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Jedi Wear Skydiving Suits Review

Full disclaimer right at the start: I have been asked by Nick, the owner of Jedi Air wear to write a review for his products. I have not been paid to do so though I do measure for Jedi Airwear and have received suits in payment for that. I also consider Nick a friend. That said, for those that don’t know me, I’m rather blunt and to the point and tell things as I see them. I am taking the time to write this review because of the commitment to improving their products year after year and customer service I have received from Jedi Airwear. I hope this review helps people evaluating different brands of suits and offers insights into how Jedi Airwear treats customers and product development.  So keep that in mind when reading the following. 
What does a jumpsuit need to do? Well that depends on what you’re doing as a skydiver. As a full time instructor I have a couple of suits; my go-to red and black Instructor suit, camera wings and swoop shorts, and a freefly/tunnel suit. 

My Instructor suit is my day-to-day suit. It needs to be able to take a beating while doing tandems, offer lots of range for AFF and have a pocket for my phone, a pocket for bungees and, most importantly, it needs to be comfortable as some days I’ll end up wearing it for 14 hours at a time. My current instructor suit is one of the original Jedi Airwear Instructor suits and does all these things well. Double lined Taslan with Cardura knees and butt and a YKK zipper mean I am not worried about the knees when I am packing or the butt when I have a heavy tandem on a no wind day in the middle of summer when the ground is hard and rough. Three years and 1500 jumps on my current instructor suit form Jedi Airwear and it’s still going strong and only now starting to show signs of wear. It’s tough, it’s affordable and it does the job well. As a bonus I have seen the latest iteration of the Instructor suit which have been tweaked slightly with updated pocket closures and single layer options. 
My camera wings are used for filming both tandems and formations. Four years ago when I first started wearing Jedi Airwear products I wanted a different wing shape and mounting point than was offered at the time. Jedi Airwear worked with me to change the shape and bring the mounting point forward which resulted in a bad@ss camera jacket that matched how I wanted to fly. Filming in sit with tandems or formations from underneath with loads of range and an easy transition or staying above and in control while filming belly formations from 4-14 way this jacket has never let me down and has helped make my camera jumps easy.  I have seen Jedi Airwear do various different designs to match customer requirements frequently over the last four years.

The freefly suit, well actually both of them as I am lucky enough to have a short sleeve and normal version, fit well and feature the same Taslan, Cordura and YKK as the instructor suits with a nice fitted design and spandex in the right places to keep movement unrestricted. Used for tandems a bit during the summer as well the suit has held up well. The company is now working with Steve Howes on tighter, more advanced, tunnel specific suits. The one thing I would change is the Velcro closure over the zip, but as that’s my biggest gripe with the suit I am pretty happy. 
As for the swoop shorts? They do what’s expected; they take a beating and they keep my legs cool on the hot days.  They have an inbuilt belt with large fastex clip and zipper which both work well and the design suits my legs well with good coverage over the knee with cordura when seated, standing or kneeling and they don’t bunch up around the crotch when my rig is on. They have original pocket design, which was placed similar to jean pockets, which was a bit inconvenient but after learning from this design the new swoop shorts have a pocket placed on the thigh with a horizontal zipper.

Bottom line there are many great suit providers out there offering various features at various price-points however I feel Jedi Airwear represents good value for money with a suit that matches my flying ability and needs. The quick turnaround time, usually 3 weeks or so, is a nice bonus too. 
About the author: I have been a full time instructor since 2012 and have earned various AFF, tandem and coach ratings in Australia, Canada, the USA and the UK with a little over 5000 jumps and 30 hours of tunnel time (I like to pretend I can freefly). I own Overdose Industries Ltd and am also a rep for Squirrel wingsuits. 
   -- 
  David Keevers   Director   Overdose Industries LTD   Company Number: 10574178
  T: 0747 6824 317   www.overdoseindustries.com  

By licker, in Gear,

Performance Designs closes out the PD Bullseye 2019 competition at Skydive DeLand

Performance Designs hosted the PD Bullseye Sport Accuracy series across the US and Europe this summer. The competition visited 5 countries, 9 dropzones and met over 400 skydivers. This series was a chance for people with under 500 jumps to test their sport accuracy and become better canopy pilots. The 23 finalists traveled to Skydive DeLand on December 6th to meet each other, the PD team, train with Flight-1 and then compete for the chance of becoming a PD Sponsored Athlete. After an exiting competition the winner was announced: Paul Winner from Skydive Orange. Second place was taken by Lori Patalocco from Skydive Spaceland Houston and Third place by John Victor from Skydive Spaceland Dallas.


