Forums: Skydiving Disciplines: Wing Suit Flying:
big suits, little plane?

 


Jbag  (D License)

Nov 30, 2013, 6:25 PM
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big suits, little plane? Can't Post

Any noticeable fabric management difficulties when exiting something like a 152 in an aura/apache/etc?


lurch  (D 27583)

Dec 1, 2013, 1:09 AM
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Re: [Jbag] big suits, little plane? [In reply to] Can't Post

Depends on the weight of the wingsuit pilot and which aircraft.
Jumping an S-bird from a PAC 750 in Germany was scary but doable. I wrapped my wings about me tightly, balled up in a crouch and hopped out sideways.

Recently jumped what I'm pretty sure was a base model Cessna Caravan at Spot's place in Elsinore. I'd never seen or jumped one before... just the Grand version. The itty bitty one was the cutest little plane. But this time I was in an Apache XRW and I hadn't launched it from anything smaller than an Otter yet.

I watched the others exit and noticed a bunch of em would sit on the floor facing backwards and roll out. I was last out, and being fairly experienced, started to set up for the same exit I'd used in the PAC. The seated exit looked studentish and undignified.

Then I hesitated, took a good long look at that tail, first over my left shoulder, poised for exit, then turned and looked at it harder... and thought it through.

The exit I'd just seen was slow and clunky, but it had one thing going for it... it was SAFE. Spot wasn't even in the plane but I recognized his handiwork immediately.
My older small plane-close tail exit style had been just barely adequate in a smaller suit. The tail is CLOSE on that caravan.
And I was in a much... MUCH bigger suit this time... which I've launched from balloons, otters, helis, CASAs, Skyvans... basically everything BUT a very small plane.

I know an ego trap when I see one. I sat my ass down facing backward and rolled out like they did. Worked fine. When in Rome...

Especially if you're light, take NO chances. The maximum suits can get an amazing amount of loft off surprisingly little airspeed.
As it is, the rollout exit felt like falling facefirst onto a mattress 3 feet below the doorframe. The megasuit starts flying -immediately- with NO significant drop.

To exit a 152 or similar I'd suggest sitting in the door, planting your feet on the step, hands up in front of you, elbows pressed to ribcage in front of your belly, go for the strut just for support, and allow yourself to topple out off the step at 90 degrees to line of flight while still all hunched up mostly in a ball.

Its clumsy as hell but it'll get you clear of the aircraft. It's what I'd do. You can learn to make it look good, later. I'd start off with a technique 100% designed around surviving it and nevermind how pretty of an exit it ain't. Launching a suit that big from a plane that small is a rather sketchy proposition no matter how it is done but if that's the only plane you got, that's the only way I can think of to be absolutely sure of a clean exit. Biggest suit/smallest plane, with a close, low tail and a step preventing a rollout, is the most unforgiving possible combination available. You just don't have a helluva lot of options, here.

By far the most important part is keeping your elbows tight against your ribs. If you allow anything like your full wingspan to open, you're screwed and you probably took the pilot with you. The way I just described is how I always exited a small Cessna with my S-Bird. I've seen people do strut-hang exits but their suits were smaller and they were heavier.

If you're flying one of these megasuits you can sort out heading and orientation AFTER exit without losing more than a few feet of altitude.
-B


(This post was edited by lurch on Dec 1, 2013, 1:13 AM)


shveddy  (D 30995)

Dec 1, 2013, 4:56 AM
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Re: [lurch] big suits, little plane? [In reply to] Can't Post

lurch wrote:
Recently jumped what I'm pretty sure was a base model Cessna Caravan at Spot's place in Elsinore. I'd never seen or jumped one before... just the Grand version. The itty bitty one was the cutest little plane. But this time I was in an Apache XRW and I hadn't launched it from anything smaller than an Otter yet.

Spoiled turbine brat ;)


maxtreme  (D 3067)

Dec 1, 2013, 9:14 AM
Post #4 of 8 (1449 views)
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Re: [shveddy] big suits, little plane? [In reply to] Can't Post

Cessna 182 rodeo exits with tony's XS
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5AgMDQOpSB4
Cool

last summer i did jump with X2 from ikarus 42 microlight airplane
with no problem, just my wings closed on exit
Crazy


(This post was edited by maxtreme on Dec 1, 2013, 9:21 AM)


lurch  (D 27583)

Dec 1, 2013, 9:27 AM
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Re: [shveddy] big suits, little plane? [In reply to] Can't Post

I'd plead guilty, but what about the balloon? That thing didn't even have an engine, nevermind a turbine... It was a giant ball of nylon and air powered by a FLAMETHROWER...
Smile
For anyone else reading my post above by the way...
The reason I detailed it as a narrative is because I wanted the train of thought laid out.
If you're flying a megasuit a lot you're likely to be encountering a lot of circumstances like these where there may be no specific established way of doing things for that combo of suit, gear, plane, etc.

So it is up to the pilot to think it through very, very carefully. Consider all the physics before trying something. Probable airspeed, possible complications, consequences of getting it wrong, etc.

