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Mithril
08-16-2007, 06:43
hey again ladies! I was wondering what women's B.C's you think are the best, i'm in the market for one of my own, ive been renting one thats ok but have heard somewhere along the line that the zeagle brand is really good for women? I need one for both warm and cold water diving that is good for my curvy shape (weight integrated- forget those weight belts!) ive had a good look but i feel spoilt for choice since there is quite a few on the market and now i'm all confused... Lol :smiley5:

tx.lakerat
08-16-2007, 07:10
Zegale makes some great womens bcd's my sister own's one and loves it. All the women on staff at our shop dive the zegale stilleto. you might want to check those out as well. They aren't make for "women" but have great cut's to fit very well - and can be mixed and matched (with bladders and shoulders) to custom fit you. VERY nice feature!

Disneymom
08-16-2007, 07:59
Mithril, I was having the same problem. I narrowed it down to 2 - the Genesis Athena and the Zeagle Zena. What I don't know for sure is if either of these are cold-water compatible. What I do know is they were both exceptionally comfortable, and my first choice would've been the Zena, but I was made a 'too-good-to-pass-up' deal at a LDS (that I needed to build a repoire with anyway) on the Athena. I'm happy with my choice, it is a great BC, very comfortable. If either of those suit your needs, you can't go wrong.

creggur
08-16-2007, 08:03
My wife has the Zena and loves it... Having said that if you are going for a more conventional style BCD I would look at the Brigade. You get the heavy duty straps and D-rings from the Ranger with a 35lb lift wing. And it's actually less expensive than the Stilleto. Since it is modular they can do a custom fit for you. I love mine, and I think lucidblue has one, maybe she can chime in here for a womans perspective on it.

Oh and Zeagle has the best IMHO integrated weight system out there..
Good luck..

94GTStang
08-16-2007, 08:11
My fiance has a Seaquest Eva and really likes it. However it is discontinued but they replaced it with the Seaquest Diva which is slightly better than the Eva. I'd also recommend checking out the Tusa Selene

Liv7301
08-16-2007, 08:23
My wife has the Zena and loves it... Having said that if you are going for a more conventional style BCD I would look at the Brigade. You get the heavy duty straps and D-rings from the Ranger with a 35lb lift wing. And it's actually less expensive than the Stilleto. Since it is modular they can do a custom fit for you. I love mine, and I think lucidblue has one, maybe she can chime in here for a womans perspective on it.

Oh and Zeagle has the best IMHO integrated weight system out there..
Good luck..

I dive with a Brigade and so far have been very happy with it. Being a plus size girl I definitely benefited from the custom fit options with the waist/shoulders. Also I love not feeling the midsection squeeze since it is a back inflate. It has helped with my trim because I tend to be a low-butt swimmer if you know what I mean and the back inflate has helped even a lot of that out. There are actually several other women I know that dive with Brigades and have similar happy experiences. I believe DallasDiveGirl is one of them. Hope this helps!

Zenagirl
08-16-2007, 09:02
The best BC to recommend to you is the one that fits you well....regardless of brand, or what any of us wear. ;)

I dive a Zeagle Zena, but I don't think it's the best choice for cold water diving in a dry suit. If you're going to wear a 7mm wet suit, then a Zena would be fine. Some folks don't like the corset (zip up) design and prefer a cumberbun, so you'd definitely have to try it out for yourself. Personally, I hate the cumberbun design as I find it impossible to cinch it down enough to keep my BC from riding up....thus the Zena is perfect for me since it has a corset and fitted to the entire torso instead of just the waist.

Whatever you do, don't get hung up on "womens" or "mens" suits. Try on as many as you can and pick based on fit and comfort.

Subaqua
08-16-2007, 09:51
Hello,
i did not have a chance to try the Zeagle models, but I have the Ladyhawk (scubapro) and I really like it. I dive mostly in cold water, but sometimes in warm water. It's not too big to pack when travelling. Between the choices that I had (men and women BC), it was the one that felt the most comfortable.

Good luck to find the perfect BC for you!

