Upon graduation, students become eligible to take this course, which is held later each month after graduation. Dive hats are essential equipment you’ll be working with for the rest of your career so the knowledge you’ll gain from the Hat Technician Course is practical training you’ll be able to use throughout your diving career. The industry standard and requirement is that all dive helmets need to be torn down, inspected, and rebuilt once a year. The soft good also needs to be replaced. This includes O-rings, teflon spacers, and “…pretty much everything that’s not metal or fiberglass on these hats get replaced once a year,” as the course instructor mentions.
"It's one thing just to throw it on your head and get in the water, but there's no greater value than knowing how it works and how it functions internally."- DIT Hat Course Instructor
The first part of this course is in the classroom, learning about legal do’s and don’ts and going through the technician manual. The second part of the course you spend down in the shop doing hands on work. You’ll tear down a hat completely to the shell, inspect everything, replace all the soft goods, put it back together, and adjust it.
Mechanical aptitude probably. Being able to read a blow apart schematic, understanding what the parts are, where they go. Most people do pretty well with it.
It's nice to know how these hats come apart and go together because these helmets are our life support. It's what lets us go underwater and do what we do. Having the ability to understand how the hat functions, and how to troubleshoot when stuff isn't acting right is a valuable asset to have on any dive team. I personally want to know how to fix my hat if I'm having a problem with it, especially if I'm out in the middle of nowhere on a job site.