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Hard v soft links?

 

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chrisat13000ft  (C 101203)

Feb 24, 2012, 6:27 AM
Post #1 of 38 (2703 views)
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Hard v soft links? Can't Post

Ive just recieven my new canopy (spectre 170) and it has hard links attached to the lines.
Ive not had hard links since using student kit and was just wandering what the pros and cons are or both types of link?

Do i go hard or soft?


Premier skydiverek  (C 41769)

Feb 24, 2012, 7:07 AM
Post #2 of 38 (2646 views)
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Re: [chrisat13000ft] Hard v soft links? [In reply to] Can't Post

First bullet: http://www.dropzone.com/...etail_page.cgi?ID=50


chrisat13000ft  (C 101203)

Feb 24, 2012, 8:23 AM
Post #3 of 38 (2590 views)
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Re: [skydiverek] Hard v soft links? [In reply to] Can't Post

Ah some good info in that article.. Thanks :-)
In reply to:


Coreefdiver  (D 15287)

Feb 24, 2012, 10:19 AM
Post #4 of 38 (2529 views)
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Re: [chrisat13000ft] Hard v soft links? [In reply to] Can't Post

soft = stronger

any other "plus" is icing on the cake ;)


riggerrob  (D 14840)

Feb 25, 2012, 11:17 AM
Post #5 of 38 (2399 views)
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Re: [Coreefdiver] Hard v soft links? [In reply to] Can't Post

softer = your slider grommets will last a lot longer


packing_jarrett  (D License)

Feb 25, 2012, 11:26 AM
Post #6 of 38 (2394 views)
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Re: [Coreefdiver] Hard v soft links? [In reply to] Can't Post

Hard Links pros
Easier and faster to install
Snag resistant
near infinite lifetime
almost idiot proof

Soft Link Facts
Cheaper for the manufacture to make
Have limited jump life
Caused fatalities that would not have been caused by rapide links

Soft Link Selling points
Lower bulk


Pro soft link quotes that make me want to stab my ears out

"they're stronger" ...who cares? hard links are way stronger than they need to be.

"easier and faster to install" - you're high! Lets race!

EDIT: I use soft linksUnimpressed


(This post was edited by packing_jarrett on Feb 25, 2012, 11:27 AM)


sundevil777  (D License)

Feb 25, 2012, 11:57 AM
Post #7 of 38 (2382 views)
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Re: [packing_jarrett] Hard v soft links? [In reply to] Can't Post

In reply to:
Hard Links pros
Easier and faster to install
Snag resistant
near infinite lifetime
almost idiot proof

Hard links are only easier and faster if you don't mark them to allow you to confirm they haven't loosened and don't install link covers and tack them in place.

Hard links are far from idiot proof, as many have overtightened them causing cracked barrels.


(This post was edited by sundevil777 on Feb 25, 2012, 11:57 AM)


airtwardo  (D License)

Feb 25, 2012, 12:14 PM
Post #8 of 38 (2376 views)
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Re: [sundevil777] Hard v soft links? [In reply to] Can't Post

In reply to:
In reply to:
Hard Links pros
Easier and faster to install
Snag resistant
near infinite lifetime
almost idiot proof

Hard links are only easier and faster if you don't mark them to allow you to confirm they haven't loosened and don't install link covers and tack them in place.

Hard links are far from idiot proof, as many have overtightened them causing cracked barrels.

and soft links have been single looped and not tacked...it's all depends on your definition of an idiot. Wink


(This post was edited by airtwardo on Feb 25, 2012, 12:16 PM)


DoZ3r  (D License)

Feb 25, 2012, 12:17 PM
Post #9 of 38 (2372 views)
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Re: [packing_jarrett] Hard v soft links? [In reply to] Can't Post

In reply to:
"easier and faster to install" - you're high! Lets race!

