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DrSher

I want a reliable 7-cell new main. Something wrong with me?

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I appreciate all the advice. You guys have been great. I really need to get to work on Mondays and Tuesdays and cannot (at this time) afford to break a hand or a leg. Hook turns are also an addicting thing and hard to get away from once you start, so a forgiving canopy is a must.

So, after browsing the canopy websites; researching books and talking with a few "skygods", I have decided upon a Triathlon 175.
A little bit intrigued by the Storm (and like the name), but if Triathlon is closest to the old Cruiselite, then..
My body weight is from 180-220 pounds depending upon season, avg 200 and I HATE hard landings and openings. Someone that was into BASE recommended me to get a larger size canopy, but I am many years away from that and cannot imagine it should be much different at the end. In any case, I am more interested in learning CRW over the next years and Triathlon also has some good CRW specific canopies.

The only time I rode a PD, I broke my nose. There should be pictures of that somewhere... The steeper ascent is appealing enough to avoid them.


The reserve will be Swift Plus. Had the old Swift in past and besides opening when it had to, it also was great to control and navigate and landings were soft..

So I have ended upon a Triathlon and a Swift Plus. Any advice about rig to put it in? I have a fancy for Vector, but is there something else?

There is still lots of time to learn it..

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I don't know how many jumps you have exactly, and what kind of a refresher you've had, but 175 will put you at almost 1.3 wingloading in the "average" scenario and 1.4 on the heavy end. That is not a docile, forgiving WL for someone who's had decades of a break in the sport. If you're going for soft landing and no injuries, 175 is most likely too small.

http://www.flyaerodyne.com/triathlonsel.asp
"Skydivers are highly emotional people. They get all excited about their magical black box full of mysterious life saving forces."

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Hmmmm, yes, that is true. I would not consider myself green at this point, but definitely rusty.
So two questions then?

*Does the type of canopy influence how forgiving WL is?

*I flew a 220 or so in the past, but was always surrounded with people flying smaller. Well most at least. So with this calculation, assuming 200#avg, then I should gowith200 sqF then?

There is still lots of time to learn it..

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You know you can still by a Fury 220, the Glide Path version of the Django Pegasus?

http://flightconcepts.com/7-cell-reserves/ Flight Concepts is the reorganization descendant of Glide Path.

Or a zp manta in sizes down to 185.

Don't get me wrong, I like and own a triathlon but seems you want to relive the old days.

And the newest Swift Plus somewhere close to 25 years old. Many riggers have age limits to the stuff they will work on. While I don't have a drop dead age for these any Swift Plus is getting pretty old. You should update your choice of reserve. If you want old school new Glide Path/Flight Concepts reserves are also still available.
I'm old for my age.
Terry Urban
D-8631
FAA DPRE

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*Does the type of canopy influence how forgiving WL is?

No. Higher wingloading = going faster than lower wingloadings. More weight per square ft plus shorter lines plus shorter brake lines always adds up to: faster turns, faster landings, faster mistakes, faster response needed to correct mistakes, and canopies respond to smaller inputs overall (sometimes called "twitchy"). All this applies when comparing the same model of canopy (Spectre to Spectre, Triathalon to Triathalon, Velocity to Velocity, etc).

Quote

*I flew a 220 or so in the past, but was always surrounded with people flying smaller. Well most at least. So with this calculation, assuming 200#avg, then I should gowith200 sqF then?

A 220 puts you at a nice, comfortable, safe wingloading of 1:1. Only go for a higher wingloading if you are comfortable doing everything at that 1:1 wingloading on a 220 - if you can tiptoe those landings today (one of your goals), land comfortably in any direction with any amount of traffic and in any condition, and have a full range of control of all inputs of that canopy - THEN think about a smaller canopy that has you going faster. There are lots of downsizing checklists available. Given that you're not physically recent on doing any of the maneuvers on the lists on any canopy and you stated that your priority is remaining uninjured so you can work to support your life (and skydive habit) - there is no reason to go any faster until you can do everything on the downsizing checklists at the only wingloading you have flown thus far.

