Carrying a float or diving with a board has always been an errand for most of us. We want something easy to carry in the water and we also want plenty of functionality like space to put spearguns or to attach fishor a safe place for diving papers, keys, etc… San Fransisco based company “Banks Board” has probably found the perfect remedy for us…
Fighting with the conventional floats during freediving trainings, I was very interested and excited when I first saw the designs of “Banks Boards” a.k.a – “John” on our forum pages. He was using aluminum moulds, high-tech CAD technology and most importantly he was fast on applying positive feedbacks on the designs. We’ve all followed the progress of his design and finally the products hit the market.
They were not only looking cool but also functional as far as one can say from the pictures. A lot of straps, a wide and solid platform to put equipment on (or to rest yourself), a watertight locker and a sea-worthy hull to cut the waves when you are pulling it!
We all know that, most of the diving equipment looks very nice on catalogues but it is a different story in real life. It was almost early summer when John sent me a yellow board to test in the turquoise waters of Aegean sea. The idea was simple! Giving the board a long and hard test on freediving trainings and also on spearfishing sessions. So here are the results of the Medfish jury!
Technical Specs: Banks Board is offering several setups for their products. Every dive board is coming with an easy carrying system which includes military grade shoulder straps and stainless steel clips to create a portable “back pack” with all your diving stuff on it. You can either order your board with bungees or with a mesh bag which has a marine grade zipper for rough conditions.
A flag post at the fore, a flush hole at the centre, an almost 10lt dry compartment, two slots to attach spearguns and heavy duty handles can be listed as the main features of the dive board. Weight is just under 5kg and dimensions are 110cm X 70cm (including handles).
Possibly the best feature of Banks Board is its hull design. It clearly reminds the hull of a fishing boat designed to cut waves to give comfort. Whether you pull it with a rope or you use it like a body board, Banks Board is always helping the diver to travel easily even on heavy swells. Well adjusted buoyancy is helping quite a lot here as one can push the front part of the board under the waves when needed. Finger slots, designed to help powerful grips, let you manoeuvre the board easily and of course let divers rest around with comfort.
The bungee option on our test board can function in several ways. First of all the bungees to secure spearguns are seperate from the rest of the rig. At the centre part of board there are two sets of elastics which let you secure different objects at the same time with the luxury of adjustable tightness. The plastic hooks at the end of bungee cords have swivels and it is very easy to use them.
Banks Board is not only a spearfishing accessory but also good for freediving. In our training sessions and freediving classes it proved itself as a solid platform to give support up to 4 freedivers with 12kg bottom weight attached to the board. Locker box managed to stay dry after countless training hours in the sea.
I’ve found opportunity to test Banks Board for a period of 3 months by countless torturing water sessions with some of my friends and students. It has always performed the way it should be and never lets you down even at the roughest situations. It is a very solid and reliable dive accessory which you can never give up.