Observe and take hints from the locals- but be willing to make your own decisions as well. For instance, if I had been present for the famous Miami Tailstrike Contest, I would NOT have exited like those guys did. I'd have used my own technique.

But watching the locals do their thing from the baby Caravan, different story. I recognized immediately that Spot must have trained those guys to do it that way when launching from that plane as a safety measure, and as a method of tailstrike prevention it was damned effective and nearly impossible to screw up.
I'd actually never seen people exit that way before, and although I instinctively didn't really like it because it looked awkward, like and dislike should have nothing to do with such a decision. There is only correct and incorrect, and for a megasuit in a tiny plane especially, that was by far the most correct way to do it, so I did it that way.
-B


shveddy  (D 30995)

Dec 1, 2013, 10:43 AM
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Re: [lurch] big suits, little plane? [In reply to] Can't Post

Flamthrower in a nylon ball is awesome, but it's still no 45 minute ride in narrow body 182 with four jumpers crammed on the floor. Very cosy and there is plenty of time to nap.

On a serious note though - I haven't flown any megasuits so this comes from someone with phantom type experience, but on one of my exits I remember purposely going head-low in relation to the relative wind so that my back caught the air and it seemed to push me down and away from the plane with a decent amount of force (I was much lower than the other guys on the load immediately after exit). This was out of a 182.

I guess there is a risk of over rotating and presenting too much drag, but if you have some experience with head down exits it shouldn't be much different and you can probably present less drag than a belly flyer.

I'm not saying you should go out with your wings spread - do the exit the same, just try to go head low a little bit for maybe a bit more margin.

So how reckless is that idea?


lurch  (D 27583)

Dec 1, 2013, 12:34 PM
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Re: [shveddy] big suits, little plane? [In reply to] Can't Post

Not reckless. Shows you put some thought into it.
I recently tried backflying the exit in my Apache out of an Otter.
I thought through possible variations and had a plan for what to do if it didn't go exactly as expected.
As it happened, it didn't. I kept my armwings shut, but due to the fumbling unfamiliarity with launching a suit that big backwards, failed to keep my elbows tight. Even releasing that much wing was too much, and for a second the tail of the Otter was starting to get closer than I liked. I snap-bailed on "flying" the exit and arched over backwards away from it into a headdown which turned into a neat little gainer. Same move you just described but upside down and backwards. Whole thing was over in less than 2 seconds.

Never actually got anywhere near the tail, just close-ER than I thought I'd be, and safely learned from the experiment. Mostly learned that its very easy to screw up a backfly exit in a big suit and there is a LOT less margin for error than you'd expect.

You gotta leave room for being wrong.

When I try a move like that, (canopy buzzjob, novel exit, whatever) I leave triple the margin for error that I think I'll need, that way when I end up USING that margin I'm still far from an incident. In this case, I expected to just drop away, instead I lofted back along the side of the plane without losing any altitude. If I'd truly stayed balled up, I'd have been at or under the base 100% margin. As it turned out, the result I got just from being sloppy with my elbows consumed more like 150% of a 300% margin. Using even that much of it startled me, but I had a preplanned snap reaction ready for that, and I used it. The instant the tail did -not- recede as expected, I pulled the trigger on the bail move.

If I hadn't thought it through, and had casually laid out and opened wide, I'd have had 150-200% at best, and used almost all of it and barely missed. When it comes to stuff like this, embrace cowardice. Better to chicken out 50 times while you learn, than go big once, and hit something.
-B
Edit to add: This same thinking is why I ditched my chosen exit style out of the Caravan. Taking a good hard look at the lowness and closeness of that tail, comparing it to my experience of drop scaling and timing, I realized there WAS no way to exit poised, fly the exit, and leave a 300% margin... or even a 150% margin. That tail was smack in the middle of the space I'm accustomed to flying through on an Otter exit. Even scrunched up in a ball, with a suit this big with this much drag I'd barely clear that tail. There might have been 120%. Meaning the faintest error would hit the tail. A poised exit, this suit floats so much even shut down that I don't even start to drop until after I'm well clear of the door. All I'd have to do is hover a half second longer than expected while running into the relative wind like a brick wall while the tail of the plane overtakes me, and Bang- tailstrike. Whereas that rollout exit, gives you a nice downward inertial movement before you've even cleared the doorframe let alone begun to dig in your wings, and it prevents your wings from grabbing any air at all until the rotation of the roll is completed- by which time you're at least 3-5 feet down.


(This post was edited by lurch on Dec 1, 2013, 1:07 PM)


flipwithit  (D 31574)

Dec 2, 2013, 4:25 AM
Post #8 of 8 (1013 views)
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Re: [Jbag] big suits, little plane? [In reply to] Can't Post

*not reading any of the replies
no.
my fast exit is right foot on the strut/step and turn into the the wind as i leave the plane. climb out exit is left foot on the outside corner of step, right foot dangling, and launch underneath strut, into the wind. you wont hit the prop...because you shouldn't aim for it. cesna pilot should be able to get air speed down to 50 at the most


(This post was edited by flipwithit on Dec 2, 2013, 9:46 AM)



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