MelC
08-16-2007, 10:00
I ended up buying a Dive Rite Transpac and I love it. It has a great adjustable fit to it, no squeeze and, most important to me, it is swappable for different wings etc. Since I live in Canada but dive tropically a couple of trips a year I wanted to make sure i had that versatility. It comes with integrated weight pockets that mount on the waist strap. I travel with the 30lb Travel Wing and it packs up nice and small. I almost went for the Zeagle Zena though and I know others who have it who are really happy with it.

Mel

dallasdivergirl
08-16-2007, 10:49
I have a brigade and love it in the water. I rarely have much weight or air in it at all.

One thing I noticed this last weekend in my first shore dives was that my lower back was getting sore either from walking with the tank or I had the waist too tight. Those bones stick out for me in back.

Foo2
08-16-2007, 10:53
Here is an article that I found a couple of weeks ago that rates several bc's for women. It's on the Scuba Diving Magazine website. Hope this helps! http://www.scubadiving.com/gear/bcompensators/GR_BC_best_bcs_for_women

Black-Gorrilla
08-16-2007, 12:59
guy alert***

i saw this topic on the main page, and just to let you know... my friend dives the mares womens BC (starts with a K) and she loves the fit. i think it's a very nicely made BC quality wise...

also, last weekend on the boat there was a couple... and she dove a Transpac and said it fit better and was much more comfortable than any BC she had ever tried before... so check it out.. and Good luck in finding what you need.

guy exits.

Zenagirl
08-16-2007, 15:47
Here is an article that I found a couple of weeks ago that rates several bc's for women. It's on the Scuba Diving Magazine website. Hope this helps! http://www.scubadiving.com/gear/bcompensators/GR_BC_best_bcs_for_women

For me the problem in their "rating system" is that it's not valid for everyone. I'd rate the Zena at the top at the Diva at the bottom, though I know people who would rate the Diva high and the Zena low. It really comes down to finding the right BC for YOU, not the "best" or "highest rated" one.

I know you're not saying this is the "be all, end all" list, so this post is not meant in any way to attack or be rude to you. Thanks for posting the link, it's always nice to have a list of BCs to check out!

Foo2
08-16-2007, 16:02
Here is an article that I found a couple of weeks ago that rates several bc's for women. It's on the Scuba Diving Magazine website. Hope this helps! http://www.scubadiving.com/gear/bcompensators/GR_BC_best_bcs_for_women

For me the problem in their "rating system" is that it's not valid for everyone. I'd rate the Zena at the top at the Diva at the bottom, though I know people who would rate the Diva high and the Zena low. It really comes down to finding the right BC for YOU, not the "best" or "highest rated" one.

I know you're not saying this is the "be all, end all" list, so this post is not meant in any way to attack or be rude to you. Thanks for posting the link, it's always nice to have a list of BCs to check out!

No offense taken.:smiley16: It's not my list :smiley2: I just saw it the other day and thought I'd pass it along. It also appears to be outdated. It says April of 2003 on it. I just realized that. Anyway, I didn't know if maybe one of the reviews would be helpful.

cmufieldhockey8
08-18-2007, 22:37
I second something like a Transpac or a backplate/harness. It's completely adjustable so you can make it as big or small as you want. Nothing fit me till I got a backplate.

And if you wear out a harness years down the road, you just have to buy a harness, not a whole bc.

lucidblue
08-18-2007, 23:45
I dove with a Zeagle Zena during my confined dives in OW class, at the time I didn't have a great idea of what I liked and didn't like. Then I used Seaquest Diva for my OW dives and rented one when I went to Cozumel. I liked the Diva, but it was rather bulky. After a lot of research I decided I wanted the Zeagle Lazer. I went to a few LDS and nobody had one that I could try. However, I tried on a Ranger and it was really comfortable. An instructor that was there and about my size said she loved diving with the Ranger, however I still had my heart set on the Lazer because it was less expensive. When I went to Scuba Toys to put together a package I noticed there was a great deal on the Brigade. Ranger BC with a bladder the same size as the Lazer and a fantastic price. I have about 6 dives on the Brigade and I love it!

