Blog about Underwater Life and Scuba Diving

Seac Sub Pro 2000 BCD Review

1 Star2 Stars3 Stars4 Stars5 Stars (29 votes, average: 3.59 out of 5)
Loading...Loading...

Seac Sub Pro 2000

A BCD is a very personal part of your dive gear. It is donning your BCD that makes you feel ready for a dive, It is the base of your life support system and it is the thing you will customize the most – clipping, strapping, tie-wrapping and generally stuffing things into it. It is the hub of your dive gear and you will want to get one that suits you as a diver.

Being an instructor, I need lots of gear – spare masks, spare weights, a compass, a reel with SMB, a knife, a pointer, a whistle, a flashlight, a writing slate and teaching slates – and that’s assuming I’m not doing a specialty course! I need a BCD that has a home for all this stuff. I also need a BCD that can handle the kind of wear and tear that comes from being shoved in and out of boxes, boats, shops and the sea. I look after my gear as best as I can but that isn’t quite as good as it would be if I were just in this for a hobby, this is a job so things get abused.

So, when I was looking for a new BCD I went looking for a big, heavy-duty rig with rings, clips and pockets galore. I found what I was looking for in the Seac Sub Pro 2000. It is a very, very heavy BCD. I mean that both in terms of the abuse it was designed to withstand but also its physical weight – it must be the heaviest BCD I’ve ever lifted! This poses no problem to me as I do not tend to travel much with my BCD, this is a work tool and so it only moves from dive shop to boat and back. As such it remains fully configured with all my auxiliary gear in place in the various clip points and pockets. When fully configured it is even heavier still – I’d put it at around 5-7kg depending on the set-up.

Seac Sub Pro 2000

Let’s break down the features:

Materials and Structure

 

  • Bladder – The Pro 2000 is a single bladder BCD which makes it a little less puncture resistant that if it were a double bladder system. This does not mean that it is weak, just not top of the line. The inner bladder and outer shell are both made from polyurethane coated nylon though the outer shell is constructed from higher grade nylon. The bladder distributes two-thirds of the air to the back of the jacket and one-third to the front, this arrangement means that the diver is well balanced in most positions.
  • Straps – The straps are standard fare BDC straps – fairly uncomfortable without exposure protection and they have a mildly abrasive edge that might irritate an exposed neck if you pick the wrong size of jacket. They do appear very strong though, they have to be when you put weights in the pockets and a tank on the back!
  • Colour/Appearance – The BCD is a very functional and robust looking piece of kit, but it doesn’t look pretty. Quite the contrary – I think it looks butt ugly, but in a sort of militaristic manner (inspired by the camouflage green of the outer shell) which might give it a certain army chic. I don’t think it could ever be “cool” unless talking in a purely engineering sense.

 

Ease of Use

 

  • Power Inflator – The piston based inflator system on this jacket is ergonomic and modern in design. It is nicely responsive when pressed hard but allows a high level of control for accurate inflation. The slight drawback for me as an instructor is that both the inflate and deflate buttons are black – there is no obvious colour discrimination between the two which makes explaining the system to students a little harder. I rectified this problem with a little bright yellow paint on the inflator button.
  • Wings – The BCD has a set of adjustable wings that can be either strapped in tight against the BCD (presumable for ease of movement in tight spaces) or they can be unfurled to provide stability in horizontal swimming. I have them deployed when diving and find that they do add a little extra steadiness.
  • Weight System/Trim Weights– The BCD has an integrated weight system which is one of the most simple yet effective styles I’ve come across. It comprises of two removable pockets that can accommodate up to 5kg each which simply slide along a hard plastic rail and “click” into place. To supplement this there are two trim pockets at the rear of the BCD that will each take 2.5kg, this is in place to help distribute the weight better and allow for exact buoyancy control.

    Simple Integrated Weights, Just Pull On The Red Handles!

  • Adjustability/Harness– This is the Pro 2000’s party trick. This BCD is adjustable in every direction possible. It has an AHS (adjustable harness system) that allows the BCD to be extended or shortened for longer or shorter backs, the whole webbing can be brought in to accommodate larger or smaller torsos and, of course, it is shoulder strap adjustable too. Serious changes can be a hassle but are well worth it and will pay you back in comfort.

    Adjustable Harness System

  • Tank Band – I am not a fan of this single tank band system. It is nigh on impossible to get a very secure fit with the tank. I’ve never had a tank slip out, but there is sufficient wriggle that I am always a little concerned that my luck might run out. I have considered swapping it for a Scuba Pro tank band with metal clip – those bands are fantastic!
  • Handle – The BCD uses a fabric handle with rubber grip rather than using a plastic handle in the back plate. This also doubles as the safety strap which is surprisingly convenient and easy to put on.

 

Storage

 

  • Pockets– This is a very strong point for this BCD. It has two main zipper pockets which have a very wide opening and have cavernous space within them. This is complemented with an additional pocket which uses a Velcro/buckle combo to secure it (this pocket is ideal for slates). There is even a small pocket tucked into the cummerbund strap. This small zipper pocket is perfect size for a spare 800g weight for students which, because it is in the middle of your body, doesn’t affect your balance.

    Third Pocket – Great For Teaching/Writing Slates

  • Rings– There are several different D rings placed all over the BCD which are made from different materials to serve different functions. There are metal D rings which are great for clipping large bulky objects (SMB, compass and retractor etc), there are smaller nylon rings for lighter items and then there are two fabric loops which I have attached my auxiliary knife to.

    Fabric Hoops, Ideal For Securing Your BCD Knife To

  • Octopus Retainer – Conveniently located on the right shoulder strap is an elastic loop with a toggle which serves as a surprisingly effective alternate air source holder. You simply stretch the band over the mouthpiece of the octo and it will stay in place. When needed you can give it a firm tug and it will pop out of the elastic. A very low tech solution, but very effective.

Final Thoughts

 

The Seac Sub Pro 2000 is a great, hard working BCD. It is the Land Rover Defender of buoyancy jackets so it’s not to everyone’s taste. It works great when you don’t need to transport it too much, but it’s no good for those who think the diving platform at the back for the boat is a catwalk. I love the fact that it has the same features as a high end BCD for  a mid-range price tag.

Pros:

 

  • Simple, robust materials – durable.
  • Minimal fuss integrated weight system, with trim pockets.
  • Four pockets, different sizes – many applications.
  • Fully adjustable harness and straps.
  • Huge array of D rings and hoops for clipping on gear.
  • Optional foldaway wings for stability in the water.
  • Loads of features, reasonable price.

 

Cons:

 

  • Very heavy and bulky, especially when configured with gear, weights in the pockets and a tank strapped on – might be too much for some to get out of the water with. No good for travelling, even when stripped of equipment.
  • Edge of straps are a little rough, can leave a rash on an exposed neck
  • The tank band is a weak design, consider replacing it.
  • Ugly, and although this is subjective, it’s not sleek by any standards…

By Jamie Campbell

buy now


Tagged as: ,


Blog Roll