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Maksimsf

Squirrel Funk

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Just to add another comment - Squirrel saw my comments about the innie-outie and sent a very thorough follow up email. They provided additional tips and suggestions, and offered to take the suit back via FedEx (at their cost) to get modifications done - if possible by the weekend.

[I'm not taking them up on the offer at the moment because I'm out of skydiving due to other life stuff for the month of August, and I loaned the suit to my buddy, but this is a hugely nice offer.]

That is some seriously quality customer service. If we can resolve this issue, I'd buy another Squirrel suit without hesitation, due to that alone.
Skwrl Productions - Wingsuit Photography

Northeast Bird School - Chief Logistics Guy and Video Dork

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Anachronist

In addition to what I said in the previous post, Tony, PF, and SQ are all very small companies and decisions rest in the hands of one or two people. Those people are all expert flyers and may not be totally in touch with the "general public." They are constantly adapting to different market demands and haven't yet found the discontent for zippers to be sufficient to change the design. Having multiple designs makes manufacturing more complicated and more expensive, if they don't think the money is in it to change, and they are happy with their design, they won't change. There is also the whole who is copying who problem and no one wants to be accused of copying a different company's design, because in a way that is admitting that their previous one is inferior. There is a lot of ego in all three big WS manufacturers. (I know literally nothing about S-Fly, just btw)

Also as for PF zippers, I jump in FL and in 90+ degree heat in 90+ % humidity, ease of getting in and out is kinda a big deal. I'm not bendy enough to put on a PF suit standing (I can but sitting is much much easier) and at the very least, getting in or out of a Tony suit is much faster and easier.



TS did acknowledge the weakness of the zipper innie-outie and switched to a cable laced system last season. Personally I had big problems with the zippers and refused to jump them. I like the cable system because it really "locks" the webbing\handles in place. I will have to try to post a photo. I still have heard that some rigs just don't work well with any innie-outie design, not a specific manufacturer but a personal size.

It is a shame Tony doesn't do a better job of marketing because those that have flown the R2B2 or R Bird 2 think it is a great backfly suit, just most people don't know they exist! :S

The R2B2 uses the innie-outie and the R Bird 2 keeps the traditional skydiving design where all the webbing is on the outside. Both rock on the back. There is a guy in Europe that has flown all 3 major backfly suits and I am hoping for an honest review of them.
Summer Rental special, 5 weeks for the price of 4! That is $160 a month.

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There is a lot of misinformation in this thread, posted anonymously.
But there are also some valid concerns. Unfortunately we don’t have time to monitor the forums so if any SQUIRREL customers have questions, email or call us and we will answer the phone and/or reply the same day, as always. Real people with real issues get real and immediate results by contacting us. We personally answer the phone and emails every day of the week and we tend to have answers to every possible problem you can come up with relating to our products.

Zips:
We skydive our wingsuits much more than we BASE jump them, and after tens of thousands of jumps on the innie-outie system we have never experienced an actual issue in flight or had one reported to us. While in the plane, in a seated position or while hunched over, yes the zippers may spread apart. Checking your handles prior to exit is a mandatory part of your pre-flight procedures. While in flight or while under canopy, when it matters, the zippers on a properly-fitted suit will always align and leave the handles exposed. Therefore, if you pre-flight and your suit fits then the system will work for you the way it works for us, which is quite well. If you are a customer and you are not experiencing this, then we will modify or replace your suit immediately, as always. It’s that simple! If you want to change your innie-outie system for whatever reason, then there are permanent mods which guarantee that zippers do not move out of position.

The following link contains detailed information on a mod which will stop all unwanted movement of the zip sliders. The suit can still be taken on and off, as normal. If your Tony Suit uses YKK 10C Locking Zips, then this mod may also be a viable fix for it. Click here for more info, the mod is described at the end: www.squirrel.ws/zipperstuff

RAD System:
The concept of being able to reach your risers/brakes without unzipping or cutting away was initially conceived by Jeff Nebelkopf. He incorporated it into Tony’s suits and it is an important feature. Obviously, we now use something similar and it works fucking great https://vimeo.com/102553917
If it’s not working well for you on your SQUIRREL wingsuit, then either the suit doesn’t fit you right, or you are doing something wrong. Either way, we’ll be happy to fix the issue for you immediately. Just shoot us an email and we will reply the same day, as always. Or, hey, maybe pick up the phone and call us.

Funk Thumbloops:
The thumbloops on the Funk are for added control, in flight. The manual describes the best practice for combining their use with the RAD system, etc. So, RTFM.

Did I miss anything? Let us know, by contacting us directly, if you have questions about any suit we make. We do have answers.

