Scuba Diving - - Head-To-Head-Testing -

A pop­u­lar rental BC, the Start re­ceived some up­grades this year, in­clud­ing an er­gonomic in­fla­tor and stream­lined har­ness. The weight sys­tem has bi­fold pock­ets at­tached to the BC that se­cure with a buckle. Cinch­ing down hard on the ad­justable strap lim­its weights shift­ing in the pocket when your at­ti­tude changes, and while weights are se­cure, they drop cleanly when you re­lease the buck­les. One down­side is it’s not re­ally prac­ti­cal to pull weights at the boat lad­der and hand them up; but it’s also im­pos­si­ble to lose the pock­ets, a plus for new divers. The Start Pro was rated very good for com­fort, ad­justa­bil­ity, at­ti­tude and sta­bil­ity, valve op­er­a­tion, as­cent con­trol, and sur­face float­ing po­si­tion. Stoutly made, it has de­cent cargo pock­ets, octo pock­ets (but no trim pock­ets) and a half-dozen plas­tic D-rings. The least ex­pen­sive BC in our test, it nev­er­the­less made its way onto the top three list of more than half our test divers.

“Easy to get a good fit.”

PRICE $329.95 CON­TACT cres­

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