A List of Modern Sidemount Diving Systems

by Andy Davis

There are an increasing number of commercial ‘off-the-shelf’ sidemount systems available to purchase.  These typically fall into one of two categories; minimalist (Hogarthian-inspired) rigs and cold-water rigs.

The minimalist rigs, sometimes called “British configurations” typically feature a base harness that uses lumbar and shoulder plates, to which a flat bladder is attached.  These are primarily popular in warm-water regions, where aluminum cylinders will be used.  Their advantages are that they are very small, thus suitable for diving in confined spaces/tight penetrations, and that they are very lightweight/low-bulk for travel. Attachment points for cylinders are typically on the waist belt and butt-plates are omitted.

Cold-water sidemount diving systems, sometimes referred to as “American configurations”, tend to have more bulk, but offer sufficient lift for use with multiple steel cylinders.  Attachment points for cylinders are typically via a ‘butt-plate’ with rails.  Cold-water rigs are also more likely to offer integrated buoyancy redundancy. Some sidemount BCDs are also designed to be ‘hybrid’; able to convert between sidemount and backmount roles. They typically use a soft-backplate that has grommits for attaching a single-tank adapter, backmount doubles or directly fitted with cam-bands.

  For more information read:  The Two Schools of Sidemount Diving Heritage

Some manufacturers (for instance, Hollis and DiveRite) also offer sidemount BCDs with either a top or bottom (left) mounted low-pressure inflator hose.  The top mounted hose may be more familiar to novice sidemount divers transitioning from conventional back-mount BCDs (thus marketed as ‘blue water’ or ‘open water’ design).  The bottom mounted LPI is typically popular with overhead environment divers, as it offers superior protection from abrasion/impact/entanglement; it is thus marketed as a ‘tec’ or ‘cave’ configuration.  In many other cases, the LPI is interchangeable by the diver, between top/bottom position (when there is a pull-dump located on the upper wing).


Agir-Brokk Ratatosk

Agir-Brokk Ratatosk sidemount

The Ratatosk sidemount follows a similar minimalist design to the Razor, Stealth, Z-Trim and Aquamundo. It has a ‘tear-drop’ shaped bladder and features the ‘SiMo’ design bungee mounting (based on the UTD approach).  The lumbar and shoulder plates are available in either 3mm or 6mm stainless steel.  More Details/Review here

  • Buoyancy: 24lbs/11kg
  • Material: Outer – 1000 denier cordura |  Inner – 400 denier cordura
  • Weight:  Not known
  • Manual:   Not yet available (Agir-Brokk Manuals Page)
  • Manufacturer Link:  Agir-Brokk Ratatosk

[quads id=1]

Akuana Hummingbird 1

Akuana Hummingbird 1 sidemount bcd


The Akuana Hummingbird 1 is a quite generic design, that’s sold by a few different companies under different names (see also the Aquamundo sidemount).

  • Buoyancy: 22lbs/101kg
  • Material: 1680D nylon
  • Weight:  1,9kg
  • Manual:   Not yet available
  • Manufacturer Link: Akuana Hummingbird 1

[quads id=1]

Akuana Hummingbird 2

Hummingbird 2 sidemount bcd

Set for release later in 2019, the Akuana Hummingbird 2 looks like it borrows much of its design from the Razor 2.0 – in a slightly minimized size (only 32lb of buoyancy). It should  have an economical price, making it an option for those on a strict budget.

  • Buoyancy: believed to be 32lbs/15kg
  • Material: Not yet known
  • Weight:  Not yet known
  • Manual:   Not yet available
  • Manufacturer Link: Not yet available

[quads id=1]

Apeks WSX-25

Apeks-WSX-25-Sidemount The Apeks WSX-25 features 27lbs of buoyancy, custom sliding D-rings and a robust ‘armoguard’ material wing. It comes complete with a butt ancillary pouch and is based on the 2-plate (butt and lumbar) harness system with 3x 3kg spine weight pockets.

When trialling the wing, I found that the sliding D-rings had a tendency to ‘migrate’ up along the waist-belt when aluminium cylinders were buoyant.  This can be resolved somewhat by adding a stronger bungee material to the D-rings.  I also found the belt buckle was very heavy and quite tough to manipulate.  I’d love to see a more refined sliding-gate buckle used with the system – as the rest of the metal hardware is of very good quality.

I managed to put some scratches into the wing material when squeezing through some very tight wreck restrictions – but that’d happen with most sidemount rig materials.  I don’t think the wing came close to getting a puncture.  I did like that the rear ‘tail’ OPV was concealed under some fabric to help protect it.

The rig was initially quite hard to assemble. It’s a fiddly job because the harness makes use of custom allen nuts/bolts at several locations.  I don’t really see any advantage with these attachments over regular nylock bolts.

See my full pre-release review here:  Apeks WSX-25 Sidemount

In late 2016, a redundant bladder option, of the same material and buoyancy will be released.

  • Buoyancy:  27lbs / 12kg  (+ interchangeable left/right LPI option)
  • Material:      Armoguard material (10x more abrasion resistance than cordura)
  • Weight:         Not yet available
  • User Manual:  Apeks WSX-25 User Manual
  • Manufacturer Link: Apeks WSX-25 Sidemount

[quads id=1]

Apeks WSX-45

apeks wsx-45 sidemount

The Apeks WSX-45 is expected to be released in late 2016.  The harness system will be identical to the WX-25, but the larger wing features 45 lbs/20kg of buoyancy – making it more suitable for mixed-gas technical diving.  Like the WSX-25 it has reversible left/right LPI and OPV on the lower corners, along with an OPV  at the tail of the wing.  An addition that the WSX-25 doesn’t have is an inflator connection on the inside left shoulder. There will also be an add-on redundant bladder option with the same materials and dimensions.

  • Buoyancy:  45lbs / 20kg
  • Material:      Armoguard material (10x more abrasion resistance than cordura)
  • Weight:         Not yet available
  • User Manual:  Not yet available
  • Manufacturer Link: Not yet available

[quads id=1]

Aquatec My Sidemount

Aquatec my Sidemount bcd


No… this REALLY is a sidemount system.  The Aquatec ‘My Sidemount’ was thought to be a joke by the sidemount community when it was first released. It is certainly a novel concept – merging a BCD with a dryland backpack. But why?!?

Apparently, you can remove the backpack cover to reveal a slimline wing underneath. It comes with an optional oral-inflate secondary bladder.

  • Buoyancy:  26.5lbs / 12kg
  • Material:     No details available
  • Weight:         Not yet available
  • User Manual:  Not yet available
  • Manufacturer Link: Aquatec My Sidemount

[quads id=1]

Amphibian Gear Transformer

amphibian gear sidemount
The Amphibian Gear Sidemount ‘Transformer’ comes from Russia. It is a modular system, similar to the OMS ‘Profile’ adapter, whereby an anti-taco rear cover/butt-plate configuration that can be used in conjunction with varied wing and harness options. The picture above shows a 30lb ‘donut’ wing and ‘comfort’-style harness,as options.  This permits a very flexible approach to suit a variety of needs and requirements; and also to allow new sidemount divers to utilize some wing/backplate components they may already own.
  • Buoyancy:  30 lb / 14.5 kg
  • Material:    Outer: Cordura (1680 g)  /  Inner:  Nylon (420 g)
  • Weight:  Varies – modular options
  • Manual: Not known
  • Manufacturers Link:  Amphibian Gear Sidemount (Russian)

[quads id=1]

Aquamundo SM

aquamundo sidemount

Produced by locally popular Philippines-based diving manufacturer ‘Aquamundo’, the SM is a minimalist warm-water sidemount configuration, similar in approach to the Z-Trim. It is sold complete as a complete unit, with all necessary ancillaries.    I’ve dived the Aquamundo sidemount comfortably with 4x AL80s on technical dives… and subjected the rig to some quite hard demands when running technical wreck penetration courses.  The rig is exceptionally robust.

