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Stilleto as a Student Canopy

 

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Poll: Stilleto as a Student Canopy
A lightly loaded stiletto is acceptable 32 / 7%
A 1:1 loaded stiletto is acceptable 13 / 3%
A stiletto is NEVER an acceptable student canopy 387 / 90%
432 total votes
 
jumpnaked69  (D License)

Jun 9, 2006, 1:06 AM
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     Stilleto as a Student Canopy  

I recently demo'd a Stiletto 150 and began to consider the rumored Skydive Chicago policy (past, i believe) of putting students on lightly loaded Stilettos.

A friend of mine who learned to skydive at SDC was apparently flying a stiletto97 by the time he finished his license and when he moved to the Colorado area up-sized to a larger canopy (most would call this a very smart choice). Now I'm not asking to debate whether this actually happened at Skydive Chicago but I'd like to discuss it here as an option in itself. As an AFF-I I think the question of student canopy choice is really important and probably not given the proper attention. I've seen AFF-Is put students on the same oversized canopy several times in a row because that was the only thing available and I've seen very little time spent on canopy training and flight as part of an AFF dive flow because the free-fall instruction is often thought to be the most important part of the skydive.

So, here's the question--at a dropzone using an AFP-style program where the student will do 2-3 tandems and then 15-18 jumps with at least 1 instructor, what do you other instructors think about using a Stiletto (loaded at about .75-.85:1) as the student's canopy? The benefits, as far as I can tell, include nearly-instant openings, amazing flare power, great ability to get back from a long spot and it will recover almost immediately from a dive, turn, or harness-turn. The obvious downsides include the potential to spin-up and the incredible responsiveness during openings and flight. If you were spreading out freefall instruction over those 20 or so jumps, wouldnt that give you some more "time" to teach your student more about canopy flight and allow them to be super-current on emergency procedures and the importance of body position during deployment? Yes, I realize that any instructor SHOULD have infinite time to teach their student about EPs, body position, and canopy flight but we might as well discuss this in the real world where a first jump course is only so long and prep before each of the AFF levels is 20-30 minutes at best.

What about the transition training needed for someone who begins flying a stiletto very early in their career? Would they be more conservative and heads-up about canopy flight? That same friend described his speculative take on the late Roger Nelson's philosophy--give a 14 year old a Toyota Camry and they'll wreck it. Give the same kid a Ferrari and there wont be a scratch because he'll be too scared and tentative to do anything wild with it. (Now again I'm not sure if Roger Nelson really felt this way, I'd just like to discuss how this sits with the other instructors out there.)

Thanks for voting and posting.

Blue skies...
Alan


(This post was edited by jumpnaked69 on Jun 9, 2006, 1:14 AM)


feuergnom  (D License)

Jun 9, 2006, 4:11 AM
Post #2 of 397 (8162 views)
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     Re: [jumpnaked69] Stilleto as a Student Canopy [In reply to]  

ok i'm no AFF-I, but i coach a lot.

my take on this: there are plenty of other canopies out there suited way better for students. the place i jump at has pilots in various sizes (from 188 down to 150) for students and upjumpers wanting to get some sort of downsizing. rule is: you want to jump a smaller canopy - you show us you can do consistent stand up landings, then you get the smaller animals. as for giving a student a stiletto - no f**** way!

btw: initially they start out with other canopies in the range of 240 - 230


justinb138  (B 28762)

Jun 9, 2006, 6:44 AM
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     Re: [jumpnaked69] Stilleto as a Student Canopy [In reply to]  

In reply to:
I recently demo'd a Stiletto 150 and began to consider the rumored Skydive Chicago policy (past, i believe) of putting students on lightly loaded Stilettos.

Are you sure you're not confusing Stilettos for Sabre2's?


Thanatos340  (B 27588)

Jun 9, 2006, 6:53 AM
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     Re: [jumpnaked69] Stilleto as a Student Canopy [In reply to]  

I have always heard that the Stiletto is a Fully elliptical entry level High Performance Canopy that is known for Spinning up on deployment (spinetto) if you deploy with less than perfect body position.

Putting a Low time jumper on this canopy seems to me like a pretty bad idea.

Much more suitable Semi-Elliptical Canopies out there such as the Sabre2, Pilot, Safire and others that have some of the characteristics without as much risk.