“I felt that going into the competition, I had a chance. I’d put a lot of time into working on canopy skills this year. Then you get to the finals, start meeting the competitors and you realize that everyone has been working hard and the pressure was on. This event was incredible and thanks to PD for coming up with an idea that made so many people focus on their canopy piloting. What's next for me? I got my coach rating this year, and want to continue working with new skydivers and keep progressing on my free fly skills. Canopy wise, I’m hoping to attend an FLCPA event this coming year. I'm proud of myself and all the competitors for all the hard work we put going into this competition. I'm honored and excited about the amazing opportunities that our ahead for me.” - Paul Winner, PD

Bullseye 2019 Winner
Congratulations from Performance Designs to all the finalists for their hard work and enthusiasm for becoming better canopy pilots. Stay tuned for more details on PD Bullseye 2020.
“We’re super excited about how the 2019 PD Bullseye season turned out. Loads of newer jumpers discovered and were excited about developing their canopy flight skills in a fun and competitive environment. It was great to see this series work and create greater enthusiasm in our community for safe and fun canopy flight. Learning to fly and land your canopy well is cool, and we’re glad we’ve been able to do a little part in promoting that.”


Albert Berchtold, PD Marketing Manager

By Administrator, in News,

The 2019 Malfunction & Incidents Collection

We recently posted an article showcasing some really sweet videos to get you amped to hit the sky. The reality however, is that not every jump goes as planned. Sometimes you find yourself victim to a bad pack job, bad technique or failed equipment. The collection of videos below are some of the malfunctions that made their way onto Youtube in the past year. Use these videos to learn from other's mistakes, look at how others reacted to their incidents and how it affected their outcome. While some malfunctions one can laugh about later, others should serve solely as a lesson to other jumpers.
From the uploader: "On my first jump with my Strix i had a toggle fire and needed to cutaway! Not the best body position and pitched with some speed. This is the only way that my great SABRE 1 wingsuit canopy can get into a diving spin."
From the uploader: "After an uneventful jump, on deployment one of the riser covers of the Wings rig did not release, leading the PD 90 to deploy unevenly and start violent spinning behind the neck of the jumper. He was about to cut away the wing and pull his reserve when the riser cover released. The jumper checked his altitude, reasoned he had altitude to keep working on it a bit longer and then untwisted. He landed back at the dropzone exhausted and shocked, then switched container manufacturer as soon as he could."
From the uploader: "Bag lock is a b*tch, especially on a tandem skydive. This TI and passenger were in the saddle by 1650 feet."
From the uploader: "A skydiver has some heavy line twists on opening, which he fights all the way down to his hard deck before cutting away and deploying his reserve parachute -- which also opens with heavy line twists. Yikes!"
From the uploader: "Skydiver rides his reserve parachute safely to the ground after a canopy malfunction!"
From the uploader: "A pilot chute in tow malfunction is never fun, especially when you try to manually deploy your main parachute and end up flipping onto your back with a mess of lines wrapping around your leg. That’s exactly what happened to this skydiver. He pulled his cutaway, deployed his reserve and crossed his fingers that the reserve would clear the ball of $#!t above his head."
From the uploader: "This jumper deployed their main, saw a malfunction they could not recover from, and cutaway. Their three-rings separated but a line got caught and the main parachute remained connected to the container. While attempting to clear the line entanglement, it appears the jumper pulled on their RSL and extracted their reserve pin; giving them a two-out. The jumper flew the reserve and, twenty seconds before safely landing their reserve, the main finally released."
From the uploader: "As they exited the plane this jumper’s deployment bag came out of their container and gave them a horseshoe malfunction. They realized their pilot chute was still in the BOC and deployed it in an attempt to remedy the situation. Unfortunately, the pilot chute failed to extract the main, resulting in a SECOND malfunction! This time the jumper was faced with a bag lock. They cutaway their main, regained stability and deployed their reserve."
 