Mithril
08-19-2007, 04:11
thanks all! as expected the zeagle range seems to be pretty 'up there' but there was also a couple of brands that ive never heard of before (probably because im here in Australia) il be sure to check them out...:)

caroln
08-19-2007, 15:09
I have a Sea Quest Libra and like it a lot. It doesn't have a ton of extra stuff to it, so it's pretty nice and streamlined. I'd also recommend checking out a BP/W setup. My LDS talked me out of one when I was buying and if I were to do it over, I probably wouldn't have allowed them to.

sidneydiver
08-20-2007, 00:05
I used to dive a Zena and I loved it. I have recently swapped to a Ranger for more versatility. I also use a BP/W when I dive doubles and I love that too!

JodiBB
08-20-2007, 10:20
I dive in cold water (46-60 degrees) with a 7mm suit and my Zena is wonderful! I did need to switch out the front panel to a smaller size, as the straps were completely maxed out when I went horizontal. But ST was great in allowing me to send it in and get the piece swapped out. Now it fits me perfectly and I love the support it gives me on my back due to the corset fit.

namabiru
08-20-2007, 10:34
Whatever you do, don't get hung up on "womens" or "mens" suits. Try on as many as you can and pick based on fit and comfort.

I do have to chime in on Zenagirl's recommendation here--get something that fits you.

Now, in comparing a "men's" BCD to a "women's" BCD, I'm currently diving a modified Ranger. The previous owner, male, had medium shoulders but a large waist. I'm finding this is working well, although I do confess the shoulders are a smidgen big. Not enough to chuck the BCD, though, by any means.

On the other hand, and a complete aside from the BCD debate, I find that a man's wetsuit fits better than a woman's since I've got a larger build. Bigger arms and such.

So, if you can, find measurements and get something which is close. You really can't go wrong with Zeagle, as you can mix/match shoulder and waist requirements. With the Zena, you can also mix the chest requirement since it's a corset style fit. This may be worthwhile if the stock BCDs aren't fitting right.

kittyjg
08-20-2007, 19:06
I dive with a Libra and love it. Back inflate, waist strap, not a big cumberbund, a clip above the chest that I sometimes clip. It doesn't restrict my arm movement or breathing at all. It is almost like I don't have anything on. Not a lot of clips or rings and only one pocket. Most of the other rental BCs I dove with were too tight around the chest area and squished things. Worth a try if you can rent one to try it out before you buy one.

The male version is the Balance. My son dives with one of those and I can use his but I can't use the chest strap since it does come right across the anatomy and becomes uncomfortable.

kittyjg
08-20-2007, 19:15
I forgot to mention that I do dive with the Libra with a drysuit as well. Fits over the suit. I do add a weight belt so I don't have all of the weight in the pockets.

ladyfish
08-21-2007, 19:20
As you've seen from the comments, everyone is different. I actually did some of the testing for Scubadiving Mag for their women's BC's. Even with all the women testing them, different women liked different BC's based on their diving expericence, style and their body type. So the best advice is to try them on.

Take a look at the features you like/don't like. For example, I know I much prefer a cumberbund than a strap around the waist. Just the way I'm built--the cumberbund keeps the BC in place better (the strap style tends to ride up and not stay below my ribcage). Other things I look for: pockets if you use them; number of d-rings if you like all your stuff cliped close where you want it; type of integrated weight system--every manufacturer has a different one. I like some much better than others.

So take the time to play with the BC's and see what works for you.

Good luck!

alpine
08-25-2007, 09:09
I have the Zeagle Brigade and love it.

I used to dive the Athena. I liked it, but it had such small pockets they were pretty much useless - couldn't even get a small backup light in the pocket and zip it up.

When I went to buy a new one, I went to ST and tried on several. I tried on the Zena, but didn't like the constricted feel of the corset. I also had concerns about the zipper - I've had too many zippers fail in life (not on BCs, but on dresses, pants, etc) and thought the cummerbund would be more reliable.

The Brigade has great pockets, good fit.

