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Welcome to Dive Gear Reviews, a comprehensive guide to scuba diving equipment. Scuba diving is an expensive pursuit, so looking up reviews for a particular article of equipment is a wise precaution before investing any hard-earned money in it. However, consumer reviews may or may not be written by an experienced diver, and magazine reviews could be suspect due to the advertising ties of the publication in question. Dive Gear Reviews provides cross-referenced reviews assembled by an expert, making it possible to see at a glance what multiple sources said about a particular piece of scuba equipment. If one magazine loved a scuba regulator or a dive computer, but the consumers hated it, that information will be found here.

Zeagle Stiletto Scuba BCD Review

Written by Dive Gear Reviews Editor. Comments Off on Zeagle Stiletto Scuba BCD Review Posted in: BCDs, Over $500

Zeagle’s Stiletto BCD is a fine example of a general purpose piece of recreational diving equipment. With a dry weight of 7.4 lbs (3.35 kg), the Stiletto isn’t as light as a true travel BCD, nor is it as collapsible, but it isn’t so heavy that it will tip a wisely packed bag of dive gear over the 50 lbs checked luggage limit either. With a lift capacity of 35 lbs, the back-inflating Zeagle is also suited to use in temperate waters. Those two specifications make it a sound choice for a diver who does most of her diving locally and in cooler waters, but who still wants to bring her BCD with her for the annual trip to the Caribbean, the Andamans or the Red Sea.

The Zeagle is made from 1000 denier nylon, making it a tough, durable BCD. The Stiletto’s back has a sewn-on pad but no hard plate, making it a little more collapsible than back plate-based BCDs, but also somewhat harder to get on and off on a cramped, inflatable boat. It comes with the fairly normal adjustable sternum strap and a cumberbund with buckle strap. The tank is secured with a single conventional strap. The Stiletto’s carries cargo through five steel D-rings and a pair of zippered pockets. These pockets are located on the outside of the integrated weight pockets, and just like every such pocket, they share volume with the weight system. This means that a diver in cold water and packing lots of ballast will find their pockets won’t hold much.

The integrated weights use Zeagle’s ripcord system. The weight pocket is attached by a plastic cable to an emergency pull-handle, which in turn is secured by a Velcro strap. In an emergency, a diver is supposed to give the handle a strong tug and release the weights, just as in an emergency parachute. The main weight pockets can hold up to 24 lbs (10.8 kg), and the trim pockets in the back can store an additional 20 lbs (9 kg).

Zeagle also created a tricked-out version of the Stiletto called the Stiletto Extreme, which fits the BCD with quick deploy systems for a signal sausage and a pony bottle, as well as the company’s Octo Z alternate air source inflator and more attachment points for gear.

Average Price: $580