From the uploader: "After an uneventful wingsuit flight this jumper deployed his main and found himself with a line over that sent him spinning. Unable to fly the canopy, he cutaway and – after dealing with some line twists – landed without further incident."
From the uploader: "This skydiver pulled at 4k feet to get comfortable under canopy again -- it was their first jump after a 4 month break from skydiving. Once they deployed, they checked their canopy and thought it was an end cell closure, but quickly realized that it was actually a line-over. They began pumping the risers to clear it and continued to do so until they reached their decision altitude. The jumper claims they were preparing to cut away when they did one last pump of the risers and cleared the line-over."

Top 10 Skydiving Videos of 2019

Ever tried searching "skydiving" on Youtube? It's a mess, between a million Fortnite videos and vlogger's first tandem jumps it's a nightmare finding quality content on the platform. So we've made it a bit easier for you by running through the last year of skydiving footage and selecting a few of the best videos we could find, so you don't have to wade through the crap. Below is a list (in no particular order) of some of the best skydiving videos we came across during our search, whether it be quality camera work, the vibe of the video or something that makes you want to get up in the sky. We've intentionally omitted a number of wingsuit videos as we'll be bringing you a special collection for those soon. If you have any additions drop us a link in the comments and we'll put together a part two with your suggestions.
1. Eye Candy
This video is just awesome to watch! Nothing too crazy taking place, but the camera work provides some truly awesome eye candy. Who wouldn't want to skydive after watching this?
2. The Highest Swing
Everyone loves balloon jumps, right? Well we've got a balloon jump and a swing jump in one on this. A cool watch for sure!
3. Sister's By the Sea
We're a sucker for boogie footage. There's something about the community vibe and the awesome sunset jumps that make boogie compilations some of our favourites.
4. A Compilation
Alright, enough with the malfunctions for now - this is the only compilation in the list, this video showcases various jumps, some of which are definitely worth being reshared. While this video was uploaded this year the compilation itself uses clips from a number of jumps spanning over a few of the recent years gone by.
5. The Story of Dan Brodsky-Chenfeld
From the creator: "In 1992, professional skydiver Dan Brodsky-Chenfeld boarded a plane for a routine training jump. Six weeks later, he awoke from a coma to discover that a terrible accident had crippled his body and shattered his dream of becoming a World Champion."
6. Ballistic 2019
Skydive Burnaby in Canada hosted Ballistic 2019, a new skills camp. Overall this video just has some cool flying scenes that will make one want to get into the air.
7. Invasion 2018
Despite the date on the title, this video was uploaded in early January and showcases some awesome scenes out of the Invasion boogie at Skydive Sebastion.
8. FAI World Indoor Skydiving Championships 2019
We can't just neglect our tunnel rat brothers and sisters. This year's FAI World Indoor Championships showed just how far the sport has come in the past decade. 
9. Maja Kuczynska - Unstoppable
One of the coolest videos of this year that incorporates both indoor tunnel flying and skydiving. A question often asked, is how do experienced tunnel flyers handle their first few skydives, and are they able to easily translate their skills from the tunnel to the sky - this video answers that question.
10. Skydiving Onto a Motorbike
From the creator: "Incredible footage shows an Australian skydiver jumping out of a plane to land on a fast-moving motorbike in New South Wales.
Skydiving instructor Scott Hiscoe performed the high-adrenaline stunt with Red Bull motocross athlete Robbie Maddison over the skies of Wollongong.
In what was reportedly an Australian first, the pair achieved the stunt on their third attempt.
Mr Scott said: “It was always going to be a challenge with a lot of things having to line up to be successful, but who better to do it with than Robbie Maddison? Pulling this stunt off over my own hometown of Wollongong made it even better.”