-Matt

www.squirrel.ws

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pgpilot1

While in the plane, in a seated position or while hunched over, yes the zippers may spread apart. Checking your handles prior to exit is a mandatory part of your pre-flight procedures. While in flight or while under canopy, when it matters, the zippers on a properly-fitted suit will always align and leave the handles exposed.



Serious question, what if you are doing acrobatics that put you in a "hunched over" position (similar to seated in plane)? What if you pendulum under canopy during line stretch, and pull your knees into your chest or again in some other way create a "hunched over" position? What if you chop from a spinner and tumble for a sec before pulling silver, and get hunched over while tumbling?

pgpilot1

The concept of being able to reach your risers/brakes without unzipping or cutting away was initially conceived by Jeff Nebelkopf.



The Phoenix-Fly Prodigy came out in... 2005? Jeff started making wingsuit prototypes in 2006.
www.WingsuitPhotos.com

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Matt Hoover, your concerns are addressed in the pdf linked above.

I am mainly replying to your post to clear up the fact that Jeff Nebelkopf's Escape Arm innovation was just that - innovation. Comparing the Prodigy to the wingsuits he designed with said innovation makes it seem like you're just searching desperately for shit to disagree with. That is not the best way to use a forum.

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pgpilot1

I am mainly replying to your post to clear up the fact that Jeff Nebelkopf's Escape Arm innovation was just that - innovation. Comparing the Prodigy to the wingsuits he designed with said innovation makes it seem like you're just searching desperately for shit to disagree with. That is not the best way to use a forum.



Jeff innovated a hell of a lot:
check

Jeff's suits are very different from the Prodigy:
check

Jeff initially conceived the idea of reaching toggles in a zipped up wingsuit? (i.e. the exact text I was responding to)
nope

That's not disagreement, it's a simple fact. Making sure correct facts are posted in a thread that many around the world will read for years to come is a good way to use a forum. :)
www.WingsuitPhotos.com

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Anachronist


As for the innie-outie system, it is retarded (Coming from a Sky perspective). 1st off, I have jumped a Swift several times (and a Funk once, it was too tight and small to get a good feel and why I haven't jumped it since) and I know people who jump every SQ product except the Funk regularly; everyone has complained about the innie-outie system but they deal with it because they like the suits, I too am not a fan. The difference for BASE has got to be miniscule, if it isn't, then make a BASE-only and Sky-only version.



Well since you "know people" you're probably right then.

However, since I jump three different Squirrel suits, I'd like to chime in and say that I have never had a problem with the innie-outie system. And for those who do, I'd check to make sure the suit is rigged right or if it (or their rig) fits correctly. I witnessed a cutaway yesterday flying next to a friend in a colugo, and he apparently had no issues finding his handles either. The zippers on my squirrels are bomber, located properly on every suit, and have never been "swallowed" while sitting down, bunching up, or getting funky. I started on a havok, and to this day it is the only suit that has swallowed a handle while sitting down. I believe that having zippers on both sides of the handles allows the suit to adjust to your handles while you move around in the plane and the sky. Great design!

And as for your comment about making and buying two wingsuits, that would kind of defeat the purpose of skydiving the suit you are going to BASE jump, wouldn't it? (yes, it would). I like the current system more than I like this forum thread, puppies, kitten videos, spicy mustard, or any other wingsuits on the market.
Never, under any circumstances, take a sleeping pill and a laxative on the same night.

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no issues with my squirrel in skydive mode. learn your system and how it works. i wish people hadnt burned the inside harness/outside handles system from tonys first apaches, that was my favorite. dont jump a rig that doesnt fit you or a system you dont understand.

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pgpilot


The concept of being able to reach your risers/brakes without unzipping or cutting away was initially conceived by Jeff Nebelkopf.


The111


That's not disagreement, it's a simple fact. Making sure correct facts are posted in a thread that many around the world will read for years to come is a good way to use a forum. :)



Yeah. You make some strong points here. We definatly wanna be careful to not get Folklore into these forums, I mean, people will use this thread as their primary source of wingsuit discussion background material for many years to come. With this great power, comes great responsibility.

Therefore I see no other way right now than to object to your alleged "facts". First of all, lets agree what we are discussing here. Is it who came up with the concept of reaching toggles in a wingsuit first, or are we discussing which wingsuit came out first with full access to the toggles without additional zipper/cutaway steps for the pilot.

Then there is also the question of what a wingsuit is. The Prodigy consists of two parts, pants and jacket. It could be argued that it actually is closer to a tracksuit.
I think that if the wing is so small that you dont actually need to cut it away to reach your toggles, have you really made an invention by still reaching up, or is this just how the "suit" works? If there is no need to cut away anything to reach up, then you have basicly just invented a huge jacket.

