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Advice on buying a BCD

Discussion in 'Basic Scuba Discussions' started by stev, Apr 26, 2014.

  1. diversteve

    diversteve Technical Admin

    # of Dives: I'm a Fish!
    Location:
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    Stev,

    You're talking about t-shirt/barebacked diving right? Notice where most of the other posters in this thread live. :D

    Have you tried a steel backplate with the weight of a tank on it resting on your shoulder blades - I have - it's not for me...
    It's not really so much in the water as it is the long carries for shore diving. IDK Oahu but there's plenty of that on Maui or the Big Island.

    Since you were looking at a Balance do you actually want to trade comfort (and pockets) for minimalist design?

    For single tank, Zeagle makes the Stiletto. It's pretty much direct competition to the Balance. Even costs about the same. Stiletto BC Weight capacity is slightly larger but where you live that's not as important.

    Lot of people like that Blue "H" though...when I was considering one Deep Sea Supply seemed like a much more reasonable option. IDK what they sell for now. Tobin will help size it for the diving you do if you call him.

    Or one of these - does almost the same thing for about 1/2 the price - $349. Express Tech Deluxe They come with a 24# wing which is probably adequate for warm water diving. And you can upgrade to any wing Zeagle makes at Scubatoys or Zeagle Express during the purchase. Even add a weight system for +/- $100 more. I don't recommend it but it will take doubles also.

    my .02

    ---------- Post added April 26th, 2014 at 08:26 PM ----------

    $47 Quick-adjust Crotch strap*Buy Halcyon at DIVESEEKERS.com 888-SCUBA-47
     
    Last edited: Apr 26, 2014
  2. diver 85

    diver 85 Solo Diver

    # of Dives: 1,000 - 2,499
    Location: SW Louisiana
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    Stev, I too would not buy that for that price......Several years ago, Edd @ Cave Adventurers(http://www.caveadventurers.com/store/package-deals-c-43.html) put together a 'deal' for me on a Dive Rite package, have been thoroughly pleased with it & their service.....You might want to give him a holler....PS, came an eyelash away from getting a DSS, but Edd won out in the end---very close though...
     
  3. DivemasterDennis

    DivemasterDennis DivemasterDennis ScubaBoard Supporter

    # of Dives: 500 - 999
    Location: Lakewood, Colorado
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    Just as a counterpoint, I am a big fan of the SeaQuest Balance. I had an old one (1997) and now a new one. The new ones are not back inflate, but jacket type and much more comfortable than the prior models. I also have a SeaQuest pro for teaching and training, but it is big and heavy. Lots of good suggestions here. Buy whata you find comfortable for your use. NHop one opinion is "correct."
    DivemasterDennis
     
  4. Derek S

    Derek S Divemaster

    1,216
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    As others have said, you really can't go wrong with a Halcyon. I've been using one since right after AOW, and I won't consider anything else at this point. I'm a bit crazy about my gear, and cost really doesn't come into the equation for me. This is gear that could potentially save your life, so what's a few hundred dollars either way?
     
  5. Tony387

    Tony387 Solo Diver

    # of Dives: 100 - 199
    Location: San Marcos, Texas
    357
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    I agree with the last poster. If cost is not a factor, then absolutely go with Halcyon...they make a fine product. However, if cost is a consideration...then I doubt using a HOG, Dive Rite, or DSS rig will cost you your life. I've heard they make pretty good products too.:wink:
     
  6. LowDrag

    LowDrag Manta Ray

    # of Dives: 100 - 199
    Location: Portland, Oregon
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    I think the OP would be hard put to find any BC, wing or jacket that will be comfortable on the walk to the shoreline when he is bareback or even in a wet t-shirt. I think the OP might be better served to wear at least a thicker rash guard of some kind to protect his bare skin. Just a thought...

    On a side note. I have dove both jacket style and BP&W and my jacket BC moved around on my back far more than my wing ever has.
     
  7. Jim Lapenta

    Jim Lapenta Dive Shop

    # of Dives: 500 - 999
    Location: Canonsburg, Pa
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    I would never get in saltwater these days without some type of rashguard, skin, or even a 1.5 mm wet suit. It just offers too much protection against scrapes, stings, etc..

    Sent from my DROID X2 using Tapatalk 2
     
  8. diversteve

    diversteve Technical Admin

    # of Dives: I'm a Fish!
    Location:
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    My Ranger is - esp. with the lumbar pad. And the padded shoulder straps. I've had hard backpack BC's in the past but it's not as much fun...I only dive warm water in a t-shirt and microfiber board shorts - have for decades. Even when others have thin full wetsuits, I just don't get cold. And we also dive liveaboards so I'm in the water 4-5 dives/day.
    I completely agree, mine also. No soft backpack supports a tank as well as if it's bolted to a steel plate. I don't dive caves/wrecks so for me it matters less.
     
  9. LowDrag

    LowDrag Manta Ray

    # of Dives: 100 - 199
    Location: Portland, Oregon
    1,050
    172
    63
    My thought on the comfortability (is that a word?) was not the walk itself but the material of a BC rubbing against bare skin or a wet t-shirt between the BC and skin. I have no doubt that you or anyone else that doesn't get cold could dive as you describe. I have known people that could really take the cold. Not me, that's why I dive dry...LOL!!!
     
  10. diversteve

    diversteve Technical Admin

    # of Dives: I'm a Fish!
    Location:
    26,242
    5,820
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    I don't recall any chafing even when I have gone without a shirt. The lumbar pad on mine is made of something nylon that feels like a mattress top and the straps are all wrapped in something that to the touch seems softer than the 1000 denier wing - which would give you some good rub marks if you made a lot of contact with it. It could be the same stuff though, hard to tell.
     

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