By Meso, in General,

4 Upcoming Halloween Boogies

Skydive Arizona - Halloween Boogie (25 - 27 Oct 2019)

No registration fee - discounted $22 lift tickets
Organizing by Arizona Dream, AZ X-Force and Arizona Airspeed
Crazy 8s event brought to you by Arizona Anthem
Canopy training by Justin Price
Nightly Entertainment and Free Boogie Beer!
Annual costume contest with Epic prizes! Free Curv container for Best Costume!
Sugar skull face painting, Hot air balloon jumps, DC-3 jumps and more!
Skydive Sebastian - Halloween Boogie (2-3 Nov 2019)

NO registration fees!
What you'll get:
*Wicked FF, RW, Angle, and WS organizing
*costume jumps
*tricky contests
*spooky games in the air & on the ground
*treats from our sponsors
So book that flight or make it a roadtrip, and don't pay any registration because its all on us!
Keep an eye out over the next two weeks while we announce all the s͏p͏o͏o͏k͏t͏a͏c͏u͏l͏a͏r details about LOs, events, sponsors, and prizes!
Spaceland San Marcos - Halloween Boogie (24-27th Oct 2019)

"Two Otters and a Super Caravan to keep your happy butt in the air!!! We're filling in our list of organizers.
Here's what we have so far....
Freefly - David Lange, Carly Barto, Konstantin Petrijcuk, Tyler Perkins
Belly - Louis French, Scott Latinis, Doug Feick, David Bowen
Wingsuit - Anthony Kimball Zoo dives, contests, shenanigans - Brian Casserly (AKA Pussfoot)

Saturday night entertainment - Derek Lewis - https://www.facebook.com/FiveMinuteParty-116054008418316

Saturday night - Costume contest!! It's easy to play! 1) dress up 2) show up 3) impress the judges....you can win free jumps!

Register at https://sanmarcos.skydivespaceland.com/shop/event-registration/2019-san-marcos-halloween-boogie/
West Tennessee Skydiving - 28th Annual Halloween Boogie (25-27 Oct 2019)

Inverted Biplane Jumps, $100 a slot, $50 for video Michael Mullins Super King Air, 7 min to 14,500ft -$26 a slot (half price early bird special if you manifest before 8 AM)
-Helicopter Jumps Coach Jumps are always free to students who are trying to acquire thier USPA "A" License
-Balloon Jumps
- $150 Rental gear is not available for balloon jumps. Must have USPA A license
Registration will be $35 this includes 5 raffle tickets (you can purchase as many additional tickets as you want) Dinner, free beer, and free Jell-O Shots!!
The winner of the costume contest on Saturday evening will receive one weekend of free jumps courtesy of West Tennessee Skydiving (does not include gear rental) Mark your calendars guys and don't miss out! Let's have us another amazing boogie this year!!!

By Administrator, in Events,

Welcome to Paradise. It’s Called Mayotte

Thanks to Vewuha Parachutisme, Your #SkydivingVacationGoals Just Upleveled
Got the almost-wintertime blues? If you’re in the northern hemisphere, that’s a very likely yes. Don’t despair, dear reader. We’re here to push a few daydreams your way. Perhaps, we’ll even put a brand-new DZ on your bucket list: One where you can jump onto a sandbar deep in a turquoise expanse of ocean, then hop on a boat and pootle back to an island, then wiggle into a swimsuit and make friends with sea turtles, then tuck into a beach barbecue with a bevy of new friends. Can you think of a sweeter escape from your snow shovel? Yeah… neither can we.
The sandbars and sea turtles in question are, interestingly, technically located in France -- albeit a very remote handful of France. They’re in the island country of Mayotte -- part of the Comoros archipelago, located in the northern Mozambique Channel off the coast of Southeast Africa. You’ll find it on the map tucked between Madagascar and Mozambique. Mayotte was purchased by France in 1841, becoming an overseas department of the country significantly more recently (in 2011). These days, it’s touristed mostly by French sunseekers and scuba divers; soon, with a lot of work and a little luck, it’ll be on the sport-skydiving map.

