Forums: Skydiving: Instructors:
A good story about student radio not working

 


peek  (D 8884)

Aug 19, 2013, 8:15 AM
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A good story about student radio not working Can't Post

OK, here is a good story that we can learn from.

First jump IAD student, and I was out in the landing area when the instructor was doing some of the canopy control training.

This student sounded nervous about his ability to control the parachute, so he received some extra attention.

PLFs are taught and physically practiced, canopy control training is done well, students do not jump unless winds are low, and the student radios are reliable. (Edited in response to comment: Radios are considered backups and students are off radio in just a few jumps.)

So I volunteered to do the radio, and we of course did a radio check, followed by the student radio being turned off until close to exit time.

The instructor turned on the radio before exit, but somehow it got turned off. The student said something about not remembering if the instructor turned on the radio, so he turned it on, but instead turned it off. (The possibility exists that the student deliberately turned it off, because he was whooping it up under canopy, and that sounds odd for someone claiming to be nervous about canopy control. I don't recall his explanation for why he did not check the radio after not hearing any commands.)

The good news is that with good instruction, the student flew around in the "holding area", did a good pattern and landed within a couple hundred feet of me. He flared a bit high, right before I was going to yell "flair". A decent landing anyway.

Ideas for discussion:

1. Good canopy control training can compensate for problems in other areas.

2. Perhaps student radios should be left on after being tested, but many DZs seem to be concerned about battery charge. New batteries that are charged well should work for many hours, but unless someone takes the time to make a plan for rotating the radios to have the best charged one marked, you never really know.


(This post was edited by peek on Aug 19, 2013, 9:21 AM)


skyjumpenfool  (Student)

Aug 19, 2013, 8:43 AM
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Re: [peek] A good story about student radio not working [In reply to] Can't Post

#1 above!!! Radios are great backupdevices. The primary device is and should be the initial canopy training. Cool


Arvoitus  (D 3917)

Aug 19, 2013, 10:32 AM
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Re: [peek] A good story about student radio not working [In reply to] Can't Post

When I work with students, after the radio is checked/tested with the ground person, the radio is not touched/turned off until the student has landed. Batteries are so cheap that I don't see the point of turning them on/off after doing the radio check.


popsjumper  (D 999999999)

Aug 19, 2013, 4:31 PM
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Re: [peek] A good story about student radio not working [In reply to] Can't Post

Oh..the standard,
Stu: "I didn't hear it.".
AFFI: Funny, I could hear if on the ground.
LaughLaugh


stratostar  (Student)

Aug 21, 2013, 6:09 AM
Post #5 of 18 (5589 views)
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Re: [peek] A good story about student radio not working [In reply to] Can't Post

A FJ student should never hear about a radio until it strapped on them as the radio is checked. That is how I train a FJC, you will learn how to do this solo, period.


popsjumper  (D 999999999)

Aug 22, 2013, 4:31 AM
Post #6 of 18 (5430 views)
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Re: [stratostar] A good story about student radio not working [In reply to] Can't Post

^^]
Agreed, wholeheartedly.


tdog  (D 28800)

Aug 22, 2013, 6:15 AM
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Re: [stratostar] A good story about student radio not working [In reply to] Can't Post

stratostar wrote:
A FJ student should never hear about a radio until it strapped on them as the radio is checked. That is how I train a FJC, you will learn how to do this solo, period.

I prefer to tell them about the radio - but lay down the ground rules, including that it may not work, and they should not talk back unless they are on the ground and we ask them to, etc... And, "if your instructor tells you to turn into a tree, don't. If you wait until you strap the radio on, do you do all that education then?


longtall  (D 7244)

Aug 23, 2013, 6:23 AM
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Re: [skyjumpenfool] A good story about student radio not working [In reply to] Can't Post

BACKUP to be sure;teaching a FJC I mention the backup radio as late in the course as I can,fearing the student will shut out the training to be self reliant and hope to rely on the radios. At our DZ the radios remain on untill landing.


wicodefly  (B License)

Aug 23, 2013, 9:43 AM
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Re: [longtall] A good story about student radio not working [In reply to] Can't Post

Glad he made it don safely!

From this student's perspective I've been happy to have a radio (one way) during the first few landings. But they make it clear it is a backup device. At our DZ the instructor only talks to you if they think they need to after a few landings.

Radio checks are done when the radio is strapped on and it's left on.