More details/my review here

  • Buoyancy:  21lbs / 9kgs
  • Material:  1000 denier nylon (special 420 denier ‘lightweight’ nylon ‘Rescue Team version available)
  • Weight:  Not known
  • Manual: Not available online
  • Manufacturer Link:  Aquamundo Sidemount

[quads id=1]

AudaxPro ‘Point Break’

Audaxpro-point-break-sidemount system

The Italian manufactured ‘Point Break’ sidemount is available in 9 colors (red, yellow, blue, black, white, orange, gray, turquoise and fuchsia) and provides 8kg of buoyancy.

  • Buoyancy: 18lb / 8kg
  • Material:  Outer: nylon TEXTANE A / B 210 with polyamide coating HT Inner: nylon TEXTANE A / B 210
  • Weight:  1.9kg / 4.2lb
  • Manual:  Not yet available
  • Manufacturer Link:  Audaxpro ‘Point Break’

[quads id=1]

Custom Divers Rhino

Custom Divers Rhino Sidemount

The Custom Divers Rhino is a hybrid sidemount/backmount wing system that weighs only 2.50kgs.  It can be converted for sidemount or backmount diving use.  It has 28lbs of buoyancy and is designed to be highly flexible for individual customization (for instance, it has 5 alternative mounting points for the LPI). More Details / Review here

  • Buoyancy: 28lb / 13kg  Sealed single compartmental system.
  • Material: “super fabric with armor technology” (*No further details given – believed to be cordura/urethane)
  • Weight:  5.5lb / 2.5kg
  • Manual:  Custom Divers Rhino Datasheet
  • Manufacturer Link: Custom Divers Rhino Sidemount System
[quads id=1]

Deco Sidemount

 Deco Sidemount 3

The Deco Sidemount bladder can attach to any sidemount harness or be worn stand-alone via bungees.  With 22lbs/10kgs of buoyancy it will easily float two AL80 cylinders for recreational sidemount; or can be used in conjunction with an existing sidemount rig, to provide redundant lift.

The bladder and harnesses (and individual hardware components) are available separately – allowing sidemount divers to pick an exact rig specification to suit their preferences and needs. The bladder is available to purchase without an LPI (for those wishing to fit their own), or with an LPI with either  13′, 16″ or 19″ corrugated hose length.  That’s a purchase option that I feel more sidemount rig manufacturers would offer.

There are two harnesses available;  a traditional harness (shoulder straps to the rear lumbar plate) and an ‘H’ style harness (shoulder straps routed to front of harness via ‘T’ attachments).

Both harnesses are lightweight and minimalist; providing all the functionality that you’d need with zero superfluous clutter.  Many other types of sidemount wing could be attached to this harness.  The harness is supplied with 6ft of 5/16th bungee and two bolt-snaps, so the diver can rig out their own tank bungee method (loop, sliding loop, independent, ‘old school’ etc).

See my full review here:  Deco Sidemount Review

  • Buoyancy:  22lb / 10kg
  • Material:    1000 Denier Cordura with urethane coating
  • Weight: Wing only 1.3lbs/0.462kg
  • Manual: Not known
  • Manufacturers Link:    Deco Sidemount

[quads id=1]

DiveRite Nomad LS

Nomad LS sidemount

The latest (September 2016) release from DiveRite.  The Nomad LS incorporates a more streamlined design that also helps keep most of the buoyancy over the hips for better trim.  It comes with a deluxe-type harness, but this is removable if the diver wanted to fit a more minimalist simple webbing harness.  The LPI and OPV are fitted into the inside of the wing, for greater protection in overhead environments.

There is an option to buy the Nomad LS with an extra 10 lbs. (4.5 kg)  redundant bladder.  The wing also uses a newly designed ‘Adjustable Bungee System’, which is claimed to allow swifter user adjustment without typing knots.

It’s not clear from the DiveRite website whether the butt-plate is removable.  If it’s not removable then it limits rear mounting options for divers using aluminium cylinders.  If using Loop bungees, then D-rings located at the wing-waist attachment point are probably sufficient. You’d need to add extra D-rings at the front of the waist-strap for when aluminium cylinders became buoyant.

  • Buoyancy:  35lbs/15.8 kg
  • Material: Outer -SuperFabric™ material with double ply 600 denier fabric. Inner- Heavy duty 420 denier nylon laminated
  • Weight:  Med: 5.7 lbs. (2.59 kg)
  • User Manual: Not yet available online
  • Manufacturer Link:  DiveRite Nomad LS

[quads id=1]

DiveRite Nomad XT

sidemount diverite nomad xt

The DiveRite Nomad XT is a modular sidemount system, built around the Transpac XT harness with XT wing and buttplate. It is available in both single and dual bladder versions; with sizes M – XXL.  The XT wing focuses buoyancy low on the hips and there is an interchangeable LPI/OPV at the top-centre and lower left.
  • Buoyancy:  50lbs/22.6 kg
  • Material:  Outer – SuperFabric brand technology & 1000 denier Cordura | Inner –  210 denier nylon laminate
  • Weight:  Med: 9.375lbs (4.25kg), Lg: 9.625lbs (4.36kg), XL: 10.06lbs (4.56kg)
  • User Manual: Nomad XT User Manual
  • Manufacturer Link:  DiveRite Nomad XT

[quads id=1]

DiveRite Nomad LTZ


sidemount diverite nomad ltz

The DiveRite Nomad LTZ is the improved successor to the old Nomad LT Extreme.  Made with even more robust materials and now offering a (limited) integral dual-bladder, the LTZ continues the Florida Cave evolution of sidemount design – but with a relatively minimalist feel. The LPI and OPVs have been moved inside of the wing, where they are significantly more protected.  I’m glad to see that the inflator now routes from the lower left wing – as this is over-riding preference of the vast majority of sidemount divers; and makes prudent sense from a hose routing perspective.

DiveRite have retained both a right-side and top-mounted OPV still, but this is discretely placed inside the upper wing and accessed by a pull-dump on the harness.  There is the option to buy the rig with a limited redundant bladder, which is just under half the capacity of the primary bladder.  As usual for DiveRite, the rig ships with a ring bungee system (DiveRite calls this the ‘loop bungee’, but that causes confusion with the different loop bungee method most sidemount divers refer to).  The rig has angled, low-profile D-rings on the shoulders and hips; along with a butt-plate/rails at the rear.

  • Buoyancy:  35lbs / 8kg (optional redundant lift capacity bladder with 10 lbs/4.5 kg)
  • Material:  Outer – SuperFabric material with double ply 600 denier fabric| Inner –  420 denier nylon laminate
  • Weight:  5.75 lbs/2.61 kg
  • User Manual:  Not available
  • Manufacturer Link:  DiveRite Nomad LTZ

[quads id=1]

DiveRite Nomad JT

sidemount diverite nomad jt

The Nomad JT was discontinued in Feb 2013. It utilized a ‘modified’ deluxe transpac-like harness, with a 50lb donut wing, an off-set inflator and three OPVs (top and both sides). It utilises a unique ‘daisy chain’ attachment at the diver’s back for attachment of sidemount bungees – preventing a hernia effect on the bladder. It is supplied with ‘ring type’ bungees, which can add security for water entries and in-water fitting of the cylinders, but can also be used with standard sidemount bungees.