There is, of course, a story there.
The story starts, as so many good stories do, in Africa. It involves Karen and Steve Saunders, two adventuring British jumpers who enjoy power-couple status: Karen, as a well-known BPA Advanced Rigger and Examiner (well known as the rigger behind Tom Cruise in his latest Mission Impossible Film “Fallout”; as well as a popular FS coach); Steve, as the owner and principal instructor at Complete Skydiving Solutions. (Steve has been a skydiving instructor for many years, a BPA instructor examiner and -- notably -- one of the few expats to hold S&TA Status with the USPA.)
Steve and Karen were working at a dropzone in Kenya in December of 2018 when they met a Comorian tandem instructor named Anly AD. After a few weeks sharing the dropzone life, Anly approached Steve and Karen. He told them he was keen to eventually get a full-time dropzone going in his home country, but that he was (wisely) going to start by planning destination events. He was already all-in committed to the task, having already started to work his full gamut of connections to lay the groundwork. It already had a name: Vewuha Parachutisme. And he wanted their collaboration.
Before these conversations, neither Saunders had heard of Mayotte. It’s off the general tourist map, after all, mostly drawing outside interest for its unspoiled coral reefs, not its sky.

“We thought -- okay, that’s a nice dream,” Karen says, “and then we looked it up. We were floored.”
When Anly asked if Karen and Steve could be available to come out in March of 2019 to help with Mayotte’s first contact with skydiving, they couldn’t agree fast enough. When they landed, their initial impression was in perfect alignment with the photos they’d seen.
“When you’re there, you can hardly believe how beautiful it is,” Karen enthuses. “You just stand there in awe. Volcanoes -- craters -- lakes -- jungle -- beaches -- it is phenomenal.”
They couldn’t stand around for long, of course. Anly had laid all the groundwork he could, but the trio had their work cut out for them. There was no skydiving infrastructure in place. In fact, the country had never seen a single recreational skydive.
The dropzone is based on the country’s single municipal airport: the airport code for which is, charmingly enough, “DZA.” Anly had partnered up with a little flying school based on that airfield, renting a secure space. The first big task, then, was going to be educating Air Traffic Control -- working skydiving operations smoothly between the six-or-so jets a day coming in and out, as well as the military and general aviation workload, none of which had any experience accommodating skydiving. The learning curve was steep, but Steve’s previous experience proved invaluable; under his tutelage, DZA’s ATC learned the system and figured out the delicate timing. Once ATC was on board, the crew tackled the rest of the logistics head-on.
This first event was, in essence, a debutante ball to introduce skydiving to the island of Mayotte. Knowing how challenging it was going to be, Steve, Karen and Anly paced themselves. They organized five or six loads a day to facilitate specialist tandem jumps for regional dignitaries and military officials onto Mayotte’s surrounding islands and sandbars. To add a fun dimension to the challenge, Sébastien Chambet (and the rest of the French freefly team GoodVibes) joined the madness to shoot documentary footage for the French tourist board. The far-flung landing areas required significant boots-on-the-ground work to manage; some of them required hour-plus retrievals; the variables were stacked like Jenga pieces.
 
Luckily, Karen and Steve are stone-cold pros -- and decidedly British.
“Those were long days,” Karen grins, “But we just packed up a bunch of flags, tents and coffee and got it sorted.”
The team’s efforts were rewarded with resounding success. The team celebrated the excellent first impression they’d made with a sunset skydive into a remote, uninhabited island for a barbeque, a super-memorable party and an overnight tent-camp on the beach.
This coming spring -- exact dates to be announced -- will see Mayotte’s first skydiving invitational event. The event itself will be hosted by Anly the DZO, with safety overseen by Steve and Karen, organised by world-class skydivers Milko Hodgson and Sian Stokes. A dozen experienced jumpers will be invited for a week of jumping and exploring, staying among the island’s small selection of boutique hotel properties and sampling the hiking, dining and watersports that make up Mayotte’s idyllic tourist landscape. (Let your thoughts wander to a leisurely afternoon swim with dolphins and turtles, and you’ll have the right idea.)

As if the nascent Vewuha Parachutisme didn’t have enough unique characteristics already, there’s another important one to consider: In a region that has historically seen dangerous, unethical skydiving operations set up by greedy expats, it stands tall and proud.
“Safety is already a foundation of the culture here,” Steve notes, “because this is the owner’s home, and it’s his priority. He is not money-oriented. He’s passionate about bringing skydiving to his own country, and he wants to do it right.”
As Anly and the Vewuha Parachutisme team make ready for the coming year -- and continue to lay the groundwork for a permanent dropzone -- they’re getting more and more excited for the place’s potential.
“This is the kind of place you really have to see to believe,” Karen grins. “It is beyond incredible.”

