So, You Want To Own a Dive Shop?
So!!! you think that being a scuba diving shop owner and a PADI Open Water Scuba Instructor is easy? Every day only out on the boat, meeting different people, diving, lounging in the sun and drinking beer? Just having fun? Let me tell of my day today.
After working on our web site till 0200 hrs in the morning last night, planning to work some more on our web site in the morning and fix our broken scuba tank compressor in the afternoon, I had a bit of a lie-in in till 0900 hrs this morning. I then had the breakfast that my great wife Saifon left for me before she went to the boat to cook for the 9 divers we had on dive boat. After which I opened up my computer to continue working on our web site’s “GO PRO” section. At around 1000 hrs I get a call from our dive boat captain that our four month old (new) 220 volt generator on our dive boat is smoking and red hot. Great!!!! Close the computer and get to office to coordinate efforts to fix the problem.
Toy, more my girl Friday than only a secretary, is already on the problem and coordinating with Captain Jack (Jackrit), my dive boat captain, on how to quickly get the problem resolved. The best we could do was to have the mechanics on standby till the scuba diving day was over. So, I brought my compressor to a great compressor technician, Steve Burton, who runs Samui Easytech, to troubleshoot our compressor.
After removing all three cylinder heads and looking at all the valves we find two problems and get them sorted out. Put the scuba compressor on the test bench and find out the problems are solved. This is already 1600 hrs.
The boat comes back from it’s diving trip and I run my motorcycle down the pier and consult with the mechanics who installed the brand new generator just four months ago. They have taken some of the panels off and have reviled that the coils have shorted out. Now, What do we do? Tomorrow we have 28 divers on board and no way to pump tanks.
By this time another great friend of ours, Jimbo Munday, offered his truck to help sort out tomorrow. First we got an extra 15 tanks (though terrible traffic and took over an hour, now 1830 hrs) from another great friend of ours, Gary Phillips, delivered them to the diving boat, (now 1930 hrs) then had planned to get the 26 empty tanks on board filled by yet another friend of ours from his boat, Dave Wright, owner of Pattaya Dive Center, but his boat, generator had just broken down as well. Now, what to do?
Honestly, I gave up. I went to the office and told Toy to call the customers, we will cancel. Toy looked at me as if I am crazy! (Stop, Breathe, Think, then Act) I went and had the first relaxing moment of the day and opened a beer and just relaxed for 15 minutes. Then started to think, how can we make tomorrow’s scuba diving trip happen?
Toy had started on a few ideas of her own, told me of them and though those ideas I got a few of my own. At 2230 hrs, problem for tomorrow was solved, but it included my boat staff probably working till midnight.
It looks like our generator problem will take a bit of time to fix. We have already solved our daily problems with filling scuba tanks but Tim Bass, my IT mentor, has come with a good idea to run our dive compressors, possibly renting a construction site generator to pump our tanks at night on the peer. We’ll see if that is a viable solution. (Now 2200 hrs)
Then, as I have promised my IT mentor a post a day, here it is 0130 hrs the next day and I am still writing this post for fear of Tim scolding me about not posting each day. Thanks Tim, I know it is the thing to do!
And for today, and every day, I must thank, (not in order of importance) all again.
Toy, Steve (B2), Jimbo, Sir David, Gary, Tim, La, Jackrit, Dang, Freshy, Tomasz, Saifon (most of all, as she is my wife), Dave Wright, Serge (Fun and Sun), and everyone else who I have not mentioned, I love you all!!!!
Anyway, if you are ever considering to buy and manage a scuba diving shop, consider that you will be forced to work harder than ever before, for next to nothing (financially), but it is the most rewarding experience you will ever have.
You Are Family, ALL!!!