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Bassoonin
06-29-2008, 00:23
Hello all,

My husband, son and I just got our OW certs! We live in Northern CA and are getting ready to do some diving. They are both getting their BCs from our LDS, but nothing seems to fit me well. I am considering the Zena and I am wondering if it will do the job for me.

I am a little large (5'8" and about 185) and we dive in the Monterey area. We used steel tanks for our OW and I needed 30 lbs. We are switching to neutral boyant tanks and I'm worried that the Zena might not work. Our LDS doesn't like Zeagle because of the ripcord system. They tell me that it takes to long to thread (blah, blah, blah) after you have to dump the weights. My thought is that if you have to dump the weights, you have more trouble than just rethreading anyway.

There are Zeagle dealers within a 2 hour drive from me, but none of them carry the Zena. Please Help!

Eddym67
06-29-2008, 00:42
Have you checked Sherwood or Aqua Lung? I moved to Vegas from San Carlos. 30 miles south of S.F.

Bassoonin
06-29-2008, 00:54
I tried the new ladies aqualung (the one with pink, can't remember the name) I don't like where the inflator is and I think that I would prefer back inflate as my feet like to float. I do like the Libra, but that seems to be my only choice around here. I would like to try at least one other.

Eddym67
06-29-2008, 01:05
There are many back inflates that may work. My ex wore a Sherwood Tortuga.

Eddym67
06-29-2008, 01:10
By the way, Congrats on the OW Certs!!!!!!

burna
06-29-2008, 02:18
Hello all,
Our LDS doesn't like Zeagle because of the ripcord system. They tell me that it takes to long to thread (blah, blah, blah) after you have to dump the weights.

How often do you LDS divers dump they're weights?

They don't like them most probably because they don't sell them.

I've got a stiletto and I think it's great, far better than any of the jacket types.

As far as the ripcord system, it takes about 2-3 mins to re-thread, there is a video on zeagle's website if you want to have a look.

As you say, if you're dumping your weights you have bigger issues to worry about.

oddbod
06-29-2008, 02:31
Congrats on your OW Certificate.
Have you thought about a BPW setup? It can grow with your experience level.:smilie40:

rumblefish
06-29-2008, 04:13
Congrats on your OW Certificate.
Have you thought about a BPW setup? It can grow with your experience level.:smilie40:
I knew someone was going to chime in with the BP/W suggestion. That being said, if you decide to rock a steel backplate, you could take about 8 pounds off your belt.

Vercingetorix
06-29-2008, 07:34
BP/W suggestion?...And away we go...:smilie40:

I bought my BP/W immediately after OW cert, and I wore it for AOW. It has a five pound steel plate; I have aluminum as well.

Last May, I dove at Catalina (Casino Point is great for beginners) with my rig and a steel tank. I weigh 155. With a 7mm Farmer John, I had 16 pounds of lead.

I won't go into the advantages/disadvantages of BP/W over other rigs. There are many threads on this forum and others that discuss the topic far more eloquently than I.

I normally dive in fresh water with a 3mm suit. No weight is required.

Bottom line: BP/W offer reconfigurability and low maintenance (the harness is 10 feet of 2-inch webbing; and, you can't break a backplate). Therefore, the money is in the wing. Mine is a GolemGear which almost requires a chainsaw to cut.

obrules15
06-29-2008, 08:41
Hello all,

My husband, son and I just got our OW certs! We live in Northern CA and are getting ready to do some diving. They are both getting their BCs from our LDS, but nothing seems to fit me well. I am considering the Zena and I am wondering if it will do the job for me.

I am a little large (5'8" and about 185) and we dive in the Monterey area. We used steel tanks for our OW and I needed 30 lbs. We are switching to neutral boyant tanks and I'm worried that the Zena might not work. Our LDS doesn't like Zeagle because of the ripcord system. They tell me that it takes to long to thread (blah, blah, blah) after you have to dump the weights. My thought is that if you have to dump the weights, you have more trouble than just rethreading anyway.

There are Zeagle dealers within a 2 hour drive from me, but none of them carry the Zena. Please Help!

With needing that much weight I would probably go with something with a little more lift capacity. I use a zeagle Lazer for tropical diving and a ranger for cold water diving. The nice thing about Zeagle's is that they are way customizable. They can be made to fit all of your bumps and divets. The ripcord system doesn't take that long to rethread and I like the way it dumps if need be.

percussionist1
06-29-2008, 09:45
Congratulations on your OW certs!

