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FTP_07

Traveling with Gear

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Okay....so I know some of you have said that people have in the past wondered WHY anyone would even bring a parachute on as carry on and some have even grumbled about other skydivers just wanting to show off, ect. I recently got my rig and have plans of carrying it on board on a commercial airline and am not interested in checking it (even though I got it for a steal it was still alot of money as we all know rigs are!). Shipping it home will be costly and I'm not letting my rig out of my sight now that I've gotten ahold of it (yes, I'm in love with my rig - pathetic but hey, it's my first lol). Anyway, I'm asking for advice on how to get through security with this as it has an AAD and what I can possibly expect to have happen to me when trying to go through security. Thanks all for any positive input.

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Keep your rig in a gear bag or carry-on sized suitcase to protect against spills, scrapes, and unwanted attention. Don't put anything else in with the rig if you can avoid it. If you have a Cypres, carry the xray card. The TSA has written procedures regarding the handling and inspection of parachutes. They should only inspect the rig in your presence and shouldn't open the reserve container. If you have questions or concerns, ask for a supervisor. Bring a pull-up in case you have to re-close your main.

I've carried my rig on dozens of times and only had issues one time, when I put a weight belt in with the rig. They also opened the main container for a swab test once. 95% of the time it goes through without a second glance.

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Well, that's the only thing - I don't have a gear bag and I'm leaving Sunday night. Only other thing I was planning on putting in with the rig is my helmet as there won't be any room in my suitcase for it (if I can get a gear bag or some kind of bag for it the night before). Everything else I have as far as requirements (pull up, x-ray card...er, well, it'll be a print out off the computer but I think it will serve the purpose). Well...now to find a gear bag or something similar that will get me through this.

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Just go to Ross or TJ Maxx for the time being and get a bag that your rig will fit in. It doesn't have to be fancy, and you can buy a better one later for future trips. Hell, you can get one at Target or any other store like that. :)
Or Goodwill! They almost always have bags that size.
And for the record: the appropriate ranking of cool modes of transportation is jet pack, hover board, transporter, Batmobile, and THEN giant ant.
D.S. #8.8

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Well, that's the only thing - I don't have a gear bag and I'm leaving Sunday night. Only other thing I was planning on putting in with the rig is my helmet as there won't be any room in my suitcase for it (if I can get a gear bag or some kind of bag for it the night before). Everything else I have as far as requirements (pull up, x-ray card...er, well, it'll be a print out off the computer but I think it will serve the purpose). Well...now to find a gear bag or something similar that will get me through this.



A duffel bag or larger backpack will work, as will many 20- or 22-inch roller bags (I believe 22 is the max allowable carry-on). Depending on the size of your rig and the shape of the bag you may have trouble getting both into a bag that's an allowable carry-on size. But you do get two carry-on bags, so you can always toss the helmet into a smaller bag.
"There is only one basic human right, the right to do as you damn well please. And with it comes the only basic human duty, the duty to take the consequences." -P.J. O'Rourke

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So here is the question: Why should they be carried on? Is it because of the fact that luggage personnel just don't give a damn how they handle stuff?



That's part of it. Baggage gets mis-handled and lost, and it is always the most expensive thing I'm carrying with me on a trip, by far. I'd rather keep that in my possession.

I also carry mine on so that I can be present at the TSA inspection. I've traveled with my rig a lot and the overwhelming majority of the TSA checks fall into a couple categories:

1) Bag sails through like any other bag and I take it off at the other end and I'm on my way.

2) Screener calls for a bag check and the checker opens the bag, swabs the rig, makes a DB Cooper joke, and sends me on my way. (A variation on this is the screener is totally confused, calls a supervisor, and the supervisor calls for the bag check).

