The Hype Behind Roller Spearguns
Roller Spearguns are the future of spearfishing. They are the greatest strides in spearfishing technology over the past decade. These spearguns do have limitations.
How a Roller Speargun Works
Roller spearguns work on the principle of starting your band stretch from the end of the speargun. The purpose of a speargun’s bands is to store energy. Bands only start to store energy as they get under tension. A traditional speargun does not start to store energy until the bands start to stretch. They break that mold by having the bands start at the back or middle of the speargun on the underside of the gun.
Roller spearguns require retention on the bands to work properly. Without pretension the spear shaft travels faster than the bands accelerate. This is one of the biggest drawbacks of traditional spearguns, and one of the biggest benefits of roller spearguns. If a roller is properly pretensioned the shaft will accelerate for the entire length of the speargun.
One of the biggest myths behind roller spearguns is that they are more powerful. To some extent they are, but it is from having more distance for the bands to stretch. Speargun range is the result of band stretch distance. Power is derived from the size and number of speargun bands.
Another myth about these spearguns is that they don’t have recoil. They do have recoil. It is reduced compared to similarly powered traditional spearguns. The reduced recoil is because the bands are moving towards the front and the back of the speargun simultaneously. You still need to brace for recoil with roller spearguns, especially for larger spearguns.
The primary benefit of roller spearguns is the additional range they provide. This is a result of the additional band stretch length. The distance a band stretches is the primary factor in the range of a speargun. These spearguns typically have an additional 20%-30% of the range of the same size traditional speargun.
Many spearguns can easily be converted to roller spearguns. There are kits, like the MannySub Roller conversion kits, that make converting Euro style spearguns into single or double roller gun. Wood spearguns can be converted with some Roller Kits depending on the style of the speargun.
With so many benefits there has to be a catch when it comes to these spearguns, right? And their defiantly are some challenges that come with roller spearguns. The first hurtle most people notice about roller spearguns is that they are hard to load. This is true. You are adding tension to the bands the entire length of the speargun. Its not easy. That being said it is effective, so if you want your speargun to perform properly you will need to deal with the challenges of loading it.
The next issue is that rollers tend to be complicated. They are. These are not basic spearguns. You will want to become very familiar with how they operate before putting them to the test on fish. You will want to see how to route your bands, as well as your shooting and test out how it is routed a few times before getting everything wet.
The last hurtle is that some rollers are more expensive to maintain. Spearguns bands are not crazy expensive, but you will be going through more of them if the bands are constantly under tension. That means your bands will deteriorate about twice a quickly as non-tensioned bands. Inverted rollers get even more complicated because you have a larger number of bands to replace annually. Two bands is not crazy expensive to replace, but six or eight gets expensive quick.