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looking to get my first bc help please?

Discussion in 'Buoyancy Compensators (BC's) and Weight Systems' started by lvxsurf, Jun 24, 2012.

  1. TXreefer

    TXreefer PADI Pro

    # of Dives: 200 - 499
    Location: Texas
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    I'll try it thanks! I have thought of doing that or at least 90* to one side or the other, but I guess I'd still hit on that side.
     
  2. RonFrank

    RonFrank Solo Diver

    # of Dives: 200 - 499
    Location: Conifer, CO
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    I like Zeagle. Based in FL with products made in the USA. I have a Zeagle Stiletto BC. I use Zeagle Regs as well, the 50D/ZX.

    Unlike most here I say buy your equipment as soon as you find some you like. You live where Diving can be cheap if you have your own stuff. When I first started I bought mostly used. You can get some great deals on EBay. You can get setup for $500 or less. After you dive for a while you will have your own preferences.

    Enjoy the certification. Dive Safe!
     
  3. vladimir

    vladimir ScubaBoard Supporter ScubaBoard Supporter

    # of Dives: I just don't log dives
    Location:
    36,757
    46,591
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    You should not mount the tank so low that you can't reach the valve.
     
  4. TXreefer

    TXreefer PADI Pro

    # of Dives: 200 - 499
    Location: Texas
    206
    22
    18
    Yeah that is what I meant by only so low. I always check to make sure I can reach the valve after I suit up. I do like the BP&W though. Still fine tuning the fit. I tried it the other day without the STA I have (so I could mount the top strap a little lower), but it rolled a lot. So I mounted the STA and instead of running the straps through the STA, I just ran them through the DR plate instead. Seems better- will know more next week!
     
  5. bug catcher

    bug catcher Solo Diver

    # of Dives: 200 - 499
    Location: Wisconsin
    46
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    When I started diving I was advised to go with a jacket style bc w/rear air bladder and front air bladder(on both sides by the pockets). It keeps you more level when floating at the surface, However; with too much air in it it creates a squeeze that can be uncomfortable even after letting air out. This cheaper bc wore out as the pockets tore out and in general was not a quality bc (Dacor)-by Mares but no longer manufactured. It also had 1 tank band. I replaced this with a Zegal Tech bc. This still is a jacket type with pockets but has wings or a back air bladder. If you fill this with too much air while floating at the surface it will force you foreward and be uncomfortable but with the right amount of air you float quite well and Never get a squeeze. I was able to add a back plate and the 2 tank bands make a very secure attachment for my steel 130cu ft tank. Zegal is made of very strong fabric sort of bullet proof in my experience and I believe they can be custom fit and you still have pockets. A bp& wing is also very adjustable as your experience grows these can grow with you, but you have to add pockets and the strap/belt adjustments may be annoying for a new diver. Dive rite and Halicon are 2 I know and are good but I would replace mine with another Zegal but I don't believe I will be going on to Tech diving. If you are just going to dive in warm water climate a middle of the road adjustable reg is ok. If there is a possibility of cold water diving you may want to spend more and get one that won't freeze up. I had a Decor metal as I was from wi. then they don't make'em any more and now I have a Aqualung Legend LX & a AL Titen for my pony bottle. both are good titen more middle of the road. 1st stage could be a Din valve with a k valve adaptor. If you use your own tanks someday the din valve is more reliable I believe then the K valve and o ring. I never had a o ring failure while diving but my buddy just did. All ended well. Good luck & dive safe!
     
  6. -hh

    -hh Solo Diver

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    The 'squeeze when (fully) inflated' is the perrennial complaint of the Jacket design. Some jackets are better/worse than others, as some designers have taken this into consideration when designing the bladder vs harness.

    In any event, what this really gets into is a broader question of equipment design philosophy, priorities and trade-offs. For example, going to a back inflation (wing) does eliminate this squeeze potential, but there's no such thing as a free lunch. Part of its trade-offs are that this design approach does by definition move the BCD's center of lift to be further "behind" the center of mass of the diver, which has implications for changing both surface float characteristics (pre- and post- dive) as well as for during-dive body positioning. Naturally, the magnitude of these factors varies by other factors such as how much thermal protection (and associated buoyancy thereof) and other elements that contribute to how much air is in the BC, and the net sum difference may or may not be acceptable to the diver making the trade-offs.

    (slight editing re-arrangement of statements)

    One of the things that I've found to be interesting in BC design is that they all used to be made of pretty lightweight material, whereas today's are often 1000 denier Nylon, which makes them quite bulky & heavy (especially for airline considerations). Sure some of the oldtime BCs were downright cheap and would break down, but others would still last a long time. I'll admit to being quite cynical here: I suspect that the reason why we have BCs made with 1000 denier Nylon isn't because it is really needed for diving, but because it helps to sell the product in the store...it is kind of like a "MHz Myth".

    The Zegal's bladder is on the diver's back, so it is a Wing configuration. That's why there's no squeeze but there's also the surface float "faceplant" trade...which BTW becomes more pronounced with an end-of-dive AL80 rental tank found at most dive resorts. But in any case, I wanted to comment on the tank bands comment: probably each manufacturer has their own tank band design, and while some of them are perfectly adequate, there are some that really are pretty bad - - the easiest advice to offer here is for a diver to not be afraid of "Mixing Brands" and doing his own refit of the tank band. Years ago, I had a TUSA BC which used a single band setup which wasn't that great, and a stop at the local dive shop to buy a ScubaPro 'cam band' assembly to replace it solved the problem.


    Here's my old Dacor ... it needs a good, loving home to pay for its restoration:

    [​IMG]

    :D

    -hh
     

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