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IanHarrop

PIA - If you're there - What's new?

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The RSL AKA: Stevens cutaway system, was invented by Perry Stevens in the early 60,s. Mr. Stevens consulted with the FAA regarding their approval for his system. Because the system does not interfere with operation nor does it alter airworthiness The FAA advised approval was not necessary. It falls under the "extra equipment category". AS 8015 b provides 4 tests with the RSL actuating the reserve pack "if the RSL is provided as a part of the assembly. All systems in common use today provide for user defeat at any time. AS 8015b provides no qualification tests with an RSL disconnected and unconstrained. Master Rigger

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Can someone explain to me what the advantage of this new pin is? i.o.w. what problem is solved?
The trouble with skydiving; If you stink at it and continue to jump, you'll die. If you're good at it and continue to jump, you'll see a lot of friends die...

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Apparently because of the positioning of the loop and the shape of the standard pin there is a potential for a bent pin if everything happens to line up wrong and your closing loop is extremely tight.

Best to review the video http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=uh5hnkW2K-Q
"Where troubles melt like lemon drops, away above the chimney tops, that's where you'll find me" Dorothy

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John Sherman explains the pin very well in the video, but the upshot of it is that it has an off-center eye, which means that no matter what angle it's pulled, it will release and not bend. Additionally, because there are no squared edges as current pins offer, it will "roll" properly when being pulled.
This allows for a more concise and consistent deployment, since any angle will work more efficiently. The new pins cost nearly 3 times to manufacture at this time, but Mr. Sherman believes the cost will eventually come down.

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John Sherman explains the pin very well in the video, but the upshot of it is that it has an off-center eye, which means that no matter what angle it's pulled, it will release and not bend. Additionally, because there are no squared edges as current pins offer, it will "roll" properly when being pulled.
This allows for a more concise and consistent deployment, since any angle will work more efficiently. The new pins cost nearly 3 times to manufacture at this time, but Mr. Sherman believes the cost will eventually come down.


_________________________________

I had a closing pin very similar to that on my first rig (Classiflyer)!


Chuck

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What struck me was how little "new stuff" there was. I guess that means that things have stabilized for a while gearwise...which might actually be a good thing. Our big problem, if we have just one, is not gear related...it is people, or training, related.



I totally agree with everything you said, Bill. It was a very-busy week for us in my booth, but I didn't see hardly anything I would consider "clever" when I finally got the chance to walk around and check out everyone elses offerings. What I did notice was a lot of vendors there for the first time.

Chuck

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I saw the video, in fact even 2 hours after you uploaded it. I also tried to place the comment over there, but don't have a youtube account. It may be a small language barrier, but I just don't see it. I was not aware from any flaws in the standard pin. I've seen a pin "stand-up" on a rare occasion, but I blamed that one on a wrongly matched pin and grommet.
The trouble with skydiving; If you stink at it and continue to jump, you'll die. If you're good at it and continue to jump, you'll see a lot of friends die...

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I haven't been around long enough to know whether square pins vs a rounded pin is a problem or not, so I'll leave that to John Sherman to argue one way or the other. I do see that the rounded and offset pin pulls more smoothly, but I'm not educated enough to say that it's a big deal or not. If it does increase the speed and safety at pull time, I'm all for it. If it doesn't change the speed, it's merely an alternative.
If it's slower, bends more easily, or hinders the opening process, obviously it won't fly.
If nothing else, it's great to see that minds never stop seeking ways of making even the smallest aspect of our sport better, yeah?

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It was a very-busy week for us in my booth...

***

Errr....:$

Which booth was that?
Don't tell me I miss you! :o


There was a lot to see, biggest convention so far...or so they said! B|

I sat in on a very interesting riggers discussion on the 20 year (or less) mandatory retirement of reserves and possibly harnesses.










~ If you choke a Smurf, what color does it turn? ~

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I sat in on a very interesting riggers discussion on the 20 year (or less) mandatory retirement of reserves and possibly harnesses.



Was there any outcome / consensus?



The consensus was, that there are many and varied opinions as to the 'service life' of both canopies and harnesses.

It was stated that although it has not been a problem to this point, it very well could be, and the manufactures needed to address the concern now, in advance of a fatality because the 'overemphasis' following one could possibly be detrimental to the sport.

Some riggers thought it was much to do about nothing since the 120 day inspection would / should catch any problems.

A manufacturer suggested that the only way to truly tell if a harness still had the integral strength needed, was to test it to destruction...Bill Booth didn't feel that was necessary and that a thorough visual is all that would be required.
(in most cases)

Most everyone seemed to agree that if and when a problem arises it would be most likely on a pilot's emergency rig, since they are notoriously lax on the care and maintenance of the parachute system.

It was also brought up that in years past very few 'sport' rigs were subjected to the constant and high volume of use some 'professional' jumpers put them through.
ie. 1500-2000 jumps in a 12 month period, and THAT should also be taken into consideration.

One suggested path was to place a 10 YEAR 'general' life cycle on ALL reserves / harnesses with the system then being sent back to the manufacturer for evaluation and re-certification for another 5 years, following THAT 5 year cycle, another send back and 5 year re-cert would come into play....at the end of the 20 years the retirement would be mandatory.