However, there's a third category that happens rarely, but it does happen, where you get an ill-informed screener or supervisor and they want to start poking and prodding and opening things or otherwise telling you that you can't carry that on the plane. I like being able to be there to politely and patiently explain what's going on. So far (and I bet I've carried my rig with me upwards of 100 times) I have never had a problem carrying the rig on fully intact after these discussions, but I like to keep the rig with me just in case.
"There is only one basic human right, the right to do as you damn well please. And with it comes the only basic human duty, the duty to take the consequences." -P.J. O'Rourke

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i traveled with my rigs a lot this season. You don't need to put it in a bag if its a carry on unless you are worried about people breathing on it. I don't carry the TSA or x-ray card. Most "security" agents have no clue what they are looking at so they call over a supervisor. Its possible to get swabbed, but that's about as far as they go with them. What you should watch out for is snagging the metal reserve handle if you have one.

If you check the rig, make sure it is in a bag and be sure to pile all your dirty laundry esp. dirty underwear on top of it to prevent looky loos.

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All very excellent points... The real issue is when your the last individual on the plane and you have people with like 15 damn carryons and all the bins are full though :(



Doesn't happen to me that often since I'm usually one of the first on thanks to traveling a ton.:D

At that point, though, you've eliminated a lot of the risk points - if you gate check, you're past security, and it won't get quite as much "handling" as if you'd checked it at the check-in counter. All the more reason to have it in a decent bag, though - can you imagine being told you'd have to gate-check your rig without the protection of an external bag? Eek.:S

Getting on late is also one of those situations where being super-nice to the flight attendants and explaining what you have and why you'd strongly prefer that it not be checked (expensive, life-saving equipment, prone to damage, etc.) - sometimes they can find secret spots in closets if you're really nice about it.
"There is only one basic human right, the right to do as you damn well please. And with it comes the only basic human duty, the duty to take the consequences." -P.J. O'Rourke

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The worst I've gotten in about ten times of traveling with mine is a swab tests. Most of the time if you tell them that if they pull the wrong thing they are gonna have 170 square feet of nylon pop out, they step back. Funny enough (or scary?) I realized the other day that I had traveled ten times with my rig......with a big 'ol hook knife in the leg strap not realizing it and totally forgotten about without a word ever being said. lol. That last time I was scared cause the x-ray chick was hollaring about the guy in front of me with the tooth paste in his bag. lol. I got through with a swab test.

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If you have a Cypres, carry the xray card.



I've traveled with my Cypres-equipped rig many times over the past 15 years and I still don't know what benefit there is to carrying that Cypres x-ray card. So they x-ray your baggage, see something they're not used to seeing, and you hand them a card showing them the same thing they are seeing on their x-ray monitor. What good does that do?

Imagine for a moment you are a TSA employee and your friendly local terrorist shows up with his very own homemade incendiary device he's trying to get onto the plane. You don't recognize the shape of the item you see on the display but that friendly local helpful terrorist pulls out a card he laminated at Kinko's that shows a picture of the same thing you are seeing. Are you supposed to be satisfied with that and send him on his way? I mean, after all, he had a card.
"For you see, an airplane is an airplane. A landing area is a landing area. But a dropzone... a dropzone is the people."

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i flew home with my right in may this year and just had it on my back through security placed it in one of the baskets through the x-ray machine it went though with no problem both in denver and in NY even with a AAD in it.

i never let it leave my sight i don't trust other people with the most expensive thing that i own.

with that i did pull the leg straps all the way closed and rolled up the chest strap so that there was nothing dangling around to get caught on. i don't think anyone look at me differently.

on a different note i was traveling with my brother and he joked about pulling my reserve in line at security.

also one of the guys at my drop zone told me that only an FAA certified rigger can handle your reserve so if they want to open it then ask if they are a FAA rigger or if they want to give you the money for the repack them selves.

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also one of the guys at my drop zone told me that only an FAA certified rigger can handle your reserve so if they want to open it then ask if they are a FAA rigger or if they want to give you the money for the repack them selves.