DJL  (D License)

Jun 9, 2006, 7:26 AM
Post #5 of 397 (8099 views)
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     Re: [jumpnaked69] Stilleto as a Student Canopy [In reply to]  

Quote:
The benefits, as far as I can tell, include nearly-instant openings, amazing flare power, great ability to get back from a long spot and it will recover almost immediately from a dive, turn, or harness-turn.

Seems like a solution to a problem that doesn't exist. Yes, I've seen students land in trees but it was a result of shitty spotting. As for better performance on landing...fuckers should expect to PLF anyway.


Premier SkymonkeyONE  (D 12501)

Jun 9, 2006, 7:38 AM
Post #6 of 397 (8088 views)
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     Re: [jumpnaked69] Stilleto as a Student Canopy [In reply to]  

Quote:
A friend of mine who learned to skydive at SDC was apparently flying a stiletto97 by the time he finished his license

No way in the world. Either you heard wrong or your friend told you wrong.

No, a Stilletto is not a suitable student canopy. Not under any circumstances/wingload.

Chuck


jumpnaked69  (D License)

Jun 9, 2006, 8:12 AM
Post #7 of 397 (8072 views)
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     Re: [DJL] Stilleto as a Student Canopy [In reply to]  

OK it seems like we are missing the point here. I will totally accept that my friend was NOT flying a Stiletto 97 when he got his license. And no matter how you cut it, that would have been insane by normal standards.

Yes, Justinb138, I am quite sure I know the difference between a Sabre2 and a stiletto. Thanks, anyway.

Feuergnom has a good point. Why not a Pilot? It's still somewhat elliptical and they can get some good performance out of them, right? I've never flown a Pilot but I can tell you that a crossfire2 149 can catch up to and pass a Pilot210 and that the Stiletto 150 could almost certainly outglide that Crossfire2. Are some of the student landing problems perhaps the result of poor flare power from a Manta, Navigator, Skymaster, whatever.

Thanatos, you point out that need for very good body position on deployment--well, why is that a BAD thing to emphasize? Spinning up on deployment? (Just to challenge this very common myth, Craig Girard of Airspeed and I were talking about the "Spinetto" and he said to forget about the spin ups--he had 12,000-13,000 jumps on Stilettos and only one cutaway. So, it CAN be done...with the emphasis on good body position and some well-trained EPs). So what if a stiletto (again, typically if you load a canopy a little less the tendency to spin up will be decreased, right?) will spin up? If you are using an instructional program that allows lots of time to emphasize canopy skills, body position, and EPs (instead of barrel rolls on jumps 5-7), then why exactly is it a bad choice for a student canopy?

DJL, you call these solutions to a problem that does not exist. At my dropzone, and I imagine at many others as well, the students are dropped a good ways from the landing area and under less than helpful wind conditions they sometimes are on final approach all the way back (never flying a pattern) and even then sometimes do not make it back. The stilletto wont help them NOT land in a tree (only common sense can do this) but it WILL help them alleviate some of the get-home-itis that frequently results in hazardous off-dz landings. I can absolutely guarantee that the stiletto has a lot more flare power than the Manta, Navigator, or Skymaster--and even the Sabres, Spectres, Pilots, and Safires. Why should "the fuckers" (I'm not sure why they have to be fuckers, since they're the future of skydiving...) expect to PLF instead of learning to stand up a landing? Where do most injuries in skydiving come from? LANDINGS! To include poorly-executed PLFs that were attempted to respond to a poor flare from the canopy.

Thus far no one has addressed the fact that the Stiletto will recover from any kind of diving turn almost immediately and the impact that this could have on Student injury rates. A large student canopy will not recover on its own from a diving turn very quickly and there is a much larger period of time that it will take for the pilot to be able to control what the canopy is doing. In a stiletto with a little bit of toggle pressure you can accelerate the recovery of the canopy. A low turn on a stiletto? 10:1 odds that the canopy will at least be planed out before the student hits unless we're talking extraordinarily low in which case the results are going to be the same for the large student canopy or the considerably smaller stiletto. And if they are making lower turns to the ground? Give them proper instruction and caution them agaianst attempting high performance landings if that is their intent.

Also no one has addressed that the canopy will open IMMEDIATELY almost all of the time. As a student they're going to be pulling at slightly higher altitudes so the ability to execute EPs is not diminished. However, if they pull lower than expected then the fast opening will still benefit them. Personally, I'd prefer a slower opening for my jumps, but we're talking about students.

