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Vector 3's reserve flap design

 

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skydiverek  (C 952)

Jun 26, 2003, 10:29 AM
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Vector 3's reserve flap design Can't Post

I was wondering - why doesn't Vector 3's reserve flap tuck in on the bottom. Well, I know it does, but it folds first. It loks like it could be snagged be the line in case of canopy collision Unimpressed. New Javelin, Wings, Voodoo have a reserve flap that cannot be snagged (the ending tucks in straight down, without folding upwards).

I know RWS always wants to make their product safest, so maybe there is some reason for this particular style of reserve flap? Crazy

Any ideas?


markbaur  (D 6108)

Jun 26, 2003, 10:46 AM
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Re: [skydiverek] Vector 3's reserve flap design [In reply to] Can't Post

The design is intended to prevent the flap from being dislodged by a push from any direction.

Mark


billbooth  (D 3546)

Jun 26, 2003, 2:07 PM
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Re: [skydiverek] Vector 3's reserve flap design [In reply to] Can't Post

Mark is right, the tuck under flap on the Vector will not move upward in response to a door strike (or a foot) like the tuck down flaps on the other rigs. If your reserve pin protector flap can move upward, your pin can be pushed out, even if the flap stays "closed". This fact makes the Vector reserve flap much more secure. Also, the tuck under design on the Vector is just as snag proof as the tuck down design, maybe even more so, because it is much harder to accidentally dislodge. But there is another, even more important reason.

When you tuck the top reserve flap down into a pouch on the reserve bottom flap, the top flap must come out of the pouch for the container to open. When you tuck under, as I do on the Vector III, nothing has to come out of anything for the reserve container to open.

Airtec tests every new rig design before they OK it for a Cypres. They have had several rigs with tuck-down flaps total when bench tested with a Cypres cutter. These same rigs would open fine when the ripcord was pulled, but the Cypres doesn't release the closing loop on top of the last flap like a ripcord does (on most rigs). It releases (cuts) it many layers down. The drag of the top flap coming out of the pocket, coupled with the added drag of the cut loop unlacing through several grommets while both are being "pinched" by the pilot chute spring, was enough to total the rigs. Tuck down rigs work fine most of the time, but a Cypres firing, with a bad pack job, an old, weak pilot chute spring, sand or mud in the pocket, or a too long reserve closing loop, might add up to disaster.

I tried tuck down flaps years ago. They just didn't work as well in all the worst cane scenarios my wicked little mind could come up with. I don't know about you, but I want my reserve container to open every time, not just most of the time. But then again, perhaps I worry too much.


skydiverek  (C 952)

Jun 26, 2003, 2:54 PM
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Re: [billbooth] Vector 3's reserve flap design [In reply to] Can't Post

Mr. Booth:

Thank you very much for explaining this particular design. Now I see how it can be better than on other rigs. By the way, it would be probably a great idea to publish an explenation of Vector 3 features on RWS website. Some of them seemed like a worse design (meshless reserve pilotchute or the aforementioned reserve flap) until it was thoroughly explained to me. I think more skydivers are "misled" in this way (and buy a different rig Smile). Crazy


(This post was edited by skydiverek on Jun 26, 2003, 2:58 PM)


billbooth  (D 3546)

Jun 26, 2003, 5:00 PM
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Re: [skydiverek] Vector 3's reserve flap design [In reply to] Can't Post

You're probably right, Bart...but I don't know if it would help very much. It seems that safety is the last reason anyone buys gear nowadays. I'm glad it's important to you. The safer you are, the longer you can skydive.


sundevil777  (D License)

Jun 26, 2003, 9:55 PM
Post #6 of 31 (5035 views)
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Re: [billbooth] Vector 3's reserve flap design [In reply to] Can't Post

In reply to:
Also, the tuck under design on the Vector is just as snag proof as the tuck down design, maybe even more so, because it is much harder to accidentally dislodge

Although more difficult to dislodge (of course a good advantage), isn't it still true that fabric or a line can get under the tuck under flap, but can't on the tuck down style?

