Re: [Lindenwood] "Oh, I'll never downsize beyond xxx sqft."
Is it unrealistic to expect to enjoy the same size canopy for a long time?
As mentioned, it depends on the person, but when you say things like -
I have always been one to enjoy ringing every last bit of personal performance out if machines and equipment,
-you might not be one to stay at 1 to1.
Let's keep in mind that 1.2 or 1.3 isn't really 'high' performance, but it's quite a bit higher performance than 1 to 1. In terms of machines, consider that 1 to 1 might be the equivilant of a 4 cylinder car with 110 or 120 hp. It's a fine car, capable of highway travel, and serves the purpose of transportation quite well.
A canopy at 1.2 or 1.3 would be more like a car with a V6 putting out 200 hp. It's no Corvette or Ferrari, but it has some get up and go, and can be fun to pedal to the floor from time to time.
Back to canopies, also keep in mind that the landing is only one part of the canopy ride. When you bump up the WL, you also bump up the responsiveness of the canopy. The turns will be snappier, and the toggles more sensitive. Even if you don't intend to hook turn, a canopy loaded at 1.3 can get a nice 'turf surf' on a straight-in landing if your technique to good, and the winds are low.
Speaking of winds, the WL of your canopy will ultimately dictate what sort of winds you can jump in. The lower your WL, the lower your wind limits will be. Floaty canopies with low WL will get bounced around sooner, and backed up sooner than canopies with higher WL. Remember that once your airspeed equals the wind speed, you're not going to be going forward at all. So if your canopy at 1 to 1 has a forward speed of 15 mph, when you face into a 15 mph wind, your ground speed will be zero, aka, going straight down. (Those numbers are all for example, you normally won't want jump in winds so high that you come straight down, but once they get close to that number, you lose most of your forward drive, and a gust can back you up).
The long and short of it is that most jumpers will want to vanture up the WL ladder at some point. Not all, but given the nature of the sport, the type of people that it attacts, and the practical reasons for a higher WL, most people end up moving up at some point.
THAT SAID - moving up too soon has proven to be deadly and injurious to many. Much like the car example above, flying a canopy will become second nature with experience, and you will be able to focus on the higher performance machine once the basic operations become a non-issue.
In terms of gear, I strongly reccomend used gear to start with. Trying to buy one thing that you think you'll jump 'forever' just isn't practical. Look for an inexpensive first rig, with canopies big enough to be safe, and a container even bigger so it's easy to pack. Once you have 100 jumps, your skills, experience, and knowledge about gear and what you want from it, will be exponentially higher than they are now, and then you can re-evaluate your choices, and adjust them as needed.
(This post was edited by davelepka on Aug 9, 2012, 7:18 AM)
Post edited by davelepka
() on Aug 9, 2012, 7:18 AM