So, while I will probably agree that the line of Sabres, Pilots, Spectres, and maybe even Safires out there will make good student canopies (all with their own problems, mind you), why not the stiletto?

thanks again
alan


Premier PhreeZone  (D License)
Moderator
Jun 9, 2006, 8:40 AM
Post #8 of 397 (8042 views)
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     Re: [jumpnaked69] Stilleto as a Student Canopy [In reply to]  

The Stiletto does not have an instant recovery from a turn, Depending on the turn it can actually have a decent arc. Stilettos are not an answer to your precieved issue, if students are having get home itis then you as an instructor need to spot better or get a go around. If you are able to have the student pull at 4, take it down to 3 yourself and still land on the DZ, then there is no reason a student under a much lighter loaded canopy can not make it back. Over all the Stiletto isa very poor choice for a student canopy, on the other hand the Semi-elliptical class of canopies like Sabre2, Pilot, Safire2, Lotus all are great choices when properly loaded and with correct canopy instruction.

Using your eariler car analogy if some one is scared of their gear is that the mind set you want to give your students? If you do anything under canopy you will die so don't do anything at all?


OnYourBack  (D 25190)

Jun 9, 2006, 8:41 AM
Post #9 of 397 (8042 views)
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     Re: [jumpnaked69] Stilleto as a Student Canopy [In reply to]  

I come from a dz where Stilettos are very popular among the up jumpers. It seems to us that most of the "spinetto" incidents requiring cut away seem to come from old line sets and subterminal openings. I have also heard that SDC used Stilettos for students but haven't seen it myself.

I love Stilettos on women Wink


justinb138  (B 28762)

Jun 9, 2006, 8:47 AM
Post #10 of 397 (8038 views)
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     Re: [jumpnaked69] Stilleto as a Student Canopy [In reply to]  

In reply to:
At my dropzone, and I imagine at many others as well, the students are dropped a good ways from the landing area and under less than helpful wind conditions they sometimes are on final approach all the way back (never flying a pattern) and even then sometimes do not make it back.

Give them a better spot. Why would a stiletto help in this situation?

In reply to:
The stilletto wont help them NOT land in a tree (only common sense can do this) but it WILL help them alleviate some of the get-home-itis that frequently results in hazardous off-dz landings.

It will make it easier to turn themselves into the grouind in a panic turn.

How will it help alleviate get-home-itis better than a Navigator or Sabre2?

In reply to:
I can absolutely guarantee that the stiletto has a lot more flare power than the Manta, Navigator, or Skymaster--and even the Sabres, Spectres, Pilots, and Safires.

Have you flown both a similar wingloadings to know that? Navigators have decent flare power, and Sabre2's have a very nice flare.

In reply to:
Why should "the fuckers" (I'm not sure why they have to be fuckers, since they're the future of skydiving...) expect to PLF instead of learning to stand up a landing?

Because if you flare at 15ft and try to stand it up you break your legs.

In reply to:
Where do most injuries in skydiving come from? LANDINGS! To include poorly-executed PLFs that were attempted to respond to a poor flare from the canopy.

Most student injuries I see come from flaring too high, how is a Stiletto going to help?

In reply to:
Thus far no one has addressed the fact that the Stiletto will recover from any kind of diving turn almost immediately and the impact that this could have on Student injury rates. A large student canopy will not recover on its own from a diving turn very quickly and there is a much larger period of time that it will take for the pilot to be able to control what the canopy is doing. In a stiletto with a little bit of toggle pressure you can accelerate the recovery of the canopy. A low turn on a stiletto? 10:1 odds that the canopy will at least be planed out before the student hits unless we're talking extraordinarily low in which case the results are going to be the same for the large student canopy or the considerably smaller stiletto. And if they are making lower turns to the ground? Give them proper instruction and caution them agaianst attempting high performance landings if that is their intent.

Have you flown a Navigator recently? They have a rediculously short recovery arc.

In reply to:
Also no one has addressed that the canopy will open IMMEDIATELY almost all of the time. As a student they're going to be pulling at slightly higher altitudes so the ability to execute EPs is not diminished. However, if they pull lower than expected then the fast opening will still benefit them. Personally, I'd prefer a slower opening for my jumps, but we're talking about students.