Downsizing checklist: http://www.dropzone.com/cgi-bin/forum/gforum.cgi?do=post_view_flat;post=792344;page=1;sb=post_latest_reply;so=ASC;mh=25;

My recommendation: Get current. Rent gear, start on a 220, decide what canopy you like. Once your skills are back, work on the downsizing checklists and determine the minimum size canopy you are ok with being under in the worst case scenario = your reserve canopy size. (For me the worst case is unconscious or otherwise injured so much I can not give any input for landing. My personal wingloading on a reserve is always 1:1 or greater.) Then start shopping for a container and get that on order while you are demo-ing mains and figuring out that size and type. Containers fit similar size canopies for mains and reserves. If you're looking for a 220 to start want room to downsize to a 210 or 200 or 190 when you do want to go faster under canopy, that makes sense. You're not going to find a container that will fit a 220 reserve and a 7-cell 175 main - that is a conversation with a rigger or dealer. 7-cell mains pack smaller than 9cells - which is great for fitting a large main to start with, not so great for the 1.4 wL 175sf 7 cell you see yourself moving too in the future (that packs similar to a 150sf 9 cell canopy). I guess what I'm saying here is: really consider what is an appropriate wingloading for your main now, for your next jump, and for your reserve always (because that might be your next jump!).

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So, essentially you are saying I should go with a SqF equivalent to my BW. ATM, I am heading back to 200 again, but may not get further than that for a while, so 200 should be OK then..
I witnessed someone that weighed 120 kilo (after weighing) land a Mini-Surfair (PdF), that was like 155 or something. They stopped taping him right before the landing, unfortunately...;)

I want my own ASAP. Once I am told I don't need student gear, I will go for it. Too impatient to explore the first one.

Maybe I should just contact a rigger, tell him/her what I want (Triathlon and Swift) and then defer the rig selection.

I am getting so fired up now, that I can hardly think about anything else. Have been watching lots of AFF shots on YouTube, old video pictures and the rest of the time I am looking for climbing routes to do DWS. It's not affecting work (yet), but it definitely has made my wife wonder WTF?? She also wants to do it with me, so OK. My little daughter just got mad that "she never gets to do fun stuff"..

I am sooo fired up now that even watching a soccer game (today is Toronto vs NYRB) does not start excite me. It's gonna be AWESOME to come back again.

Again, keep coming with these awesome advices. Next thing now is to contact the dealer for Triathlon. I'm sure they would do custom colors? I would like ALL bright red..

There is still lots of time to learn it..

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Sounds like you've got a healthy combination of excitement and desire to be safe - perfect.
Yes, find a local rigger who can measure you for a rig and help choose which brand. The big names are all good, but some riggers have preferences for ease of packing or their experiences with customer service, etc. Keep your rigger happy and everyone is happy!

It takes time to have a rig built. That wait time is a good time to demo different main canopies and build skills. It sounds like you're like me and don't want to just sit around while you wait for your gear, get out there and jump and learn, wash rinse repeat.

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I'm just gonna echo what has already been said. If you want reliability, head on openings, and comfort Spectre is the way to go. I bet my back will thank me later on in life as I do enjoy those 800-1000 feet openings. Its not a speed demon nor will you be able to swoop it per say, but it will get you to the ground safely every time. I have over 300 jumps on one, and I like its flexibility. I can fun jump or wingsuit on the same canopy.

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Spectre opens slow? I would not like that, but reliable and comfortable is important too. HOW "slow" is it and does that mean smaller canopy size can be used?

Spectre and Storm I like the names too. First time I ever heard the word Spectre was in a game of Dungeons&Dragons as some incorporeal undead.

What does the name represent with the canopy?

There is still lots of time to learn it..

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DrSher

Maybe I should just contact a rigger, tell him/her what I want (. . . Swift [reserve])



Echoing what Terry wrote a few posts earlier:

1. If you insist on a Swift+ reserve, you will get a canopy that was designed 30 years ago, when wing loadings of around 1.0lb/ft^2 were common for experienced jumpers.

2. The canopy will have been manufactured 25 years ago. There is no such thing as a new Swift+. It will likely come with an incomplete history, i.e. you will not know how many times it has been packed or jumped, or in what conditions.

3. Your canopy will be an orphan since the company that made it is no longer in the sport business.

4. The Kevlar tapes and the particular variety of Spectra lines are not common, which makes repairs more of a hassle, and the canopy's span-wise construction is something that most riggers today are unfamiliar with. IIRC, there are also two Service Bulletins, one for improperly shaped ribs, and one for improper bartacks on the lines.

-Mark

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If you want to do CRW - definitely get a Triathlon or Spectre. Triathlons are a tad more compatible than Spectres but both are good. Storms fall out of the sky. Their angle of attack is practically straight and they are 100% incompatible for CRW with any other canopy other Storms.

I have ~10k jumps, 3k CRW jumps. I jump a Lightning for hard core CRW and I own 10ish Triathlons for freefall and everything else. Triathlons are very compatible for stacks and otehr small ways.

