The Sherwood SR2 Regulator Review – Underwater Breathing Made Easy and Safe
Every diver knows the importance of having the right gear every time they go under.
And getting the right gear that you can trust on every dive means going to a brand that has been tried, tested, and proven.
A brand like Sherwood.
If you are looking for your first regulator, or a replacement one the Sherwood SR2 regulator will do you wonders.
And if you are wondering why the Sherwood SR2, we’ll get to that in a moment.
Before we get to what makes this the regulator you should pick up next, I think a bit of history will help you to appreciate all the successes and failures that went into producing this great regulator.
The thing with regulators is that they essentially determine your safety underwater. A faulty regulator can spoil a dive, and in worst case scenarios, prove fatal to a diver.
That is why you don’t want to waste your time, effort, and money or a dodgy regulator.
And that is exactly where the Sherwood SR2 regulator comes in.
Let’s take a close look at it, shall we?
Sherwood SR2 Regulator – Rising Out of the Depths
Sherwood has been manufacturing and supplying scuba gear to individuals, dive operations, and retailers for over 60 years, making it a veteran in the industry.
In that time, the company has learned a lot of lessons (the hard way) that have led to them producing resilient and reliable scuba gear.
One such lesson was learned when developing what was to be the predecessor to the SR1.
The said regulator was sent for intensive testing with 15 other regulators from different manufacturers. The Sherwood regulator was the worst performer in the group.
For divers all over the world, Sherwood is a forward-thinking company that immediately went to work on sorting out every weakness in the regulator.
The Sherwood SR1 was born.
The next time the Sherwood SR1 was tested it came out top of the class, making it one of the best regulators of its time.
Sherwood had proven themselves to be a strong contender in the scuba diving gear industry again.
But just because they were on top of the world, Sherwood didn’t just sit on their laurels and enjoy the glory the SR1 brought, Sherwood went to work on producing the next generation regulator, the Sherwood SR2 regulator.
And that’s the regulator we are reviewing today. So let’s get on with our Sherwood SR2 regulator review.
The Sherwood SR2 Regulator – Upgrading an Already Near Perfect Regulator
No one thought they would be able to outdo such near perfection.
But they did – with the Sherwood SR2 regulator.
When Sherwood launched the SR1, it gave divers another option for a great above average regulator.
It definitely made a big splash.
So what exactly does this regulator bring to the table?
Let’s take a look at the spec sheet first so as to see the potential the $640.00 Sherwood SR2 regulator packs.
Sherwood SR2 Regulator Specifications
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First Stage Type: Pneumatically Balanced Flow-Thru Piston
LP Ports: 5 with 3/8″ Thread
HP Ports: 2 with 7/16″ Thread
Adjustable second Stage: Yes. Dual Function Knob. Venturi Dive/Pre-Dive, Inhalation Resistance Adjustments
Nitrox Compatible: Yes, Up to 40%
Second Stage Type: Pneumatically Balanced Valve
Materials: Marine Grade Chrome Plated Brass (First Stage), Glass-Filled Polyamide (Second Stage)
Hose Thread: 3/8″
Hose Length: 31″ (78.75 cm)
Weight: 4.1 lb (with packaging)
At a glance, you can already see how good the Sherwood SR2 regulator is. But let’s take it a step further and strip it down and see exactly what you can expect from this iconic regulator.
Design and Build Quality
One of the best things about the Sherwood SR2 regulator is its design. Featuring a compact and lightweight design, you will find that it will easily and comfortably fit in your mouth, giving it a more natural feel than its counterparts.
As for the materials, the high-grade chrome plated brass for the first stage and the glass-filled polyamide for the second stage make for a very durable and efficient regulator overall. Although the first stage is a bit on the heavier side, you’ll discover that this added weight is actually a blessing in disguise as it aids with the swiveling feature.
And when it comes to aesthetic looks, if you were to enter the Sherwood SR2 regulator in a pageant, it would probably take first prize due to its looks. The simplistic and minimalistic design makes for a pleasant sight that isn’t too busy.
