May 26, 2007, 6:58 AM
Post #1 of 52
Just curious to know if anyone has tested the new reserve by PD, and what they thought of it. I went on their website and read all the articles, I'm curious about the new type of material they are using more than anything else.
is there any prospects of pd making them in the 160/176 versions in the near future? why only up to a 143?
The rumors on the street - so likely wrong are:
1) the fabric and design would not "scale to larger sizes".
2) that someone loading a traditional PD-R near 1 to 1 in a larger container would be less likely to spend a bit more for a canopy that packs smaller, thus making the money for R&D to make the larger sizes have a less ROI...
In case either of the above are true, I think those of us who want the reserve in the larger sizes should all e-mail PD so they can judge the demand.
(This post was edited by tdog on May 28, 2007, 5:57 PM)
I spoke directly with PD about making the larger optimums and they said to not expect them out any time soon. Canopies may be able to be mathmatically scaleable from one size to another but that doesn't mean that the opening or flying characteristics scale as well. There is a thread in this forum about the optimum reserve that I started quite awhile back. This conversation would be better suited in that thread instead of making several other threads about the same subject. I'm sure that moderators like Bill Von would agree. That is all.
(This post was edited by Spizzzarko on May 29, 2007, 11:58 AM)
I jumped a 143 packed as a main at terminal last weekend after a freefly jump. The opening was hard but it didn't really hurt too bad. It was an on heading and smooth opening. The material is slippery but spills air quickly while packing and is very small once in the bag.
The toggle response is quick and the front riser pressure is very light. I did a 270 to landing and was able to keep it diving nicely. I had to run it out more than on a 9 cell, and it didn't have as much flare as a swooping canopy, but it was still a fun landing.
I put 6 or 7 jumps on an Optimum 143 demo this weekend. Loaded at around 1:1 (or maybe a little more).
LOVED it. I've demoed a PDr 143 before (never had a chance to jump my own), and I thought it was great. The Optimum flies even better.
First jump was a hop n' pop. I was a little nervous about how hard it would open at terminal. Had it in my backup rig and just planned to do a few hop n' pops between other jumps. Well, I ended up needing that rig for freefall, so I bit the bullet and took it to terminal.
Opening was GREAT. Ok, I guess I wouldn't fault a reserve for opening a bit hard, but this one opened considerably softer than the PD 9-cell that usually lives in that rig. I thought maybe it was a fluke or the guy that packed it knew what he was doing better than me, so I packed it myself and jumped it again. Another perfect opening. Not as soft as my Sabre2, but definitely not hard or even brisk. Jumped it with my camera helmet at terminal with absolutely no problem.
Played around up high with it a bit. Felt a lot zippier than the PD-150 (course it is smaller). I could easily do a front riser 360... can't do that with the 9-cell. Not that I care about front riser turns. Flew great in deep brakes too...
Did a bunch of practice flares on my first jump... Hard to tell how the flare will be up high though. I knew it'd have more flare than the regular PDr 143, but I was still surprised. It's not as much flare power as my sabre2, but it was still really easy to land, even slightly downwind. The flare started off nice, but I was expecting it to kind of drop me at the end, like my PD-150. But nope, it gives a really nice flare all the way through. Someone watching told me he was shocked it didn't stall and drop me on my back at the end of the flare, like some reserves have been known to do.
I just wish I could keep the demo as my main in my backup rig! Oh and having one for a reserve would be kinda nice too...
In case anyone's wondering, the going price these days seems to be around $1260 from most dealers.
(This post was edited by pilotdave on Aug 6, 2007, 7:30 AM)
Unless I'm much mistaken, I just saw the original poster at a skydiving event attended by a PD crew with demo Optimums, so she might have first hand experience now.
I put just one jump on an Optimum 113 in moderately windy conditions. At 1.5:1 loading I tried sinking it in in deep brakes (about 2/3 brakes) without a flare onto grass. The descent rate was not a intimidating at all and a little roll to the side was fine to absorb the landing.
A video of a PD jumper trying to sink the 113 in to a tuffet and missing also shows that the landings are quite survivable without having to have a perfect approach. The vid should be up on skydivingmovies.com any time now. The name is "Sinking in an Optimum 113.wmv".
Whether this refers to the video, or what I said about a single jump on an Optimum 113, you're right, it doesn't prove anything. And I don't know how another modern reserve might fare in comparison.
Others may get different ideas, but I got a favourable impression out of seeing that something as small as a 113 could be flown in without it being too scary, if one for some reason weren't able to land from full flight with a proper flare.
A good video of the same canopy landing with a full flare in no winds would be useful too.
I would like to know if Ned took the opportunity to demo an Optimum at the event.
I put 2 jumps on the 143 and 1 on the 113. All at terminal, doing tandem video, so now I have some nice video and stills (20D) of the openings and I know the glide is good enough to get you home from being the last tandem out of an Otter.
The openings were not hard. They were very comfortable, even with a PC9 and 20D on my head.
The flights were amazing, these reserves have incredible range.
Packing them is super easy too, I have packed one as a reserve.
Isaiah McCauliffe and Scott Roberts (PD reps and Fastrax swoop team members) were at the canadian nationals last week and originally were only going to do the swoop event, but they grabed some of the PD Optimum's (don't know the size) and did classic accuracy as well with them. from what i hear from others it was impressive.
Isaiah McCauliffe and Scott Roberts (PD reps and Fastrax swoop team members) were at the canadian nationals last week
Yes, my video was of one of their first practice jumps trying to sink it into the tuffet. Although the landings were quite survivable when they missed the tuffet, they soon changed to going to a full flare and trying to tap the scoring pad as they planed out and went by.
They both used the Optimum 113's. Isaiah's comment on the video was that the loading was 1.8! (But there was significant wind that cut down his forward speed.)
A quick count shows that between them they got scores on the 16 cm radius pad seven times out of 20 competition jumps.
They also entered the just-for-fun team accuracy event and on one round used their Velocities. But one malfunctioned, so after the chop the jumper used his real Optimum 113 reserve to go for the tuffet...
i know both Scott and Isaiah rarely post on here but they had a blast at Canadian Nationals, so much so that i think me and the rest of the team wouldn't mind showing up next year. thanks for posting that video too.
Yeah they did have a blast - and so did the rest of us that got to watch them come in for the tuffet. I have to admit that when they first announced they were going to compete I thought they had lost their minds! Much to my surprise they figured it out (with a lot of help and good input from the seasoned classic accuracy jumpers I might add) and did great (and only scared the judges a couple of times.
I think both of them now have a lot more respect for the fine art of classic accuracy. Plus here is a little secret - if you score a dead center, you get a special cookie, it's even written in the rules . I think both of them are going to try to get some "cookie rules" written into swooping too