If you are looking for an outstanding Jacket style BCD in the low medium price range, then you should take a closer look at the Sherwood Avid.
The Avid model is considered by many divers to be one of the best BCD made by Sherwood Scuba. It is widely known for its rock-solid reliability and stability.
Being recently upgraded to the new Avid 700 version, apart from a few aesthetics, this new version is designed to be more robust and provide better comfort on repetitive dives.
In this review, we are going to look at some of the features which make it an excellent choice for beginner and casual divers, a well as what we like and don’t like about this BC.
The Sherwood Avid 700 is a low-to-mid priced BCD that offers superior fit, comfort, and styling. A jacket style bladder completely warps around you for easy floating and greater stability on the surface. Additional neoprene padded neck roll help prevent irritation and chafing, which makes it an excellent choice for repetitive diving.
Sherwood Avid BCD Review Video
Below is a brief overview of the Sherwood Avid BCD done by the guys over at simplyscuba.com. Although the video is of an older model of the BCD, nothing much has changed with the BCD expect for aesthetics, additional padding, and a large handle on the weight integrated system. You can find out more about these changes below the video.
Key Features and Benefits:
The Sherwood Avid has been around for quite some time now. The new Avid 700 Series has been updated to make an already great BCD even better. Below are some of the main features of the Sherwood Avid 700 the make it stands out from other BCD on the market.
Extra Padding for Additional Comfort
Unlike previous models of this BC, the new Sherwood Avid 700 has been updated with comfort in mind and now sports an additional neoprene padded neck roll. This feature helps with reducing chafing and irritation you might experience from repetitive diving. This makes it a great choice for your perfect Liveaboard BC.
CQR-3 Integrated Weight System
The CQR-3 Integrated weight system is among the best in the industry. Know for its stability, ease of weight insertion, and convenience, it has also been upgraded with larger pull handles. Making it more accessible and easy handle, even while wearing thicker gloves, a major improvement from previous models.
3D Air Cell Bladder For Stability
The 3D Air cell in this Jacket-Style BC makes it easy to float upright on the surface by wrapping are completely around you. When fully inflated on the surface the suspension straps create a stable and comfortable fit which virtually eliminates the squeezing you would expect from other jacket-Style BCs.
3 Strategically Placed Dump Valve
The Avid gives you superior control over your buoyancy by providing three strategically placed dump valves. There are 2 valves located on either shoulder, with the right valve attached to the power inflator assembly. The third is located by the right butt cheek and also doubles as an overpressure relief valve. The position of the three dump valves makes it easy to quickly dump air in any position.
Plenty Of D-rings and Pockets for Accessories
This BC is equipped with 6 stainless steel D-Ring conveniently place through the BC to attach additional gear or accessories. It also features zippered pockets for additional safety and scuba accessories. There are also non-releasing trim weight pockets that can accommodate up to 10 additional pounds.
Sherwood Avid 700 Specs
Number of Pockets
Number of D Ring
How Does It Stack Up?
Although the Sherwood Avid CQR 3 BCD is not a low-quality unit by any means, it’s also definitely not the most durable out there. It’s just not made for intensive diving.
It is made to be functional and user-friendly. It works perfectly fine for fairly basic diving needs. It just doesn’t do too well in excessively cold or deep waters.
This model is fairly lightweight, has all the right adjustable support straps, and is made to be ergonomically friendly.
Based on everything said here today, the Sherwood Avid CQR 3 BCD is quite a bargain.
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What We Like
What we like about the Sherwood Avid BCD is that it features a high level of dependability and functionality. It’s a straightforward and user–friendly unit ideal for causal divers and beginners alike.
It’s not too heavy or bulky, all of the mechanisms are well located and easy to use, and it’s comfortable also. For the relatively low price, there is not much we didn’t like.
What We Don’t Like
Now, with all of that said, something that does need to be said about this Sherwood Avid CQR 3 BCD is that it’s just not the most durable. No, it won’t fall apart after a single-use, but its ability to stand up to puncturing, UV light, and wear and tear in general is a bit limited.
Furthermore, it’s also not the kind of unit you would choose for cold and deep water diving.
Who Should Buy This BCD?
If it is a very affordable BCD you are looking for, you may want to consider the Sherwood Avid CQR 3 BCD. The Sherwood Avid CQR 3 BCD is designed for more casual divers, not for the deepest or coldest of waters, more for some basic recreational diving.
What can be said is that this unit is fine for beginners and occasional divers who just need something that works without costing an arm and a leg. It’s not the most highly functional unit, but it’s not really designed for professionals or very intensive diving.
Simply put, the Sherwood Avid CQR 3 BCD is a good option for people working with a limited budget.
Frequently Asked Questions
Would this qualify as a travel BCD?
Yes, the Sherwood Avid CQR 3 BCD is fairly lightweight and it dries quickly, making it fairly ideal for travel.
Could the Sherwood Avid be use with Dual tank?
This cannot be used for dual tanks. I would recommend getting a harness, wing and back plate set up to do a dual tank properly
Is the Scubapro Equator BCD ideal for cold water?
Although it can handle cool water just fine, it’s not designed for excessive cold.
The Bottom Line
If you need a great BCD designed for causal and recreational diving, especially one that is ideal for beginners, the Sherwood Avid CQR 3 BCD is a strong contender to keep in mind. It comes at a decent price, and considering the price, the features are better than could be expected.