It's finished in a DayGlo orange material that, quite frankly, is a bit embarrassing to wear. In fact, I think a diver wearing it needs to get lost, just to make the point!
The manufacturer says that it was developed primarily for military rescue divers, which explains not only the dazzle but why it is made from such durable material.
You could probably run a battleship over it without ill-effect, if the Royal Navy had any.
Naturally the TCB-25 has high buoyancy volumes too, intended to help the diver sit high up and clear of the water at the surface.
SOLAS reflectors are fitted at both shoulders to aid identification in the dark, and under the beam of a searchlight. I can just imagine divers wearing these while they secure a space capsule that has just landed in the ocean.
This BC is fixed to the divers tank by both a conventional camband and a second Velcro-covered strap that stops the tank twisting. There is also the usual strap at tank-valve height.
There are said to be up to 70 possibilities for attaching individual extra items to the BC.
I didn't bother to count but, suffice it to say, there are plenty of D-rings.
Most remarkably, the TCB-25 has four enormous pockets, each one measuring 20 x 13 x 4cm and held closed by Velcro-covered flaps.
The forward pair is supplied equipped with two internal stainless-steel D-rings each, and there is sufficient space for the largest SMB or a typical small reel in either.
The two rearward pockets are supplied with weight-pouches. You may have heard stories of BC weights being inadvertently released, but on this BC they were so securely stowed when the pouches were installed properly that you could forget them.
The job is done using 5cm webbing and pinch-clips, assisted by several layers of Velcro.
During my first look at the Seareq Search in my office, I nearly burst a blood vessel pulling one of these integrated-weight pockets free. I successfully loaded and used nearly 6kg on each side when diving in a bulky drysuit.
We released these weight-pouches as an experiment while not in the water, and later found them almost impossible to reinsert properly again, while the BC was still being worn.
In fact, one actually dropped out while my buddy Colin Mac Andrias was using it, and you can lay the blame for this at my door.
You can always instantly convert the rear pockets into two more cargo pockets if the other two are not adequate for what you want to carry.

Comfort
When wearing this BC out of the water, you feel impervious even to the ambitions of those who would rob an armoured truck. It has a conventional layout, with a cummerbund and buckled strap over it and a sternum strap that I found convenient for tucking a corrugated hose and direct-feed under.
A slim cushion covers the hard backpack, and two crotch-straps conveniently take the strain of a tank that would otherwise tip over your head if you inverted, without reminding you of the day you had your vasectomy.
I always ask for a BC in size M, as I find that one too large will never feel right.
In this case, I wished I had asked for one in size L, because it was a little difficult to fasten the cummerbund and waist-strap.

Efficacy
I have very long legs, and this BC positions the integrated weights high up on my body. The fulcrum for my balance was positioned well away from the weights, so I had a tendency to tip head-down, legs-up, in a drysuit.
It was not very nice to be in a drysuit containing air that was constantly migrating to my legs (with the weights positioned well round towards the back, its easy enough to swim in a horizontal position when using a wetsuit).
I felt inclined to use the dreaded ankle weights to avoid a feet-first ascent to the surface. However, Im sure divers with shorter legs would have no trouble.

Control of Ascent
There are three built-in methods of dumping air during an ascent. You can pull on the corrugated hose; you can pull on a toggle at the opposite shoulder; or you can go horizontal and pull on the rear toggle, to operate a dump valve by the kidneys.
The toggles are chunky and easy to find because, just as with Baby Bears chair, bed and porridge in the Goldilocks story, the length of cord supplied in each case is just right. Expanding air never became trapped on the way up.

Surface Support
If you dont know by now that this BC is meant to give good surface support, you omitted to read the first few paragraphs.
That said, we werent overwhelmed by the distance our heads were raised out of the water, and decided that the Seareq Search TCB-25 was no better than a lot of BCs in this respect.
It may be bright orange, but most of that orange stays beneath the water.

Ease of Removal
Removing this BC on land turned out to be quite easy, but I found it rather less easy when in the water.
It took some studied effort to release the weight-pockets without dropping and forever losing them, because they seemed to be so securely stowed and hard to reach, round towards the back.
It was easy enough to unclip the waistband and one shoulder-strap, but the crotch-strap buckles took a while to locate. That done, the TCB-25 swung off a shoulder easily enough.
There was plenty of buoyancy to float a single tank of almost any size, and there was no way you would lose sight of your gear floating at the surface. With so much robust weight, I cant foresee many divers taking one of these BCs on a trip involving a plane ride.

SPECS
PRICE
£475
STYLE Conventional
DRY WEIGHT 4.25kg
POCKETS Two integrated weights8Yes
D-RINGS 10
MAX LIFT IN SIZE M 22kg
SIZES S-XXL
CONTACT www.seareq.de
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