[quads id=1]

Dive System Manta Sidemount

manta sidemount diving systems

The Manta sidemount is a hogarthian-inspired, minimalist, sidemount system available in a number of options.  It can be bought with a single (30lb/15L) wing or a dual/redundant (50lb/23L) wing.  The wing fabric is 1000 denier nylon (kevlar reinforced wing is also an option).  The harness features a custom-designed movable D-ring for cylinder trim control.  More details / review here

  • Buoyancy: Separate Twin Bladder – Primary bladder: 23kg /50lb | Secondary bladder: 22kg /48lb
  • Material:    Cordura® 1000 deniers ( Kevlar® optional )  (*believed to be single-layer)
  • Weight:  Not known
  • Manual: Not available
  • Manufacturers Link:  Dive System Manta Sidemount
[quads id=1]

Eques Sidemount

Eques sidemount

The Eques Sidemount system was developed by Polish cave divers; Richard Paluszkiewicz, Patrick Widmann, Christopher Starnawski and Mirek Wolski – who were also involved in the development of the X-Deep Stealth 2.0.  The Eques shows that lineage.  It was originally designed in 2000 and has been in use with the Tatra mountain rescue team.

  • Buoyancy:  27lb / 12kg
  • Material:    Cordura
  • Weight:  <3kg
  • Manual: Not available
  • Manufacturers Link:  cavesidemount.com

[quads id=1]

FinnSub ‘Fly Side’

The FinnsSub Fly Side sidemount is a tear-drop shaped bladder based upon a DIR harness with metal backplate. The BCD can be purchased with either an aluminium or steel (3mm or 6mm) backplate; or you can use an existing backplate/harness if you own already.  The purpose of including a metal backplate is to simply provide an alternative method of carrying necessary weight.  The Fly Side also includes trim weight pockets that can carry a total of 6kg.  It has a fitted buttplate with rails; and supports a range of bungee options. It retails for 590 Euros, including backplate.
  • Buoyancy:  35lb / 16kg
  • Material:    500 PU Cordura Inner / 2000 Cordura Outer
  • Weight: Varies depending on backplate option
  • Manual: Not known
  • Manufacturers Link:   FinnSub

[quads id=1]

Freedom Sidemount

The Freedom sidemount comes from Israeli manufacturer ‘Freedom Dive System’.  The harness is reminiscent of the X-Deep Stealth, with a teardrop shaped wing, similar to the Razor 2.0.  It has weight pockets for the spine and hips. The wing attaches securely to the harness at the top and bottom. It can also be configured as a dual wing (two bladders) for technical diving redundancy.
  • Buoyancy: 16kg /36lbs  (18.5kg / 41lb version available)
  • Material: Details not available
  • Weight:  Details not available
  • Manual:  Details not available
  • Manufacturer Link: Freedom Dive Systems 

[quads id=1]

Golem Gear Armadillo A2 and S

armadillo sidemount

The Armadillo is a sidemount specific rig, with integral buoyancy compensator and limited adjustment harness. It has an inter-changeable inflator/OPV, allowing divers to decide how they want it to be configured. The harness can be re-configured to allow incorporation of a climbing harness (rather than standard waist belt). A short fitting model (S) has also been released. More Details / Review here

  • Buoyancy: 35lb / 16kg
  • Material:  Outer – 2000 denier Cordura.  |  Inner bladder – RF welded Cordura 560 with PU coating.
  • Weight:   Not known
  • Manual:   Armadillo A2 User Manual
  • Manufacturer Link:  Golem Gear Sidemount

[quads id=1]

Halcyon Contour

Halcyon contour sidemount

The Halcyon sidemount offers 50lbs of buoyancy through a pre-shaped wing that keeps buoyancy lower in the rig (where it is ideal for sidemount).  It heavily features cave-diving configuration modifications developed by Edd Sorenson.  It has a reinforced top section to offer more ruggedness on overhead environment dives. More Details/Review here  and another good review here

  • Buoyancy: 50lb / 23kg  (rumored 40lb/18kg version to come)
  • Material:  TBC.  Expected: Outer – 1000 denier urethane coated nylon  |   Inner – 420-Denier urethane-coated nylon. Triple-layer top cover
  • Weight:  Not known
  • Manual:  Not yet available
  • Manufacturer Link: Halcyon Contour

[quads id=1]

Halcyon Zero Gravity

halcyon zero gravity sidemount bcd


The Halcyon Zero Gravity sidemount is supposedly designed for the warm-water diver using AL80 cylinders – and in that respect, it’s a major failure; not grasping the fundamental principles of aluminium cylinder diving.

The design borrows a little from the XDeep Stealth Rec – configuring a U-shaped bladder beneath a flat plate on the upper back.  Simply borrowing a bladder design but not integrating that onto a Mexican-style harness with hardware for AL tanks isn’t going to work though.

Disappointingly, this is just another inflexible ‘Florida-style’ rig making false claims about its functionality for aluminium tank diving.

American manufacturers need to cease their blinkered approach to warm-water sidemount design and, perhaps, actually just consult with sidemount experts who use aluminium cylinders as their primary method. There are specific principles that apply for aluminium cylinder configuration, and I have yet to see an American sidemount manufacturer who appreciates them.

The Zero Gravity has built-in, but moveable, rails on the upper-bottom of the wing; that are about as much use as a chocolate frying-pan for divers using aluminium cylinders.

Whenever the bladder is filled or dumped, the height of the butt rails will vary. So there’s no chance of ever getting a consistently good cylinder trim.

There are some D-rings on the waistbelt, but these are fixed in a set position where they secure the lower edges of the wing. In short, out-of-the-box there is zero means to attach aluminium cylinders front and rear on the waistbelt. You’ll have to go shopping for some extra D-rings and retainers, I am afraid.

  • Buoyancy: TBC
  • Material:  TBC.
  • Weight:  Not known
  • Manual:  Not yet available
  • Manufacturer Link: Not yet on site

[quads id=1]

Helium-Dive He2 Sidemount

 helium he2 sidemount

The He2 sidemount is manufactured by the Russian company Helium-Dive.  At first glance, it looks a lot like the Apeks sidemount. It has a weight pocket system on the inside of the wing, capable of holding up to 12kg of lead.  The hardware is all titanium – reducing the overall weight of the rig, but it’ll probably be expensive.  At present, the website is only in Russian, so I’ve got limited details on the system.

  • Buoyancy: 37lb / 17kg
  • Material:  1100d Cordura / Superfabric
  • Weight:  Not known
  • Manual:  Not yet available
  • Manufacturer Link: Helium-Dive

[quads id=1]

Helix Sidemount


The Helix sidemount is manufactured in Singapore and is purely designed for recreational sidemount diving (wreck penetration and technical diving in the rig is not advised by the manufacturer).  The rig weighs less than 1kg and features a novel harness design that removes the waist belt and crotch strap.  The wing is located high on the back, with a top-mounted LPI.  It has 10kg/22lb of buoyancy and the wing is constructed from 1400 denier nylon.

