Quote Virgil SB#1A from APF website - second Aus incident appears to be from static caused by static-line operations (pun on words clearly not intentional!)
OK what about this quote from Vigil service bulletin 1: During the time it will take to exchange all units the Vigil can still be jumped since an electrostatic misfire can only happen on the ground.
So, they only changed their mind after another misfire in Australia? (Vigil service bulletin 1A) It sounds that this constructor considers the device to be safe until proven otherwise. Not a very common approach in aviation and skydiving safety. I am therefore not so convinced that the solution is to be found with the current replacements. They are simply not aware enough (safe, not so safe, maybe safe, the next one will be safe)
And it doesn’t answer the other air misfires which were no static line jumps.
Great solution that bypass of the reserve loop, especially on student rigs (Vigil service bulletin 1A). You can use a Vigil. Only ensure yourself the reserve loop doesn’t go through the cutter.
Ever fuel an airplane? You connect an insulator line to the airplane from the fuel source. This assures that when you put the fuel nozzle in the plane it won’t generate static and cause a spark. A skydiving static line is a solid connection to the plane. It would ground out any plane to jumper connection and act as an insulator. I don't see any reason for a static line to cause a Vigil to fire.
Please don't jump a pre-mod Vigil, they are not safe. Look at all the misfires that Vigils have. The company does not answer every occurrence and they have lousy explanations for the ones they do choose to answer. Also consider the number of misfires in such a short time. With every unit being replaced, how safe can the old units be? I hope it doesn't take someone to have a main reserve entanglement to get them to ground the units until they are replaced. And if it does take that, I dont want you to be that person.
It isn't as simple as just not turning your unit on, they have fired while off. Remove your unit from your rig, or do not jump it until your replacement is installed. I know there has been talk about why is Majic or the French team still jumping them? Who do you think got the first batch of replacement units?
I am not out to Bash Vigil, I am just trying to inform you what information is out there. Just like the warning label says, skydiving is a dangerous sport, lets keep it as safe as possible. Your AAD is there to save your life in the event of an emergency, it shouldn't be a cause of an emergency. Especially when the manufacturer knows there is a problem, and has admitted it, but still claims the units are safe to jump until replaced. Think about it, the life you save could be your own.
The vigil fired as the jumper left the acft at 3500'. Apparantly it was quite a sight from inside... I saw a "canopy" open, and then I saw the freebag floating away. I got pretty much everything after that on video.
The unit wasn't switched on.
The jumper landed uneventfully. Nice sideways PLR. 'twas his first jump too.
I can't comment on the "static line causing static" theory.
Just a reply though. Isn't the line you connect from the fuel to acft a wire? so it's not an insulator line, but a conducting line? making sure that the acft and fuel are at the same potential?
I don't know how conductive a static line is, but rubbing cloth together does generate static, if it can't travel to the plane, then it stays in the rig...
Pursuant to an incident that happened in Australia today on a static line and Virgil-equipped rig, we commend that you read and implement the additional information on Service Bulletin #1.A. (See attached.)
The above incident was caused by the same issue that is listed in Service Bulletin #1, dated 31st March 2004. (This issue is high levels of static electricity.)
We strongly recommend that you exchange your Vigil for the updated version through your distributor/dealer.
Once again, thank you again for your interest, trust and support.
Service Bulletin #1.A.
Date: 22 April 2004 Subject: Vigil AAD ground activation due to static electricity Status: Mandatory replacement of the main printed circuit board on all Vigils identified below Identification: Any Vigil with a D.O.M. prior to 26 March, 2004
Please note that the use of a static line on a parachute equipped with a Vigil AAD manufactured before 26 March 2004 is not permitted.
If you use a static line, you must ensure that the reserve loop does not go through the cutter. The reason is because static electricity between plan and parachute can provoke the cutter to misfire, even when the Vigil is not switched on.
Therefore, we recommend that customer using a Vigil manufactured before 26 March 2004 strictly avoid the use of a static-line equipped rig.
Advanced Aerospace Designs is now in the process of replacing all units currently in the field. These replacement Vigils (“B” version, manufactured after 26 March 2004) have an updated printed circuit board that is shielded from such high levels of static electricity.
Feel free to contact us for more specific details at firstname.lastname@example.org
You mean the possibility that it fires into your main is OK by you? Or even the hassle of it just firing on the ground and having to get it repacked is OK?
I should clarify I guess for you. I dont have one but like the features that the unit is advertised to have. I have held one and looked at tit. Played with it and read the manual and the unit is an impressive little package. The static problem is one I think will/can be solved, and I can wait till it is. I currently have a Cypress but I also have made well over 1000 jumps w/o an AAD. I am not a "I wont jump w/o one" type, but if given the choice to jump an aad I will and do. I still think that AAD as a company has not tried to hide anything and not unlike many new things there are problems that will come up after beta testing...
