Diving Equipment Catalogs!
An Outstanding Year in the History of Scuba
Scuba diving had only existed in the USA for
about 10 years prior to 1963, but by that time it was
already taking America by storm. There were more scuba
equipment companies than ever, along with various TV
shows, dive periodicals, and magazine ads, enticing
anyone interested into visiting the underwater world.
Here are six of the largest scuba equipment
manufacturers' catalogs from 1963!
1963 Dacor -
"Fine Equipment Makes Diving Enjoyable". Only
three regulators were featured in this 1963
catalog: models R-4 "Dial-A-Breath" and C-2
"Clipper" two hose regulators, and the D-1 Dart
single hose regulator. They retailed for $79.50,
$59.50 and $59.50 respectively.
Healthways "Skin and Scuba Diving Equipment".
Healthways must have had a great year in 1963, as
their catalog was a whopping 43 pages. They
featured 4 different single hose regulators, and
their double hose "Scuba" single stage regulator,
which retailed for $52.95. Other equipment
included spear guns, underwater lights, watches
and depth gauges, rafts, air compressors, one of
the first automatic decompression meters, and
believe it or not, a 2-man submarine!
"Underwater Equipment by Seamless". The Seamless
Rubber Company, out of New Haven, Connecticut,
distributed Spanish built Nemrod regulators and
accessories. They had a nice line-up of spear
guns, including a very powerful "Pirate" pneumatic
model. They only offered two regulators in 1963:
the Snark III Deluxe two hose regulator for
$69.95, and the Snark II Deluxe for $39.95.
Sportsways "Diving". Sportsways built some of the
best regulators in the world at that time, and
many diving records were broken using their single
hose equipment. Their top of the line single hose
was the Navy Unit II, and it sold for $95.00.
Their double hose "Hydro-Twin" two stage regulator
featured ports for a Sea-Vue pressure gauge, and a
hookah attachment. It sold for $90.00, or $109.95
with the Sea-Vue gauge.
1963 US Divers
"Aqua-Lung". This was the 20th anniversary of Captain
Jacques-Yves Cousteau and Emile Gagnan's invention known as
the "Aqua-Lung". The US Divers catalog featured 23 pages of
a variety of gear, including the new "Calypso" 35mm
underwater camera. The three double hose regulators offered
that year were: the DA "Aqua-Master", a top of the line two
stage regulator that sold for $90.00, the single stage
"Mistral", a favorite of Captain Cousteau's research diving
team that sold for $67.50, and last, the ultra-modern
"Jet-Air" single stage regulator, with a high-impact black
cycolac housing and yellow hoses. Retail price was $50.00.
Three single hose models were also available that year.
1963 AMF Voit
"America's Finest Diving Equipment". Voit gained massive
popularity from the Sea Hunt TV series because Mike
Nelson used Voit gear almost exclusively. All Voit
regulators were basically the same as US Divers models, with
minor cosmetic changes. It was easy to distinguish a Voit
two hose regulator from afar by its gray hoses and
mouthpiece. Only two double hose regulators were featured in
1963: the V66 Navy two stage, and the V22 Voit Polaris 50
single stage regulator. The Navy sold for $90.00 and the
Polaris for $60.00. Three single hose regulators were also
available, including the unbreakable and chip proof VR4 Voit
Explorer II with blue cycolac casing.