In reply to:
Airtec tests every new rig design before they OK it for a Cypres. They have had several rigs with tuck-down flaps total when bench tested with a Cypres cutter. These same rigs would open fine when the ripcord was pulled, but the Cypres doesn't release the closing loop on top of the last flap like a ripcord does (on most rigs). It releases (cuts) it many layers down. The drag of the top flap coming out of the pocket, coupled with the added drag of the cut loop unlacing through several grommets while both are being "pinched" by the pilot chute spring, was enough to total the rigs. Tuck down rigs work fine most of the time, but a Cypres firing, with a bad pack job, an old, weak pilot chute spring, sand or mud in the pocket, or a too long reserve closing loop, might add up to disaster.

How much of the spring force (~50-70 pounds?) can be needed to unseat the tuck down flap? All of the other 'impeding' forces are common to other rigs.

Do you mean to say that 'pin against the back' style rigs such as the racer and reflex are at a disadvantage in this respect, and the same for rigs that position the Cypres cutter under the freebag instead of on top? The manual for my Infinity doesn't say where it should go, only says to follow procedures from Airtec, and I could not find where they specify the location either. What is the location (under/above freebag) for mine and other rigs?

The racer and reflex are inherently resistant to the pin being pushed out, but isn't it true that their closing loops have been cut/broken when snagged on a door frame, etc? I don't see how the V3 is not also more vulnerable in this respect than the tuck down style (as you mentioned, of course that is not the only way a rig can get opened when dragging against the door).

Apart from the slight drag to pull out the tuck down flap, isn't it possible and wouldn't it be best to have both the tuck down and tuck under flap (only the tuck down would be visible)?

Of course you have a better perspective on the relative risks than I. This is an just one of those 'gear & rigging' topics that really gets me thinking, and wanting to know more.

Thanks,

Cliff


alan  (D 17868)

Jun 27, 2003, 10:57 AM
Post #7 of 31 (4958 views)
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Re: [billbooth] Vector 3's reserve flap design [In reply to] Can't Post

Thanks for the information Bill.

Quote:
I don't know about you, but I want my reserve container to open every time, not just most of the time.

I've been watching the fatality reports in Parachutist for 12 or 13 years now. Have I missed something?
Are there any documented incidents of the top flap design on a reserve container causing it to total mal in field use?


riggermick  (D 17071)

Jun 27, 2003, 12:28 PM
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Re: [sundevil777] Vector 3's reserve flap design [In reply to] Can't Post

 
<snip>

Do you mean to say that 'pin against the back' style rigs such as the racer and reflex are at a disadvantage in this respect, and the same for rigs that position the Cypres cutter under the freebag instead of on top?

<snip>

On the Reflex the reserve pin and the CYPRES cutter ane only 1/4" apart so it's a moot point. Because the reserve pilot chute is externaly mounted it has no flaps to push past. It works well. I've never seen or heard of a total, or even a hesitation on a Reflex reserve pilot chute and I've seen one or two of those rigs.

Mick.


riggerrob  (D 14840)

Jun 28, 2003, 7:07 AM
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Re: [alan] Vector 3's reserve flap design [In reply to] Can't Post

I've been watching the fatality reports in Parachutist for 12 or 13 years now. Have I missed something?
Are there any documented incidents of the top flap design on a reserve container causing it to total mal in field use?
>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

Fortunately, designers are doing their job well, so that sort of mal is rare. Since it is far too easy to make a pin cover so long that the spring cannot push it open, most designers are playing with the "how short can we make it side of the problem?" They are erring on the side of caution.

However I can understand Bill Booth's logic in designing pin covers so they tuck into the same flap. Tucking a pin cover into the same flap vastly reduces the number of variables.
On some rigs - where the pin covers tuck into another flap - it is too easy for a field rigger to ruin the geometry by installing too long a closing loop or putting too much bulk in the wrong end of the container.
For example, it took Rigging Innovations 5 years to work the bugs out of the reserve pin cover on the Flexon, 94 Talon and Talon 2 series.
Then every once in a while, a rig would appear with too long a loop and the pin cover would still not stay tucked.


MontyPyhton

Jun 28, 2003, 11:53 AM
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Re: [riggerrob] Vector 3's reserve flap design [In reply to] Can't Post

Sorry Bill & Rob,

but I don't can agree.