Navigators can open pretty quick if you don't roll the nose.

In reply to:
So, while I will probably agree that the line of Sabres, Pilots, Spectres, and maybe even Safires out there will make good student canopies (all with their own problems, mind you), why not the stiletto?

Hmm.
It's more sensitive to body position than a Navigator.
It turns faster than a Navigator.
It'll dive more than a navigator.
It's less forgiving of an imperfect flare than a navigator.
It'll stall easier than a navigator.
It's not a student canopy.
PD says so.

I'm nowhere near being an instructor, but the thought of it seems kinda silly.


jumpnaked69  (D License)

Jun 9, 2006, 9:21 AM
Post #11 of 397 (8012 views)
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     Re: [justinb138] Stilleto as a Student Canopy [In reply to]  

A stiletto will help because it covers tremendous ground in full flight. It is trimmed, according to PD since you hold their word so highly, much flatter than almost any other canopy out there and as a result, by applying the principles of aerodynamics, will cover more ground. Therefore, the student will get back easier. And, since you're nowhere near being an instructor like you mentioned, you probably havent been faced with the problem of getting out too early as a Coach doing a 2way or as an AFF-I getting out fairly late. Dropzones, no matter how benevolent they are, simply cannot afford in time and money to give go-arounds for 75% of the loads carrying mostly students.

Again, I think many of your responses and those of Phreezone as well are ignoring the stipulation that using Stilettos as a student canopy only in a program where canopy skills are highly emphasized and well-developed leading up to an A-license where a jumper will then be able to make their own canopy choice decisions.

Turn themselves into the ground in a panic? Isnt this possible with any canopy? A student could even use harness turns to fly their pattern with a stiletto! Again, this is extremely dependent on instruction. I'd also like to suggest that many instructors forget what it is like to fly some of those large canopies and therefore provide less effective instruction. The power of an elliptical nine cell and the power of a 7-cell boat are considerably different and they should be flown differently.

If a student pulls at 4 and I pull at 3 and I can back flying directly into the wind some of that will have to do with the fact that I can cut through the wind because my canopy will have a high forward speed. Think about the Velos and VXs at your DZ that can land in 20+ winds but the student canopies that fly backwards.

Justinb138, have YOU flown a stiletto in your 116 jumps to get a feel for what I'm suggesting? I would not have even considered this until actually flying one. I am NOT saying that I'm convinced but it seems that people are so attached to a dogmatic response that they refuse to consider why a choice has been made in the past and good reasons to change it.

If you flare at 15 ft with a Skymaster you might break your legs, too. The much more powerful flare of the Stiletto is probably MORE likely to set them on their feet gently instead of a mis-managed Manta flare. Try it out.... Keep in mind that ANY canopy can be landed with a straight-in approach and that those with excessive forward speeds (Stilettos, Katanas, Velos, VXs, etc) are landable because their flare is so powerful and bleeds off that speed so well.

You write: It's more sensitive to body position than a Navigator.
It turns faster than a Navigator.
It'll dive more than a navigator.
It's less forgiving of an imperfect flare than a navigator.
It'll stall easier than a navigator.
It's not a student canopy.
PD says so.

I think we've established that being sensitive to body position is not a bad thing.
Faster turns and a more aggressive dive will require more canopy instruction, this is true.
Not sure what the stall has to do with any of this except the flare power and I think its clear which canopy will result in a better flare. An imperfect flare meaning...? If a student flies at half breaks on final on a Manta and a Stiletto the Stiletto is much more likely to result in a stand up landing because it still has more flare power. Why isnt it a student canopy? Maybe we've been making student canopies as a result of the instructional programs out there. This doesnt mean that we should dog canopies that are not "student canopies" if we treat them as big boy toys.... Oh, and PD says so is probably a terrible reason--while they are my absolute favorite skydiving company and I love their products and their professional ethics, take a look at the wingloading recommendations on their canopies--do you subscribe to them? Are you loading your canopy very lightly in accordance with PD recommendations?

Maybe a student shouldnt be taught to be scared under canopy but that tends to be the result anyway! And those that are NOT scared in the beginning probably end up with casts and bandaids. But I'm not sure why we would teach students that a Skymaster is safe and very forgiving but a Stiletto is instant-death. Again, I am not convinced myself that we should use Stilettos as a student canopy, only considering.

