A GOOD FEW YEARS AGO, I rolled backward from the tubes of the club RIB and set out to explore the wreck of HMS Falmouth, leading a much less experienced buddy on his first open-water wreck dive.
We swam around the well-broken remains for an enjoyable 37 minutes before I signalled that it was time to end the dive and make a free-ascent in midwater. We broke surface within touching distance of the boat, to the utter amazement of my buddy, who demanded to know how I’d accomplished such a feat in rubbish vis and on a wreck best described as so much jumbled scrap, with no recognisable navigational references.
I mumbled something suitably modest, and otherwise kept quiet. The performance earned me a reputation for navigational excellence that I maintain to this day.
What I’ve never admitted before is that I remember nothing of the wreck, because I actually spent the entire dive with no idea of where I was, and desperately trying to find the anchorline so we could get back to the boat without a long surface swim. I gave that up only when our remaining gas supply suggested that being on the surface toot sweet would be a smart move.
Which brings me to the Strobo strobe made by Polish manufacturer GRALmarine.
This is a substantial piece of kit. It feels weighty and solid in the hand, like the sort of thing that you can depend on when everything else in your world goes Pete Tong, and you need a break.
True, there’s a whiff of the garden shed in the build quality and the printing of the graphics, but the unit carries the CE mark and the website claims that the standard strobe is tested to 150m, with a 300m tested unit available on request.
I had been sent a 300m unit, but the Editor told me that I didn’t have to take it that deep, which was good of him.