On the one hand the most of the modern rigs (for example Mirage, Javelin, Wings, Infinity, Atom, Voodoo, Talon FS) have pin covers which are tucked into another flap.

They all are working great and they are all tested.

On the other hand you should agree with the argument, that all Vector styled rigs have also a less security caused by the flap covered reserve pc's.


So I think your theory is only a theory.

The theory sounds logically - but the reality is another cup of tea.

Bill, from your point of view you should built all new Vectors as pop-tops because in theory it's safer.


billbooth  (D 3546)

Jun 29, 2003, 1:02 PM
Post #11 of 31 (4840 views)
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Re: [MontyPyhton] Vector 3's reserve flap design [In reply to] Can't Post

If I believed pop-tops were safer, I would build all my rigs with pop-tops.

Safety is a very relative concept. Each year, somewhere around a million jumps are made on Vectors. So while a million-to-one-shot fatal malfunction might not worry a normal jumper very much (because he will never make close to a million jumps) it worries me...because even one fatality a year due to gear failure is too many.

However, those very rare malfunctions should worry each and every one of us, because whether you die of a common, or of a very rare malfunction, you're still just as dead.


andy2

Jun 29, 2003, 1:21 PM
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Re: [billbooth] Vector 3's reserve flap design [In reply to] Can't Post

Quote:
Safety is a very relative concept. Each year, somewhere around a million jumps are made on Vectors. So while a million-to-one-shot fatal malfunction might not worry a normal jumper very much (because he will never make close to a million jumps) it worries me...because even one fatality a year due to gear failure is too many.

well put, one of the reasons why RWS remains my favorite manufacturer of containers. Thanks bill! Cool


MontyPyhton

Jun 30, 2003, 12:35 AM
Post #13 of 31 (4791 views)
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Re: [billbooth] Vector 3's reserve flap design [In reply to] Can't Post

Bill, your point of view impresses me really.

But why do you think that other manufacturers have another point of view?

With other words: It is true: one accident caused by gear failure in one million reserve deploys is to much.

But in this rare statistics it become difficult to blame a construction principle as a possible reason for a reserve total mal.

Nowbody can say If the Vector flaps or the Mirage flaps (for example) will stay closed in a few million deploys.

So I have to say that the only way to prevent this "flap locks" in a few million deploys is to put the reserve pc on the outside of the container, not covered by any flap.

Bill, you are a ingeniously inventor and your inventions have saved countless jumpers arround the world.
But in my opinion my theory sounds as logically as yours.


x3mcam  (D License)

Jun 30, 2003, 2:39 AM
Post #14 of 31 (4777 views)
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Re: [billbooth] Vector 3's reserve flap design [In reply to] Can't Post

Bill,
As long as we are on the subject, could you give me your insight/reason to why my V3 Microns AAD pocket is under the reserve flap, and not easily used on the outside as in Mirage, Wings etc. ?

Nice rig though, even if my shoulder riser covers keep popping up. ( they're a bit tight as i use the cutaway tubes and third risers... still not nice of them opening every once in awhile..)

Tomppa


skydiverek  (C 952)

Jun 30, 2003, 7:13 AM
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Re: [x3mcam] Vector 3's reserve flap design [In reply to] Can't Post

In reply to:
Bill,
As long as we are on the subject, could you give me your insight/reason to why my V3 Microns AAD pocket is under the reserve flap, and not easily used on the outside as in Mirage, Wings etc. ?

I know this one Smile Smile Smile. Bill wants to make you at least look at your reserve pin at the start of your skydiving day... True, Bill? Laugh


billbooth  (D 3546)

Jun 30, 2003, 7:30 AM
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Re: [x3mcam] Vector 3's reserve flap design [In reply to] Can't Post

I left the Cypres control unit under the reserve flap to force people to open the flap, and therefore check their reserve pin at least once during a jump day. And since you should do at least one pin check a day, it's no trouble to set your Cypres while you're in there. It also allows another jumper to turn off your Cypres, without taking off your rig, in the event you have to ride down in the aircraft. Besides, the unit is more "protected" in the yoke.