Are you seriously telling me that Cypress units had no problems when they first came out, come on.. Lets see, after the fact, airtec introduced the checks and lifetime limitations, for two reasons, safety and to cover libality. What about the foil wrapper that you have to have since there was the threat of misfire with lack of sheilding on the cypress. What about the display problems that Cypress 2's are currently having. Based on your statments regarding the vigil you must be holding off on getting a Cypress 2 as you dont want to beta test them as well....
I dont think holding off on the Vigil is a bad thing but I also wont dismiss them as they seem to have some good features to compete in the market. I dont think it will be another Astra. There has been a problem after Beta tests and AAD as a company seems to not to have held back on information. I dont care about glitches in the beta testing since that is what the beta tests are for.
So I dont want a fire into my main nor do I want a ground misfire but I dont think I am ready to dismiss the Vigil right now. The company has not been against doing the right thing and as long as they are continuning this path I will consider them for my next AAD provided the glitches are worked out....
Beta testing glitches? What part about the 400+ units out there that were sold, and are being replaced is BETA? What part about the in air misfire(s) that Vigil still hasn't addressed yet dont you see? How is that for holding back on information? What about the total bs statement that the static line caused the static fire of the Vigil?
What about the statement that until the Units out there are replaced that the ones out there can only fire on the ground doesn't make sence, when the units have fired in the air. What part about the unit can and will fire turned on or off, in the air or on the ground when it isn't supposed to doesn't bother you? I am sure if Vigil is going to live as a company they will handle their problems, but the thing that bothers me, should bother everyone is they are putting you (the vigil customer/jumper) at risk while they figure out what is wrong, and fix what they know is wrong. The Vigil A unit WILL fire when it isn't supposed to, how hard is it for you, or people to see that. Maybe the Vigil B unit has the problem fixed, time will show. Only testing the Vigil B should be done seperately, just saying ok we fixed the problem that almost killed 3 people isnt enough. As far as I see it they are starting from scratch. I welcome a competing unit to the cypress, and just like you I held the vigil and said yep I want one, that was until I saw a friend of mine almost killed when her reserve deployed the same time her main did, and Vigil still hasnt addressed it. Do you still think that this company has your saftey in mind? Most of all Vigil employees frequent these forums, how come they are so quiet?
Like I said before if you have a Vigil A unit DO NOT JUMP IT! if you know someone with a Vigil A unit do them a favor and ask them NOT TO JUMP IT! Just because vigil says it is ok, it isnt, enough has happened to prove that. Trade your unit in as soon as possible, and if you have to jump w/out an aad then it is probably much safer than risking a main/reserve entanglement.
Good point and well spoken, look at this months Skydiving Magazine, Mike Truffer took a long and good look into this before making a statement, he makes a lot of sence out of this.
I still think that AAD as a company has not tried to hide anything and not unlike many new things there are problems that will come up after beta testing...
They have not answered the in air fire at DeLand yet.....They have mentioned it in Emails, but no SB. I think they are hiding that one.
Also you don't mind paying to be a test jumper? Paying to risk your life? Thats what Vigil is doing. They sold a device that has issues...They know it has issues and the scope of those issues gets bigger everyday. They are not talking about the in air misfires, but they are not saying to stop jumping them.
Is someone going to have to die before they see that there is a problem and they ground the first batch? I think thats whats going to have to happen.
In reply to:
Are you seriously telling me that Cypress units had no problems when they first came out
No, they had problems, but they were very quick to fix them. My whole issue is it makes no sense for an AAD company to tell you that a device that they admit will fire *Even when off* and that has fired several times to include 4 fires in the air. Is safe to jump. Also they are not forthcomming with any info on the DeLand fire.
In reply to:
airtec introduced the checks and lifetime limitations, for two reasons, safety and to cover libality.
Which I didn't agree with and am not happy with. I want a better AAD to come to market. If it were as reliable as the CYPRES I would buy it just cause I think the way CYPRES handled the 12 year life span was BS...When I bought mine it said it would be jumping longer than me. But the AAD is going to have to be reliable..And the Vigil is not.
In reply to:
Based on your statments regarding the vigil you must be holding off on getting a Cypress 2 as you dont want to beta test them as well....
Yep, I don't plan on getting a CYPRES 2 anytime soon either.
In reply to:
I dont care about glitches in the beta testing since that is what the beta tests are for.
Do you think its right to sell a product that could kill someone...And when the "Beta" units (Which BTW were paid for...I never have paid for a beta unit in my life) show problems the company says the are broken, but still safe to jump?
I think that the company knows they have a problem...But they are trying to avoid saying those dreaded words "The Vigils are grounded" so they can avoid a marketing nightmare. I just hope no one dies before the AAD's get replaced, and the fix works.