  • Buoyancy: 22lb / 10kg
  • Material: 1400 denier nylon single shell
  • Weight:  1.5kg
  • Manual:  Not available
  • Manufacturers Website:  Helix Sidemount  (alt: Diveguide.Com/Helix)

[quads id=1]

HOG Sidemount

Hog sidemount system

The HOG sidemount is very much in the American (Florida Cave) style of design, similar to rigs from DiveRite, Halcyon and Hollis. It comes in two sizes; Large and Small (for divers less than 5/8″).  The rig has an ‘H’ style harness and comes supplied with an ‘old school’ bungee set-up and has a large buttplate with rails.  Seen on sale at Cave Adventures  and DRIS for only $199 (as at July 2016)… quite a bargain!!
Read Doppler’s in-depth review of the HOG Sidemount HERE.
  • Buoyancy:   45lbs / 20kgs
  • Material:    420 Hi-Tenacity Nylon Air Cell
  • Weight:  6.2lbs
  • Manual: Not yet available
  • Manufacturers Link:  HOG

[quads id=1]

Hollis SMS100

SMS100 sidemount The Hollis SMS (Side Mount System) 100 is an integrated, hybrid sidemount system, which allows use of sidemount, back-mounted doubles and single tank configurations. It features an adjustable (rather than single-piece) harness, more akin to jacket BCD, or ‘comfort/deluxe’ harness design and is available with a single or double bladder.  There are many ‘standardized’ after-market modifications available for the SMS100, the most notable of which is the Edd Sorenson/Cave Adventures cave mod.  More Details / Review here

  • Buoyancy:  52lbs / 24kg
  • Material:  1000 denier CorduraTM w/ PU lamination outer shell & 15mil urethane internal bladder
  • Weight:    Not known
  • Manual:  SMS100 User Manual
  • Manufacturer Link:  Hollis Gear SMS100

[quads id=1]

Hollis SMS75

Hollis SMS75 sidemountThe SMS75 is Hollis’ mid-buoyancy sidemount system.  It’s more streamlined and lightweight than the SMS100 – but has more substantial lift than the SMS50.  It comes with a lighter weight bungee than the SMS100/50… which is much more suitable for a variety of bungee approaches.

The rig is suitable for technical and overhead sidemount with steel cylinders, but the lack of mounting points to keep aluminium cylinders in trim might frustrate divers in tropical areas where non-steel tanks are the norm.   The trapezoid wing shape to promote horizontal trim and it has an adjustable and removable) wing bungee if individual wing shaping or retention is desired.

The system also includes cam-band slots; so it can be used as a backmount system also.  The LPI and OPV are reversable and it is available in three sizes: SM/MD, LG/XL and XXL

  • Buoyancy:  40lbs / 18kgs
  • Material:  1000D Cordura
  • Weight:  7lbs
  • Manual:  Not yet released
  • Manufacturer Link: Hollis SMS75

[quads id=1]

Hollis SMS50

SMS50 sidemount The Hollis SMS 50 is a dedicated sidemount rig, which features a lower capacity bladder than the SMS100 and a much more minimalist and ‘Hogarthian’ inspired harness system. It also has dedicated trim pockets on the upper and lower harness. Popular as an ‘off-the-shelf’ sidemount option for warm-water/recreational sidemount divers. Available in two models; the ‘Sport’ comes with a top-mounted low-pressure inflator.  Both models have 10kg/22lbs of buoyancy. More Details / Review here and here

[quads id=1]

Hollis SMS Katana

sidemount hollis katana


The Hollis SMS Katana is more inspired by the British (Mexico cave) school of sidemount design; being Hollis’ most minimalist and modular rig to-date. It has a bare webbing ‘H’ style harness, integrated loop bungees and a diamond shaped bladder.  There are 3 weight pockets; two 5lb/2.26 kg and one 3 lb/1.36kg.

The loop bungees are webbing mounted beneath the bladder, but route through the wing to help keep it snug to the diver’s body. Retail price is  $499, making it a very economical option. It has two dump valves (OPV); at the rear left and the central top

  • Buoyancy:  35lbs / 16kg
  • Material:  1000 denier CorduraTM w/ PU lamination outer shell & 15mil urethane internal bladder
  • Weight:  Not listed
  • Manual:  Not Available
  • Manufacturer Link:  Hollis SMS Katana

[quads id=1]

Hollis SMS Katana 2

hollis katana 2 sidemount bcd

The Hollis SMS Katana 2 isn’t due for release until later in 2019, so not many firm specifications are known.

The design is very reminiscent of the XDeep Stealth Tech, with a flat plate on the upper-spine and horizontal wing below.  From the initial DEMA show photos, it seems there is a one-piece soft backplate, loop bungee fittings and an ‘H’ style harness.  It will be available with single or dual/redundant bladder options.

  • Buoyancy:  TBC
  • Material:  TBC
  • Weight:  Not Yet Known
  • Manual:  Not Yet Available
  • Manufacturer Link:  Not yet available

[quads id=1]

IST Dolphin Tech SMB-21

IST Sidemount System SMB-21
IST Sidemount SMB-21

The IST SMB-21 is designed for warm-water/aluminium/wetsuit diving.  It offers 21lb of buoyancy and is made from 1680 denier nylon with a TPU coating.

  • Buoyancy: 21lb / 9.5kg
  • Material: 1680 Denier Nylon with TPU coating
  • Weight:  3kg (shipping weight boxed)
  • Manual:  Not yet available
  • Manufacturer Link: IST SMB-21

[quads id=1]

IST Dolphin Tech SMB-42

 IST Sidemount System SMB-42

The IST SMB-42 is designed for cold-water/steel cylinder/drysuit sidemount diving.  It features a generous42lb bladder is constructed from the same 1680 denier nylon as the SMB-21.Review/video here:  60 Second ScubaLab: Dolphin Tech 42 

  • Buoyancy: 42lb / 19kg
  • Material: 1680 Denier Nylon with TPU coating
  • Weight:  TBC
  • Manual:  Not yet available
  • Manufacturer Link: IST SMB-42

[quads id=1]

Kamaleont Sidemount

Kamaleont sidemount

This Italian manufactured sidemount is of minimalist design with a triangular wing.  It is not known if the sidemount diving system is still currently available for sale.

  • Buoyancy: No information available
  • Material:    No information available
  • Weight:  Not known
  • Manual: Not available
  • Manufacturers Link:  Nauticamare

[quads id=1]

Manta Industries / Highseas Millwork Sidemount

manta-industries-sidemount system

The Manta Industries sidemount is a triangular wing bladder on a single piece, continuous harness. It has two pull-dumps, located inside the wing and low-profile butt plate.

  • Buoyancy:   50lb/24kg
  • Material:    “Super fabric”
  • Weight:  Not known
  • Manual: Not available
  • Manufacturers Link:  Manta Industries Sidemount

[quads id=1]

Mares XR Pure Light

Mares XR pure lightsidemount bcd


The Mares XR Pure Light is a stand-alone wing that can be fitted onto any of Mares’ hard backplates, or you can build a Mexican -style harness from the components they sell as accessories.

  • Buoyancy:  24lb/12kg
  • Material:    Outer- 1200D Ballistic Nylon | Inner – 600D Polyester
  • Weight:  Not known
  • Manual: Not available
  • Manufacturers Link:  Mares XR Pure Light

[quads id=1]

Northern Diver 42

northern diver 42-sidemount bcd


British equipment manufacturer, Northern Diver, seems to have lacked any credible sidemount user experience when designing this BCD.  Nicknamed the ‘Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtle‘ by the sidemount community, this rig has a very bulbous oval wing. Having used prototype sidemount of very similar specifications, I can say that this design proves very ungainly in the water and doesn’t trim the diver well.

  • Buoyancy:   40lb/18.3kg
  • Material:   1680D nylon
  • Weight:  4.2kg
  • Manual: Not available
  • Manufacturers Link:  Northern Diver Sidemount 42

[quads id=1]

OMS Sidestream



OMS released the Sidesteam BCD in 2018. It seems designed for recreational sidemount use. It has a detachable buttplate and there is room on the waistbelt for more D-rings (that aluminium tank divers will need to supply and add themselves).