My wife and I just purchased our BCs yesterday. She got a Zena and I got a Brigade. If I were you, I would go ahead and order the Zena from ST. They have a great return policy and the sizing chart that Zeagle uses is very accurate (not to mention that the BCs are very adjustable). Also, it is my understanding that you can get a Zena, with the stock bladder...then if you need, you can upgrade to the larger bladder later. The quote I got for upgrading to a ranger bladder was around $120 (for my Brigade).

Obviously, there are a ton of people here that have more experience than I do, so I would probably heed their advice first (before mine).

Good Luck!

Vercingetorix
06-29-2008, 09:51
My wife and I just purchase our BCs yesterday. She got a Zena and I got a Brigade. If I were you, I would go ahead and order the Zena from ST. They have a great return policy...Unless something has changed recently, Joe's policy is "Once it's wet, it's yours."

harb99
06-29-2008, 10:49
My wife and I just purchase our BCs yesterday. She got a Zena and I got a Brigade. If I were you, I would go ahead and order the Zena from ST. They have a great return policy...Unless something has changed recently, Joe's policy is "Once it's wet, it's yours."

true, but if she wants to try a couple of different sizes or styles - they are great to work with - they sent me 3 BC's for my wife to try on - she ended up choosing the Zena - we sent the other 2 back

Vercingetorix
06-29-2008, 11:35
true, but if she wants to try a couple of different sizes or styles - they are great to work with - they sent me 3 BC's for my wife to try on - she ended up choosing the Zena - we sent the other 2 backAhhhh... Thanks for the clarification. I was kinda hopin' Mr Joe had modified the policy.

Bassoonin
06-29-2008, 18:25
Thank you all for your help and advice. I think that I'm going to go ahead and order the Zena from ST and then try it on and see what I think. I kind of want to stay away from velco as I have a Henderson Hyperstretch 7mm which I just love! (it fits great and was nice and warm for me in Monterey with the insulated diveskin that they make).

dive10killer
06-29-2008, 18:38
I'm sure you will love the Zeagle.
Excellent Quality!

Splitlip
06-29-2008, 18:39
Hello all,

My husband, son and I just got our OW certs! We live in Northern CA and are getting ready to do some diving. They are both getting their BCs from our LDS, but nothing seems to fit me well. I am considering the Zena and I am wondering if it will do the job for me.

I am a little large (5'8" and about 185) and we dive in the Monterey area. We used steel tanks for our OW and I needed 30 lbs. We are switching to neutral boyant tanks and I'm worried that the Zena might not work. Our LDS doesn't like Zeagle because of the ripcord system. They tell me that it takes to long to thread (blah, blah, blah) after you have to dump the weights. My thought is that if you have to dump the weights, you have more trouble than just rethreading anyway.

There are Zeagle dealers within a 2 hour drive from me, but none of them carry the Zena. Please Help!
Please, do not buy into the ripcord negative hype. You only have to rethread if you ditch your weights in an emergency. In my 35 years, I have done that ....let me think how many times...NEVER.

Splitlip
06-29-2008, 18:42
Thank you all for your help and advice. I think that I'm going to go ahead and order the Zena from ST and then try it on and see what I think. I kind of want to stay away from velco as I have a Henderson Hyperstretch 7mm which I just love! (it fits great and was nice and warm for me in Monterey with the insulated diveskin that they make).

Velcro. Hate velcro. (shudder) only have it on my wetsuits' neck seals and my thigh pockets. Even my board shorts have zippers.

But I hate corduroy too, so what do I know?

ScottZeagle
06-30-2008, 09:01
Hello all,

My husband, son and I just got our OW certs! We live in Northern CA and are getting ready to do some diving. They are both getting their BCs from our LDS, but nothing seems to fit me well. I am considering the Zena and I am wondering if it will do the job for me.

I am a little large (5'8" and about 185) and we dive in the Monterey area. We used steel tanks for our OW and I needed 30 lbs. We are switching to neutral boyant tanks and I'm worried that the Zena might not work. Our LDS doesn't like Zeagle because of the ripcord system. They tell me that it takes to long to thread (blah, blah, blah) after you have to dump the weights. My thought is that if you have to dump the weights, you have more trouble than just rethreading anyway.

