SCUBAPRO Seahawk BC with Air 2 Buoyancy Compensator Review
SCUBAPRO have been a leading name in diving equipment since the 1960s and are responsible for many of the innovative products that we see on the market today. Continuing the trend of award-winning equipment, SBUBAPRO offers the Seahawk buoyancy compensator with the added option of Air2. With so many back flotation jackets on the market, is the Seahawk BC able to reach the levels of previous jackets in the SCUBAPRO range.
The Seahawk back buoyancy BC scooped the Scubalab Testers’ Choice General Purpose award in 2010 and remains one of the best BCs on the market.
As always with SCUBAPRO, assembly is first class, particularly so with the ‘Super Clinch’ stainless steel tank strap buckle. The buckle can be adjusted simply and quickly to the diameter of the tank and once done, the tank can be locked-down with a hook and clamp maneuver that is effortless and very convenient for instructors and divemasters.
The tank positioning strap is very useful indeed and there is a well-constructed carry handle that makes it easy to lump around the 24.5 kg BC.
Comfort is always a big factor for the consumer when it comes to buying a BC and the Seahawk comes up trumps once again with its proprietary quick release integrated weight system providing superb weight distribution that allows for freedom of movement and promotes excellent swimming position.
The back padding on the Seahawk is thin but scores very highly for comfort, as does the neck roll which is constructed from neoprene. SCUBAPRO offers rotating quick-release shoulder buckles and adjustable shoulder straps with the Seahawk that allow straps to be routed under the arms – this gives divers the benefit of being able to easily pull the rig in for a closer fit and added stability as depth increases. The BC secures with a pair of low-profile squeeze buckles which give audible and visual confirmation of locking. As with the rest of the BC, the buckles are very well-built, although the adjustment straps could maybe be a little shorter to prevent snagging.
As ever, SCUBAPRO provides a vast range of features with their BC. First of all, there is the three-dump air deflation system which allows divers to dump from varied underwater positions, and then we have the knife attachment grommets and well-constructed stainless steel D-rings which are excellently positioned close to the waist for lanyard attachment.
The Seahawk is equipped with two rear trim pockets and two large zippered cargo pockets for accessories. The former are used to great effect for balancing out the front and allowing for a better swimming position, while the latter are able to hold 10-12lbs each. The standout feature though is the Air2 inflator regulator.
Air2 is SCUBAPRO’s fourth generation inflator regulator and is better designed and lighter than previous generations. Air2 provides outstanding pressure control for buoyancy management and is very easy to handle.
A great feature of the inflator regulator is the exhaust button which allows the Air2 to be emptied with the touch of a button. Its single hose configuration is also well thought through and prevents the need for a separate alternative air source.
The Seahawk is right up there with the very best general purpose back buoyancy BCs and provides an excellent range of features for keen divers. While the Super Clinch tank strap will take some getting used to, once you have got the hang of it, you are provided with a must-have system that can do it all.