From Brian Germinas Radio show- I'd agree that the 270 is the best turn avaliable (when at the right skill level of course)
Thise turn- Unlike a 180- 360 gives you a very clear C-B-A point set up, letting you fly a right/ left hand pattern to adjust your accuracy points as needed to be at the right turn altitude at the right point.
I hope I didnt butcher his explanation- If you havent checked out his second radio show, check it on skydive radio, its really worth listening too.
The best turn is the one where you dont kill yourself or anyone else.
I think the "best" turn would probably be a 90 givin that your blind spot is the smallest (if you have to make a turn that is).
What is the best as far as performance? Thats up to wing type, pilot preference and experience. Whatever you do you should be super proficient before you consider moving up in rotation.
Personally I prefer a right 270 in a left hand pattern. But again I dont think you should try 270's until you mastered 180s. Land away from the high traffic areas if at all possible. And never hook if something isn't perfect with traffic/your head.
(This post was edited by johnny1488 on Dec 18, 2005, 6:34 PM)
I prefer a 270, that's just me though, I feel like I get the most speed and "power" from the canopy with that turn. The downside is to properly do a 270, you do your turn "against" the pattern. For instance a right hand pattern would leave you with a left 270 and so forth. Doing a 180 you either leave out the base leg of your pattern or turn against the pattern just prior to your turn. For instance if you do a right hand pattern with a base leg, you'll do a left 90 deg turn (toggle or whatever) to set yourself up to 180 back into the landing direction. The only turn that really leaves you in a standard pattern is a 90 deg turn.
So with that said, I often find myself doing 90s if I'm in a bit of traffic in the pattern, assuming its not so heavy as to require a standard non-swoop approach.
So firstly you have to decide what is the proper approach for the DZ you're jumping at and what is "socially accepted" at the DZ as well. Does that make sense?
There's a reason I like doing hop-n-pops and altitude clear and pulls, it gets me clean airspace to do exactly what I want where I want for the landing area. Obviously that's basically the only safe option if wanting to land in a direction other then the set direction for landing at the DZ.
Luckily at my DZ the normal Caravan load lets me pick my spot in the airspace (be it first down or in between groups) and get enough seperation to do a 270. Not always but usually.
Obviously the best thing to learn and comply with is that you don't *always* have to swoop. Its not worth your safety and the safety of those around you to rip an approach to swoop when you could cause serious injury or death due to traffic for whatever reason. Sure its really damned annoying to have someone loading their 190 at 1.0:1 spiral HARD after opening and clog the landing pattern, but that doesn't mean you get to disregard that jumper's safety and do your approach.
Anyways, sorry for the long reply, the info you probably wanted is at the top, hopefully someone else will read this and take something from it.
I did about 800 180 degree turns before I went any higher and probably 400 90s before that. 180s are my fail-safe. If done correctly you can get a lot of power, but its easy to do the turn to fast and not get much speed at all. 270s seem to be the prefered by the experienced pilots I know including myself. Just remember that a well executed 90 degree is just as effective as a bad 270, with way fewer things to process. Get good at lesser degree turns before worrying about higher degree ones.
I have a lot of respect for Brian Germaine, but just because somebody says they prefer something, doesn't mean thats its always right for everyone. Tagle set one of the distance records using some crazy 675 degree turn or something like that. On the other hand, Moledski set the current record with a 270.
(This post was edited by Cacophony on Dec 19, 2005, 5:03 PM)
Each type of turn is a trick. Each trick is a toy in my toybox of tricks deliverable on any skydive. Given that the variables such as clear airspace, comfortable with landing area,time and space allow them. For a turn to become a trick it must be tried and true and comfortable to perform. Try 90's enough, it becomes comfortable and then becomes a trick. Landing a straight in appraoch using double front risers to gain speed and descent, letting off fronts then applying the brakes to plane out bleed off airspeed and the final shutdown, should also be a 'trick' in your toybox prior to going for higher speed landings. Nevertheless, I like combo's. A combo is more than one event(turn) to gain speed along with setting up for the final throw.
Wow! You really need to get that straightened out! YOU are responsible for ending up behind them and should never even start a turn if you don't have clear airspace to do so. If you are coming from above and behind someone, you have made a HUGE mistake!
(This post was edited by ccowden on Dec 21, 2005, 8:08 AM)