Jun 29, 2004, 11:24 AM
Post #1 of 23
When can I freefly?
Although I'm new at this sport with only 35 jumps, I'm really interested in free flying. I've gotten several different opinions, from wait until you have 900 jumps to start now!!! I'm messed around a bit and haven't had any problems yet with losing altitude too fast or going out of control. If there any reason why I shouldn't be doing free fly so soon?
There are plenty of threads in the Freefly Forum regarding topics just like this. Check across the next few pages of for similar topics.
Really, you should be asking yourself, "Is it SAFE for me to freefly during my skydives yet?" If you're own answer is uncertain, then you should follow popular opinion; "...after you've gotten the proper instruction."
ps. this also applies to everything in the sport, not just your skydive-discipline-type.
I was trying to freefly on my 19th jump using a wonderful dolphin container lol. I was trying to sit fly and while on my back trying to get into position one of my toggles flew out. My rigger has since added secondary riser covers and moved the pilot chute bag thingy so there is zero bridle exposed. Got my heart pounding pretty hard since I really wasnt sure what I should have done. I'll probably end up sending it to altico to get the freefly updates done. I guess I'll have to see how this guys updates look like first since I don't plan on jumping this dolphin next year anyway.
I just took a good friend of mine who owns the wind tunnel here in Houston on his first head-down. Jump # 9 He held a flower exit down to about 8k then we played around on our bellys and made about 10 points till break off at 4.5k.
Any suggestions on how to change the velcro for the risers then? Add flaps? Scrap it all and get a new container (not that I can afford that...)? I'm still working on sit fly but at a rate of one jump a weekend, I'm not getting very far. Hopefully the weather will cooperate for the next few weekends and I can get more jumps in!
People are giving you good advice.... make sure your gear is freefly friendly. So important!! I've watched someone be ripped out of a sit just a few feet in front of me because his gear wasn't safe for what he was doing. I also have a close friend who had two mals in one weekend from freeflying with an old Racer. Get good gear.
STart now, definately, I started working on it at 14 and had sort of reclining sit by 15, I'm just really intense about it. I jump a vector II and haven't had N E problems with it (have done 2 way head down, sit, barrel rolls, flips, back track) you're fine. have fun!
hey bro, how many jumps do you have? Just because you have gotten away with something for 50 or 100 jumps does not make it safe. Did you not read all of the above posts pertaining to gear safety and compatability with freeflying?
From reading this post and another in a different forum, it is obvious you don't have a whole boatload of experience. I'm not coming down on you for being new, but maybe you should refrain from giving advice until you are sure of what you are talking about.
I think the bigger picture is - do you know why velcro is bad for freeflying? Do you know what would cause someone to be yanked out of a sit in freefall? Do you know why there are little bungees attaching the legstraps on freefly rigs?
I don't ask to make you feel bad or to make me sound smart (I sit in and listen to coaching all the time to keep learning)
The point is, as a new skydiver - you have alot (more) to learn.
And every skydive is a potential test of everything you know.
Some hints: Spend time with your eyes and ears wide open determining who's experienced and who's not. Keep in mind, the most experienced won't be the ones hanging around offering you advice every second. They might have to be sought out.
Internet advice should be taken with a grain of salt. The best advice and direction you'll get is from experienced, respected people who know you and your gear and abilities first hand. Check everything you read online with them.
Don't be afraid to ask anything. And everyone. When I first started to learn freeflying (9 years ago?)- there was only one school. I traveled from the Northeast to Florida to go to it. I also went to Eloy to get coaching from some of the best freefliers of that time. When I wanted to BASE jump, I emailed a very experienced/respected jumper and asked him to teach me. In other words, seek out those who will be able to teach you the most. Don't rely on just what or who is readily available. (You may be lucky enough to have the very best at your dz - or nearby)
This sport is so cool and the people in it, for the most part, are some of the coolest - everyone will want to help you. Just be strong and curious enough to take only the best advice.