There are Zeagle dealers within a 2 hour drive from me, but none of them carry the Zena. Please Help!

30 lbs is a lot of weight for a Zena to carry. :(

Does your LDS that doesn't like Zeagle actually CARRY Zeagle?? If so, who are they?? They need a little education. :)

Bassoonin
07-01-2008, 18:24
No my LDS doesn't carry or like Zeagle. They only sell the brick and mortar only brands. The store that carries Zeagle is in Santa Clara, an almost 2 hour drive from me.

I talked to my instructor about the weight and he told me that he made me extra heavy do to conditions because he wanted to make sure that we stayed on the bottom. I thought that I was just slightly negative when we were in the water, but being new to this, I wasn't sure.

They (my LDS) want me to get the aqualung pearl or the Libra (I can't remember who makes it). I was able to borrow a pearl and I don't like how it feels or how the inflator works. I like the Libra ok, but I wanted to try others and not feel pressured or guilted into buying one.

I will be doing warm water diving too, (we're going to the caribbean in November) so now I'm not sure what to do. I have a Henderson 7mm that does not like velcro, so I'm trying to stay away from cumberbuns. I did get some ankle weights (1lb) because I tip backward in the water. Obviously I won't need the 7mm in Grand Cayman, but I really don't want to buy two BCs for me. I have to get them for my son and husband too.

Too much to think about!:smiley29:

BSea
07-01-2008, 19:56
Hello all,

My husband, son and I just got our OW certs! We live in Northern CA and are getting ready to do some diving. They are both getting their BCs from our LDS, but nothing seems to fit me well. I am considering the Zena and I am wondering if it will do the job for me.

I am a little large (5'8" and about 185) and we dive in the Monterey area. We used steel tanks for our OW and I needed 30 lbs. We are switching to neutral boyant tanks and I'm worried that the Zena might not work. Our LDS doesn't like Zeagle because of the ripcord system. They tell me that it takes to long to thread (blah, blah, blah) after you have to dump the weights. My thought is that if you have to dump the weights, you have more trouble than just rethreading anyway.

There are Zeagle dealers within a 2 hour drive from me, but none of them carry the Zena. Please Help!
Please, do not buy into the ripcord negative hype. You only have to rethread if you ditch your weights in an emergency. In my 35 years, I have done that ....let me think how many times...NEVER.Well obviously you aren't the curious type. :smiley24: When I had my brigade, I think the 1st thing I did was pull the ripcord just to see how it worked. But I agree, I've never had a case where I had to ditch weight, so it's really a non-issue.

And FWIW it takes maybe 5 minutes to restring if your watching TV at the same time.

CamaroChick
07-02-2008, 07:52
If the Zena can hold enough weight for you, I highly recommend it. I absolutely adore mine!! I had tried several of the women's jacket-style BCs at my LDS and didn't like any of them. I bought my Zena from ST, so you could consider doing that. I'm sure if you don't like it, the ST folks will let you exchange it and try something else.

As for the weight-ditching thing, there are 4 weight pockets on the Zena - two with the rip cord and two with just some red pull straps (sorry I know that's not the technical name). So if you had to, you could ditch those first. The good thing about it is that you won't be losing a weight pocket if you have to ditch, which I hear can get expensive to replace.

I found the Zena to be a good BC for travel - it fit nicely into my carry-on bag (well it is a size XS) and is lightweight. So comfy, no yucky velcro, highly adjustable... it is fabulous!

My LDS wasn't pleased to hear I bought a Zeagle... not sure why other than they don't carry them. And that is why I shop at ST :smiley2:

Martin2
07-02-2008, 08:11
I talked to my instructor about the weight and he told me that he made me extra heavy do to conditions because he wanted to make sure that we stayed on the bottom. I thought that I was just slightly negative when we were in the water, but being new to this, I wasn't sure.

I am fairly close to your stats and do not need nearly that much weight in my 7mm. You may want to check your weighting before you rule out the Zena. If you really need that much weight, then Scott would be the expert and I would take his word that you might need something else. But if your instructor had you overweighted to stay on the bottom, that might be part of the issue. That said, I love my Diva. It fits like nothing else ever has (though I haven't tried the Zena and am considering it for weight and lift reasons myself).

