day period. It involves a minimum of forty (40) hours of instruction, encompassing both classroom and in-water work.



Course Limits


  1. General Training Limits as outlined in Section 1.4
  2. Student to instructor ratio is not to exceed 3:1 during any in-water training
  3. Maximum depth 240 feet (+/- 10 feet)/70 meters (+/- 3 meters)
  4. No overhead environment diving (excepting decompression)


Course Content


The GUE Tech 2 course is normally conducted over a 5-day period, and cumulatively involves a minimum of forty (40) hours of instruction, designed to instill in divers a working knowledge of extended range diving; including physiology, tables and logistics. Special emphasis is placed on extended exposures and on their associated considerations (gas consumption, DCS, Oxygen toxicity, and thermal concerns).


Course requirements include a minimum of six (6) hours of academics, and eight (8) dives, four (4) of which will be critical skill dives and four (4) will be experience dives. Four (4) dives must utilize Helium.


Required Training Materials


  1. Doing it Right: The Fundamentals of Better Diving. Jarrod Jablonski, GUE, 2001, High Springs, Florida.
  2. Getting Clear on the Basics: The Fundamentals of Technical Diving. Jarrod Jablonski, GUE, 2001, High Springs, Florida.


Academic Topics


  1. GUE organization
  2. Limits of training
  3. Course completion requirements
  4. Review of decompression, gas utilization and risk, diving physiology
  5. Accelerated, omitted, and general decompression strategies
  6. Dive logistics and planning


Land Drills & Topics


  1. Spool, reel, and guideline use
  2. Dive team order and protocols
  3. Gas switching procedures and protocols
  4. Bottom, stage, and decompression bottle use


Required Dive Skills & Drills


  1. All skills and drills as outlined in General Diving Skills, Section 1.5.
  2. Review procedures for gas failures; including valve manipulation, gas-sharing, and regulator switching (as appropriate).
  3. Effectively and comfortably demonstrate the ability to deploy a lift bag/surface marker buoy in less than two minutes while hovering stationary. Participants should not vary in depth more than 5 feet/1.5 meters.
  4. Demonstrate the clean and effective removal and exchange of multiple stages and decompression bottles while hovering horizontal. The participant must be capable of removing and replacing each of at least two bottles in less than one minute, i.e. one minute per bottle.
  5. Be able to comfortably demonstrate at least two propulsion techniques appropriate for delicate and/or silty environments.
  6. Equipment familiarization.
  7. Gas-sharing scenarios to include gas-sharing for at least 200 feet/60 meters.
  8. Demonstrate the effective deployment of a reserve light in less than 30 seconds.
  9. Demonstrate excellent buoyancy control skills, including when conducting stage and decompression gas switches.
  10. Demonstrate effective valve-management.


Equipment Requirements


Each student should have, and be familiar with, all of the following required equipment.


  1. Tanks/Cylinders: Students are required to use dual tanks/cylinders connected with a dual outlet isolator manifold, which allows for the use of two first-stages. All dives must start with a minimum of 80 cubic feet/2250 liters of gas. Also required are two decompression cylinders: one (1) greater than 30 cubic feet/850 liters for Nitrox and one (1) 30 cubic feet/850 liters, or greater, for an additional deco gas.
  2. Regulators: Two first-stages, each supplying a single second-stage. One of the second-stages must be on a 7-foot/2-meter hose. One of the first-stages must supply a pressure gauge and provide inflation for a dry suit (where applicable). One first-stage regulator for shallow decompression gas and one first-stage regulator for travel/decompression gas; each one is to supply a single second-stage and a single pressure gauge.
  3. Backplate System: A rigid and flat platform, of metal construction with minimal padding, held to a diver by one continuous piece of nylon webbing. This webbing should be adjustable through the plate and should use a buckle to secure the system at the waist. A crotch strap attached to the lower end of this platform and looped through the waistband would prevent the system from riding up a diver's back. A knife should be secured to the waist on the left webbing tab. This webbing should support five D-rings; the first should be placed at the left hip, the second should be placed in line with a diver's right collarbone, the third should be placed in line with the diver's left collarbone, the fourth and fifth should be affixed to the crotch strap to use while scootering or towing/stowing gear. The harness below the diver's arms should have small restrictive bands to allow for the placement of reserve light powered by three in-line c-cell batteries (where necessary). The system should retain a minimalist approach with no unnecessary components.
  4. Buoyancy Compensation Device: A diver's buoyancy compensation device should be back-mounted and minimalist in nature. It should come free of extraneous strings, tabs, or other material. There should be no restrictive bands or "bungee" of any sort affixed to the buoyancy cell. In addition, diver lift should not exceed 80lbs. Wing size and shape should be appropriate to the cylinder size(s) employed for training.
  5. At least one depth-measuring device
  6. One timekeeping device
  7. Decompression tables
  8. Survey compass
  9. Mask and fins: Mask should be low volume; fins should be rigid, non-split
  10. At least one cutting device
  11. Wet Notes
  12. One spool with 100 feet/30 meters of line per diver
  13. One primary reel per team, with a minimum of 300 feet/90 meters of line
  14. One primary light: A primary light should be minimalist in design; its power source should consist of a rechargeable battery pack residing in a canister powering an external light head via a light cord. Primary lights should produce the equivalent output of 50 watt halogen/10 watt HID lighting or greater.
  15. Two reserve lights: Reserve lights should be non-rechargeable in-line three c-cell battery lights with a minimum of protrusions and a single attachment at its rear. The light should be activated by twisting the front bezel towards the body, deactivated by turning it away from the body.
  16. Exposure suit appropriate for the duration of exposure.
  17. At least one surface marker buoy per diver.


Note: Prior to the commencement of class, students should consult with a GUE representative to verify equipment requirements. Whether or not a piece of equipment fulfills GUE's equipment requirement remains at the discretion of GUE and its instructor representatives. Participants are responsible for providing all equipment or for making provisions to secure all necessary equipment before the start of the course. In general, it is better for the student to learn while using his or her own equipment. However, students should exercise caution before purchasing new equipment to avoid acquiring substandard equipment. Please contact a GUE representative prior to making any purchases. Information about recommended equipment can be obtained from the equipment considerations section of GUE's web site.

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