The Inspiration and Evolution rebreathers from AP Diving are really good rigs, but the design of their housing and harness systems have always limited the flexibility of the units to a degree. The housings are quite fragile, and because they do not use a metal backplate, clipping in side-mounts always seems to be more of a struggle than it’s worth. Top it all off with the fact that housing and harness are quite large and difficult to travel with, and you can conclude pretty quickly that there is a lot of room for improvement in the way the rebreather is attached to the diver.
Indeed, a number of enterprising divers have totally re-invented the housing and harness system. Janwillem Bech’s Travelframe is a good example of this type of innovation. It allows the entire rebreather to fit into a carry on bag, and adapts it to a Hogarthian backplate and harness system, making the use of side-mounts much much easier.
The latest in the series of these custom-made Inspiration / Evolution frame systems is called the Titanbox, and it is truly a work of art! Designer Michael Hearn at Dive Designs must be a master craftsman because the his frame is not only very well built, but absolutely beautiful as well. Hearn writes:
When I started diving the Inspiration rebreather a few years ago, I noticed the original case of the inspiration is limited when it comes to use bigger cylinders or attaching extra accessories such as battery’s.
As I was searching the web and dive shows for a scrubber assembly case, I never found what I was looking for.
So I decided to design and built my own case in one of the most indestructible, non corrosive and affordable metals of all: titanium. As titanium is very expensive and difficult to work with, I also built a hard anodized aluminium version.
He is offering them for sale, but as one might expect in the world of rebreathers, they don’t come cheap. The titanium model can be had for just under $2,000, while the allumnium version comes in at a little under $800.00. As far as I can tell it’s worth every penny though if you have an inspiration. I know I’d have my order in if I’d gotten one instead of my Meg.
Hat Tip: TheRebreatherSite.nl