The rig doesn’t come with any bungees, although OMS apparently recommends a Loop bungee system – but, I can’t see evidence of where they expect you to rig that either front or back.

  • Buoyancy: 27lb |12.5 kg
  • Material:  Ballistic nylon outer
  • Weight:  Not known
  • Manual:   Not Yet Available
  • Manufacturer Link:  Not on OMS site (DGX shop link)

[quads id=1]

OMS Tesseract Wing/Profile ‘Tec’ Adapter

oms tesseract profile sidemount

The OMS ‘Profile’ sidemount diving system is a modular hybrid, allowing inter-changeability between back-mounted and sidemount configurations. The Profile’’Tec’ adapter fits over the rear of the OMS Tesseract wing/backplate, to prevent taco’ing and provide attachment points for the bungees and ancillary equipment. The ‘Tesseract’ wing is similar to other OMS double-tank wings, but was adapted for maximum compatibility with the ‘Profile’ adapter; for instance, the inflator is off-set at the top, to allow the adapter cover/protector to fit over the top of the wing, whilst there are also dedicated attachment points at the top and bottom to ensure maximum fit between the wing and the adapter. It has 60lbs of buoyancy. When used with other wing systems, considerable user adaptation and initiative are required to make the ‘Profile’ adapter fit. It will, however, fit any wing/backplate that has standard 11” hole spacing. It is available in double/redundant bladder. More details/review here

  • Buoyancy: 60lb / 27kg
  • Material:  Outer – 1000 denier Nylon backed with 5-6 oz Thermoplastic Polyurethane (TPU)  |  Inner – 200 Denier Nylon Fabric backed with .12 mm of TPU
  • Weight:  Not known
  • Manual:   Profile Sidemount Manual
  • Manufacturer Link:  OMS Profile Sidemount System

[quads id=1]

OMS REC Sidemount Adapter

sidemount oms rec adaptor

OMS also produce the ‘Rec’ adapter, which allows conversion of any existing backplate/wing style BCD into a basic sidemount rig. The adapter prevents the wing from going into a ‘teco’ shape, whilst also giving 6 D-ring mounting points for bungees and accessories along the sides.  It also has a butt plate with further accessory D-rings, rails and two bungees for securing DSMBs and/or lift-bags.  The ‘Rec’ adapter does not feature the extra ‘fold-over’ protection of the ‘Tec’ version; but this actually makes it a lot easier to fit on most wings.

Read:  Diving the OMS Rec Sidemount Adapter

  • Buoyancy: adapter only
  • Material:  Cordura
  • Weight:  Not known
  • Manual:   Profile Sidemount Manual
  • Manufacturer Link:  OMS Profile Sidemount System

[quads id=1]

Oxycheq Recon

oxycheq recon sidemountThe Oxycheq Recon is available in either single (Recon 1) or double/redundant (Recon 2) bladder options.  There is also the ‘extreme’ variant which features an especially durable, armored, outer fabric. This fabric includes tiny, hard guard plates that are adhered to multi-layered base fabrics. It has 55lbs of buoyancy.

  • Buoyancy: 55lb/25kg
  • Material:  Outer – 1000 Denier + 5 oz urethane \  Inner – 25 mil  urethane (Extreme armored variant differs)
  • Weight:  Not known
  • Manual:  Not available
  • Manufacturer Link:  Oxycheq Recon Sidemount

[quads id=1]

Poseidon Sidemount

 poseidon sidemount bcd

Diving manufacturer Poseidon have joined the sidemount market with the release of their new BCD.  The rig is based on the American/Cold-Water school of design (see The Two Schools Of Sidemount Diving Heritage).  As is common with sidemount BCDs of this design, the use of a butt-plate and lack of forward/sliding D-rings make it primarily suitable for diving with steel cylinders.  Aluminium cylinders, which are ubiquitous in most warm-water destinations, do not trim well from butt-plates and must be shifted to the front waist-belt once buoyancy shifts to positive. One innovation new with this BCD is the use of bungees integral to the 12 liter/27lb bladder – which should help reduce any ‘turtle shell’ billowing of the bladder when inflated full.

The rig ships with independent bungee system and an inflator system that can be routed over the shoulder or up across the chest.  The later method tending to be most streamlined for hose routing. The BCD is supplied with unique ‘cylinder bags’ which replace the normal rigging method for sidemount tanks. This feature may cause disapproval from some sidemount divers, in particular, the lower connection method; which cannot be sized individually and contains metal-to-metal connections (a big ‘no-no’ principle for overhead environment divers).  These cylinder bags would also not work effectively if the user opted for a different bungee method, for instance, loop bungees.

See more information/photos here:  Poseidon Sidemount Introduction

  • Buoyancy: 27lb/12kg
  • Material:  Not known
  • Weight:  Not known
  • Manual:  Not available
  • Manufacturer Link:  Poseidon Sidemount

[quads id=1]

Razor 2

Razor sidemount

Designed by renowned Mexico cave pioneer, Steve Bogaerts, the Razor system offers a distinctly minimalist approach, which makes the enables the diver to make the best use of the advantages of sidemount diving. It is based on a ‘Hogarthian’ principled harness, with a small capacity bladder (evolved from the MSR Hydromedary) on the diver’s back. It has a single-piece bungee, which routes across the diver’s back to provide attachments on both sides. It has a bottom/side-mounted inflator and OPV.  One of the few minimalist sidemount rigs on the market with in-built redundant buoyancy (oral inflation only).

The latest version of the Razor, the 2.5, has a novel weighting solution. There are slots in the reinforced underside of the wing. The diver can place moveable weight pockets into any of those slots to fine tune their trim

  • Buoyancy:  45lbs / 20kg  (+ oral inflation 45lb redundant integral wing)
  • Material:      3-layer sandwich (1000 denier nylon – heavy gauge polyurethane – 1000 denier nylon)
  • Weight:   Complete System: 7.9 lbs (3.5 Kg) / Basic System: 5.8 lbs (2.6 Kg)
  • User Manual:  Razor Side Mount System 2 Manual
  • Manufacturer Link:  Go-Sidemount

[quads id=1]

Scubapro X-Tek Sidemount

scubapro-x-tec-sidemount system

The Scubapro X-Tek sidemount is a modular system, available with two bladder sizes and an optional top-cover for increased durability in overhead environments.
  • Buoyancy:  12kg/25lb  or 20kg/45lb
  • Material:  Believed to be –  Outer1680DEN Ballistic Nylon / Inner:  420 D Nylon
  • Weight:  not specified.
  • Manual:  X-Tek Line Manual
  • Manufacturer Link: Scubapro X-Tek Sidemount

[quads id=1]

ScubaOne Mangusta / Mangusta18

Scubaone-Mangusta sidemount diving system

The Mangusta and Mangusta18 are sidemount systems from  Italian manufacturer ‘Scubaone’. Designed for’ sidemount cave diving, and also to appeal to sport divers.  The 40lb buoyancy wing manages twin steel cylinders from 7 to 15 litres.
  • Buoyancy:  18kg / 40lb
  • Material: Composite 1000 denier Cordura nylon with Kevlar and polyurethane
  • Weight:  Not known
  • Manual: Mangusta (in Italian)
  • Manufacturers Link:  ScubaOne Mangusta

[quads id=1]

