2013 ScubaLab BCs: Testers' Choice
AquaLung Axiom BC
• MSRP: $575
• Warranty: Limited Lifetime
• Made in: Mexico
• Dry Weight: 7.8 pounds (size ML)
• Sizes/Buoyant Lift: XS-31, S-31, M-36, ML-41, L-44, XL-47, 2XL-54
• Info: www.aqualung.com
The Axiom comes in a wide range of sizes, and offers a swivel buckle harness and adjustable sternum strap to dial in the perfect fit, some excel- lent back and lumbar padding, and the Wrapture harness system. The Sure-Lock II weight system is about as good as it gets; weights snap right in even when wearing the BC, and they ditch on demand. With its efficient valve system, the Axiom joined only a few other BCs able to go three-for-three in the flow-rate tests. Test divers weren’t wild about the positioning of the lower-rear exhaust valve, which is located on the left side of the BC. But all things combined, this is an incredibly form-fitting BC that was the only model in this test to earn perfect scores for comfort and stability. Overall, the Axiom feels like it’s an extension of the body.
This year’s Testers’ Choice winner in the jacket-style category is a comfortable and stable BC with a good weight system, efficient valves, and a long list of convenience features.