By nettenette, in General,

Eloy World Cup 2019 Results & Gallery

The FAI World Cup of Formation Skydiving and Artistic Events was held at Skydive Arizona during early October 2019. Teams representing 16 different countries spent the week competing in Formation skydiving (4-way, 4-way Female, 8-way and VFS) and Artistic Skydiving (Freestyle and Freefly).
The event opened with a memorable ceremony featuring RedBull pilot Kirby Chambliss and the Women’s Skydiving Network debuted their first all-female demo team who jumped into the event with 20’ x 30’ flags and smoke.
After the opening ceremony and official draw, it was down to business as all the competitors prepared for the week ahead. The next few days were full of action as each team demonstrated their skill and sportsmanship through each round of competition. Luckily, good weather meant for a speedy competition and all events were finished by October 11th. With a full day to play before the closing ceremonies, competitors and local skydivers got together in a 10-way speed scramble competition. One round incorporated a jump from Skydive Arizona’s venerable DC-3!
The awards ceremony the night of October 12th was one to remember. With over 400 guests, the hangar was vibrating with excitement and enthusiasm. Gold medals went out to the French Freestyle team as well as their 4-Way Female team. USA took gold home for 4-Way open and VFS. Norway received a gold medal for their Freefly team and Russia for 8-way FS.
All disciplines will have their chance to compete again at the next FAI World Cup which will be held in Norway during the month of August 2021.
All photographs were taken by Bruce Griffith, while scores listed below have been gathered from results.worldskydiving.org






 




























Wingsuit Skydiver Saved by AAD After Collision (Video)

The following video was posted on social media last week and shows a harrowing scene of a wingsuit jumper suffering a collision shortly after exit. The collision appears to knock the jumper unconscious, as he then begins to spin uncontrollably as he descends in freefall. The spin amplifies the lower he gets - until finally his AAD activates and saves his life by crucially firing while he is seemingly unconscious.
You can follow or contribute to this conversation in the following forum post:
A forum post from a Dropzone.com user has shed some light on the situation...
 
"If I remember correctly group of 4. Leader fumbled exit a little. The 2&3rd guys start flying the planned direction right on exit. The 4th guy has the time and awareness to see the leader and starts diving to the leader. Guys 2&3 now correcting from intended flight path toward leader, intercepted by guy number 4. None of them are new guys. Super lucky that the guy who had the AAD fire walked away with no major injuries. The guy who hit this guy is a good friend of mine and is very heads up and a skilled 4-way flier with more WS jumps than FS. The example here is that if it can happen to guys like him it can happen to you." - Slimrn
The topic of AADs can sometimes be a controversial one, many experienced jumpers believe they don't need them and some even view dropzones that have AAD requirements negatively. However, this event goes to show that sometimes the AAD can play a crucial role in saving your life, especially in the case of midair collisions which result in a loss of consciousness.

Cookie G4 Skydiving Helmet Review

Review by Joel Strickland
Cookie Composites are quick to admit that there was a fair element of luck involved in their success with the G3. At the time of release in the early teens, the tunnel industry was exploding - and the full face helmet was crossing over from the province of close-in disciplines where you need to be extra careful about catching a knee or an elbow in the face - to pretty much everyone. Flyers were after a greater level of comfort while training for extended periods of time indoors while retaining a level of communication akin to open helmets. People wanted to be able to see each other’s whole face - and with the G3 you could. Skydiving soon followed suit, because you could now wear your cool sunglasses underneath your lid and see all the big grins in the pictures and video.
While lucky with the timing, Cookie had purposefully pulled off a crucial victory with their product - it occupied a particular sweet spot between form and function that appeals greatly to skydivers. The G3 was desirably fancy - but not too posh or too shiny to the point where it stood out as worthy of mockery. A few scratches and a couple of stickers later, and it had become (in the most positive of terms) part of the furniture of skydiving. While there were functional alternatives available, the G3 became iconic - as much so as the L+B device on your wrist or the Cypres unit in your rig.

