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Cave Diving with Superlight | Throwback

Contributed by Bill Anderson

We want to congratulate long-time Ikelite customer Bill Anderson, who is celebrating 50 Years of Diving this year. Bill has spent his most beloved diving days exploring the depths of Florida's cave and cavern system.

On May 20, 1970, a 20-year-old Bill ventured down to an incredible 325 feet (99m), establishing a World's Record Deep Dive for a minor (under 21 years of age) on regular compressed air. Keep in mind folks, this is well beyond a reasonable risk of oxygen toxicity on equipment that was quite a bit less sophisticated than what we're using today.

Image © Ikelite Underwater SystemsVintage 1979 catalog featuring the 100W Superlite

With its switchable spot/flood beam and aircraft landing sealed beam bulb, Bill found the Ikelite Superlite to be the perfect companion for his adventures.

After a stint in the US Marine Corps, Bill ran the Florida State Skindiving Schools in Jacksonville, Florida. It was there that Bill met local basketball coach and aspiring underwater filmmaker Ned DeLoach and introduced him to the mysterious world of cavern diving.

Bill, along with two other divers, were the primary divers for Ned's 16mm feature film Underground Underwater: A Cave Dive Odyssey. During the filming the three divers wore Superlites on padded necklaces to free up their hands. The Superlites were so powerful that they fully illuminated the cave system's huge cavernous rooms and large winding tunnels. Additional film lighting was only required to light up the divers behind them.

Ned went on to form New World Publications and become a world-renowned photographer and guru of fish identification (along with Paul Humann).

Just like Ikelite, Bill is still out there diving after 50 incredible years. Here's to another 50 years, and convincing Bill to try something new!

Cave divers explore the world of eternal darkness. True darkness is when you cannot tell if your eyes are open or closed. In such total absence of light, the phenomena called "blind sparks" occur from optic nerves firing in feverish attempts to detect any source of photons. Claustrophobia, disorientation, and onset of panic can easily overwhelm a diver when the lights go out and the blind sparks begin. This is why it is so important to rely on a dive light you can trust and place your confidence in. No such darkness or blind sparks exist when Ikelite is guiding your way safely.

- Bill Anderson, Florida Cavern and Sink Hole Diver

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