One thing I will say is that the instrucor's tone of voice makes a big difference for me. I've had a couple where their voice has gone up quite a bit saying Flare or PLF. Certainly helpful and helped me land safely. But a little unnerving. I prefer a calm voice :).


stratostar  (Student)

Aug 23, 2013, 9:36 PM
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Re: [tdog] A good story about student radio not working [In reply to] Can't Post

They still get all that info but not while I'm teaching canopy control and off landings and the like. I want them focused and learning WTF to do on their own up there and not blowing it off because in the back of their mind Joe is going to be talking them down. They get the speech while it's getting put on and checked along with a review of landing off as well as landing pattern on dz.


joelgibson  (A 70628)

Aug 29, 2013, 7:06 PM
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Re: [peek] A good story about student radio not working [In reply to] Can't Post

As a student with 15 jumps. I have 12 landings(i did 3 tandems). 7 of the landings were complete boffos, all with radio support. 5 have been on my feet and close to the target(no radio or with very little radio help). Learn how your students learn and adapt. Over the top coaching(during the event) negatively affects me. Good coaching (prior to the event) is perfect. It's all about the method of learning.


(This post was edited by joelgibson on Aug 29, 2013, 7:07 PM)


potatoman  (Student)

Aug 29, 2013, 11:45 PM
Post #12 of 18 (4386 views)
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Re: [peek] A good story about student radio not working [In reply to] Can't Post

I vote for no radios....

Skydiving is non power, so you cannot abort a landing, and try again. From jump 1, the student should be able to manage. The canopies are slow enough, and generally, the landing areas big enough too.


councilman24  (D 8631)

Sep 8, 2013, 6:12 PM
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Re: [peek] A good story about student radio not working [In reply to] Can't Post

Unlike the one we had many years ago.

Taught all control, not told about radio until end of training, DZO didn't use radios for some years. Radio didn't work and the woman didn't make a single turn from opening until crashing into the wires and getting burned.Unsure


WILDBILLAQR  (D 29042)

Sep 23, 2013, 9:51 AM
Post #14 of 18 (3183 views)
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Re: [stratostar] A good story about student radio not working [In reply to] Can't Post

Funny thing, radios normally work fine until about 50ft. Then not at all until just after landing!Crazy


rickjump1  (C 1323)

Oct 2, 2013, 9:08 PM
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Re: [potatoman] A good story about student radio not working [In reply to] Can't Post

potatoman wrote:
I vote for no radios....

Skydiving is non power, so you cannot abort a landing, and try again. From jump 1, the student should be able to manage. The canopies are slow enough, and generally, the landing areas big enough too.
Back in 1961 at Zephyrhills, still in high school, I remember being told to face the wind after opening and check for drift. The T-slot had no drive, so I drifted backwards out over a golf course and yelled at a couple of golfers to look out, but they never looked up. Things went well with a sorry plf, but they gave me a ride back to the packing area with their golf cart.


potatoman  (Student)

Oct 3, 2013, 2:03 AM
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Re: [rickjump1] A good story about student radio not working [In reply to] Can't Post

Sounds like me, also still in school, just that I landed in a graveyard on a sunday morning....Pirate


davelepka  (D 21448)

Oct 3, 2013, 5:39 AM
Post #17 of 18 (2018 views)
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Re: [potatoman] A good story about student radio not working [In reply to] Can't Post

Quote:
Skydiving is non power, so you cannot abort a landing, and try again. From jump 1, the student should be able to manage. The canopies are slow enough, and generally, the landing areas big enough too.

'Should' is a big word in that sentence. A lot things should work one way or the other, but we both know that skydives don't always go to plan. We also know that people react differently to the environment and stress of making a skydive, and sometimes it's not by making rational, good decisions.

For these reasons, you put a radio on your students. You plan for the radio to fail, and you train them as if the radio did not exist, but you still use the radio and treat it like the valuable tool it is.

Being able to have real-time contact with a student under canopy, and able to add your knowledge, experience and perspective on their situation can easily make the difference between a 'good' canopy ride with some learning points you can make in the debrief, and a 'bad' canopy ride with some learning points the student learns the hard way.


potatoman  (Student)

Oct 3, 2013, 6:51 AM
Post #18 of 18 (1989 views)
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Re: [davelepka] A good story about student radio not working [In reply to] Can't Post

Agreed, but sometimes it is only the hard way that works.

(and breaks)



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