If you’re considering or already signed up for a GUE Fundamentals class and you’re reviewing your equipment needs,  you can use the list below as your reference guide.

The GUE Fundamentals base equipment configuration is comprised of:

a. Tanks/cylinders:

Students may use a single tank/cylinder with a single- or dual-outlet valve. Students may also use dual tanks/cylinders connected with a dual-outlet isolator manifold, which allows for the use of two first stages. Dual tanks/cylinders connected with a dual-outlet, non-isolator manifold can be used, but only in recreational (no decompression) diving, and are considered an alternative for a single tank/cylinder. Consult course-specific standards and your instructor to verify size requirements.

b. Regulators:
  1. Single tank: The first stage must supply a primary second stage via a 5 to 7 ft/1.5 to 2 m hose. A backup second stage must be necklaced and supplied via a short hose. The first stage must also supply an analog pressure gauge, inflation for the buoyancy compensator (BC), and (when applicable) inflation for a drysuit.
  2. Double tank: One first stage must supply a primary second stage via a 5 to 7 ft/1.5 to 2 m hose (7 ft/2 m hose is required for all cave classes) and inflation for the buoyancy compensator (BC). The other first stage must supply a necklaced backup second stage via a short hose, an analog pressure gauge, and (when applicable) inflation for a drysuit.
c. Backplate system:

i. is held to the diver by one continuous piece of webbing. This webbing is adjustable and uses a buckle to secure the system at the waist.

ii. A crotch strap is attached and looped through the waistband to prevent the system from riding up a diver’s back.

iii. The continuous webbing must support five D-rings:

  1. The first placed at the left hip
  2. The second placed in line with a diver’s right collarbone
  3. The third placed in line with the diver’s left collarbone
  4. The fourth and fifth are placed on the front and back of the crotch strap when divers plan to use advanced equipment such as DPVs


iv. The harness below the diver’s arms has small restrictive bands to allow for the placement of backup lights. The webbing and system retain a minimalist approach.

d. Buoyancy compensation device (BC):

i. A diver’s BC is back-mounted and minimalist in nature.

ii. It is free of extraneous strings, tabs, or other material.

iii. There are no restrictive bands or restrictive elastic affixed to the buoyancy cell.

iv. Wing size and shape is appropriate to the cylinder size(s) employed for training.

e. At least one time/depth measuring device
f. Wrist-mounted compass
g. Mask and fins:

Mask is low-volume; fins are rigid, non-split.

h. Backup mask
i. At least one cutting device
j. Wetnotes with pencils
k. Surface marker buoy (SMB) with spool:

When required, the SMB should be appropriate for environmental conditions and deployed using a spool with at least 100 ft/30 m of line.

l. Exposure suit appropriate for the duration of exposure


Additional Course-Specific Equipment

a. Where required, back gas and stage cylinders are marked in accordance with the GUE General Training Standards, Policies, and Procedures document and configured in line with GUE protocols.

b. When drysuit inflation systems are applicable, they should be sized appropriately for the environment; small tanks are placed on the left side of the backplate with larger supplies affixed to the diver’s left back gas tank.

c. Underwater lights:

i. When required, backup lights should be powered by alkaline batteries (not rechargeable) and stowed on the D-rings at a diver’s chest.

ii. Backup lights should have a minimal number of protrusions and a single attachment at the rear.

iii. The primary light should consist of a rechargeable battery pack and be fitted with a Goodman-style light handle.

iv.When burn time requirements create the need for an external battery pack, it should reside in a canister mounted on the diver’s right hip.

d. Guideline devices, as required during cave diving activities:

i. A primary reel is required for all cave diving and provides a minimalist form factor with a handle designed to support a Goodman or “hands free” handle operation. The primary reel must contain at least 150 ft/45 m of line.

ii. A safety spool is required for each diver while cave diving and must contain at least 150 ft/45 m of line.

iii. A jump or gap spool is required during Cave 2 diving and must contain at least 75 ft/23 m of line.


GUE General Training Standards, Policies, and Procedures Excerpt from Version 9.1, view the full document here.