Where is the like buttom? Cool


SStewart  (D 10405)

Feb 25, 2012, 1:12 PM
Post #10 of 38 (2349 views)
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Re: [packing_jarrett] Hard v soft links? [In reply to] Can't Post

In reply to:
Hard Links pros
Easier and faster to install
Snag resistant
near infinite lifetime
almost idiot proof

Soft Link Facts
Cheaper for the manufacture to make
Have limited jump life
Caused fatalities that would not have been caused by rapide links

Soft Link Selling points
Lower bulk


Pro soft link quotes that make me want to stab my ears out

"they're stronger" ...who cares? hard links are way stronger than they need to be.

"easier and faster to install" - you're high! Lets race!

EDIT: I use soft linksUnimpressed

+1
Jarrett pretty much nailed it.

Soft links are stronger when they are new but lose strength over time and use. Rapides remain the same strength over a lifetime. Soft links have broken and caused serious problems, to be fair this could have been avoided by replacing them when they show signs of wear.
Soft links are NOT easier to install, in fact compared to hard links they are kind of a pain in the ass.

I use soft links on reserves because a reserve does not get jumped much if at all so not much chance of wear and tear. Also they are more comfortable on the back.

I still use hard rapide mini links on my mains since they are plenty strong and easier to swap. Also they don't wear out. Wrap them with vet wrap and you won't ding your slider. (I use vet wrap with an upside down witch hat) but just the wrap will work fine if you like to pull the slider over your head.

Don't over tighten the barrel and they are pretty much idiot proof. I catch incorrectly installed soft links all the time, sometimes even on reserves.

Newer is not always better.


RIGGER  (D 7933)

Feb 27, 2012, 12:07 AM
Post #11 of 38 (2208 views)
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Re: [chrisat13000ft] Hard v soft links? [In reply to] Can't Post

Smile Hi

PD SM-1 slinks are far better than the 3.5 oval metal links - the slinks are stronger & safer.

Before replacing to slinks please check the slider grommets for being free of chips / nicks / burr surface from the metal links used.

If your slier gromments are affected replace before using with slinks.

Be sure your SM-1 slimks will be hand tacked as should to the main risers webbing.

Enjoy the SP170 - Be Safe !!!

Cheers


JerryBaumchen  (D 1543)

Feb 27, 2012, 3:50 PM
Post #12 of 38 (2099 views)
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Re: [RIGGER] Hard v soft links? [In reply to] Can't Post

Hi Shlomo,

Quote:
the slinks are stronger & safer.

Some how I doubt that George Galloway of Precision would agree with you.

He, apparently, has tested his Wrap-Its side by side with PD Slinks and finds the Wrap-Its stronger.

And then there is the thing about being strong enough. The soft links ( whatever type ) only have to carry the loads imposed upon them; anything stronger is, in my engineering opinion, a waste of materials.

And since the Wrap-Its do wrap around three times, I am thinking that they just might have better wearing/abrasion properties.

YMMV,

JerryBaumchen


mr2mk1g  (C 103449)

Feb 28, 2012, 10:19 AM
Post #13 of 38 (2011 views)
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Re: [chrisat13000ft] Hard v soft links? [In reply to] Can't Post

There's also the theory about relative failure modes.

The theory goes that a slink (or similar) will fail, if it's going to fail, on opening from the shock load. That's a relatively speaking good time for it to fail as you have time to get your reserve out.

Rapide links may fail on opening shock but leave you with a hook-like bent metal ring which still holds the lines and so passes a control check and is flown down to landing if the jumper doesn't spot the bent/broken link. The theory goes that this may then let go on finals, perhaps when a riser turn is initiated, causing you to enter into an irrecoverable malfunction at a point too low to get a reserve out.

I seem to remember there might have been an example of this some years back which generated the debate on here but that might be beer/time speaking. I therefore put this out there as no more than a theory that some propose unless anyone can point to something.