Are there any seasoned instructors out there willing to chime in? Come on Brad and Derek....


Alan


chopchop  (D 25001)

Jun 9, 2006, 9:33 AM
Post #12 of 397 (7994 views)
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     Re: [jumpnaked69] Stilleto as a Student Canopy [In reply to]  

To me, just the sensitivity issue is enough. I have watched enough of my students stab the flare, flare unevenly and reach for the ground to know that I don't want them flying any canopy with the kind of sensitivity that means if they flare unevenly, try to adjust to miss something or get turned into the wind at the last second, it will turn them hard into the ground.

Obviously, openings are another issue. On Cat A and Cat B and usually on Cat C, we are holding onto their harnesses when they pull, until they are pulled away from us.. If their body position isn't enough, us giving them a little spin can't make matters any better..

Don't get me wrong, the Stiletto is a wonderful parachute.. for experienced jumpers.

I'll leave the students on wings that are alot more forgiving.

One final note.. Let's not forget Paul Cousins

Frown


(This post was edited by chopchop on Jun 9, 2006, 9:37 AM)


DJL  (D License)

Jun 9, 2006, 9:51 AM
Post #13 of 397 (7979 views)
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     Re: [jumpnaked69] Stilleto as a Student Canopy [In reply to]  

Quote:
Why should "the fuckers" (I'm not sure why they have to be fuckers, since they're the future of skydiving...) expect to PLF instead of learning to stand up a landing? Where do most injuries in skydiving come from?

I'll reply in song (B-sharp, CLICK ON ATTACHEMENT FOR THE MUSIC):

Intro If attachement doesn't work then download the "Greatest Love" wav file here.

I believe the fuckers are our future
Give them Mantas and let them learn the hard way
Show how to PLF or land it right...
Give them a sense of pride In judging their landing.
Let the fucker's bruises remind us of how it used to be.
Everybody's searching for a student canopy
that will do better than get the fuckers to the ground.
I never found one to really fullfill their needs
It's a lonely place to be,
hanging from the top of a tree

[Chorus]
But I decided long ago,
the fuckers are gonna do dumb stuff anyway.
And if they fail, if they succeed, at least it's under a docile canopy.
No matter how much beer they buy for me
they'll still be on the next load with dignity.
(And I'll just let Whitney take it from here)
Because the greatest love of all
Is happening to me
I found the greatest love of all
Inside of me
The greatest love of all
Is easy to achieve
Learning to love yourself
It is the greatest love of all

I believe the children are our future
Teach them well and let them lead the way
Show them all the beauty they possess inside
Give them a sense of pride to make it easier
Let the children's laughter remind us how we used to be

[Chorus]

And if by chance, that special place
That you've been dreaming of
Leads you to a lonely place
Find your strength in love


(This post was edited by DJL on Jun 9, 2006, 9:52 AM)
Attachments: Greatest_Love_Of_All_-_Whitney_Houston.mid (34.0 KB)


justinb138  (B 28762)

Jun 9, 2006, 9:59 AM
Post #14 of 397 (7973 views)
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     Re: [jumpnaked69] Stilleto as a Student Canopy [In reply to]  

In reply to:
A stiletto will help because it covers tremendous ground in full flight. It is trimmed, according to PD since you hold their word so highly, much flatter than almost any other canopy out there and as a result, by applying the principles of aerodynamics, will cover more ground. Therefore, the student will get back easier.

A Navigator is a pretty flat gliding canopy, and I've easily made it back from some long spots on them.

If the problem is students not making it back, why not drop them where the can make it back, and fix the real problem?

In reply to:
And, since you're nowhere near being an instructor like you mentioned, you probably havent been faced with the problem of getting out too early as a Coach doing a 2way or as an AFF-I getting out fairly late.

I've been a student and had experience getting out late. Never had any problems making it back under a navigator, silhouette or Sabre 2. I've landed off as a student, and I'm glad I had a Nav instead of a stiletto.

In reply to:
Dropzones, no matter how benevolent they are, simply cannot afford in time and money to give go-arounds for 75% of the loads carrying mostly students.

So how is putting students under HP canopies going to help that? If a student can't make it back to the DZ under a navigator, I doubt they'll make it back under a stiletto.

In reply to:
Turn themselves into the ground in a panic? Isnt this possible with any canopy?

