Aug 13, 2014, 10:01 PM
Post #1 of 23
New Skydiver 18 years old
Hello everyone! I just turned 18 end of May, and decided that I would jump out of a plane because it's something I always thought was amazing. So I gathered a few buddies of mine and off we went, not getting nervous until we pulled into the parking lot! Regardless we had tons of fun and went for our second tandem 3 weeks later. I loved every minute and would like nothing more than to get into the sport. I have the money for the class which I will take in the spring because I am going off to college. After that I will have about $3,000 USD to spend..Should I buy or rent gear? Is there any tips/tricks I NEED to know before I start? I understand it's an expensive sport but I feel that if I enjoy myself it is worth it. It's a feeling I can't get from anything else. Please just say hello, leave stories about how you got into skydiving, or just give me some recommendations! Thanks everyone!! You all are awesome!
Hi Avkrell, welcome to the best sport in the world. Yoiu are my middle son's age, so I will tell you what I told him...You're education is the most important next step - no arguments or questions - Keep that in mind, as skydiving is very seductive and can easily distract you; rent gear for now, dont be in a rush to buy; ensure that you have fun in the sport, and above all, smile, be safe, enjoy jumping and buy beer!
Aug 14, 2014, 7:34 AM
Post #3 of 23
Re: [kenthediver] New Skydiver 18 years old
[In reply to]
Hi kenthediver! Yes for sure education is first, I've got all of that taken care of and I was thinking of jumping during my summers in between paychecks;) but It is amazing and I won't forget to save a little for the beer!!
Welcome to the skys, I just got cleared for solo jumps last weekend and hope to have my A license done by seasons end. At my DZ the AFF jumps include all the gear as part of the price. You're going to start on a huge canopy and work your way down anyway, so there is no reason to buy anything just yet. The biggest piece of advise I can give you is to RELAX. I had to redo some levels because I was fighting the wind. More than likely you'll end up redoing a couple levels as well. Don't sweat it. After having done level 5 3 times levels 6 and 7 were a breeze and super fun. If you can hit the tunnel. It's a great training tool. Check with the instructors at your DZ and go with them. Have fun and stay out of the trees.
Hi Tela! Thanks for the suggestion, I will for sure try my best to relax!! Congratz on getting to solo jumps that is awesome!! As far as gear I will wait until I have been jumping for awhile! Thanks again and good luck. Update me on how you do!
skymama (D 26699)
Aug 15, 2014, 10:32 AM
Post #6 of 23
Welcome to the forums! Most people rent gear until the 25-50 jump range. That gives you time to downsize your canopy size a little from the big student gear that you will learn on and it will help you decide which size and type you want to settle on without making a costly mistake. Good luck on your training and study hard in school!
You started pretty similar to me. Did a tandem for my 18th b-day and started IAD training the following year. I spent a ton of money on skydiving in the past 2 years between training, my own gear, and a brand new AAD (about 5000 dollars total maybe) but I wouldn't go back and change anything! School is important, but if you find you have enough money leftover to start skydiving then by all means do it because you won't regret it!
I had to get a job during one semester and over the summers for the past two years and about 80% of that money went to skydiving (addicted?....maybe).
I rented until about jump 35-ish. Luckily I had a friend who sold me his old gear for a great price and I didn't have to pay all at once. Also, I jumped without an AAD until about jump 80 (recently) which saved money...however you have to determine if that is something you want to/are okay with doing.
Wait until you're at least done with AFF, then go ahead and buy an altimeter/helmet/goggles/gloves. DZ will supply everything you need through your A license. Jumpsuit is completely optional and up to you if you wanna buy one.
Thanks for the tips!! I will for sure wait until I know what I am talking about before buying gear, but for future reference do you go with used or new, and how much will it all cost?
Well, I can share with you my own experience. I rented until about 40 jumps. I bought an all new rig, because I didn't want used gear (yuck!). By 100 jumps, I was ready to downsize again and wished I had bought used gear that would have been less expensive! So, my advice is to go with used for your first rig because you're probably going to want to downsize again. When you pick your container, check to see what sizes it will fit so all you have to do is switch out canopies and not the whole rig. And, don't go too small on your reserve just because you want a smaller rig.
As for cost, I don't know because I bought my rig and gear a long time ago. But, check out the Classifieds link at the top of the page so you can find the going rates and make a budget. You're also going to want a jumpsuit, helmet and altimeter. And, get an AAD so your parents won't worry so much.
Welcome to the forums and sport. Some good advice on this thread. Keep your education first man, I work full time and jump on my days off but yet everyday I get out of bed I want to call in and go jumping. I gotta tell myself no job no jumps so I go to work and keep the play on my days off. So keep your priorities straight. Don't buy gear right off the bat. Remember tho you can't just jump every now and then like summer breaks. You need stay CURRENT. As a student you have to make at least one jump a month. I jump with a few college students who have a few hundred jumps in and jump on a shoe string budget, they always find a way to stay current. Talk to coaches and instructors at your home DZ and before you buy any gear or consider any ask them AND your rigger about it first and see what they think how the canopy, container, and reserve will be for you. Other than that have fun, and welcome.
You have to jump once every thirty days to stay current as a Student. When you get your A license it's one every 60 days. Sometimes this a problem depending on where you live due to weather. So pick a nice day and do your jump that day. If not you will have to do a type of re introductory jump with an instructor to check you off to make sure you haven't "lost" your touch. I'm not a coach or an instructor I'm just telling you what I have been told. Talk to your DZ and see what they recommend for you.
Definitely school first as all have said, then start talking to people at the DZ about gear. My advice would be to buy an altimeter and helmet first and do your research. Definitely try on the helmets you like as they tend to be very different. As for altimeters there are many different brands and kinds so ask around to see what people are using and why. After those I would look at getting a suit so that you have something consistent to jump in. Other things come later and there is plenty of time so don't rush it. Good luck!
As for gear, wait until you get your A license before buying anything in my opinion. The reason I say that is a lot of people decide skydiving isn't for them in that time period.
When you do buy gear, clear goggles, helmet (something like a benny or protec to keep cost down), and something like a galaxy 2 altimeter is what I would suggest. Also an inexpensive suit like a bevsuit would be a good start. But if cost is an issue always remember that most of these items come free with rental, so there is no rush as long as you rent.
When you get ready to get a rig, used is a sure thing, just get it inspected by a rigger before buying. Otherwise you eat a lot of depreciation on the gear if you buy new.
AAD is highly suggested. Hopefully you value your life enough to invest in one.