View Full Version : Mares R2 Rebel Regulator

09-09-2007, 15:25
Hi - My wife and I were Open Water certified this past January in the Cayman Islands. We are now planning another dive trip this upcoming January and am going to be buying our own dive equipment. I am interested in buying the R2 rebel package from Scubatoys.com. Being a newer diver - I am not so sure as to if I am making a wrong choice though based on price. I want a very tough/durable workhorse regulator. My wife and I are definitely tropical destination divers that are purely recreational (for now at least). Am I forgetting something that this regulator package doesn't have ?? Pros/cons, likes/dislikes? Any information would be greatly appreciated!

ScubaToys Larry
09-09-2007, 15:39
That is a very simple non-balanced first stage... about as bullet proof as they get. The only thing non-balanced means is if you get low on air... down below 500 psi and are at depth... it will get harder to breathe... but if you are at depth with only that much air, someone should tell you to get up! So why not the reg!

Non-Balanced pistons are a very popular choice for stage bottles for tech divers since they are so dependable.

Now the reg does not have adjustments, which some people like - so if you wanted to make the next step up, I'd point you to the Tusa RS-130 package (http://www.scubatoys.com/store/detail.asp?PRODUCT_ID=PackageTusaReg), and you will see when you check it out, there are a few threads over here from people who use that one and love it - especially for the price. http://forum.scubatoys.com/showthread.php?t=2376

Either seems like it would serve you fine for your needs... But I'll back out now and let you get some unbiased opinions from the members - but feel free to PM if you have any other specific questions for me!

09-09-2007, 17:24
So larry, how do you compare the mares mr12rebel and the TUSA RS-130?

ScubaToys Larry
09-09-2007, 17:27
Personally, I'd still go with the Tusa... I like the ease of rebuilding the little balanced piston, and I like the adjustments. The Tusa is a great breathing reg at that price - I really haven't seen anything that is as good at that price point - or even if you throw another 50 bucks at it.

09-11-2007, 23:19
hmm i think i'll listen to larry... i'm prolly gonna go with the tusa as well

09-12-2007, 06:29
hmm i think i'll listen to larry... i'm prolly gonna go with the tusa as well

Probably hard to go wrong with that decision...

09-12-2007, 10:49
Mmm... I've gotta tell you. I used a Rebel R2 reg on one dive, and that was because I was taking my AOW navigation dive, and I didn't have a compass but my instructor's console did. I don't mean to be rude, but I can see why it is a cheap regulator. I had been breathing from an Aqualung Calypso, and I went to that Rebel R2, and I saw the difference immediately. The R2 was hard to breathe from. I didn't enjoy the experience at all.

It's a nice inexpensive set if you have someone who dives maybe once a year, so won't notice the difference, but... sorry to be mean... I didn't think much of the set. It's inexpensive for a reason.

Quite seriously--I'd go higher on the hog. If you buy an inexpensive reg and don't like it, then you've just cost yourself more money.

*or* perhaps you can try the reg out first, before you make your decision. Not in the pool so much, but be sure to go to a halfway deent depth. 15 meters or more. Then again, I was only at about 8, and could already tell the reg wasn't for me.

09-12-2007, 11:56
This is great information - thank you all - Unfortunately I have my job I have to attend to - otherwise my wife and I would be diving all the time! We actually trained/certified w/ the Rebel and to newbies like me - I had no idea if something was hard or softer to pull on when breathing. I did take a couple of puffs of of my instructor's Poseidon - but that's a whole 'nother ballgame. Any opinions out there about any other simple non-balanced first stage reg ? Sorry to start this up - but some of my instructors said that Tusa was "cheap" - so perception is reality right now (at least for me) - was he wrong????

09-12-2007, 13:44
I dive a Rebel, and I dig it. I've dove high $$ regs before, and I can't say I can relate to the "hard breathing" post above For the money, it's a steal.

09-12-2007, 13:45
Larry, one question? Can I get the TUSA with DIN? My cousin told me I could use his tanks, but they are all DIN. (if I can get DIN, is there a DIN-Yoke converter for the tusa ?

ScubaToys Larry
09-12-2007, 13:55
Couple things to answer a few question in this thread... Tusa stuff is not "cheap". They are very nicely made regs - and actually Tusa makes a lot of equipment you see with the ScubaPro name on it... They do very good machining in Japan. Very high quality stuff.

No... they don't really have a din for it - but I'd probably tell you to see if he has a 200 bar din that you can get the screw in adapter for - like the thermo valves - and convert the tank to yoke - not the reg to din, otherwise anytime you travel, or want to use another tank - you'd have a problem.

And any reg that you grab - can be set up to breathe great or terrible. It just depends on how they have it set up. I've taken hits on Aqua lungs, Scuba Pro - you name it, that felt like you were trying to drink a chocolate shake through a small straw... It's all on when was it serviced, and how is it set. That's true for any reg.

09-12-2007, 19:01
thats right. during my class for the OOA practice, i had to use someones scubapro mk25 s600 that was completely untuned (he messed with it) and it was horrible compared to my "cheap" stuff! my regs breath great and are older and cheaper regs, nothing too expensive. gorrillas mares reg (he paid 180 bux for a 400+ dollar reg) brand new, was breathing too loosely out of the box brand new... he set it so it would stop freeflowing and it got much better.
i dont think price is a big deal when it comes to scuba... it's not like a company is gonna put out a reg that will kill you... or else they would not be around.

09-12-2007, 20:14
Aha-- I kind of wondered if it was maybe just the specific reg. I was using. I'm serious in that it didn't breathe well at all.

So we had one person who likes the R2. It goes to show you that your scuba gear use will depend on personal preference. You can't really buy a dodgy reg. that won't work. 20 years ago, a different story. As CrzyJay said already.

So if you've dived with the Rebel R2, and you were fine with it, then it should work for you.

One thing to remember is that you can always buy the reg, make some dives, get some experience, and then peddle it for a higher end Mares later on if you so desire. Some people use the R2 for a stage bottle. If you've got your guage and your octo, and you're fine with them, but want a higher end Mares, then just peddle the R2, purchase a new reg., and move your octo and guage over to the new first stage.

As you said, you don't dive so often, so the inexpensive reg. set would get you in the water. In the meanwhile, you can get more diving exposure, and have a better understanding of what *you* like and don't like, or what conditions you'll dive in.


10-09-2007, 14:53
Larry, but what if i had to choose between the Tusa RS-130 and the Aeris A1? Which would be the best choice? I have to buy a new reg for my wife... I have an Aeris, but an Atmos Pro, and like it a lot, have just good things to say about it.

10-09-2007, 20:44
I can't comment on the first stage as much (R2), as I have the Rebel MR12, but that unit is GREAT (aside from the 2nd stage being a bit bigger than what I'd like).


04-20-2008, 13:20
If I was going to buy a new reg I would probably get Tusa RS-130. Some Scubapro reg models are actually the exact Tusa's.

08-31-2008, 04:33
I dive the R2 and havent had any problems with it. Had it down to ~90 ft with no problems.