Updated November 09, 2020 by Chris Gillespie

The 10 Best Mini Scuba Tanks

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This wiki has been updated 14 times since it was first published in August of 2019. Sometimes called pony bottles, divers often carry a mini scuba tank with them to act as a redundant air source in case of an emergency underwater. While these can be used relatively safely at shallow depths of under three meters to clean a boat or swimming pool or even do some light exploring, scuba diving without proper training can be extremely dangerous, and we strongly advise against it. When users buy our independently chosen editorial selections, we may earn commissions to help fund the Wiki.

1. Byoxo Smaco

2. Spare Air Mini Scuba Nitrox

3. GDRasuya10 Dideep E-S400B

Editor's Notes

November 04, 2020:

Since our last update, these mini tanks are gaining popularity, especially amongst recreational users. So much so in fact, that many experienced scuba divers are calling for tighter regulations on their sale and use. Originally they were designed as a safety precaution for use in an emergency, however, more recently they are being marketed as a fun gadget that can be used by anyone. The dangers of using compressed air underwater, at any depth, cannot be overstated, therefore, anyone using a mini tank, either recreationally or as a safety device, should do so only after adequate training and certification.

In this update, we have included several new models that have very recently come on to the market, and removed a few older models that are no longer available. Since using a tank and regulator to breathe compressed air has been possible since the 1940s, the design of this equipment has been perfected over time, therefore, when choosing the best setup for you, the accessories and the filling method will likely play the biggest role in your decision. We added the Byoxo Smaco, the Gdrasuya10 Dideep E-S400B, and the Dedepu S5000, which are all high-quality kits that include useful extras such as masks, hand pumps, and carrying cases, and all allow for around 20 minutes underwater. The Spare Air New 3.0CF is similar to the Spare Air Extreme Watersports Rescue Kit, in that it is a very small tank, which will only really allow you to resurface in an emergency. Similar again is the Spare Air Mini Scuba Nitrox which is specifically designed for deep divers using enriched air.

The Karbones Mini Refillable is aimed more at the recreational market, and although more pricy than most others in the ranking, it utilizes a lightweight carbon cylinder rather than an aluminum one, and comes with an electric pump that can re-pressurize the tank in a few minutes, as opposed to roughly 15 minutes with a hand pump. The XS Scuba Aluminum was added to the list to replace the Sherwood High-Pressure Pony Bottle, as an affordable, no-frills, tank only option, and it's available in a range of sizes up to 30 cubic feet.

September 04, 2019:

Sometimes called pony bottles, divers often carry a mini scuba tank with them as a safety precaution, to act as a redundant air source underwater in case of an emergency. While many users also report having great success using these devices in shallow water, exploring while snorkeling or cleaning a boat or swimming pool, the dangers involved with swimming in deep water without training can’t be stressed enough.

Unsafe diving practices can result in barotrauma or even death by suffocation. Make sure you receive proper training and certification from an accredited instructor before attempting any sort of serious scuba diving. While offerings in this category are commonly rated for depths of 50 meters, a safe depth to dive at without training is something closer to three meters.

Options in this category tend to be quite similar in their design and functionality, but you'll want to keep an eye out for their tank volume/capacity – as it speaks directly to the weight of the unit and the length of time it can keep you underwater for, and whether or not they include a regulator – as it’ll amount to an additional cost to you if not. Also, unless you've already got a wetsuit and harness ready to go, you might want to pay special attention to options like the Spare Air Extreme Watersports Rescue Kit, which comes with a black neoprene vest that can accommodate your new gear.

Special Honors

Brownie Dive Egressor If you want to use a mini tank recreationally, but you are not a certified diver, then you should consider enrolling in a training course. Based in Pompano Beach, Florida, Brownie's offer an online course that will teach you the basics followed by an in-water course with a qualified scuba instructor. browniedive.com

4. Dixie Diver Bailout Pony Bottle

5. Spare Air Extreme Watersports Rescue Kit

6. Smaco Dive Cylinder

7. Karbones Mini Refillable

8. Dedepu S5000

9. Spare Air New 3.0CF

10. XS Scuba Aluminum


Chris Gillespie
Last updated on November 09, 2020 by Chris Gillespie

Starting his career in the building industry, Chris built and managed a plumbing and heating company in northern England. After 13 years, seeking a more fulfilling lifestyle, he moved to southeast Asia, eventually settling in Vietnam, where he teaches writing and comprehension at a number of international universities. Drawing on his previous experience, and his passion for kitesurfing and windsurfing, Chris is knowledgeable in all things water related both recreationally and within the construction industry.


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