ScubaOne M90 Sidemount

Scubaone-m90-sidemount diving system

Italian manufacturer ScubaOne have created the lightweight ‘M90’ sidemount for both cave diving and leisure diving.  It has an innovative stainless steel butt section, and offers a clean profile. It has a smaller capacity than the Mangusta.
  • Buoyancy:  12kg / 26lb
  • Material: Cordura® 1000 deniers with polyurethane inner
  • Weight:  Not known
  • Manual: None yet available
  • Manufacturers Link: ScubaOne M90

[quads id=1]

Sopras Tek/Rec 1225


sopras tek sidemount bcd
There are two versions: Rec and Tek. The Rec version has quick release buckles on the shoulders for easier adjustment and wearing and a second OPR valve on the top corner of the bladder for vertical deflation. It comes in 4 different colors: blue or pink camo, red and black. 4 pockets for weights (for total 8kgs / 18 lbs) are positioned between the back of the harness and the bladder. There’s lots of optional/removable foam padding on the backplate shoulder and crotch straps.
  • Buoyancy:  12kg / 25lb
  • Material: Not known
  • Weight:  Not known
  • Manual: None yet available
  • Manufacturers Link: Sopras Tek / Rec

[quads id=1]

Sopras Tek Nomad Kevlar

sopras tek nomad kevlar sidemount bcd

I’ve seen this ‘version’ of the Sopras Tek listed for sale on several websites, but it isn’t on the main Sopras website. It seems like a different version to the Tek/Rec 1225 – with kevlar fabric and a slightly greater buoyancy wing.
  • Buoyancy:  15kg / 32lb
  • Material: Not known
  • Weight:  Not known
  • Manual: None yet available
  • Manufacturers Link: Sopras Tek Nomad Kevlar

[quads id=1]

Scuba Force Blade


scuba force blade sidemount bcd
Scuba Force, the manufacturer of the SF2 CCR, are releasing a dedicated sidemount BCD in 2019. No specifications are currently available.
  • Buoyancy: Not known
  • Material: Not known
  • Weight:  Not known
  • Manual: None yet available
  • Manufacturers Link: Scuba Force Blade

[quads id=1]

Scuba Force Toddy-Style

cubaforce_Toddy_Style_Sidemount bcd

Scuba Force, the manufacturer of the SF2 CCR, have entered the sidemount BCD market with a copy of the ‘Toddy-Style’ wing approach, aimed chiefly at supporting their sidemount rebreather model.
This is nothing new or innovative’ it is essentially how sidemount divers used to home-build rigs before commercial off-the-shelf products became available. The method involves literally sandwiching a conventional doughnut wing between two metal backplates.
In this case, the two metal backplates are specially designed to be longer in length for more sidemount suitability.
  • Buoyancy: 15kg / 32lb
  • Material: BallisticCordura 1000 deniers with textile inner
  • Weight:  Not known
  • Manual: None yet available
  • Manufacturers Link: None yet available

[quads id=1]

SEAC KS01 Sidemount

The Spanish owned, Italian manufactured SEAC KS01 was on full release since 2014.  It has a quick-adjust harness and includes three trim-weight pockets (3x 4 lbs) under the back cover. It is designed to appeal to sidemount divers of all levels. Expect further manufacturer modifications in the coming year, as several noted sidemount/cave explorers are being consulted on the design.More details Here and promo video Here
  • Buoyancy:   38lbs / 17kg
  • Material:    Outer: Cordura 500 3D / Inner: Cordura 500 with “Ironman” exterior coating
  • Weight:  3.3 lbs / 1.5kg
  • Manual: Not available
  • Manufacturers Link:  www.seacsub.com

[quads id=1]

Sea Monster Sidemount


The Sea Monster is another Polish manufactured sidemount adapter. It works in conjunction with regular back-mount ‘donut’ wing – trapping the wing between the harness and an anti-taco ‘cover’. The harness accepts many types of wing and has an integral butt-plate.  The anti-taco cover bolts through the backplate and wing, wraps around the sides and is held securely with bungee around the torso.  There are straps on the harness where weights can be threaded.
  • Buoyancy:  varies depending on back-mount wing used
  • Material:    Not known
  • Weight: Not known
  • Manual: Not known
  • Manufacturers Link:  Sea Monster Sidemount

[quads id=1]

SF Tech Sidemount

 SF Tech sidemount
 SF Tech is a Swiss drysuit manufacturer.  This sidemount wing has their logo on it.  Sadly, it was a private project for the company and is not commercially available. The wing is very reminiscent of the Razor 2, but with a slightly more rounded ‘tear-drop’ shape.
  • Buoyancy: Details not  available
  • Material: Details not available
  • Weight:  Details not available
  • Manual:  Details not available
  • Manufacturer Link: SF Tech

[quads id=1]

SistemA Sidemount

Revealed during the ‘TechAustria 2012’ diving exposition, the SistemA sidemount was designed by technical instructor, Pim Pols, for both recreational and technical/overhead sidemount divers.  I am awaiting further details on the configuration and specifications – the Sistema (tecdiving.nl) website host was destroyed by fire, so little resources are currently available (update when they are).
  • Buoyancy:  Not known
  • Material:    Not known
  • Weight:  Not known
  • Manual: Not known
  • Manufacturers Link:  www.tecdiving.nl (currently no sidemount detail on the site)

[quads id=1]

Sub-Gravity Diamond Sidemount System

Diamond sidemount

The Sub-Gravity  Diamond Sidemount is  Czech-designed and features a range of 3 bladder sizes (8, 10 and 13 litres) to suit a variety of needs. It is another minimalist/hogarthian inspired configuration, with three LPI loations (top/outer, inner left and right) allowing the user to choose where to place the LPI and OPV.  It has been extensively tested in the caves of Mexico and Florida.  More Details/Review here

[quads id=1]

Sublevel Sidemount

Sublevel-SidemountThe Sublevel sidemount is designed purely as a recreational/open-water sidemount system, with a design emphasis on lightweight, low-bulk, travel. It has 3 integrated weight pockets on the inside of the wing, each of which can hold 2lb of weight. It has a pull-dump LPI and

  • Buoyancy: 27lb / 12kg  Sealed single compartmental system.
  • Material: Outer 1000 denier nylon / Inner 420 dennier nylon with 0.15mm TPU
  • Weight:  6lb/2.7kg
  • Manual:  Not yet available
  • Manufacturer Link: SubLevel Sidemount

[quads id=1]

Sump UK Sidemount

sump uk sidemount camo wing

Andrew Goring at SUMP UK is increasingly well known in sidemount circles for producing awesome custom sidemount hardware.  He now produces complete harnesses and has a primary and redundant wing.  His sidemount system is incredible modular and you can design your system to perfectly meet your needs.  Options include a ‘V’ or ‘H’ style harness, varied D-rings, buckles and attachment points… and the wing is available in black or limited-edition camo.

  • Buoyancy: Not known
  • Material:    Not known
  • Weight: Not known
  • Manual: Not known
  • Manufacturers Link:  Sump UK Facebook

[quads id=1]

Tecline Avenger 16

Tecline Avenger sidemount

The Tecline is a Polish manufactured sidemount system that offers 16kg/36lb of buoyancy.  The Avenger model comes with a bare webbing, hogarthian inspired harness, detachable buttplate and four integral weight pockets that can hold up to 12kg.  Like many sidemount systems, they offer two additional weight pockets that can fit onto the waistbelt – raising the weight capacity to 16kg.
When the buttplate is detached, you have the option of fitting two custom designed off-set D-rings in its place.  As the wing extends below the waistbelt at the read, these can be problematic to access – shop around for some larger sized offset D-rings.
There is a special edition ‘Avenger Maya’ option with some elaborate Mexican skull embroidery across the back.  It is available in 2 material options; nylon and reinforced kevlar. The rear dump valve is concealed at the bottom of the wing, to aid protection in overhead environment diving.