True, but it's alot easier to due with the Stiletto than a Navigator.


In reply to:
A student could even use harness turns to fly their pattern with a stiletto!

Or they could experience spinning line twists because of bad body position on opening. That'd be a great experience for 'em. Crazy

In reply to:
Again, this is extremely dependent on instruction.

Agreed. Any competent instructor I know wouldn't think about putting an average student under a stiletto.

In reply to:
I'd also like to suggest that many instructors forget what it is like to fly some of those large canopies and therefore provide less effective instruction.

So how is a Stiletto going to help that? Why not fix the real problem (inadequate canopy instruction)?

In reply to:
If a student pulls at 4 and I pull at 3 and I can back flying directly into the wind some of that will have to do with the fact that I can cut through the wind because my canopy will have a high forward speed. Think about the Velos and VXs at your DZ that can land in 20+ winds but the student canopies that fly backwards.

So by your reasoning, why not just give 'em a velo? Crazy If the winds are 18+, they shouldn't be in the air.

In reply to:
Justinb138, have YOU flown a stiletto in your 116 jumps to get a feel for what I'm suggesting?

Nope. I've flown all sizes of the Navigators, a few Silhouettes, a few Tri's, and my current Firebolt. I can't think why a stiletto would have made anything better. The Navs I flew worked just fine.

In reply to:
I would not have even considered this until actually flying one. I am NOT saying that I'm convinced but it seems that people are so attached to a dogmatic response that they refuse to consider why a choice has been made in the past and good reasons to change it.

PD made the Navigator for student use. I think they know a little bit more about canopies than both of us.

In reply to:
If you flare at 15 ft with a Skymaster you might break your legs, too. The much more powerful flare of the Stiletto is probably MORE likely to set them on their feet gently instead of a mis-managed Manta flare. Try it out.... Keep in mind that ANY canopy can be landed with a straight-in approach and that those with excessive forward speeds (Stilettos, Katanas, Velos, VXs, etc) are landable because their flare is so powerful and bleeds off that speed so well.

If a student "panic flares" a nav or a manta at 15 ft, it probably won't stall, they'll just sink in and plf. If they flare the hell out of a stiletto, they're going to stall it and break their back, femur, etc..

In reply to:
You write: It's more sensitive to body position than a Navigator.
It turns faster than a Navigator.
It'll dive more than a navigator.
It's less forgiving of an imperfect flare than a navigator.
It'll stall easier than a navigator.
It's not a student canopy.
PD says so.

In reply to:
I think we've established that being sensitive to body position is not a bad thing.

Really? Go jump a Velo and pull with one hip 6 inches lower than the other, then tell me of you still think so.Crazy (Find the freebag first though).

Faster turns and a more aggressive dive will require more canopy instruction, this is true.
Not sure what the stall has to do with any of this except the flare power and I think its clear which canopy will result in a better flare. An imperfect flare meaning...? If a student flies at half breaks on final on a Manta and a Stiletto the Stiletto is much more likely to result in a stand up landing because it still has more flare power. Why isnt it a student canopy? Maybe we've been making student canopies as a result of the instructional programs out there. This doesnt mean that we should dog canopies that are not "student canopies" if we treat them as big boy toys.... Oh, and PD says so is probably a terrible reason--while they are my absolute favorite skydiving company and I love their products and their professional ethics, take a look at the wingloading recommendations on their canopies--do you subscribe to them? Are you loading your canopy very lightly in accordance with PD recommendations?

Maybe a student shouldnt be taught to be scared under canopy but that tends to be the result anyway! And those that are NOT scared in the beginning probably end up with casts and bandaids. But I'm not sure why we would teach students that a Skymaster is safe and very forgiving but a Stiletto is instant-death. Again, I am not convinced myself that we should use Stilettos as a student canopy, only considering.

Are there any seasoned instructors out there willing to chime in? Come on Brad and Derek....


Alan


I'm not going to even respond to the rest... too busy at work today.


(This post was edited by justinb138 on Jun 9, 2006, 10:01 AM)


justinb138  (B 28762)

Jun 9, 2006, 10:19 AM
Post #15 of 397 (7952 views)
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     Re: [jumpnaked69] Stilleto as a Student Canopy [In reply to]  

Here's another reason:

http://www.dropzone.com/...i?post=293649#293649


Premier SkymonkeyONE  (D 12501)

Jun 9, 2006, 10:24 AM
Post #16 of 397 (7951 views)
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     Re: [jumpnaked69] Stilleto as a Student Canopy [In reply to]  

<-------read those numbers first



Quote:
Are there any seasoned instructors out there willing to chime in? Come on Brad and Derek....

