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bravoniner

Para Commander Redux

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How would one go about rigging an airworthy RW Para Commander (about 60% of the weight and bulk of the Mark I) for occasional use in a modern harness/container system having sufficient pack volume? I presume the key issues would be finding (or making) compatible risers and D-bag, and identifying an appropriate throw-out pilot chute. Could Slinks be used?

Has anyonyone had any experience successfully adapting an old "PC" to modern gear?

Thanks.

B9

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Give Strong Enterprises a call, see if there are any geezers left lurking there whose brains you could pick. They used to make a "modern" rig for the PC. A friend of mine had one. The risers had L bar connectors and 3 ring releases. it might surprise you what's still in the warehouse. A few years ago I purchased a D-bag for mine from them. (it is not for sale)
Don't worry about nuthin' cause nothin's gonna be okay.

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Hi bravoniner,

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compatible risers and D-bag



The risers would only be different in that the steering control rings would need to be on the front risers. And you do not set the brakes. As for the d-bag, that would only be the size.

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an appropriate throw-out pilot chute



IMO a modern throwout p/c would be just fine. When I quit jumping a P/C I was using a ripcord activated container and a modified MA-1 p/c.

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Could Slinks be used?



I would think that a standard slink would be too short. You might be able to buy them longer if you were to contact PD.

Jerry Baumchen

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For one PC I put into a somewhat modern piggyback container, I used regular wide risers with 3 rings. Unfolded the tops of the risers so they would accept L-bars. Lots of bulk with all those lines, especially with the knotting & sewing system they used back then to make the line loops at the links. So I stayed with L-bars.

Tacked the L-bars in place in the riser ends to prevent them getting pulled out of place (eg, end-on loading). Might be better to actually sew the riser loop down smaller.

Control lines just went to the usual place on the back of the risers, but since they go up into the centre of the canopy, they wrap around the inner edges of the risers in use. I didn't worry about reinforcing the edge of the riser, as a few jumps a year isn't going to cause a lot of wear, and there's no tension on them normally either.

Used a pretty standard Dbag and a big non-collapsible PC. Whatever sizes are appropriate for students or accuracy canopies should do for the latter. Then added line stow loops inside the top of the bag. Crown lines stow in there.

(Since I had a regular Mk I PC, bulkier that what you have, I built an extra large main container that could be velcroed on overtop of the normal main container.)

That's all just what I did; I don't know if others have better ideas.

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Ask your local rigger to compare the pack volume of your container with the pack volume of your canopy.
For a Para-Commander class canopy, you would be better off with a Parachute Opening Device. PODs are fancy deployment bags with #8 grommets at the top and line stow elastics on the outside top. PODs eliminate most of the sleeve-slump problems that plagued sleeves.

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I have a few RW PC's adopted for modern use.

Javelin J7 or Dolphin D6

mods :
* dbag with large grommet and stow bands on the outside for crown lines
* Guide rings moved to the back of the front risers
* Elastic retainers below the guide rings (A few inches) for the dowel toggles
* lines on #6 rapide links (you could go with L-bars, but they are damn bulky)
* non-collapsible 32(ish) ZP PC
.
pack it, stow the crown lines, S-fold the canopy side to side in the dbag, stow the lines as usual, throw it in the container, and no one will know you have anything other than a big main in the rig.

Trust me, this works :)

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