But even if we somehow agree that the Prodigy is a legit WS, I am still very dissapointed by the level of folklore you bring into the forums when you claim that the Prodigy suit was the first to achieve this.
What about the S-fly Access? It came the season before Prodigy.

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0584

First of all, lets agree what we are discussing here. Is it who came up with the concept of reaching toggles in a wingsuit first, or are we discussing which wingsuit came out first with full access to the toggles without additional zipper/cutaway steps for the pilot.



We can discuss both the concept and the implementation, and we are now. But it's pretty clear my first response was to the words "initially conceived the concept."

Jeff was not the first to conceive of the idea.
I'm not sure who was.

I haven't tried many suits with escape sleeves so I can't say who does it best, but I know some are better than others.

0584

you claim that the Prodigy suit was the first to achieve this.



I made no such claim. I only pointed out that the Prodigy existed in 2005.
www.WingsuitPhotos.com

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0584

Then there is also the question of what a wingsuit is. The Prodigy consists of two parts, pants and jacket. It could be argued that it actually is closer to a tracksuit.
I think that if the wing is so small that you dont actually need to cut it away to reach your toggles, have you really made an invention by still reaching up, or is this just how the "suit" works? If there is no need to cut away anything to reach up, then you have basicly just invented a huge jacket.

But even if we somehow agree that the Prodigy is a legit WS, I am still very dissapointed by the level of folklore you bring into the forums when you claim that the Prodigy suit was the first to achieve this.
What about the S-fly Access? It came the season before Prodigy.



I thought about this some more, and you bringing up the Access made me realize that it is true that before Jeff, nobody had attempted to implement (or maybe even imagined feasible) an escape sleeve with a general purpose wingsuit (which neither the Access nor Prodigy were).

So, hopefully we can all find some common ground to agree on there. :)
www.WingsuitPhotos.com

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pgpilot1

There is a lot of misinformation in this thread, posted anonymously.

Zips:
We skydive our wingsuits much more than we BASE jump them, and after tens of thousands of jumps on the innie-outie system we have never experienced an actual issue in flight or had one reported to us. While in the plane, in a seated position or while hunched over, yes the zippers may spread apart. Checking your handles prior to exit is a mandatory part of your pre-flight procedures. While in flight or while under canopy, when it matters, the zippers on a properly-fitted suit will always align and leave the handles exposed. Therefore, if you pre-flight and your suit fits then the system will work for you the way it works for us, which is quite well. If you are a customer and you are not experiencing this, then we will modify or replace your suit immediately, as always. It’s that simple! If you want to change your innie-outie system for whatever reason, then there are permanent mods which guarantee that zippers do not move out of position.




Can't agree with Matt more here.. Ive put alot of jumps on my various squirrels over the last year or so, and can say that I have never had a problem. I run a wingsuit school, and train people every week about flying wingsuits, and do most of my first flights in my Aura, flat spinning and carving around students learning to fly, and get myself in some pretty interesting situations. I have had multiple cutaways in not just my funk and aura, but also in just about every other manufacturers suit. If you CHECK YOUR GEAR, and your gear FITS you properly, and you have set it up correctly, then you will not have a problem. Most of you skinny guys won't see this problem at all, but as a guy a little rounder around the waist than most, I can see a how when having the suit fully zipped up you may think that it could swallow a handle, but it wont. I Check my gear before I get on the plane, including how the zippers fit around the MLW, I check them again when I sit down in the aircraft, I get up and start getting ready around 10-11K, and check them again when I tighten my chest strap and zip up my suit, reminding others on the aircraft to check their gear, check my students gear, then sit back down, checking all my handles again, then as its almost our turn in the door ill go back to it and check my handles again one last time before I climb out. Do you see the trend here? Check your gear! Honestly I feel far more comfortable with the squirrel setup over a cable setup for multiple reasons, and we wont even get into moving the handles off the MLW, that's a whole other conversation I don't have time for typing on the internet, and by the way, get out and jump more so you have less time to bitch on DZ. com, and that goes for all of ya! :P

I prefer the "Floating Zipper" setup over the Cable setup for these reasons:

When I sit, move turn, or prepare for exit, the zippers move around the harness, rather than the harness moving around
the zips or cables.

On opening, there is no chance of the suit causing a handle to become dislodged or accidently cause your reserve to be pulled due to the snatch force of the opening as on some designs of the past.