[quads id=1]

Tecline Side 16

 Tecline Side 16 Sidemount BCD

The second option from Tecline is another 16kg sidemount BCD that is more aimed at the recreational and student/rental market.  This features a comfort-style padded, adjustable harness, along with extra padding on the back. It has an external top-mounted OPV, along with an OPV mounted on the left underside.  A blanking lug is included for those who prefer not to use the top-outer LPI.  It has 4 weight pockets concealed beneath the back padding, with a further zipped, 1kg trim weight pocket on the upper wing.  The buttplate is permanently fixed.

[quads id=1]

Toddy-Style TS Sidemount


toddy style sidemount bcd
The Toddy Style design comes from German cave explorer Thorsten ‘Toddy’ Waelde. As a concept, it is nothing new or innovative’ – essentially just a modern adaptation of  how sidemount divers used to home-build rigs before commercial off-the-shelf products became available.
The method involves literally sandwiching a conventional doughnut wing between two metal backplates. In this case, the backplates are specially designed to be longer in length and thinner in width for more sidemount suitability. With two aluminium backplates integral to the system, this will be one of the heavier and more bulky options on the market.
The custom designed bladder design is available in three materials, to suit different grades of diver:
  1. TS1 Cordura (Cordura 600)
  2. TS2 Cave & Wreck (PVC “Snakeskin” coated polyester)
  3. TS3 Kevlar (SFTech Kevlar reinforced polyester)

[quads id=1]

UTD – Z-System


The Z-System shares many attributes with the Razor, whilst also incorporating elements that allow it to adhere to UTD principles and retain ‘DIR compatibility’. Most noticeable of these is the optional (Z-)manifold system that allows sidemount cylinders to be linked (along with LPI and drysuit inflator), replicating the benefits of isolated manifold back-mount systems and ensuring procedural compatibility in mixed back-mount/sidemount/CCR teams. It also has a number of optional trim weighting solutions, as well as different bladder options; Z-Trim (20lbs/9 kg), Z-Tec (37lbs/17 kg)and Z-Plus (50lbs / 21kg) that enhance suitability for technical doubles, recreational sidemount and redundant bladder demands.

  • Buoyancy:  Z-Trim: 20lbs / 9kgs  |  Z-Plus 50lbs/21kg
  • Material:   1050 Denier Ballistic Cordura (“Pro” version has undisclosed Heavy Duty puncture & abrasion resistant material)
  • Weight:  Not known
  • User Manual:  Z-Trim User Manual
  • Manufacturer Link: UTD Z-Trim Sidemount

[quads id=1]

UTD Alpha/Delta Hybrid


The Alpha/Delta hybrid consists of a specially designed wing of 37lbs/17kg capacity that can be swiftly fitted to either a conventional back-mount harness or dedicated sidemount harness. The LPI/OPV is interchangeable, offering low or high positioning of the inflator hose.

  • Buoyancy:  37lbs/17kg
  • Material:     1050 Denier Ballistic Cordura (“Pro” version has undisclosed Heavy Duty puncture & abrasion resistant material)
  • Weight:         Not known
  • User Manual:  Delta Hybrid Manual
  • Manufacturer Link: UTD Alpha Delta Trim

[quads id=1]

White Arrow S-Wing

white-arrow-s-wingWhite Arrow produce a wing system that utilizes a conventional back-mount backplate. . The ‘S-Wing’  has 15kg /37.5 lb of buoyancy and features a unique ‘butt-plate’ system that fits directly to the metal backplate.

  • Buoyancy: 37.5lb / 15kg
  • Material:  Outer – Cordura 2000 |  Inner – Cordura 2000
  • Weight:  Not known
  • Manual:  Not available
  • Manufacturer Link:  White Arrow Sidemount

[quads id=1]

X-Deep Stealth 2.0 ‘Classic’

x-deep stealth sidemountThe X-Deep Stealth very popular minimalist, hogarthian-style, MSR-derived, sidemount system, which features a wrap-around bladder and innovative weighting system.  The bladder is separate from the under-lying harness and secures to the diver with torso bungees. Shifting the bladder location up and down on the torso provides a rapid adjustment of diver trim.  It has 16kgs of buoyancy and comes with a unique in-water adjustable waist D-ring system using thick O-rings (that allows the diver to shift cylinder trim with aluminium cylinders at it varies during the dive).

A dual/redundant bladder version of the XDeep Stealth Classic was released in 2018.

  • Buoyancy:  16.5 kg / 36 lbs single bladder
  • Material:  Double shell – Outer Cordura® 1100 dTEX / Inner Nylon 440dTEX  TPU 0.215mm
  • Weight:  0.9 kg
  • Manual:  Stealth Users Manual
  • Manufacturer Link: X-Deep

[quads id=1]

X-Deep Stealth REC Wing

xdeep stealth rec wingThe XDeep Stealth REC wing is designed for recreational sidemount divers and is integrated onto the existing Stealth harness system.  It has quick-release clips at the shoulders, new design weight pockets and  quick release pockets.  It has 35lbs of lift.  More Details / Review here

A dual/redundant bladder version of the XDeep Rec was released in 2018.

  • Buoyancy:  16 kg / 35 lbs single bladder
  • Material:  Double shell – Outer Cordura® 1100 dTEX / Inner Nylon 440dTEX  TPU 0.215mm
  • Weight:  0.9 kg
  • Manual:  not yet available
  • Manufacturer Link: X-Deep

[quads id=1]

X-Deep Stealth TEC Wing

xdeep stealth tec wing

The XDeep Stealth TEC wing is designed for hard-core cave and trimix divers and is also integrated onto the existing Stealth harness system. The major difference to the ‘classic’ wing is that the TEC wing is attached to the top of the harness.  Wing buoyancy is limited to the lower section of the wing, retaining the ‘ideal’ placement of gas for good sidemount trim.

The LPI hose can now be routed from either left of right side, providing options for wetsuit or drysuit divers. Buoyancy is a massive 50lbs of lift – perfect for the most demanding trimix sidemount deep dives.

A dual bladder redundant version of the XDeep Stealth tech was released in 2017.

  • Buoyancy:  21 kg / 50lbs single bladder
  • Material:  Double shell – Outer Cordura® 1100 dTEX / Inner Nylon 440dTEX  TPU 0.215mm
  • Weight:  0.9 kg
  • Manual:  XDeep Stealth TEC
  • Manufacturer Link: X-Deep

[quads id=1]

elite sidemount course philippines

There are also a number of stand-alone components on the market.  Whilst not complete sidemount diving systems, they may warrant consideration if building a mixed, or DIY, configuration rig:

Stand-Alone Sidemount Harnesses

Darkside Harness

Darkside sidemount harnessThe Darkside harness is manufactured in the UK and consists of a hogarthian webbing rig with lumbar and shoulder plates.  It has regular sized D-rings and crotch strap.

  • Buoyancy:  Not applicable – harness only
  • Material:    Nylon webbing / 316 marine grade stainless steel plates
  • Weight:  1.4kg shipping weight
  • Manual: Not available
  • Manufacturers Link:  darkside-diving.co.uk

[quads id=1]

Farr Explorer 1 Harness

Farr Explorer HarnessDesigned by renown cave explorer Martyn Farr, the ‘Explorer 1’ is a seriously robust harness designed for exploratory cave diving.  All metalwork is 316 stainless steel and the waist belt can be stripped down quickly to add/remove weights.  Not currently listed on the Farrworld website.