7 cells rock :-)

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Agreeing with councilman,
Get a Triathlon 210-ish and a similar-sized reserve.
I vaguely remember a Swift Plus 215?????
There was only one Service Bulletin on Swift Plus .... improperly bar-tacked suspension lines. Since the SB was written (early 1990s?) I have inspected and repacked dozens (maybe hundreds) of Swift Plurs and never found any defective bar-tacks.
If you cannot find a decent second-hand Seift Plus, Performance Designs, Aerodyne, etc. all make slightly better reserves and major dealers (Chuting Star, Square One, Para-Gear, etc.) all have 210 square foot reserves on the shelf. Just phone around.
Given your 200-ish pound weight and another 20 pounds of equipment, I would recommend canopies in the 220 square foot range.

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Yes, CRW is definitely on my list to learn as well. So I guess some more take home is to be size conscious; get a modern reserve and talk to a rigger.

I thought Swift was still made as active reserve. Never mind if it is not. Then I may just as well settle on Sqf and then just have rigger come with best suggestions to match it. I want something that responded as well as it did.
I had a streamer that flew "a little", but it was clear it was not going to work out. I actually landed on the DZ and remember I was a bit shaken, but I got back up next morning after a party in the evening. The Swift opened straight, quick and I remember a feather landing with it too.
Something similar(quick and easy to use) would be great.

Finally, can you jump triathlon before you get A license? I would like to start ordering one if I can jump it soon.

There is still lots of time to learn it..

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Depends upon the school.
The more progressive schools keep two or three sizes of student and rental canopies in service.
Most of their fleet will be in the 280 square foot range, then one or two 230s and finally a few 190s.
Once students demonstrate competent landings under 280s, instructors might allow a student to start jumping a 230. If you can borrow/rent a Triathlon 230 ... Great!
I forget exactly the largest size of Triathlon.
Again, the best person advise you (on canopy selection) is a local instructor who has watched your last half-dozen landings.

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damir

I'm just gonna echo what has already been said. If you want reliability, head on openings, and comfort Spectre is the way to go. I bet my back will thank me later on in life as I do enjoy those 800-1000 feet openings. Its not a speed demon nor will you be able to swoop it per say, but it will get you to the ground safely every time. I have over 300 jumps on one, and I like its flexibility. I can fun jump or wingsuit on the same canopy.



Pretty sure if you wanted to you still swoop the shit out of a Spectre, at these guys are pretty good at it :p
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=N2Y_zkRjSNw

From what I know its a great canopy though have only heard good things about it. The 1000' snivel well I'm sure that can easily be corrected by changing ones packing technique a little.

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As a rigger that has packed a few - Forget the Swift, any of the currently made reserves fly and land fairly great at a low wingloading.

The general advice I would give you is to forget about the experience from 30 years ago and look at this like a fresh student that has not made any jumps. Do the training jumps and refresher jumps on the schools gear to see what size the instructors feel is best for you. Typically they will put you on a rig that is your body weight + the weight of the gear (30 pounds for student gear) in square footage or larger. So at 200 lbs with out anything I would not be surprised if they put you on a 230+. Depending on how your landings are going they may want you to stay there for a while until you get all of your landings completely dialed in or they could have you jumper larger or smaller as needed. I have seen people coming back from long layoffs that decide that they wanted to stay at that wingloading since it was comfortable to them and I have seen others that go down a few sized because they wanted to go a lot faster and had good piloting skills.

A few major things have changed since even the early 90's in terms of canopy flight at the dropzone, the first is that with the larger number of small canopies there is a need for increased awareness under canopy. Things that used to happen a lot at small DZ's and back in the day like holding a toggle and spiraling a dozen times from 2000 feet to 800 feet are now liable to cause a collision and fatalities. This is also a consideration for pull altitudes, when jumpers with larger canopies at a lighter loading are out first they may be passed by half the load on the way back to the landing area. Many instructors and video flyers who are jumping out last tend to be flying the smallest canopies at the DZ, this leads to those instructors flying the fastest canopies through the rest of the traffic to get back to the DZ for landings. With the small canopies they start their final hook turn at 700-1200 feet so you really need to make sure you are heads up under canopy to A) stay alive, B) stay out of a collision and C) not get yelled at by half the load and potentially grounded for causing a dangerous situation. All of these details should be covered in a lot of detail by your instructors but make sure to ask since a lot of new instructors have not been around to know what we used to do.;)

Second thing that has a major revolution in canopies was the adoption of Zero Porosity fabric on all main canopies. This fabric does not let air through at the same rates that the old F1-11 fabric does so that means that the canopies last for a long time before they wear out. Most F1-11 canopies start landing like bricks after 1000+ jumps and their landings start going downhill at low as 600-700 jumps. ZP canopies can go 2000+ jumps. The downside is that with htis new material the canopies if not properly packed now can open hard enough to injure. There have been a few fatalities that jumpers have suffered hard openings with internal injuries that have lead to their death. A "Slow" opening canopy can actually be a really nice thing especially as you get older since it allows for more time for your body to decelerate until the canopy opens fully. Most student gear is of the slower opening designs since students may be deploying in a spin, tumbling or other issues and this allows for more forgiveness in those less than optimal positions.