If you are looking for a well-built regulator that won’t let you down at the worst moment, the Sherwood SR2 is just what you are looking for.
Let’s take a look at the 2 stages of the Sherwood SR2 regulator separately so you can get a better inside look that will help you make an informed decision.
The Sherwood SR2 Regulator – First Stage
A quick look at the Sherwood SR2’s first stage may deceive you into thinking this is the exact same one in the SR1. But looks can be deceiving.
The SR2’s first stage features a rotating turret that houses 4 medium-pressure ports plus a fifth that is positioned at the head. This is a clever design that gives you the extra option of a side-mount or technical set-up.
On the main body, you’ll also find 2 high-pressure ports.
You’ll definitely enjoy precise optimum balance and intermediate pressure control as the Sherwood SR2 regulator features a brilliant 2-piece piston. The piston is environmentally sealed to ensure that salt deposits, sand, grit, and even ice crystals don’t affect its performance.
The Sherwood SR2’s first stage comes either with a 300 bar DIN or A-clamp connection.
The Sherwood SR2 Regulator – Second Stage
As for the second stage, it is constructed using black hi-tech plastics and polymers. It also features a satin-finish, marine-grade, stainless-steel retaining ring to hold the purge mechanism in place.
Talk about quality.
You’ll definitely be hard pressed to find a compact and lightweight valve that offers this kind of performance. The valve is pneumatically balanced for consistent performance enabling it to deliver gas at the same rate at every pressure level, even if the tank is running low.
The Sherwood SR2 second stage regulator sports a single breathing resistance adjustment knob (BRA) that sets both the effort needed to crack open the valve and also adjusts the flow-rate.
A bit of experimentation and fiddling will help you find the optimum setting for your breathing and comfort.
One feature you’ll definitely appreciate is the “smart” demand lever and floating crown that reacts to depressurization and relieves the load on the seat. In essence, it means the regulator can be stored dry for long periods without fear of it permanently marking the valve-seat. This prolongs the seat’s life and saves you time and money you would spend going to the technician for servicing.
To prevent the regulator from free-flowing or over-delivering when entering the water or finning into strong currents, the pressure on the ocean side of the diaphragm is equalized by means of 6 entry holes around the periphery.
The Sherwood SR2 Regulator – Performance and Functionality
Many times, when manufacturers advertise a product, what they put on paper is not what you get in the real world.
But with the Sherwood SR2 regulator, the claims put on paper pan out to real life performance.
So how does this regulator perform in the water and against other regulators?
For one, setting up the regulator and adjusting the BRA is quite easy, very user-friendly if I may put it that way.
After making sure you have adjusted your BRA accordingly, you’ll find that the Sherwood SR2 regulator will afford you the easiest, smoothest breathing experiences you can get from any regulator – even the high-end ones.
The purge is also simple to use as it is easy to locate and depress. Once depressed, it gives a really progressive delivery of gas, clearing all the unwanted seawater from your mouthpiece with great ease. And it does that gently without blowing up your cheeks or irritation your throat.
Because the mouthpiece is small and the first stage compact and lightweight, the Sherwood SR2 regulator is very ergonomic and won’t strain your jaw muscles.
Although the exhaust ports are fixed and narrow, they will still manage to send the bubbles away from your face efficiently.
As for the second stage, even if you are to spit it out of your mouth underwater, you’ll find that it won’t free-flow and won’t even bubble.
When it comes to comfort, the Sherwood SR2 will give it to you better than most other regulators can.
Sherwood SR2 Regulator – Your Best Diving Partner
If you are looking for a regulator to trust and depend on to help supply you with that much-needed air as you explore the mysteries of the deep, then look nowhere else than Sherwood SR2 regulator is the diving partner you are looking for.
With its compact size, lightweight build, and durable construction you will enjoy it for a long time.
If you are a beginner or experienced diver seeking a regulator to use on a regular basis, don’t hesitate to pick up the Sherwood SR2.
But if you are looking to be diving a couple of times a year, this might not be your best option as the price is a bit on the high-end.