**As for the velcro, without seeing your gear first hand, you could send it to Relative Workshop and ask them to replace the flaps. I don't kow how big or small you are - but you could also include photos of yourself in the rig and ask them to make mods accordingly - leg straps, chest strap, etc.). But, again, learn what needs to be fixed/corrected and why it does, first. Don't just ship off your gear and ask them to make it safe for you.
And finally and most importantly, just because you haven't had N E problems yet, is no guarantee that when you do have a problem, it won't be huge. Try to remember this your whole skydiving career - it will come up often:
-I heard velcro is bad for freeflying, but it works for me - I can't afford to change it. -I heard I shouldn't be learning to fly headdown with another beginner, but he's a good friend and willing to help me. -I heard I shouldn't get on 6-ways until I have more control but 6-ways are more fun.
You get the idea...
(My post is 'internet advice', follow/listen appropriately.
(This post was edited by freeflybella on Aug 3, 2004, 7:56 AM)
I've watched someone be ripped out of a sit just a few feet in front of me because his gear wasn't safe for what he was doing.
We had a premature from sit this weekend. The jumper suffered a dislocated shoulder and some serious riser slap damage to his face and hand. He thinks he was knoced out and came to to his ditter going off.
He jumps a Reflex (as in "Got to have good relexes to catch your pilot chute when it escapes") It's his second premee.
I jump a vector II and haven't had N E problems with it
I jumped a VectorII when i was waiting for my Wings... Velcro riser covers opening constantly (it was quite well maintained), letting a toggle out once putting me in a nice spinny opening on my 120... Could have been worse. You don't want to have shit opening at 200+ mph, and there are rigs out there that will open a lot sooner.... Be careful giving advice like that... People can get hurt.
Good God! some of this is scary! Listen, Rock on and fly however you want.... but if you want to do something, do it right. especially like everyone has been saying in here about "freefly friendly" rigs. i've seen a few premature deployments from inches away... and that is not Kool! it's not just about your safety. and on a side note... i'd rather base jump a bedsheet than freefly a dolphin! ~E
yes kevin, remember when i was headdown in yer face, and the other thing head level was your D bag? that was scary. but, i would've FF'd yer rig if that "genious" had just tightened up his closing loop! i'd jump a javelin any day over a dolphin or a racer! ~E
(This post was edited by blitzkrieg on Aug 9, 2004, 8:06 AM)
Hmm, the only thing I remember on that dive is thinking, "Wow! We're orbiting and having a blast with...wait, what's that bumping my ear?" And then with the thunder and the seeing stars. It was less than a beautiful thing. Yes, shortening that closing loop. That's what needed to be done. I actually flew that rig this weekend with a Fusion in it and it was just fine. It was the pack volume. The pressure on the pin was perfect, so I felt safe. Lesson learned, though. I'm moving on to an ACTUAL freefly friendly rig...maybe a Dolphin? (not really)
(This post was edited by McDuck on Aug 9, 2004, 8:08 AM)
All flying is freeflying. The more positional flying you can learn the better imho. ALso imho - its good to learn belly flying before moving on - alot of people can get relatively decent with belly work in a couple hundred jumps.
Freeflying ROCKS! But definitely pay attention to those posts about making sure your rig is freefly friendly. I have a 97 Javelin that when I bought it my rigger told me that if I ever considered freeflying to have some modifications done. i.e. bridle protection. Well that was a year ago and I figured I wouldn't even try to free fly for at least 200 jumps, yeah right. Did my first sit attempt on jump 51 and was hooked! Jump 62 I experienced my first (BEER!) premature deployment at 6'500 feet; on my back, at 140mph. WTF! Fellow I was jumping with told me that he'd never seen a nastier preemie. I'm one lucky adrenaline junkie. I could have had a horseshoe, my lines could have snapped, the canopy could have been torn to shreds. Instead I got away with a shitload of bruises and a new tag line.