Premier faulknerwn  (D 17441)
Moderator
Feb 28, 2012, 2:21 PM
Post #14 of 38 (1970 views)
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Re: [mr2mk1g] Hard v soft links? [In reply to] Can't Post

I've heard of links bending but they always held until after landing. Most metal links have slider bumpers as well making it hard for the lines to fall off.

I do remember a fatality a few years back I'm California where a soft link failed in the middle of a swoop killing the skydiver.


RiggerLee

Feb 28, 2012, 4:17 PM
Post #15 of 38 (1935 views)
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Re: [faulknerwn] Hard v soft links? [In reply to] Can't Post

I have seen rapid links fail on at least two ocasions. Eather left open of the barrels cracked. On both ocasions the lines stayed "hooked" on the end of the link till the guy landed then fell off onto the ground. Freaked them out. Should have seen Popes face.

I have also seen a slink fail. For the record it was an old daccron sewn slink and from the remaining three I think I can say that they were not built right. Outer sheath lose. He apparently did not make a habbit of colapsing his slider or pulling it bellow the links. But the point it it let go at 800 ft. As I recall that was the guy who's break lines had never been bartacked at the cascade. Main break lines pulled right out with my fingers. It was his second reserve ride of the boogie when I found it. I think he got really drunk that night.

By the way. We've been doing some destructive testing on some of our components. My home made slinks, 1500 vectran with a ring, two wraps, have been breaking around 4000 lb. These are old slinks that have seen wear and abuse. It's dependent on how you load then and how... neatly they are arranged.

Lee


RIGGER  (D 7933)

Feb 28, 2012, 4:32 PM
Post #16 of 38 (1926 views)
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Re: [JerryBaumchen] Hard v soft links? [In reply to] Can't Post

Smile Hi

Thanks.

I know George Galloway's study & tests.

The PD SM-1 slinks are better then the # 3.5 metal links came on PD mains & sit better in the riser loop.

As always slinks has to be inspected during the packing process & should be repalced at reline time or sooner.

I never saw a PD SM-1 (main) or SR-1 (reserve) failed - not even on hard deployments as reported by the users.


Cheers


DaVinciflies

Feb 28, 2012, 4:53 PM
Post #17 of 38 (1916 views)
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Re: [faulknerwn] Hard v soft links? [In reply to] Can't Post

In reply to:
I do remember a fatality a few years back I'm California where a soft link failed in the middle of a swoop killing the skydiver.

Hadn't that guy put over 2,000 jumps on a set of slinks? If so, a failure of maintenance rather than slink design, I would say.


Premier skydiverek  (C 41769)

Feb 28, 2012, 4:55 PM
Post #18 of 38 (1913 views)
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Re: [DaVinciflies] Hard v soft links? [In reply to] Can't Post

In reply to:
In reply to:
I do remember a fatality a few years back I'm California where a soft link failed in the middle of a swoop killing the skydiver.

Hadn't that guy put over 2,000 jumps on a set of slinks? If so, a failure of maintenance rather than slink design, I would say.

Koji did not die, he was paralyzed. Slinks were estimeted to have 3,000 jumps on them, IIRC.


Born2Late  (Student)

Feb 28, 2012, 5:54 PM
Post #19 of 38 (1892 views)
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Re: [mr2mk1g] Hard v soft links? [In reply to] Can't Post

In reply to:
There's also the theory about relative failure modes.

The theory goes that a slink (or similar) will fail, if it's going to fail, on opening from the shock load. That's a relatively speaking good time for it to fail as you have time to get your reserve out.

Rapide links may fail on opening shock but leave you with a hook-like bent metal ring which still holds the lines and so passes a control check and is flown down to landing if the jumper doesn't spot the bent/broken link. The theory goes that this may then let go on finals, perhaps when a riser turn is initiated, causing you to enter into an irrecoverable malfunction at a point too low to get a reserve out.

I seem to remember there might have been an example of this some years back which generated the debate on here but that might be beer/time speaking. I therefore put this out there as no more than a theory that some propose unless anyone can point to something.

