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Rdutch

Vigil fire

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Today I was at 1100 feet under a tandem canopy, and a video guy that was filming the tandem before me was flying straight and level a few hundred feet below me and all of a sudden his reserve pc launches. Luckily he ended up with a side by side and managed to cut away safely and land his reserve. He was flying a 9 cell canopy larger than 120 sqft, he was flying a good pattern and not doing any radical turns, he was just about to initiate a front riser turn when it happened. Luckily it fired before he started his turn, or it would have been a lot worse. Inspection on the ground showed his loop was cut. He deployed his main around 3500 feet, and only did small turns during his flight. The unit is going to be sent to AAD for inspection.


Ray
Small and fast what every girl dreams of!

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it was a vigil 1, i was told it had a vigil 2 cutter.

i'm curious what they say, and also pretty happy the dual canopy situation didn't hurt my buddy.
"What kind of man would live a life without daring? Is life so sweet that we should criticize men that seek adventure?Is there a better way to die?" Charles Lindberg, August 26th, 1938

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All,

In order to keep this from turning into a thread full of wild speculation and buffoonery: The AAD in question was built in 04, I have owned it since 06. It is a Vigil1 w/ a Vigil 2 type 3 cutter. It was in PRO mode, the reserve had been repacked less than 24 hrs previous to the activation and the unit was vetted thoroughly at that time to ensure it was not listed on any recalls, etc. I pulled at 3000 ft following a tandem video jump and had an uneventful canopy descent. The only variable that makes any sense at this time is that a big storm front was passing through that changed the pressure noticeably, although no other AAD's on the DZ appeared to have been affected.

I will not be posting the s/n or adding more fuel to the fire until Vigil responds to the email I sent them yesterday and they get a chance to look at the unit. I hope that they will be honest about their findings as to why it happened and use the data they glean from examining the device to ensure it doesn't happen again.

I would appreciate it if we could keep company bashing and/or speculation out of the discussion until word comes back from the company as to what caused the fire. I'm very happy I was able to land safely and want to leave it at that for now. Thanks!

-Harry
"Sometimes you eat the bar,
and well-sometimes the bar eats you..."

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It was in PRO mode, the reserve had been repacked less than 24 hrs previous to the activation and the unit was vetted thoroughly at that time to ensure it was not listed on any recalls, etc.



At what altitude was the reserve packed? What altitude is the landing area of your DZ?

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the reserve had been repacked less than 24 hrs previous to the activation and the unit was vetted thoroughly at that time to ensure it was not listed on any recalls, etc.



I had one do the same thing in Austraila in April. I packed the rig in the morning, turned on the Vigil (SN lower than 6600 and software 1.36) as I do with all AAD's after a re-pack and then went out. Went back to the loft around 9pm with another customer to pick up their rig and found the Vigil had fired. No idea when or weather conditions on the day as I was out all day.
I like my canopy...


...it lets me down.

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It's interesting to see how the Argus ban triggered so much heat in the AAD industry.
I assume (maybe I'm wrong) this type of incidents concerning the Vigil and Cypres are not a novelty but they were going unnoticed until now. Nobody bothered to report all incidents. Of course, some riggers were concerned about these incidents but not the general skydiving community.
I personally think most skydivers won't realize what a "backup device" means until de "100% reliability" myth is busted for good.
Is there and official statement regarding these incidents form AAD, the manufacturer of Vigil?

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It was in PRO mode, the reserve had been repacked less than 24 hrs previous to the activation and the unit was vetted thoroughly at that time to ensure it was not listed on any recalls, etc.



At what altitude was the reserve packed? What altitude is the landing area of your DZ?



Field elevation was surveyed at 650ft. (http://www.city-data.com/airports/Middletown-Regional-Hook-Field-Airport-Middletown-Ohio.html)

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the reserve had been repacked less than 24 hrs previous to the activation and the unit was vetted thoroughly at that time to ensure it was not listed on any recalls, etc.



I had one do the same thing in Austraila in April. I packed the rig in the morning, turned on the Vigil (SN lower than 6600 and software 1.36) as I do with all AAD's after a re-pack and then went out. Went back to the loft around 9pm with another customer to pick up their rig and found the Vigil had fired. No idea when or weather conditions on the day as I was out all day.



Did you send the Vigil in to be checked, and if so - what did they say?
"Where troubles melt like lemon drops, away above the chimney tops, that's where you'll find me" Dorothy

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I sent the unit back via Downward Trend of Australia as I work there.

Edwin was sick at the time apparently and while I had quick email responses from AAD I never got a real answer from them. I have been on holidays overseas and have not chased anything up yet.