Tuck riser covers are very sensitive to the bulk under them. (Velcro riser covers didn't have this problem, by the way.) When we design a rig with tuck tabs, we can only choose one riser cover dimension, and we base that on the average bulk we expect. When your risers are "thick" like yours, you should ask your rigger to leave very little bulk at the top of your freebag. This will help your riser covers stay shut. If he can't pack with little bulk up top, perhaps your reserve is a bit too large. Even if you choose the "right size" reserve for your container, two supposedly "identical" reserves may have up to 10% different pack volumes, because of fabric and construction tolerances. Every bit of bulk, risers or canopy, up top affects your riser cover's ability to stay shut. So, if you want your riser covers to be as secure as possible, always choose a reserve that will fit "loosely" in your container, so that your riser covers can curve over your shoulders.


KellyF  (D 13826)

Jun 30, 2003, 8:34 AM
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Re: [sundevil777] Vector 3's reserve flap design [In reply to] Can't Post

In reply to:
Do you mean to say that 'pin against the back' style rigs such as the racer and reflex are at a disadvantage in this respect, and the same for rigs that position the Cypres cutter under the freebag instead of on top? The manual for my Infinity doesn't say where it should go, only says to follow procedures from Airtec, and I could not find where they specify the location either. What is the location (under/above freebag) for mine and other rigs?

Cliff, every Infinity made has been built Cypres ready, so the cutter location has been taken care of at the factory. On older style rigs (serial numbers below 6000), the cutter is located on the (jumper's) right reserve side flap, and on later models (6000 and above) it is located on the kicker flap. Both locations were tested and approved by Airtec to work properly with the container and pilot chute design in use at the time of testing.


riggerrob  (D 14840)

Jan 31, 2005, 7:44 AM
Post #18 of 31 (4459 views)
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Re: [sundevil777] Vector 3's reserve flap design [In reply to] Can't Post

The racer and reflex are inherently resistant to the pin being pushed out, but isn't it true that their closing loops have been cut/broken when snagged on a door frame, etc? Cliff
>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

Wow!
It is tough to decipher your "lawyerese" dialect.

On a practical note, I have only heard of one Reflex with a broken reserve closing loop and that was after it had been slammed into a King Air doorframe repeatedly by a clumbsy student.
I also heard of a similar deployment in the doorway with a Telesis (Vector I-style) student rig.
Just goes to show that students can invent new ways to mess up faster than designers can invent cures.


Premier Tonto  (D 515)
Moderator
Jan 31, 2005, 9:59 AM
Post #19 of 31 (4416 views)
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Re: [billbooth] Vector 3's reserve flap design [In reply to] Can't Post

In reply to:
Airtec tests every new rig design before they OK it for a Cypres. They have had several rigs with tuck-down flaps total when bench tested with a Cypres cutter. These same rigs would open fine when the ripcord was pulled, but the Cypres doesn't release the closing loop on top of the last flap like a ripcord does (on most rigs). It releases (cuts) it many layers down. The drag of the top flap coming out of the pocket, coupled with the added drag of the cut loop unlacing through several grommets while both are being "pinched" by the pilot chute spring, was enough to total the rigs. Tuck down rigs work fine most of the time, but a Cypres firing, with a bad pack job, an old, weak pilot chute spring, sand or mud in the pocket, or a too long reserve closing loop, might add up to disaster.

Wow.

Reading this thread now, written some 19 months prior to the release of the Mirage SB certainly puts several things into perspective.

I've been skydiving 20 years this week. It's so good to hear that someone who was building rigs long before I'd ever heard of a Javelin, Wings, Infinity, Icon, Vortex etc, is still well ahead of the curve. Well. At least 19 months, anyway!

Thanks so much for the information.

t


(This post was edited by Tonto on Jan 31, 2005, 10:03 AM)


mjosparky  (D 5476)

Jan 31, 2005, 11:20 AM
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Re: [Tonto] Vector 3's reserve flap design [In reply to] Can't Post

In reply to:
In reply to:
Airtec tests every new rig design before they OK it for a Cypres. They have had several rigs with tuck-down flaps total when bench tested with a Cypres cutter. These same rigs would open fine when the ripcord was pulled, but the Cypres doesn't release the closing loop on top of the last flap like a ripcord does (on most rigs). It releases (cuts) it many layers down. The drag of the top flap coming out of the pocket, coupled with the added drag of the cut loop unlacing through several grommets while both are being "pinched" by the pilot chute spring, was enough to total the rigs. Tuck down rigs work fine most of the time, but a Cypres firing, with a bad pack job, an old, weak pilot chute spring, sand or mud in the pocket, or a too long reserve closing loop, might add up to disaster.

