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Sea Hunt It's Still Alive - Point of No Return

From Audio: 49. Maintaining your BCD, Oceanographic Magazine and Sea Hunt – It’s Still Alive at the Point of No Return

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station description Scuba Shack Radio is an informative bi-weekly podcast covering topics of interest  ... read more
Scuba Shack Radio
Duration: 06:52
Mike is way ahead of his time in deep sea saturation diving but it is not without its challenges
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Mike is way ahead of his time in deep sea saturation diving but it is not without its challenges
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It's time for another installment of Sea Hunt. It's still alive in this time we're going to Season four Episode one titled Point of No Return, and It premiered on January 7th, 1961 60 years ago. The episode starts out with a boat pulling up alongside a Coast Guard cutter. The boat is dropping off a reporter, Dorothy Mabruk. She has heard that Mike Nelson is on board and figures there must be a big story if he's involved. The captain of the cutter tells Daddy that you'll have to wait three days to talk to Mike. The research is about Mike living and working out of the scuba sphere at 250 ft. Now that was right at the beginning of the work that the Davy Jacque Cousteau and Ed Link we're doing on underwater habitats. So see Hunt was a little ahead of the game. After Daddy gets some basic information from the three scientists on board the cutter, the scene shifts to Mike Underwater. He's in doubles, swimming with a big bag of rocks, and he's going into inside. The school is here. The scuba sphere is a small diving, bell shaped habitat with liquid helium and oxygen tanks racked out. Once Mike is inside, he gets a call from the boat. Lieutenant Tully tells him that a tropical storm is heading their way Well, rather than haul him up, it seems that Mike is going to ride it out. So he strings up his hammock, gets ready for bed and it gets into the sack. And because he says he can't raid the refrigerator like he normally does, he settles for a bottle of liquid protein. Well, you guessed it. The big storm hits. And as the cutters tossed about, so is the school bus here. Suddenly, one of the tanks secured to the side of the sphere, breaks loose and crashes down on the hatch, rendering it inoperable. Mike can't fix it, and now they can't bring them up and properly decompress. The project engineer Vic Jennings says it will take a day to make a new hatch. Should they cut him loose? No, they try to get him off the bottom and ride it out, But the scuba sphere is being dragged, and it gets caught on a coral formation. At 250 ft. Mike gears up with his doubles, and he has some additional small tanks between the double cylinders. Not sure what they are, but there's copper tubing spiraling up to the valves on his cylinders. Looks like kind of like a still maybe a chilly. Um, they never really say. As this fear breaks free Mike rides it along until the cable and telephone connections part. And luckily to screw the sphere settles on the bottom and an upright position so Mike can go back inside. And he says that he needs to spend his second night in this chamber of horrors. I gotta tell you, Mike's wetsuit looks pretty beat up in this episode, starting to peel or something like that. Well, now the storm has passed. The cutter realizes that Mike is no longer attached. They have a new door, but now they have to find a habitat. Mike goes outside and tries to inflate one of his marker buoys, but it won't work at eight atmospheres, so he takes out a balloon, blows it up a bit, ties it off to a line and sends it up. Well, you guessed it, it bursts. Now he reverts to filling up a pair of denim jeans tied off of the bottom. I remember this from my time in the Navy, where you could use your pants as a type of life preserver. Well, Mike sends the inflated pants to the surface. They briefly marked the location before collapsing, but Lieutenant Tully thought he saw something, so they stay in the area. Back inside the scuba sphere, Mike says that he needs to conserve air and pray. Then he remembers something from his Cub Scout days and concocts a plan to use his wet suit top as a surface marker buoy. He goes back outside, fills it up and shoot it to the surface, and then ties it off to the scuba sphere. On the cutter. Daddy and everyone are intently scanning the surface. Suddenly, Dottie spots the wet suit top. Well, the next thing we see is Mike Nelson Sands wet suit, top at 250 ft, dragging a new hatch, cable and telephone line. Across the bottom. He fixes the hatch. Attach is the cable and splices in the telephone. It's cold, wet work, he says, and he's ready to rejoin the human race. Mike gets back inside. He hits the hammock and sleeps through the hours of his decompression. They have to bang on the sphere toe, wake him up. Once Mike opens the hatch up pops Dottie to give him a big hug. Mike says he must be in heaven because this is the angel he's been dreaming about. Well, they're the best of my knowledge. This is the only episode that Daddy Mayfield was in, although it appears that from the dialogue from Mike that Dottie was intent on marrying Mike Nelson or, as he puts it, put a ring through his nose. Dorothy Mayfield was played by the actress Joyce Meadows. Well, there wasn't a lot of diving in the point of no return, but Mike Nelson was well ahead of the likes of George Bond, Jacques Cousteau and Ed Link in deep sea saturation habitation.
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