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Posted by Walt on February 24, 2006 at 09:48:54:

In Reply to: DSS single-tank rig posted by jonny on February 23, 2006 at 17:04:43:

If you really want a steel backplate this would be a good opportunity to see and try one.

We tried the Halcyon ones a few years ago and they seemed to do a good job with swim 'attitude' and we liked their integrated weight system (without velcro). If you dive with aluminum, the weigh offset of teh steel plate makes sense. However, remember that the steel plate is not releasable weight. Also, if you are considering doubles, then this is a good choice.

In the other hand, if you dive with a single steel tank, then you may want to consider a plastic backplate and light lift back wing (Oxycheq 18# is good). I stole the idea from Chris G. (and others I've seen) and would not dive with anything else. The steel tank is slightly negative so you don't need the extra weight of a steel plate (unless you dive dry in which case it would be a possible plus). I have a single web belt cross over set-up with just one buckle (some add a sholder release, either a monster clip or another buckle, but I've found that not neceessary for me as its really easy to get on and off as it is (even underwater during a dive). I'll be taking this plastic backpack on all future vacations as well as its very light for air travel.

As for weight integrated systems, I went back to my weight belt (and learned to dive with less lead). Reason is that its far easier to do a decent bailout with a belt of shoulder system (and not drift to the surface).

I still have my Seaquest Balance and a Dive-Rite transpac, so my choice is not for want of some good BC's. Plus you can get the plastic backplate for under $50 and the wing for $250.

Good luck!

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