ScottZeagle
07-02-2008, 09:14
If your instructor had you overweighted intentionally, you will probably be fine in the Zena. Most divers can use even less weight after they get a few dives under their belt and start to feel more at ease.

At least you know that if the shop doesn't carry Zeagle, they are just trying to get you to spend your money with them so they will tell you anything... :)

Truered1
07-02-2008, 17:05
I am only 5'3" but wide shoulders with a 38 DD chest, I have the Oceanic Hera and LOVE it. I tried on everything even the men's to find something comfortable. Here is an exerpt from the actual listing at Divers Direct where I bought mine:

The HERA is designed specifically around the female form with ample adjustments to make it your own, without sacrificing features and functionality. This may just be the most comfortable, best fitting BC you've ever worn. It is contoured over the hip for added comfort and has reinforced shoulders, padded back pack, and an adjustable position sternum strap to ensure comfort and stability.

Patented Hybrid bladder combines the benefits of both rear inflation and jacket style BCs
QLR Integrated Weight System accommodates up to 20 lbs. plus dual 5 lbs. rear weight pouches
Patented Custom Fit Harness with multi-position shoulder strap adds comfort for all sizes
Weight pockets are loaded positioned at a slight downward angle to aid self-loading
Patented Depth-Compensating Adjustable Cummerbund

What I like the most is the adjustable straps since I am short but have wide shoulders. I use 12 lbs regularly but have put 20 in it. I have had no problems with air leaking out and suggest it highly. Good Luck - Happy Diving

Martin2
07-02-2008, 18:19
I am only 5'3" but wide shoulders with a 38 DD chest, I have the Oceanic Hera and LOVE it. I tried on everything even the men's to find something comfortable. Here is an exerpt from the actual listing at Divers Direct where I bought mine:

The HERA is designed specifically around the female form with ample adjustments to make it your own, without sacrificing features and functionality. This may just be the most comfortable, best fitting BC you've ever worn. It is contoured over the hip for added comfort and has reinforced shoulders, padded back pack, and an adjustable position sternum strap to ensure comfort and stability.

Patented Hybrid bladder combines the benefits of both rear inflation and jacket style BCs
QLR Integrated Weight System accommodates up to 20 lbs. plus dual 5 lbs. rear weight pouches
Patented Custom Fit Harness with multi-position shoulder strap adds comfort for all sizes
Weight pockets are loaded positioned at a slight downward angle to aid self-loading
Patented Depth-Compensating Adjustable Cummerbund

What I like the most is the adjustable straps since I am short but have wide shoulders. I use 12 lbs regularly but have put 20 in it. I have had no problems with air leaking out and suggest it highly. Good Luck - Happy Diving

I think ST has a demo on sale.

Splitlip
07-02-2008, 18:46
Hello all,

My husband, son and I just got our OW certs! We live in Northern CA and are getting ready to do some diving. They are both getting their BCs from our LDS, but nothing seems to fit me well. I am considering the Zena and I am wondering if it will do the job for me.

I am a little large (5'8" and about 185) and we dive in the Monterey area. We used steel tanks for our OW and I needed 30 lbs. We are switching to neutral boyant tanks and I'm worried that the Zena might not work. Our LDS doesn't like Zeagle because of the ripcord system. They tell me that it takes to long to thread (blah, blah, blah) after you have to dump the weights. My thought is that if you have to dump the weights, you have more trouble than just rethreading anyway.

There are Zeagle dealers within a 2 hour drive from me, but none of them carry the Zena. Please Help!
Please, do not buy into the ripcord negative hype. You only have to rethread if you ditch your weights in an emergency. In my 35 years, I have done that ....let me think how many times...NEVER.Well obviously you aren't the curious type. :smiley24: When I had my brigade, I think the 1st thing I did was pull the ripcord just to see how it worked. But I agree, I've never had a case where I had to ditch weight, so it's really a non-issue.

And FWIW it takes maybe 5 minutes to restring if your watching TV at the same time.

I will admit, many times I caressed that red handle thinking "just once, just once" but I never did. I heard it was a real hassle to rethread.:smilie39:

Bassoonin
07-15-2008, 01:35
Well, I've just come back from diving with my new Zena and I LOVE IT!!!! It's like you're almost not wearing a BC. My husband couldn't believe that I just "zip it up" and thats it. I'm glad that I wen't with it. I feel so free in it. Zeagle and ST rocks!:biggrinbounce2: