>Your point was that manufacturers are pushing little canopies, and are therefore at least partially responsible for the consequences, including reducing the size of their future customer base. PM me with your private accusations, then.
I have nothing to lose about making the public accusation. Atair pushes people to get onto small wings.
From their website:
What's the recommended wing loading on a Cobalt?
The Cobalt canopy is an extremely efficient wing. It has the highest measured glide ratio of any skydiving canopy. The extra lift makes for a canopy that flies 'bigger'. To get equal forward speed when comparing to many other canopies you need to load the Cobalt heavier, i.e. 1#/’ on a Sabre should be compared to 1.2#/’ on a cobalt.
1.2-1.4 beginners 1.4-1.6 intermediate 1.6-1.8 high 1.8-2.2 pro 2.2-2.8 extreme max tested landed wingload 3.6#
NOTE: due to the efficiency of the Cobalt wing, most experienced jumpers will jump a Cobalt 1-2 sizes smaller than competing canopies.
Normal does not mean safe. In some cliques at some DZ's, drinking heavily then jumping is normal.
>Now I do not know why would we be able to fly smaller >canopies sooner. It could be our student program.
If, at your DZ, HP canopy training (on smaller canopies) is part of the training program, then that could be the reason it's possible to do it with some degree of safety. Question - if that's the case, was that canopy training optional?
Yes. I know normal doesnt mean safe. But In my opinion our wingloading culture seems pretty safe. Also, Generally we have much more strict skydiving-regulations in Finland comparet to US. (to a degree it sometimes almost seems like a joke to some of us.)
To some degree we have canopy training included to our student program. For example we have to land in to a 10m circle 10 times to get our licence.
We also have additional canopy training for free, but thats optional. about 20 % of new jumpers will take part. I will also try to take part to this additional training this summer, wich goes for 3-4 days.
I checked out their web site and found at the bottom of the wing loading recomendations:
"CAUTION: the above are general guidelines of where other Atair canopy owners are loading. It is not our intent to make recommendations to anyone without knowing them and their skills first hand. For a firm recommendation please consult your local Safety and Training Officer or instructor."
After reading about the Cobalt...Wow ,I'd like to try one out!
Flying a 1.9 elliptical wing at 375 jumps (if that number is accurate) does seem aggresive. But I've never seen you fly so I can't say for sure whether or not you're asking for trouble. I do know that any highly loaded wing is risky whether the pilot is experienced or not (I mean look at Duey from SDTRs a few weeks ago). The margin for error is much smaller.
Replying to: Re: [Ron] Wingload BSR. by rhino Post:
In Reply To
Would you consider yourself an average canopy pilot? Or an above average canopy pilot?
Why don't you let others give you their opinions?
Hook, Bytch, Phree, Diablopilot, Skycat, Lummy, JTVal, Viking, and on and on and on..
Ask what they think...
What I can tell you is I spent ALOT of time under canopy. And I abort more than I swoop if ANYTHING goes wrong.
Not really the point....I am not trying to discredit you... I am just showing how this is part of the problem..
It really does not matter IF YOU can do it...The point I am making is this is an attitude of ALL of the people that are jumping HP canopies with not a lot of jumps.
You *MIGHT* be really good...A natural..Or you might be lucky.
Point is that not everyone is that skilled or lucky.
And yes, I would like to hear from Lisa about you...Not that it changes anything.
I can pull low...I know what gear to use, and how to pack it...I have had several malfunctions, so I know how to see it, and react to it fast. Still it does not make it ok for me to do it. And just because I MIGHT be able to do it...Does not make it OK for everyone...Thats why we have BSR's
BTW I have spent A LOT of time in freefall below 1500 feet...It does not mean its a good idea. That was when I had 300-800 jumps. And now with almost 3,000 jumps I pull at 2,500. Funny huh? You would think that the more skill I got..The lower I could pull.
And yes, I would like to hear from Lisa about you...Not that it changes anything.
Rob's a better canopy pilot than I am - not that that says much
A year ago I would have said he's a crater waiting to happen - in fact, I think I did at least once. I tried very hard to talk him out of the canopy he's flying now. There comes a point when you know you aren't going to change someone's mind and you just have to hope for the best. Oh and btw he did know not to even ask if I'd sell it to him.
I think doing CPR on the guy who hooked into the swoop pond at WFFC last year made a big impression on him. Now I think he's definitely taking more risks than I'd be comfortable with but he also realizes the consequences of a screw up.
Can't say I don't still think he might hurt himself someday; I haven't seen him land his canopy in a small area or when shit happened in front of him. But I have seen him abort a swoop, his hooks are not nearly as low as many other swoopers, and he appears to me to be a student of canopy flight.
It's very possible he's one of the rare few who are capable of handling a highly wingloaded elliptical at low jump numbers. It's also possible that he's just been lucky so far. I like him, so I hope it's the former.
(This post was edited by skybytch on May 29, 2003, 10:39 AM)
I agree that we need some type of canopy restrictions because I'm tired of watching people limp away, if they are that lucky, but have you taken into account elevations at different dropzones, and how the canopies will perform?
OK, but Rob do you think that everyone takes as much time/effort as you did?
I have yet to see anyone that does to be honest. Although I am getting MANY people really interested in hop-n-pops from over 12,000 feet these days..
In reply to:
Do you think you are the norm out there?
Far from it.. For most what I am doing seems like suicide. I wouldn't recommend it for ANYONE that hasn't done their homework.
In reply to:
How much worse would you have been if you had to wait till you had 500 jumps to get that canopy?
Not sure. Don't know if I would have kept jumping to be honest. High performance canopy flight brought skydiving alive for me again. It is a whole new, exciting aspect of skydiving requiring exceptional skill, practice, research, patience and judgement. It was a challenge, it is a challenge. The speed is fantastic! What the parachute can do is amazing. I like to challenge myself. It is a constant test of my own judgement and skill. With 2 kids and one on the way I have no intention of doing anything stupid.
Am I willing to accept the risks involved? Absolutely.
In reply to:
More importantly do you think that everyone is capable to do what you did?
No way in hell.. Some people have it and some people don't? If that makes sense. Some people at 2000 jumps have yet to learn to fly a canopy.
Canopy flight basic things such as "below" should be taught in AFF.
recovery arc rock point slow speed flight flat turns flying in rear risers front riser dives to get out of wind
These are just some of the things that should be taught in AFF.
I have plans to be an AFF jm someday and when I do I will be teaching exactly what I am preaching.
I am no judge of canopy flight, and am very very new in this sport.
However, I will say that I took a canopy control class at 40 jumps. Took some heat about it, too. Well, actually, took some major heat for it. Did it anyway, and have really improved my accuracy and landings (although I still crash...). And while I could never teach it to anyone, I am starting to understand how and why...
I think that there is a ton of stress put on getting out and having fun in freefall....and that's great. But I sat back and thought about the major danger points (with the help of incidents like we talk about here), and few come from freefall collisions, whereas most come from landing. Therein is the primary danger point. So I addressed that first. And got told I was pretty dumb for wasting that kind of money on something I "couldn't use" - I guess people thought I was learning to swoop or something...LOL!
I put up a poll in canopy control forum, which shows that about 25% of the folks out there have taken a class; that leaves 75% of the folks learning from friends (who may not know), watching others (who may be doing it wrong), or learning by the seat of their pants (literally).
The question I have is simple: should only 25% of the people take AFF/SL, and just let the other 75% fall out of the plane on their own?? We take classes from those we perceive as experts on how to handle freefall, but don't take any instruction on how to land, what the canopy does, and why it does it for the part of the jump which will most likely kill you....and that, friends and fellow jumpers, makes zero sense to me.
Rob has aggressively pursued canopy flight, and I frankly admire him for it. While I will probably never go much smaller than I am right now, I intend to follow his lead - more high HnP, more working the canopy, more learning, more practice...and maybe that will save my life someday. Just my .02 -
(This post was edited by Michele on May 29, 2003, 12:01 PM)
billvon (D 16479)
May 29, 2003, 11:59 AM
Post #119 of 493
>And got told I was pretty dumb for wasting that kind of money on something I "couldn't use" . . .
That's like someone telling you you're dumb for getting a cypres if you plan to pull. "Hey, if you never use it. . . ." Canopy control classes would have kept a lot of people alive last year, and would have kept even more people out of the hospital. They are one of the best investments you can make.
However, I will say that I took a canopy control class at 40 jumps. Took some heat about it, too. Well, actually, took some major heat for it.
That's just not right. I don't know about the curriculum of your canopy control course, but I took one given by Hooknswoop (mother nature messed with our weather so we never did do all that we wanted that day) and Hook was very good about trying to cater to the different skill levels of the students in the class (ranging from people with a handful of jumps off of AFF to a few with a hundred or more jumps).
Hooknswoop ... if you're out there and reading this. If you do hold another canopy control course sometime in the not too distant future. I would like to try and pick up from where we left off.
I didn't say that the instructors gave me heat about it....matter of fact, Jim Slaton worked really hard because there was another, much higher jump number lady in the class with me. Jim held my hand and really taught me a ton of stuff in a way that I was able to comprehend it, as well as teaching her at her level, too. I know the instructors out there work hard to "speak into the listening" of the students...and are successful for the most part...and I very much appreciate them. The folks who gave me heat were people who were "peers".
My point was simply that peer pressure keeps people from spending the $$ to take the class, and instead they learn by doing. And sometimes those lessons are at a high cost - limbs broken, lives lost...
If I had one wish, it would be to incorporate a canopy control class before getting the A license...3 jumps on just canopy control or something...and then reassess the need for canopy wingload regulations. If one were to have the requirement of X on a canopy (and have it accountable...) before they got their A license, then perhaps some of this could be avoided. It would certainly take the peer pressure away from not taking the class early.
(And yes, I know there already are requirements, but they are easily lied about, whereas something like water training is not...something along those lines is what I mean)...
I didn't say that the instructors gave me heat about it....
I guess I could have worded things a little better. I pretty much knew the people giving you flak were your peers and not the canopy control instructors. As far as the people who gave you flak are concerned, what business is it of theirs? You obviously wanted to better yourself and any good canopy control class should be able to give the students individualized instruction. So kudos to you for taking the initiative. Now if only more course were made available and if only more people would realized they could benefit from the instruction, we'd have less issues with people hurting themselves (in a perfect world of course).
Sarge... Tell me why the PRO rating system will not work?
Of course this is simply my opinion.
Actually, as SIM 7.2 currently reads, I see a practical correlation between meeting only a fraction of the PRO requirements therein to owning and flying a canopy at a specified wingloading. I will comment on proficiency in canopy control skills in just a moment.
First of all there is no PRO requirement for Open Field and Level 1 Demos. Since the only requirement for these catagory of jumps is a D license. It appears that many landings we perform however at most Dzs fall into the Level 2 Demo class (SIM Table 7.A) considering the size of the congested popular landing area and the distance we land from other jumpers? There appears to be an inherent contradiction, in that a student/novice *can also land in that same congested landing area. (*note, "Can also land" because why? -- we make a subjective / objective determination of that jumpers canopy skills / behavior / attitude and decide whether this is acceptable) -Self Policing
Of course like I've said before Dzs make their own rules such as having a designated 'D' license landing area, which has been established at this or that DZ. (the rest I can think of specify 'Experienced Jumpers') -Self Policing
Secondly, the new D license requirements (ie:500 jumps) should satisfy the bare minimum jump numbers that I tend to agree with and as we have discussed. Considering only jump numbers as a critereon, the jump number PRO requirement does not exempt people like me who still only have an A license. But in this scenario it is jump numbers we are strictly assessing, not canopy skills. -Regulation
Which brings me to Canopy Skill demonstration. Yes, by all means, and what I have agreed with you and many all along is that there should be a mechanism in place to clarify strictly 'canopy control skills.' Now, the 'D' requires a jumper to make 25 landings within 2 meters of center. Easy enough. So with 500 accumulated jumps and 25 aforementioned landings... I think that should suffice.
The reason the PRO swoopers are crashing less, I believe, is because organizers have become more discriminating about who they admit as competitors. It's their show, and they wanna look good- crashes are spectacular but they don't glamorize swooping. ---- You don't have to be PRO Rated to compete (although I am aware the FAA requires this for some beach competitions) My point is that the competitors have proven their skills and saftey consciousness to organizers and fellow competitors. -self policing
Or even better yet, find the compromise between the USPA regulation and self policing. Each of us has a voice. Voice it to the DZO / S&TA, geez, a few years ago people started getting the idea to formalize free-fly training, found out there was a demand and that there was $$ in it. Whoola! Maybe this will come to pass as more people become highly skilled and share with their friends, and then they with theirs... etc ad infinitum.
I believe the same is true in the canopy disciplines, CRW, swooping, accuracy. The more skilled pilots become abundant, the more available and accessible training and advice will be shared.
In closing, (finally) I do not see a PRO rating as a panacea or band-aid for canopy incidents. I propose that a measure of self policing and USPA regulation 'should' find acceptance with Dzos to establish policies that work in concert with safety consciousness and skill assessment. The new D license requirement sounds like a good starting point, designated landing areas and finally some local system of skills assessment as appropriate.