What about the TI who was left paralyzed last year? A riser was inverted (? = twisted around). Usually, those break the little white loop on opening shock. That one held until they were at four hundred feet.


phoenixlpr  (D 3049)

Feb 28, 2012, 10:02 PM
Post #20 of 38 (1861 views)
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Re: [skydiverek] Hard v soft links? [In reply to] Can't Post

In reply to:
In reply to:
In reply to:
I do remember a fatality a few years back I'm California where a soft link failed in the middle of a swoop killing the skydiver.

Hadn't that guy put over 2,000 jumps on a set of slinks? If so, a failure of maintenance rather than slink design, I would say.

Koji did not die, he was paralyzed. Slinks were estimeted to have 3,000 jumps on them, IIRC.

3000? Jumps? Every rigger wants to replace them along the line-set.Crazy


RIGGER  (D 7933)

Feb 29, 2012, 2:46 AM
Post #21 of 38 (1825 views)
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Re: [phoenixlpr] Hard v soft links? [In reply to] Can't Post

Smile Hi

In reply to:

Every rigger wants to replace them along the line-set.

Yes, soft links from any brand must be replaced at reline time
or sooner if needed
- the soft links are exposed to slider impact during deployment which might "eat" the spectra line.

When I reline a main canopy the kit includes: Mfg. line set kit, new soft links (not for Tandem or Student mains) Line Trim chart.

The soft links like any link must be inspected at packing process.

Saving $30 might cost you big time.

Be Safe !!!


(This post was edited by RIGGER on Feb 29, 2012, 3:11 AM)


phoenixlpr  (D 3049)

Feb 29, 2012, 3:06 AM
Post #22 of 38 (1817 views)
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Re: [RIGGER] Hard v soft links? [In reply to] Can't Post

In reply to:
Smile Hi

In reply to:

Every rigger wants to replace them along the line-set.

Yes, soft links from any brand must be replaced at reline time
- the soft links are exposed to slider impact during deployment which might "eat" the spectra line.

When I reline a main canopy the kit includes: Mfg. line set kit, new soft links (not for Tandem or Student mains) Line Trim chart.

The soft links like any link must be inspected at packing process.

Saving $30 might cost you big time.

Be Safe !!!
I don't have any problem to replace them on wear basis.....


Premier skydiverek  (C 41769)

Feb 29, 2012, 8:14 AM
Post #23 of 38 (1762 views)
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Re: [RIGGER] Hard v soft links? [In reply to] Can't Post

In reply to:
When I reline a main canopy the kit includes: Mfg. line set kit, new soft links (not for Tandem or Student mains) Line Trim chart.

Yes, Slinks are not compatibile with Dacron lined Tandem and Student canopies:

http://www.dropzone.com/..._latest_reply;so=ASC

Also, from PD:
"This is one of the reasons we don't recommend Slinks with tandems and
student canopies. Typically those canopies are big with long lines, send
the slider down quickly, and the grommets can cause this type of
situation. There is very little known usage with typical sport gear in
this configuration of Dacron lines and Slinks. I do know of some people
doing this without any issues, but I can certainly understand how it
could happen."


(This post was edited by skydiverek on Feb 29, 2012, 8:17 AM)


BlindBrick  (C 35382)

Feb 29, 2012, 9:16 AM
Post #24 of 38 (1736 views)
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Re: [chrisat13000ft] Hard v soft links? [In reply to] Can't Post

I'm running SR-1's without issue on a 1050 lb Vectran lineset on my main which regularly sees 155 mph+ deployments with no issues. I run Wrap-it's on my reserve because that's what it came with and they have served me just fine on multiple reserve rides.

-Blind


Premier skydiverek  (C 41769)

Feb 29, 2012, 12:53 PM
Post #25 of 38 (1689 views)
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Re: [BlindBrick] Hard v soft links? [In reply to] Can't Post

I recall PD saying that their Reserve Slinks can tak 70G load. Shocked


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