I will say that before I got used to the suit, I was a little concerned about this new system that I had not used before, but as I have done hundreds of jumps on a number of different squirrel suits using this system I have seen the benefits of this design, and why its better than many previous ones used in the past by various manufacturers. I have one suit that I only jumped a few dozen times (from another manufacturer) that I actually raced in, and test jumped other versions of the suit pre production, but would only fly it in certain fashions due to its ability to make bad things happen. The system designed by Squirrel works flawlessly, just CHECK YOUR GEAR. Once there is tension on the suit, i.e. Kneeling in the door to check the spot, or standing up, the zips go right where they should be, but just for shits and giggles check em and make sure. I've done it on every wingsuit jump ive done in the last 10 years, why aren't you?

As far as the conversation being started by others in this thread about who designed what first and who should get credit, Give it up man.. That has nothing to do with this. NOONE will tell you Jeff was the MAN more than I will. We all owe most of where wingsuiting has gotten in the last 10 years to Jeff. Without Jeff, We would still be now, maybe where we were 5 years ago. Jeff was the Divinci of wingsuits and noone is arguing that.

For the Thumbloops on the Funk, they help add tension from the bottom of the legwing to the edge of the armwing, which is useful in many phases of flight. they also help when unzipping your armwings, and have found that its really a nice change of pace to fly a suit with no grippers, you can even use your hands to make small changes in your flight just like your hand out the car window, its pretty nifty, or Funky, whatever's clever.

As far as flying the Funk, gotta say I love that damn suit! Ive gotten to put a couple dozen jumps on it so far and have more people asking to borrow it than I can shake a stick at. Amazing range on its belly, and my fat ass can actually backfly it at a very decent fall rate! (now that is a small miracle to be honest) Probably the most fun to fly suit I've ever flown, and Ive had a chop in it and didn't worry about finding the handles once~ :)


If you have any questions, ask someone who knows rather than some anonymous person on DZ.com, as you can see by many of the people with questions they got their answers within minutes of even knowing they have a question~ if that's not the best customer service in the entire skydiving industry, I don't know what is. If you don't like to talk to cool people, then just check this out~ http://www.squirrel.ws/zipperstuff

Go find a nice puffy :)

Scotty Burns

FlyteSkool @ Skydive University

Z Flock #11; Muff #1909; PFI #15, USPA Lifer
Commercial Multi-Inst. Airplane/Rotory
www.flyteskool.ws Aerial Photography

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Quote

Also as for PF zippers, I jump in FL and in 90+ degree heat in 90+ % humidity, ease of getting in and out is kinda a big deal. I'm not bendy enough to put on a PF suit standing (I can but sitting is much much easier) and at the very least, getting in or out of a Tony suit is much faster and easier.




skow

I think he meant putting your rig on with wingsuit already attached. Not attaching WS to your rig.



I'm not bendy and I would consider myself as clumsy but I can put on all my pf wingsuits standing on one leg on every base exit I jumped so far ;)
I’m sure with some minor training it won’t be a problem anymore…
Michi (#1068)
hsbc/gba/sba
www.swissbaseassociation.ch
www.michibase.ch

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Its always nice to see a post from a manufacterer that answers the questions at hand, attempts to provide answers/resolution, and does not have a defensive tone. Once again showing, as many other people have said, even if squirrel suits were just AS good as other suits and not, in my own opinion, superior, the customer service would be enough to sway me from other companies. (~4 weeks for a new suit at any time isnt bad either)

I think I have flown every single model of squirrel suit ever put into production, and a fair few prototypes, and ive never had an issue with the handles ever. I ive done every acro maneuver I can imagine in my funk, and even some unintentional ones I probably couldnt repeat if I tried, definitely spent more time on my back than my front in that suit, and handles have never moved on me.

As far as using the RAD with the funk, I havent base jumped the suit so I havent really worried about it, but one of the things I have done just for fun lately is pitch, and then when I go back into flight, pop my thumbs out of the loops so when the canopy starts to open, I can reach up and fully use the potential of the RAD.

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Could not agree more. Squirrel is always willing to help, tries to improve safety with a positive attitude, advertises safety (what's safe will always be debatable) , and do not have a defensive tone. They just need more experienced ws acro pilots (most of them seem to have experience with bigger suits) on the team to improve the Funk.

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B52

Could not agree more. Squirrel is always willing to help, tries to improve safety with a positive attitude, advertises safety (what's safe will always be debatable) , and do not have a defensive tone. They just need more experienced ws acro pilots (most of them seem to have experience with bigger suits) on the team to improve the Funk.



More experience..? Did we not see the same promo? B|
http://vimeo.com/96139114
Never, under any circumstances, take a sleeping pill and a laxative on the same night.

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And...?
Don't get me wrong, it's a good promo, but it is basic flying, a lot of it not controlled or clean for ws acro standards. A great free flyer doesn't make a great ws acro pilot. It certainly helps, but it's different. Watch the stuff some of the european acro ws pilots do.

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