  • Buoyancy:  Not applicable – harness only
  • Material:    Nylon webbing / 316 marine grade stainless steel plates
  • Weight:  Not known
  • Manual: Not available
  • Manufacturers Link:  farrworld.co.uk

[quads id=1]

Warmbac ASM Sidemount Harness

warmbac asm sidemount harness  Another UK manufactured stand-alone harness is the Warmbac. It has a fully adjustable belt and shoulder straps.  The bungees  run from between the shoulders to the shoulder mounted large D rings. It features a highly adjustable roller-style belt buckle and single “floating” belt through the main ‘H’ harness with lead attachment points. Often worn in conjunction with a dedicated climbing seat harness by UK sump divers.

  • Buoyancy:  Not applicable – harness only
  • Material:    Nylon webbing / 316 marine grade stainless steel plates
  • Weight:  1.23kg
  • Manual: Not available
  • Manufacturers Link:  Warmbac Divers Sidemount Harness

[quads id=1]

Kent Tooling Sidemount Harness

Kent Tooling Sidemount Harness
Kent Tooling makes a variety of stainless steel diving accessories, including this stand-alone sidemount diving harness.  The KT harness features stainless steel lumbar and shoulder plates on nylon webbing. Available in two sizes: S-L (7m webbing supplied) and XL-XXXL (10m webbing supplied).  The harness will accommodate most ‘warm-water’ style sidemount wings.
  • Buoyancy:  Not applicable – harness only
  • Material:    Nylon webbing / 316 marine grade stainless steel plates
  • Weight:  Not known
  • Manual: Not available
  • Manufacturers Link:  Kent Tooling Sidemount Harness

[quads id=1]

DiveRite Transpac XT Harness

DiveRite Transpac XT Harness Sidemount
The original DiveRite Transpac harness was a popular choice for DIY rigs back in the days when no dedicated sidemount rigs were being manufactured (or used with the, now discontinued, DiveRite Junior or Trek wings).  Designed by cave explorer Lamar Hires, the current generation transpac features  integrated hip pads, molded foam lumbar support pad, and ergonomic shoulder pads. The harness is available in sizes XS-XXL.
  • Buoyancy:  Not applicable – harness only
  • Material:    Soft backplate constructed of 1000 denier ballistic nylon. Marine grade stainless plates and fittings.
  • Weight:   Small 4 lbs 4 oz / 1.92kg  to Large – 5lbs / 2.29kg
  • Manual: Transpac XT Harness Manual
  • Manufacturers Link:  DiveRite Transpac XT

[quads id=1]

DiveRite Transpac XT Tech Harness

DiveRite Transpac XT Tech Harness Sidemount
The ‘tech’ version of the Transpac features a single-piece continuous webbing harness, moulded foam lumbar pad and chest-support strap
  • Buoyancy:  Not applicable – harness only
  • Material:  Soft backplate constructed of 1000 denier ballistic nylon. Marine grade stainless plates and fittings.
  • Weight:  < 5lbs / 2.29kg
  • Manual: Transpac XT Tech Manual
  • Manufacturers Link:  DiveRite Transpac XT Tech

[quads id=1]

Santiago Ultimate Harness

Santiago Ultimate Sidemount Harness
This Mexican produced sidemount harness follows a common minimalist theme and is designed to provide a mounting option for the Z-Trim and Stealth 2.0 wings.  It features low-profile D-rings and manages to eliminate heavy lumbar/shoulder plates through innovative use of ‘folding-back’ the webbing through weight retainers. It also comes with a double 4.5mm high-strength bungee to provide redundancy.  One very novel feature is the LB-SR (Sliding Ring) System: an adjustable sliding D-ring that allows quick adjustment to precision cylinder trim whilst wearing/diving the rig.
  • Buoyancy:  Not applicable – harness only
  • Material:  Nylon webbing and stainless steel fittings.
  • Weight:  Not Known
  • Manual: Not Available
  • Manufacturers Link:  Santiago Diving Sidemount Ultimate

[quads id=1]

Innodive Sidemount Harness

This French designed stand-alone sidemount harness features low-profile D-rings and uniquely shaped lumbar and shoulder plates.  The lumbar plates has integral equipment attachment points.
  • Buoyancy:  Not applicable – harness only
  • Material:  Nylon webbing and stainless steel fittings.
  • Weight:  Not Known
  • Manual: Not Available
  • Manufacturers Link:  Innodive Sidemount Harness

[quads id=1]

Deco Sidemount Harness

Deco Sidemount 2

There are two harnesses available;  a traditional harness (shoulder straps to the rear lumbar plate) and an ‘H’ style harness (shoulder straps routed to front of harness via ‘T’ attachments).  Both harnesses are lightweight and minimalist; providing all the functionality that you’d need with zero superfluous clutter.  Many other types of sidemount wing could be attached to this harness.  The harness is supplied with 6ft of 5/16th bungee and two bolt-snaps, so the diver can rig out their own tank bungee method (loop, sliding loop, independent, ‘old school’ etc). Both harnesses include fixed front D-rings and offset (drop) D-rings at the read.   The rear crotch strap D-ring is a dual/double ring design; giving more options for equipment attachment. There is no weighting system included with the harness.
My solution for weighting, on ‘bare’ harnesses like these, has always been to put a couple of stand-alone weight pouches directly onto the spine webbing.  It works great and keeps things very simple. These would be an extra purchase…  or you could just thread weights directly onto the spine strap for a more permanent option (less ideal for travelling).
The regular harness costs $145.99 and the ‘H’ style harness is $163.99…..  very cheap compared to most on the market.
  • Buoyancy:  Not applicable – harness only
  • Material:  Nylon webbing and stainless steel fittings.
  • Weight:  Not Known
  • Manual: Not Available
  • Manufacturers Link:  Deco Dive Equipment

[quads id=1]

SUMP UK Sidemount Harnesses

 sump uk sidemount harness hardware options
‘H’ Style Harness showing custom hardware options
Andrew Goring at SUMP UK is well known for his excellent range of custom sidemount hardware – so it’s natural that he should produce a range of harnesses to suit every need.   There isn’t one specific harness option – but rather, you can consult directly with Andrew to specify exactly which design and hardware options you prefer.
sump uk sidemount harness
Photo courtesy of Andrew  Goring
  • Buoyancy:  Not applicable – harness only
  • Material:  Nylon webbing and stainless steel fittings.
  • Weight:  Not Known
  • Manual: Not Available
  • Manufacturers Link:  SUMP UK Facebook

[quads id=1]

Other informational sidemount equipment lists:

Ultimate Guide to Sidemount Harness Set Up

Sidemount Regulator Sets

Top 5 Warm-Water Sidemount Fins

Stand-Alone Sidemount Harness Options

How to Set Up Sidemount Loop Bungees

About the Author

andy davis technical diving philippines

Andy Davis is a RAID, PADI TecRec, ANDI, BSAC and SSI qualified independent technical diving instructor who specializes in teaching advanced sidemount, trimix and wreck exploration diving courses across South East Asia.  Currently residing in ‘wreck diving heaven’ at Subic Bay, Philippines, he has amassed more than 9000 open circuit and CCR dives over 27 years of diving across the globe.

Andy has published many magazine articles on technical diving, has written course materials for dive training agency syllabus, tests and reviews diving gear for major manufacturers and consults with the Philippines Underwater Archaeology Society.

He is currently writing a series of books to be published on advanced diving topics.  Prior to becoming a professional technical diving educator in 2006, Andy was a commissioned officer in the Royal Air Force and has served in Iraq, Afghanistan, Belize and Cyprus.

RAID Sidemount Course Philippines


What Others Are Reading