Scubapro Seawing Nova

A product that promises to revolutionise something as mundane as fins has to be worth a try, so try a pair I did, one of the first batches.......then from a batch six months later.....and six months later......

Anyone who reads my random jottings knows that I dive lots, in facts lots and lots and when these fins first became available I was sceptical but what with the product being backed with a lifetime guarantee how can you go wrong?

The first batch were marketed as 'indestructable', that has changed.......the first batch had an articulated joint which was 'split' on both sides, that has changed too!
Having conducted about three hundred shore dives the first pair died the death, splitting on one of the joints, I returned the fins to the scubapro rep at a dive centre and his attitude was that there had been zero faults and I must have abused them, well if you class heavy shore diving as abuse then yes they have been abused. I was sceptical about the design and asked what had changed, nothing was the stern reply, no-one else had reported any issues!


The size of the splits have changed and only on one side of the joint!

The next pair died again after about 300 dives, this time on a liveaboard holiday in Egypt which was rather inconvienient and trying to fit size 11 feet into small fins is not fun and does not make for good diving. However, fortunately on this trip the dive shop manager was present so when the rep suggested abuse he was quickly 'put right'.

Ok, the fins yes the foot-pocket is very comfortable fitting to near the back of your foot unlike some of the 'tech fins' which seem to fit only on the front portion making finning a bit of a pain.

The blade design does make finning and fine manouvre nice and easy, but I am not sure regards the claims about making 'hard finning easy', it isn't and I always reckon that it 'hurts' to fin hard or drag an extra weight. It's basically energy in equates to movement and speed thereof, for sure some 'sexy' blade design may help you but only by a single figure percentage, soft blades simply mean that you are limited in the water you can shift therefore the movement, although it does feel easier. To really make a fin work try towing a diver, the old style nova virtually collapsed during a timed trial.

My own investigations found that the fins were dying after about 300 dives with high frequency divers complaining to me when asked, I did put these comments to the scubapro rep when the second pair died and at least he had the decency to look sheepish, oh he had started to say that they were the first set, blah-blah until I said they were actually my second..........

After my second pair died I did give up and go to a good, old-fashioned pair of dirt cheap TUSA fins and to be honest I have no complaints, they do all that you can ask at a fraction of the cost but give scubapro credit they have reviewed the design strengthening the joint and even making an extra strong version 'gorilla' I believe that they are suffixed.

In summary I like the blade design, I like the foot pocket design but I don't like the joint and do feel that they are being targeted at a specific market (tackle tarts). they are a lovely fin for a limited amount of dives and would you really carry a spare pair to a liveaboard destination abroad?

Richies rating 3/10 a lovely fin in my experience hampered by a fundamentally poor design concept in one area, by all means use them but keep the receipt, and REAL testing don't expect your customers to do the trialling that is very lazy and poor engineering practice!!!

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