Over the last few seasons there has been a growing grumble in our sport about the level of protection offered by helmets specifically designed for flying. The biggest and most successful company is always going to be the softest target for conversations about the actual value a helmet with no impact protection material has for your brain in an accident, and the G3 has come under fire against new offerings from competing companies that have been through tests and carry a certification. The concerns over safety are certainly valid, yet these conversations would often neglect that for a very long time we were all basically completely fine with what was on offer, and from day one - if we had been genuinely more concerned about safety over comfort and style - everyone single one of us always had the option of wearing a $20 Protec just like we all did when learning to skydive in the first place.
In the meantime, Cookie Composites have quietly and diligently created the G4 - extensively researching every single material and design element to give us what we have been asking for. Instead of rushing something out, Cookie worked alongside others in the industry to help develop a brand new rating with the specific requirements of both the skydiving and tunnel environments in mind.

While purposefully retaining the same balance of form and function, up close it is clear that it is a complete redesign - applying many lessons learned from its predecessor. Here are the main differences that you likely care about the most:
Recessed Visor: High speed flying combined with any looseness in the springs could create a distracting visor vibration on a G3. The new design has the visor recessed to fit flush all-round with the shell to eliminate this effect. It also looks great.
Audible Pockets: While perfectly fine for a lot of people, many of us with funny shaped faces were squeezed by our audibles despite any amount of wiggling. Cookie have rebuilt the pockets - and now they fit into the shell with zero intrusion into the space where your head is supposed to be. Now I can jump with two sets of beeps, hearing them perfectly yet feeling nothing - unthinkable for me previously with even the largest G3.
Metal Springs: With the old design, over time the rubber springs would stretch out and require replacing - a process that even the most generous can only describe as a pain in the ass. While Cookie took steps to remedy this with good post-purchase support, they were always going to be searching for a new system. The G4 visor mechanism has done away completely with the rubber and now uses a metal spring arrangement that should eliminate the maintenance routine.
Rear Protection: While maintaining the same general look, the new shell goes down a little further at the back to offer some more coverage in a sensitive area. This does make the hole where you put your head a wee bit smaller, and changes slightly the familiar back-forward motion of putting on a G3, to something more akin to donning a motorcycle helmet.
Impact Rated: Now there is deformable material inside. The big design battle Cookie faced was to create a helmet that would pass the crash tests while always remaining something sleek and light that skydivers would embrace as the right thing. The G4 is a little bit bigger and a little bit heavier than the G3 - but comparing them with one in each hand there is really not much in it. With the redesigned interior allowing a bit more space around the ears, it does feel like a bigger helmet when you first wear it - but that is coming from someone who has been wearing a G3 for work since the day it was released.

The unsolved problem (for now) is that while the Cookie G4 as sold qualifies for this new rating specific to skydiving, the tests are very precise indeed. As soon as you make any modifications at all to the weight or shape you are no longer using the helmet that has been qualified - you are using something else. The truth is that the myriad what and where of how we mount cameras makes practical testing out of reach. Along with impacts, a part of the new rating are thorough snag tests - and adding even the smallest, sleekest camera mounts would fail them.
The question we now face is that is it safe to assume that a helmet designed from the ground up with impact protection in mind going to provide a greater level of protection in a crash regardless of where you stick a camera on it? I know what I believe.

The driving force behind Cookie Composites - Jason Cook and Jeremy Hunt - speak passionately about their company and their products. A quick hello turns into two hours of sharing their experiences creating the G4. The lessons from the previous design have been studied, revised and thoroughly applied - along the way investigating and investing in all manner of materials, theories and processes to make it the best it can possibly be. Cookie’s success this decade has given the company the knowledge and the practical means to deliver a new product that should occupy the same place in our sport that its predecessor has done for many years. Their visual presence and the level at which they support our sport can make Cookie Composites can seem like a big company, but at a basic level it is still a handful of skydivers tinkering around in a workshop, putting in a great deal of time and effort to make something that works the best for their friends and their community around the world. Long may it continue.
Does the G4 live up to the hype? Yes. Yes it does.

By Meso, in Gear,