Wow.

Reading this thread now, written some 19 months prior to the release of the Mirage SB certainly puts several things into perspective.

I've been skydiving 20 years this week. It's so good to hear that someone who was building rigs long before I'd ever heard of a Javelin, Wings, Infinity, Icon, Vortex etc, is still well ahead of the curve. Well. At least 19 months, anyway!

Thanks so much for the information.

t

Would that be a "I told you so" or what?

Sparky


pilotdave  (D License)

Jan 31, 2005, 11:39 AM
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Re: [Tonto] Vector 3's reserve flap design [In reply to] Can't Post

I knew a few good things about the Vector before buying mine. I've learned so many more since then. I actually learned about the Mirage SB from Bill Booth at the PIA symposium when a friend of mine (a rigger) asked him why he placed the cypres cutter in such an inconvenient spot. Needless to say, my friend's only gripe with the Vector 3 suddenly became a safety feature.

Some other manufacturers have prettier rigs than RWS (and prettier salespeople than Bill Booth too), but when it comes to safety, I think they've got everyone beat.

Dave


skydiverek  (C 952)

Jan 31, 2005, 1:23 PM
Post #22 of 31 (4340 views)
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Re: [Tonto] Vector 3's reserve flap design [In reply to] Can't Post

In reply to:
Wow.

Reading this thread now, written some 19 months prior to the release of the Mirage SB certainly puts several things into perspective.

I thought exactly the same waw - WOW! I started this thread 19 months ago bacause I did not understand what would be a benefit of a reserve flap that does not tuck in like almost all others. I knew Bill had a reason for this "different" design. And there you have it!


(This post was edited by skydiverek on Jan 31, 2005, 1:30 PM)


skydiverek  (C 952)

Jan 31, 2005, 1:26 PM
Post #23 of 31 (4337 views)
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Re: [alan] Vector 3's reserve flap design [In reply to] Can't Post

In reply to:
I've been watching the fatality reports in Parachutist for 12 or 13 years now. Have I missed something?
Are there any documented incidents of the top flap design on a reserve container causing it to total mal in field use?

Now there might be... Thank you Bill for trying to make us as safe as possible Smile!


alan  (D 17868)

Jan 31, 2005, 8:58 PM
Post #24 of 31 (4274 views)
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Re: [skydiverek] Vector 3's reserve flap design [In reply to] Can't Post

Quote:
In Reply To
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------
I've been watching the fatality reports in Parachutist for 12 or 13 years now. Have I missed something?
Are there any documented incidents of the top flap design on a reserve container causing it to total mal in field use?
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Now there might be... Thank you Bill for trying to make us as safe as possible !

You appear to be gloating over the possibilty that there may at some time be a documented incident of a reserve top flap design causing a total mal in field use. While I'm sure that is not what you intended, it did leave me with that impression.

Aside from that, in looking back over the thread, I stand by my question. The CYPRES cutter location seems to be the issue here not the top flap design. When bench tested, all units worked when the ripcord was pulled. Every time. It was only CYPRES activations that failed. The only time my reserve top flap will fail to open is if I fail to pull the handle or someone tampers with it.

And finally, to echo your sentiment, a big thanks to Bill Booth for his advancements in gear design and safety, as well as his willingness to share his knowledge and experience here on the boards.


Hooknswoop  (D License)

Jan 31, 2005, 9:10 PM
Post #25 of 31 (4271 views)
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Re: [alan] Vector 3's reserve flap design [In reply to] Can't Post

Quote:
The CYPRES cutter location seems to be the issue here not the top flap design.

Not if the Cypres cutter location works fine if the reserve flap tucks back under itself (like the Vector III/Mircron) and doesn't tuck into the bottom flap (like the Mirage, Javelin, and Talon/VooDoo).

Derek


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