That won't stop them, and good luck getting them to pay you any money. You can holler about FAA certified riggers all day but it won't do any good. The ONLY thing TSA is not allowed to open is a diplomatic pouch.
"For you see, an airplane is an airplane. A landing area is a landing area. But a dropzone... a dropzone is the people."

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Also remember, different airlines have different rules and weight allowances. Ryanair, for example only allows you to take 10Kgs - that's the weight of my wife's purse!!

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RYANAIR :- Parachutes of any type, recreational or sports type or paragliding wings (also known as 'canopy') can be accepted for carriage as checked-in or carry-on baggage subject to the standard restrictions for size and weight. These packs may contain an auxiliary or emergency 'chute' and a barometric mechanical activating (auto-release) device. These accessories are acceptable for check-in.

The parachute pack must not contain pyrotechnics or smoke canisters- these accessories are not acceptable for carriage on our aircraft.




If you are trying to take a big arse rig with you, then expect to have it stuffed in the hold - so ensure that it's in a hard case.

(.)Y(.)
Chivalry is not dead; it only sleeps for want of work to do. - Jerome K Jerome

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If you don't want to carry it on, but are worried about the baggage gorillas, you can do what many pro photographers are doing these days: Pack it in a hard case with a starter pistol.

http://lifehacker.com/5448014/pack-a-gun-to-protect-valuables-from-airline-theft-or-loss

Because there's a "firearm", they do the inspection in front of you, you lock the case and keep the key, and they're not allowed to open it up.

-Jon

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Thanks all. I managed to get it home with me. Stupid United though.....there was, on my first flight to my connecting flight, a baggage wrangler who took it from me though stating it needed to be checked. I was livid. I really don't like United anyway since they have LITTLE compartments. I could have had it in the seat next to me through that flight as there was noone in that seat! I got it back going to my connecting flight and then the connecting flight allowed me to bring it on and, once again, I couldn't get the darned thing in the compartment, but, again the seat next to me was empty. They ended up letting me keep it with me on that flight. That made my day. But the posts about people handling our rigs and whatnot brought up an incident I had at a dropzone and I couldn't believe what I was seeing. All I can say is that guy was lucky I didn't punch his lights out - I had left my rig sitting in a chair and I had my eye on it at all times. I had been waiting for the guy who ran the dz only to find out he wasn't coming in, never mind the packer as my rig needs a repack. So I was discouraged and was getting ready to leave (I was having a brief conversation with someone who worked there) when I see this guy make a beeline for my rig. I jokingly said to him don't touch or he'll lose a finger. To late - he violated my rig. I, and any decent packer, were the only ones to touch that rig. He started picking it up and looking at it and everything else. OMG. I thought my eyes were gonna fall out of my head. He set it down and then walked over and said 'Excuse me?' in which I said 'That's my rig....don't touch it!'. He said 'I didn't know who's rig that was!'. Idiot....you were the last one to handle that now. Hope you rest easy knowing that. Who's rig did he think it was? You don't just start handling someone's rig! Ask before you touch! And I informed him that I wouldn't have done that and that you don't just go handling someone elses rig. I would have asked around - especially since it was dead there anyway. Argh! It was such a shock. Maybe if I had known him I wouldn't have gotten as wound up about it....I don't know....but still....should ask before doing that.

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What did he do to your rig that pissed you off? I'm not getting it. Are you upset because he just picked it up, maybe moving it out of the way or trying to figure out who it belonged to?



That's my question, too. Maybe the guy was seeing if it was a rental rig that he could use? The only rigs I touch are either rental rigs or rigs that are in the way of the packing area...
Don't forget to pull!

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You lost me in this post. I get the general principle that you don't mess with other people's stuff, but I don't see why you got so upset. If I saw someone just pick up my rig and set it down, I'd give them the benefit of the doubt at least. Definitely wouldn't be mad. Just saying..
I wish Google Maps had an "Avoid Ghetto" routing option.

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