Listen. I have been a rated instructor since I was 19 years old (I am now 42). I have seen and taught every type of skydiving instruction available. I have about 1000 AFF dives and countless thousand SL dispatches before that. I am telling you, a Stilletto is not a suitable student parachute.

-First of all, they are not available in sizes larger than 190 square feet, so it would be impossible to accomodate heavier students to your proposed .8 wingload.
-Secondly, the fact that you might be better able to get back from a bad spot than if under a similarly-loaded "other" canopy is of little consequence. Why? Even if they DO get back, they then have to deal with landing this HP canopy. Make no mistake: a Stilletto is a HIGH PERFORMANCE canopy.
-What are you going to do? Detune the canopies so that they are "stall-proof?" The purpose of student canopies is to deliver that young jumper to the ground as safely as possible, even when given the most improper inputs. By far the biggest problem with early students (using any teaching method) is flaring too HIGH. Flare a Stilletto too high and it's going to stall off and you are going to be injured. Flare a Navigator too high (even when supposedly waiting for the radio command to flare) and you have a MUCH better chance of simply settling down and, at worst, doing a PLF.
-Yank a toggle on a Stilletto too close to the ground and you are going to pound in, regardless of wingload. Yes, they recover very quickly compared to other HP mains, but they DO carry a LOT of speed in a turn and it's that speed on impact that will kill you.

-Once again, as someone who has been instructing skydiving for HALF MY LIFETIME, I am going to "chime in" and tell you, unequivocally, that the Stilletto is not a good student canopy. It's too fast, turns much too quickly, and the toggle range is far too short as provided from the factory.

I truly thought you were trolling when you first posted this thread, but I can see by your multiple, lengthy responses that you really do believe this to be practical; it is not.

Sincerely,
Chuck Blue
D-12501
AFF/SL/TM-I, BMCI-4, PRO
Raeford Parachute Center School, NC


DJL  (D License)

Jun 9, 2006, 10:41 AM
Post #17 of 397 (7929 views)
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     Re: [jumpnaked69] Stilleto as a Student Canopy [In reply to]  

By the way, that glide you're harping on will also cause an unexperienced jumper to overshoot a typically small off-field landing area and go into obstacles. Better to be able to drop down into someone's backyard.


OnYourBack  (D 25190)

Jun 9, 2006, 10:47 AM
Post #18 of 397 (7927 views)
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     Re: [jumpnaked69] Stilleto as a Student Canopy [In reply to]  

If it were a choice between a huge Manta and a reasonably loaded Stiletto it might be worth debating. But there are so many middle ground canopies that can address your possible scenarios, why not just pick a Sabre2, Pilot, Navigator, or similar canopy.


Hooknswoop  (D License)

Jun 9, 2006, 11:28 AM
Post #19 of 397 (7902 views)
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     Re: [SkymonkeyONE] Stilleto as a Student Canopy [In reply to]  

I agree with Chuck. For traditional AFF, large canopies are the way to go. For AFP (3 learning tandems first) you can use smaller ZP canopies. Beyond that, it is just too much performance. They won't be able to recover from mistakes or walk away with a hard lesson. They will get hurt. If a student is afraid under canopy, they are in survival mode and cannot learn. Jut like in freefall. As long as they are working things out, I let them recover on their own, as soon as they felt like they were in trouble, they stopped learning and were just trying to survive.

Students don't tend to have great stability during deployment. That is bad for elliptical canopies. They tend to reach during the flare, making an un0even flare worse. They don't have much experience to make good choices under canopy for things like making it back to the DZ, what obstacles to fly over and what obstacles to not fly over, low turns, handling turbulence, etc.

In short, with training tandems, I am a fan of higher performace canopies for student training, within limits. Those limits are quickly reached. A velocity would make a poor student canopy. At the other end of the spectrum, there are down sides to using huge F-111 7-cells. Somewhere between those two extremes lies the perfect middle ground. Personally I find the Sabre2 or Safire2 to be a good compromise. I do not think a Stiletto (or Cobalt) makes a good student canopy.