If you do get a Brigade, check the length of the inflator hose. I found the standard one was WAY too long - I could tuck it into my cummerbund. ST switched it out for a shorter one for me, all is groovy. :smiley16:

lucidblue
08-25-2007, 10:43
If you do get a Brigade, check the length of the inflator hose. I found the standard one was WAY too long - I could tuck it into my cummerbund. ST switched it out for a shorter one for me, all is groovy. :smiley16:

I wonder if they automatically do that now? My inflator hose is pretty short and I didn't request anything special. I love my Brigade. Can't wait to take it out of the quarry and on vacation!

Silvia
08-26-2007, 09:43
I have had the Seaquest Diva LX for a couple of months, just bought it. I really like it - it fits my curvy body well and it's weight integrated, with side and back pockets. I have been using it in cold water, and plan to take it to warm water trips as well.

I got a Medium size, and in retrospect I should have bought a Small - so if you want an almost brand new BC (16 dives only, and I've used BC Life to wash it every time), perhaps we can deal?

If I can sell this one, I would buy the same one, but one size smaller.

dallasdivergirl
08-26-2007, 10:00
you might try the used items for sale section. you might get responses and stand a better chance of selling. :D


I have had the Seaquest Diva LX for a couple of months, just bought it. I really like it - it fits my curvy body well and it's weight integrated, with side and back pockets. I have been using it in cold water, and plan to take it to warm water trips as well.

I got a Medium size, and in retrospect I should have bought a Small - so if you want an almost brand new BC (16 dives only, and I've used BC Life to wash it every time), perhaps we can deal?

If I can sell this one, I would buy the same one, but one size smaller.

Silvia
08-26-2007, 10:15
Thank you DallasDiverGirl!

skippy11
08-26-2007, 19:25
Im very new to the Diving Sport and everytime I have been in the water, it is w/ a different BC and of course, I haven't had the luxury of an integrated weight belt.

Are there certain brands of BC's to stay away from? I have notice a distictive difference in the fit, but wasn't sure if there were certain ones to watch out for.

ScubaGir1
08-26-2007, 19:47
I have a Sea Quest Libra and like it a lot. It doesn't have a ton of extra stuff to it, so it's pretty nice and streamlined. I'd also recommend checking out a BP/W setup. My LDS talked me out of one when I was buying and if I were to do it over, I probably wouldn't have allowed them to.
Yup, I have the SeaQuest Libra package BCD too. I like it a lot. It has the integrated weigh pockets, a pocket, D-rings, an attached dive knife on the side, and NO straps get in the way up top (if you know what I mean :smiley36:) LOL.

savannahbell
08-27-2007, 18:17
I have the Tusa Slene with the intergrated weight pockets. I love it. The only thing I would change about it is the pockets are a little far back for me but because they only come in the smaller sizes and I have a Med and probally really need at least a large but they do not come larger than that. You can extend the waist band out to make it a large on the inside. Had mine now for 3 years and no problems.

TravisD
08-28-2007, 11:42
My wife went with the DUI Delta Wings BC and loves it. It's pretty much adjustable from XS to XXL, which means it not only fits her good, but probably will fit just about anybody well should she decide to get rid of it, or loan it out.

divechaplain-sara
08-28-2007, 12:54
Here's the thing that I love most about my Zena--it fits through the shoulders. I rented or borrowed BC's for 4 years--they never fit through the shoulders and then underwater my tank would shift and I always had trouble with bouyancy in part because of that shifting of weight. Not so with a properly fitted BC. The thing I love next most is that it doesn't have a cumberband. I am very short waisted but I do have a very distinct waist line. Cumberbunds are always to wide for me and wind up sitting around my rib cage not my waist (probably a contributing factor in the shoulders not fitting right on those bc's either). The Zena however adjusts well to curves and fits like a glove. It was heavenly when I first tried it on in the shop.

texgal@heart
08-28-2007, 16:03
I love my Zena. I'm a larger gal and am very broad in the back but not so broad in the front. I like the fact that the Zena is modular. I have a large back, med shoulder and med front. It fits like a dream and stays in place.

