Kit Review - Lomo Swim Tow

Andrew Wallace
30.04.18 11:12 AM Comment(s)

We've been asked recently for our opinion on which is the best swim towel for open water and sea swimming in particular, so we thought we would give a review of a tried and tested swim tow from Lomo.

There are two basic models from Loma for the swim tow float, which are the singular bladder or the dry bag compartment variety. This review is of the latter dry bag tow float.

Open water swim tow review by Swim Pembrokeshire
The Lomo open water swim tow with compartment

The lomo swimming tow is very sturdy and well made. One feel of the float material shows that it would take a lot off abuse before it ripped or punctured. Indeed the one shown in these pictures is well over a year old and has been used several times per week in that time and has even had the tow strap rip clean off in rough sea conditions but is still going strong.

It comes in various colours. Are preference is illuminous orange. The visibility of it is excellent and you can be seen from a great distance without much effort.

The float is designed so that it is in fact too bladders each with its own valve that can be inflated and deflated, which sandwich the dry bag compartment, with d dry bag opening at the top.

The valves consist of the inflator valve which even if you leave it and then will not allow air to escape once it's been blown in, and the deflator valve which is used to expel air either in a controlled manner or very quickly in order to pack the tow float away.

Lomo swim tow float gear review
The tow float has a watertight compartment for spare gear

A common question is: Can you keep car keys in the compartment bag?

To this we would say yes, but would recommend putting them in a separate small dry bag or a dry box. We do this, we use the Lomo drybox.  See this link for details.

Open water swim kit reviews - keeping your spare gear dry
A DryBox can be used in conjunction with the swim tow to keep car keys or even a phone, completely dry
Normally the tow float strap that attaches around your waist attaches to the float on the opposite end of the dry bag compartment opening. The strap that comes out of the box is adequate and of sufficient length. We have seen on other models that the strap attaching the toe to your waistline is way too short and that's the tow float ends up getting tangled in your feet.

In this review you can see that the tell float attachment was ripped off the bag. This was in no way a negative reflection on the bad quality, the conditions at that time were insane and it's a testament to the quality of the bag that it can still be used even when the strap got ripped off.

Open water swimming kit reviews
The Lomo tow floats are robust and well built

In this case we quickly improvised and clip to strap onto the opposite end where the lomo swimming tow comes equipped with a couple of handy resin D-rings.

This can also be used to clip on other stuff for example as pictured here, a whistle, or perhaps a GoPro with selfie stick, or we have also used it to clip on a diving slate so that we can take notes or draw diagrams of wildlife or even students swim strokes!  In other words these simple d-rings are very useful.

Swim Pembrokeshire swim kit reviews
Handy D-rings can be used if anchor points break or to attach other kit to

We have decided to lengthen the overall length of the tow float waist attachment strap. We have found many swimmers suffer from the short straps available on other models and the tow flow quickly becomes annoying and gets caught in their feet. We have found that having a longer attachment strap allows the float to float a couple of feet behind the Swimmer and also it means you can pass the tow float to someone in need.

It also means you can do a bit of duck diving to a couple of metres depth without having to detach the tow float from your body, should you see some interesting wildlife on the seabed.

Lomo swim tow review
Extended waist belt strap

This particular model cost £25 from Amazon and has been worth every penny.

Watch a video review here: