We recently got a request to fabricate a neck dam for a Russian 3-bolt hat & was wondering if anybody else out there was looking for an inexpensive way to make a 3-bolt behave a little more like a DESCO Pot.

(... or would that be more like an Aquabell?)

Not sure how much $$ they're going to wind up being yet, gotta finish off the first one first but it'll be under a C-note for sure.

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As you know this will be a positive bouyancy helmet and a jocking belt will be required also chest and back weights. The exhaust is a bump style with a secondary mushroom valve. It can be adjusted to free exhaust.

They should put a air control valve in the hat other wise they must have a belly valve.

neck dam is an easy deal. Ace Parnell set his russian 3-bolt to dive with a neck dam, his was a neoprene with a h*** in for his head - flat ass gasket type.

standard neckdam is better.

Hi Fred~!

Dang, for a minute there, I thought you were going to say that you were using one!

Yah, ACE was one of the first guys to tell me about his neck dam a few years back; it was the next logical step to add a "funnel" to the h*** for a better fit.

A guy will definitely want to utilize some chest/back weights to get the hat at least neutral, I found that out many moons ago (as a grade schooler) while diving in the river behind my house when I was a kid using a 5 gallon bucket & a pile of sash weights (less bulky than the cinder blocks I first used).

I did hear about the lads at Kirby Morgan having their own version of the "bucket hat":

They tried adding all the "bells & whistles" but had to settle for a horn instead, the whistle not working out so good underwater.

This is probably one of the first "low volume" bucket hats.


Hey Robert an Fred, Just happened to read your comments.. To recap what was able to be put together with my old Russian hat. First of all I have to say it is one of my most fun and cheapest hats I have. I just love that thing for shallow bottom walking an fun diving.
The neck dam is just a flat sheet of foam neopreme with a h*** cut in it(about 3/4" smaller than your actual neck size) you should be able to pretty well turn upside down with it in the water.
On the air control valve  I chose a chinese air control valve with the standard hose from hat to control valve then fittings with umbicial to surface. A guy like Fred would most likely chose another valve and with his skills soder it to the hat its self.
On the existing  Russian exhaust valve I heated it up with a torch and sweated it out, it came right out very easy.  One of the best suprises was the Chinese adjustable exhaust valve (like the ones old Jap hats use) fit right back into the hat perfectly. How cool was that! I have to mention that when doing all of these modifications be sure to look inside of the hat, unscrew the plate that covers the com cable and speaker first make sure one is in there. I have a friend who didnt and on his maiden dive got the suprise of his life when water came shooting inside of his hat due to not having a communication cable or not having anything in there at all. Suprise! Ok.
On helmet weights the Russian ones and orginal jocking system is very good but not sure you really need that much weight. Rember this rig was orginally designed to be used with a full dry suit and utalize adjustable inflation to help float a diver back to the surface. Heavy Gear diver John Durham use to dress himself out to be much closer to using almost neutral buoyancy. What ever you chose to weight with a suit or not it has to work for you. Your choice, but getting back to the surface to be able to dive another day is a wonderful thing.  Have fun Robert. Call me if you want to talk more.              


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