They did however immediately offer to replace the unit with a new Vigil2 as I am led to believe they have done with all the units that have mis-fired on the ground or in the activation zone incorrectly.
I like my canopy...


...it lets me down.

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It's interesting to see how the Argus ban triggered so much heat in the AAD industry.
I assume (maybe I'm wrong) this type of incidents concerning the Vigil and Cypres are not a novelty but they were going unnoticed until now.



No they are not unnoticed:

http://viewer.zoho.com/docs/dcWbbA



AlexV partly right. For newcomers to the market attention. You will be very difficult to find such information on Cypres until 2003. On the market there was no competition, these failures were not given to users.

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It's interesting to see how the Argus ban triggered so much heat in the AAD industry.
I assume (maybe I'm wrong) this type of incidents concerning the Vigil and Cypres are not a novelty but they were going unnoticed until now.



No they are not unnoticed:

http://viewer.zoho.com/docs/dcWbbA


If you would prefer to know official investigation information without compilation about Cessna-206 T/N N2537X crashing, please read official report here:
http://www.docstoc.com/docs/63545688/NTSB-_-DEN08FA078pdf
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It was set in the PRO mode. In this mode, the reserve parachute will deploy at 840 feet (256 meters) if the freefall speed is equal to or greater than 78 mph (35 m/sec). According to the company, there is a 260-foot safety margin incorporated to allow for pressure differentials and body positions. The unit should have activated approximately 1,100 feet. Preliminary (filtered) data was graphed by Vigil USA, Deland, Florida, and the raw data was analyzed and graphed by Advanced Aerospace Designs, Vigil, Belgium. According to these graphs, maximum altitude attained was 10,223, feet. Time spent in freefall was 91 seconds, reaching a maximum speed of 101 mph. The AAD deployed the reserve parachute at 1,097 feet. The recording ended at an altitude of 155 feet.

The other deceased skydiver was wearing an Cypres-USA AAD, manufactured by Airtec Safety Systems, Bad Wunnenberg, Germany, and distributed by SSK Industries, Inc., Lebanon, Ohio. The Cypres AAD will deploy the reserve parachute at 750 feet (229 meters) if the freefall speed is equal to or greater than 79 mph (35 m/sec). Two flights were recorded on an unknown date (the unit does not have a calendar function). The highest altitude recorded on the second flight, which lasted 23 minutes, was approximately 3,220 meters (10,500 feet) agl. According to Airtec's report, "The parameters for an activation
were not met at any time. The unit shut itself off automatically after 14 hours total running time. The unit did not detect a vertical speed higher than 35 m/s (79 mph) below 750 feet on the second flight of the day and therefore did not activate." Since witnesses said the airplane recovered from the spin momentarily approximately 1,000 feet, this cancelled its sensing of the freefall velocity.



Shortly. In that incident both units worked as designed. Vigil fired first because its activation altitude by default is greater (840ft + 260ft correction = 1100ft by manual) then Cypres has (750ft by manual) and there were activation conditions for Vigil firing. After Vigil fired aircraft falling speed had been decreased by spare parachute opening and speed was not enough for Cypres activation at Cypres activation altitude.

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Add +260 to the Cypres too.
(It isn't unfortunately mentioned in the manual, unlike for the Vigil, but it is also a factor.)

So it is Vigil 840+260=1100'
Cypres 750+260=1010'

While it could be the plane slowed down just enough after the Vigil fired but before the Cypres would have, I think there's suspicion that the 'hair trigger' Vigil may have fired off in a situation where the Cypres wouldn't. Whether the aircraft was truly dropping over 78 or 79 mph, in its spin or whatever it was, I'm not sure.

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Add +260 to the Cypres too.
(It isn't unfortunately mentioned in the manual, unlike for the Vigil, but it is also a factor.)

are you sure about that ? do you have it from Airtec or SSK ?
scissors beat paper, paper beat rock, rock beat wingsuit - KarlM

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It is communicated by both in the past, the explain a.o. a number of "misfires" (e.g. "worked as designed") of cypres. (Mostly activation during opening of main canopies (remember we *planned* our opening @ 2000ft those days)). A quick reference to a SKK communication from 1994:

http://www.sskinc.com/cypres/cyp12.htm
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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Add +260 to the Cypres too.
(It isn't unfortunately mentioned in the manual, unlike for the Vigil, but it is also a factor.)


No.
You are not right.
Only Vigil has additional altitude correction. This fact is wroten in the manual and mentioned in the investigation report. Please, read it again more carefully.

I have never met any mentions about any additional altitude correction for Cypres in official documents. If you have such, please refer on them here. In opposite case it will stay only your asssumption.

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