Quote:
And, since you're nowhere near being an instructor like you mentioned, you probably havent been faced with the problem of getting out too early as a Coach doing a 2way or as an AFF-I getting out fairly late. Dropzones, no matter how benevolent they are, simply cannot afford in time and money to give go-arounds for 75% of the loads carrying mostly students.

If the plane is full of students, the DZ is going to still make a lot of money with a go-around. If you cannot give your student a good spot, you do not exit. Do not short change your student with a poor spot. If the DZ won't give you a go-aound if you need one for a good spot, ride the plane down. If the DZ has a problem with that, quit. Never, ever put money ahead of your student's safety.

Derek


(This post was edited by Hooknswoop on Jun 9, 2006, 2:07 PM)


Premier SkymonkeyONE  (D 12501)

Jun 9, 2006, 12:43 PM
Post #20 of 397 (7878 views)
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     Re: [Hooknswoop] Stilleto as a Student Canopy [In reply to]  

I thought I would add that we use Navigators in sizes from 200 up to 260 for our AFF training here at Raeford. We also have a few Spectres in larger sizes we use with good results. Navigators are fantastic student mains. We have been using them almost exclusively since 2001. All of our old F-111 rags are now relegated to "packing class only" rigs and are out of service.

Edited to add that I believe a Sabre2 in larger sizes is a suitable main for training. We actually trained a tiny little girl under a Sabre2 150 (Autumn Shults, Arvel's daughter) and she did great.

Chuck


(This post was edited by SkymonkeyONE on Jun 9, 2006, 12:46 PM)


DJL  (D License)

Jun 9, 2006, 1:01 PM
Post #21 of 397 (7865 views)
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     Re: [SkymonkeyONE] Stilleto as a Student Canopy [In reply to]  

Quote:
All of our old F-111 rags are now relegated to "packing class only" rigs and are out of service.

Packing class? Sheit, we just have new jumpers pack our rigs while we stand there with a cold drink and a smile.


jlmiracle  (D License)

Jun 9, 2006, 1:39 PM
Post #22 of 397 (7839 views)
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     Re: [jumpnaked69] Stilleto as a Student Canopy [In reply to]  

Quote:
Are there any seasoned instructors out there willing to chime in? Come on Brad and Derek....

Are you looking for experienced instructors or an instructor to tell you it would be fine, great, dandy to have a student under a spinetto.

I am an instructor (only 5 years) and it would be insane to put a student under a stilletto under any circumstance.

j


Reginald  (D 28162)

Jun 9, 2006, 2:33 PM
Post #23 of 397 (7814 views)
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     Re: [jumpnaked69] Stilleto as a Student Canopy [In reply to]  

In reply to:
If you are using an instructional program that allows lots of time to emphasize canopy skills, body position, and EPs (instead of barrel rolls on jumps 5-7), then why exactly is it a bad choice for a student canopy?

Because student have BAD body position on deployment! You can train them all you want but when it comes down to pull time they torque their body and dip a shoulder. I watch it up close and personal on every AFF jump. My personal opinion is that any elipitical is a bad idea for students; they are just not forgiving of poor body position.


DJL  (D License)

Jun 9, 2006, 3:12 PM
Post #24 of 397 (7806 views)
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     Re: [SkymonkeyONE] Stilleto as a Student Canopy [In reply to]  

Quote:
I truly thought you were trolling when you first posted this thread, but I can see by your multiple, lengthy responses that you really do believe this to be practical; it is not.

I'd say your first instinct was correct, but man, all the effort he put into it kind of defeats the purpose.


jumpnaked69  (D License)

Jun 9, 2006, 4:11 PM
Post #25 of 397 (7785 views)
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     Re: [jlmiracle] Stilleto as a Student Canopy [In reply to]  

No, I was looking for posts like the ones that Chuck and Derek made. And I thank them for it. I needed more reasons than just "It's not a student canopy", I wanted some reasons based on the sensitivity of openings, the speed during the dives, the limitations of even an AFP style program, etc. Now I got those responses! And while the responses from people who have never flown Stilettos, never worked with students, and spend their time writing sarcastic songs are appreciated, I think its posts like the ones from Chuck and Derek that make the issue clearer for everyone. Thanks again for posting...now lets all be friends.


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