Another major thing that has changed since the 90's is the adoption of electronic AAD's by most jumpers. With an activation altitude of around 800-900 feet for most units in freefall this has had the consequence of main deployment altitude going up since jumpers want to avoid double out situations. Some jumpers have changed their activation altitudes to as high as 1200 feet so they are deploying their main at 2500-3000 feet to make sure if they have a malfunction they have time to deal with it prior to getting to AAD activation altitude range.
Yesterday is history
And tomorrow is a mystery

Parachutemanuals.com

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Students, BASE jumpers and precision-landing competitors tend to load their canopies around 0.7 pounds per square foot. A-licensed jumpers usual load thier first canopy around 1/1. Senior jumpers load canopies all the way up to 4/1. .... though I have never seen anyone survive landing a 7-cell loaded at 4/1.
Hah!
Hah!

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riggerrob

Agreeing with councilman,
Get a Triathlon 210-ish and a similar-sized reserve.
I vaguely remember a Swift Plus 215?????
There was only one Service Bulletin on Swift Plus .... improperly bar-tacked suspension lines. Since the SB was written (early 1990s?) I have inspected and repacked dozens (maybe hundreds) of Swift Plurs and never found any defective bar-tacks.
If you cannot find a decent second-hand Seift Plus, Performance Designs, Aerodyne, etc. all make slightly better reserves and major dealers (Chuting Star, Square One, Para-Gear, etc.) all have 210 square foot reserves on the shelf. Just phone around.
Given your 200-ish pound weight and another 20 pounds of equipment, I would recommend canopies in the 220 square foot range.



In case the OP is determined to get a Swift Plus, here is the info on their sizes, as there has been lots of discussion about how the labels don't clearly specify the size, and whether there is a 200 sq.ft. version (there is not, the 200 on the label for the 175 version is max wt. recommendation).

Part Number break down is as follows:
Swift Plus 145, PN 828100-0, SN prefix R8-
Swift Plus 175, PN 827400-0, SN prefix R6-
Swift Plus 225, PN 828000-0, SN prefix R7-

More info:

http://www.dropzone.com/cgi-bin/forum/gforum.cgi?post=4294992#4294992

I've had a ride on a 175 and 225 version, both opened and landed very well.
People are sick and tired of being told that ordinary and decent people are fed up in this country with being sick and tired. I’m certainly not, and I’m sick and tired of being told that I am

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faulknerwn


Storms fall out of the sky.



Which may explain their name! Seriously though, seconding this. It was frustrating flying that thing at 0.8 WL on a windy day. Glad I spent so much time on it but the way it flew me most of the time, I had to break some bad habits when I was ready to move on from it. Fantastic canopy if that's what you're looking for, though.
I'm not a lady, I'm a skydiver.

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Many instructors and video flyers who are jumping out last tend to be flying the smallest canopies at the DZ, this leads to those instructors flying the fastest canopies through the rest of the traffic to get back to the DZ for landings. With the small canopies they start their final hook turn at 700-1200 feet so you really need to make sure you are heads up under canopy to A) stay alive, B) stay out of a collision and C) not get yelled at by half the load and potentially grounded for causing a dangerous situation.



[:/] Really ? Am I miss reading this ? Grounded for CAUSING a dangerous situation ? Really ? ..... [:/]
Life is short ... jump often.

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I have seen more than one individual get grounded for a day for spiraling down as fast as they can to 800-1200 feet then sitting in brakes to shoot a landing pattern or accuracy on a target and cause a dozen jumpers that were later in the load to have to veer off since the first jumper was unpredictable and caused traffic jams behind them. Modern canopy flight is all about making mixed traffic patterns work even if that is having slower canopies that were out first land after the smaller faster canopies that were out last. Its something to be aware of no matter what size canopy you fly. Smaller canopies need to be prepared to fly in brakes the entire time in case traffic gets ahead of them and larger canopies need to be prepared to yield to faster traffic.
Yesterday is history
And tomorrow is a mystery

Parachutemanuals.com

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