Zenagirl
08-28-2007, 16:48
I think it's so cool how everyone not only posts what they dive (and prefer) but WHY. What a great resource for anyone looking for a new BC.

savannahbell
08-28-2007, 17:04
I think it's so cool how everyone not only posts what they dive (and prefer) but WHY. What a great resource for anyone looking for a new BC.



Very well said.

Hubby wants me to try a wing/ backplate. I say that is fine as long as the straps will cut the same way as mine now. I am not fond of the strapes going over your chest, I prefer them under the arms. Makes it a lot more comfortable due to chest size. Plus will take some weight off as well. So we will see what happens.

divechaplain-sara
08-28-2007, 17:40
Zenagirl--that giving of why is such important information. Especially for someone new. It helps to be aware of what problems people have had and the solutions they have found. That way you know that if you have had similar problems, you might be able to find the same solution. At a minimum, it lets you know what to be on the lookout for. That truly is one of the things that makes this board helpful in addition to fun.

Buc Chick
08-28-2007, 22:48
Hello,
i did not have a chance to try the Zeagle models, but I have the Ladyhawk (scubapro) and I really like it. I dive mostly in cold water, but sometimes in warm water. It's not too big to pack when travelling. Between the choices that I had (men and women BC), it was the one that felt the most comfortable.

Good luck to find the perfect BC for you!

I also have the Scubapro Ladyhawk.
I used a jacket-style BC during OW class and I felt very uncomfortable in it, like I was suffocating. I'm sure not all jacket-style BC's fit like that but it was what my LDS was using for their classes. And I also had problems staying horizontal--I just kept "turtling". It was probably me, not the BC. But after a bit of research, I decided on a back-inflate BC. For a newbie, I did not feel I was ready for a BP/W. I decided on the Scubapro Ladyhawk and luckily found one here on Scubatoys last year--I think it was their last one. Very pleased with this purchase. :smiley20:

cshel
09-03-2007, 13:20
I also recommend trying them on. There is a LDS that has a pool and you can even dive in the equipment before you buy... really cool deal.

I have a Zeagle Zena and it's wonderful! I took my classes in the jacket style and they seems to shirt and ride up on me in the water. I tried on the Zena at the LDS and immediately loved it. It's very adjustable. I have a size Small back piece and size Small shoulders and a size Large front piece. I'm a 36 DDD so I need the extra room up front. I just loosen the side straps when I put it on and then tighten once I zip up. I never have to adjust the shoulder straps. I have never had any problems with the BC shifting or riding up. It is very snug and comfortable. Because it is a back inflate, I don't get squeezed when I inflate my BC. I also added a Zeagle Lumbar Pad and a second Zeagle Expandable Mesh Quick Pocket. My Zena came with one but I like to be balanced so I added one on the other side. I had the Alternate Airsource added to it and so I have one less hose to worry about with my reg. No octopus needed.

BLGould22
09-04-2007, 06:38
Hey all, I haven't been diving much yet, but I went from renting a Selene (completely impossible to take out and put in the weight pockets when I wear a 7mm and have to add a lot of lead) to owning a Zeagle Brigade. I absolutely love the Brigade. So many options, it is heavy duty with out being heavy duty. And I found surface swims to be a lot easer now that I have back inflation. I may in time need a larger bladder but for now, and only having 2 dives on it so far, I am in love with it. All the D rings and all the different options that it can come with make it a great choice, and the price seems to be decent for all it can do.:smiley20:

Scuba Nymph
10-03-2007, 13:04
I love my Aeris Contour... but I've never tried anything else.

missnumnutz
10-07-2007, 01:58
i ended up buying a Oceanic Hera BC after trying on the usual hire men's oceanpro. my buddy ended getting an upgrade to the oceanpro fx, but even this has less padding than the Hera. I just tried out my Hera yesterday and I can't say much about the usual backpain but it was quite comfy otherwise!

anyone else get a lot of chronic back pain from the tank/bc + int. weights walking to the divespot? i thought it was just me and i would get used to it as I could be unfit from doing deskwork all the time? don't realli have a solution to all this as we need all the gear! =P