I have a lot of old gear that I maintain impeccably and for a while during the discussion I was leaning toward the comments made by some there that this was actually, or would be viewed by the skydiving 'public', as an unnecessary planned obsolesce to facilitate the buying / selling of new gear...

...until the points were made and agreed upon by ALL, that the substandard quality of the materials the manufactures are 'forced' to buy these days do indeed raise the question of long term durability.

One highly respected rigger made the comment that some rigs built 20 years ago are stronger than some with only 10 years of recent use...and taking that a step further the materials used on some 30-40 year old military gear is still as strong or stronger that recently manufactured systems now in use.
THAT kind of brought the point home that this may be a viable concern that WILL need to be dealt with in some fashion, in the very near future.

Listening in on various topics, like this one really opened MY eyes as to the fragile state of the so call 'status quo' in regard to 'our' standard operating procedures.

I've ALWAYS had the highest regard for Bill Booth and his contributions to the skydiving industry, listening to his talks brought that respect to an even higher level.

He's given a tremendous amount of detailed thought as to the ramifications to our sport should any number of things occur. Reminded me of a 'chess master' that is 10 moves ahead of everyone else in the room.

The analytical dissection Bill made concerning the two Tandem fatalities...the cause, the cure, the present and the future, made me for one, realize that it's the responsibility of US ALL to take steps to insure nothing like that EVER happens again.
It's only prudent for us ALL to become educated as well as willing to speak up if something doesn't look right regarding the things happening around us, at the DZ, in the AC...

Stop and think for a moment of a governmental 'knee jerk' reaction to another tandem fatality that would possibly put an end to ALL tandem jumping...

...how might that effect YOU?

Without the tandem $$$ we've come to depend on to subsidize our plush DZ's and turbine AC, the face of the sport would be instantly and drastically changed, and not for the better!

This was my first PIA convention, I attend several conventions of this 'type' each year, though not centered on the skydiving industry. Very quickly into the week I came to realize the vast amount and importance of the information being shared, put THIS convention at the top of my list to attend again. I would recommend to anyone with even the slightest interest in where our sport is both currently AND where it's headed, to make plans for going to the 2009 meeting, even IF it's in Barcelona! ;)



~AND hey, finally got to put a few faces to names of dotcommers I've met, but never 'met'! :ph34r:










~ If you choke a Smurf, what color does it turn? ~

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John Sherman's "new" welded pin looks a lot like the welded pins that fell out of fashion 20 years ago.
While they may perform/pull better, welded hardware is a huge quality-control headache!

Why do you think Strong Enterprises moved away from welded 3D rings as soon as they possibly could?

Similarly, only the first (prototype) R.I. 1 rings were welded.

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... isn't that 'an elegant solution to a problem that doesn't exist'? what precisely is the problem with the steel cable that the nylon one solves?



>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

How quickly you forget!

What about the whole recall on Capwell ripcord pins a few years back? (CW0103 or something like that ...)

Steel ripcord cables have always been a production bottle-neck and an on-going headache for quality control types.

There is also the whole issue of setting up a separate shop for metal-working ... because the last thing you want it metal fillings, chips, etc. mixing in with nylon fabric.

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Sounds like a good reason to change to me.

I didn't see the video yet, but how can pull force be less ?

>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

It is a question f ripcord flexibility.
When pulled straight or at 90 degrees to the housing, Spectra ripcords have slightly less friction.
However, the big change occurs when you try to pull a metal ripcord at 180 degrees to the housing (i.e. towards your chin). Friction on metal ripcords get obscenely high, while Spctra ripcords are still pull-able.

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Sorry, I was replying to Rob's comment about the pins. Guess it could have been a more clear response.

Can the pins be cast? Or hot-forged vs welding?
The comment at PIA was that the welded pins cost around 3.00 to make vs the 1.00 that the current pins cost.

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Hi DSE,

For the most part, cast metal devices do not have the 'toughness' or durability/flexibility (many flexions) that forged or machined metals have.

Castings tend toward brittle breaks/fractures. They are dynamic failures and not gradual failures like forgings.

I didn't see it put heard that John Sherman gave a demo of his pins being bent back and forth numerous times through 180 degree arc before failure. Just to prove that they will stay together when flexed/bent.

That is one reason castings have never been used in this industry, military or sport.

HTH,

Jerry

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Also new at PIA:

Aerodyne Research signed a licensing agreement with Bill Booth to install the Skyhook on the ICON



That is awesome... let me know when I can send my rig in for retrofitting. ;):)
"The restraining order says you're only allowed to touch me in freefall"
=P

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Similarly, I heard that Sigmas are moving away from the stamped (from sheet stainless steel) reserve pins towards forged reserve pins. Sigma reserve pins are shaped similar to Sherman's welded pins, but thicker.
This is because forged pins will be stronger and less likely to bend. If they do bend, forged pins are less likely to crack. This is because the forging process aligns the grain of the metal with the exterior shape.
This the same reason PIA has not followed the custom automotive fashion of carving exotic parts for billet steel.

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