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HPC

Packing Racer Reserves

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I know of several (26 at last count) rigs that the AAD fired and the reserve didn't open in time to save the individual.


I'd love the data on the rigs and AADs involved in these 26 incidents. Do you have this data?
This is why Bill Booth is an advocate for increasing the firing altitude from 750' to around 1K' or so. Personally, I think 750' is too low. I like 1000' because it's an easy number to remember and see on the altimeter, and it adds about 1.4 seconds to the reserve deployment time. How many of those 26 jumpers had reserve line stretch at impact? Another 1.4 seconds (250') would probably have been the difference for most of them.
What's right isn't always popular and what's popular isn't always right.

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I don't personally have access to it but I'll see what I can come up with. I have no issue with the reserve activating at 750' back to earth only because I know our system will surpass the expectations. And I'd also put our system up against any other in a non-mard activation terminal or sub terminal.

We have plans looking at a one pin system but I don't like it so far. There's nothing wrong with the two pin system and the only reason we're looking at the one pin is to appease the industry.

But as far as the cost, the cost of our rig will cover the difference in the increased price of the AAD. ;)
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you are making no sense....i think i am done following this.

there are very good videos on youtube to help riggers. i used to copy this video and send to anyone wanting it,,,free. now there is youtube.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=smEzRl5grtk

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Research was done years ago on the One pin and Two pin Racer Reserve.

The Two pin is a faster cleaner launch of the reserve pilot chute, hands down.
It's about the laws physics.
I Jumped with the guys who invented Skydiving.

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It makes me apprehensive to have to worry about two cutters having to work properly instead of just one. I've heard reports of missing cutters and loops not being completely cut. Bad enough with just one loop, twice the odds of such failures with two loops.
What's right isn't always popular and what's popular isn't always right.

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HPC

It makes me apprehensive to have to worry about two cutters having to work properly instead of just one. I've heard reports of missing cutters and loops not being completely cut. Bad enough with just one loop, twice the odds of such failures with two loops.



If the possibility of AAD failure makes you nervous you should examine your confidence in your skills and abilities. There is only a very small chance you will ever have an AAD fire. If you do there is an even smaller chance that it will fail. The total risk is very close to zero. People overthink these things all the time.
Always remember the brave children who died defending your right to bear arms. Freedom is not free.

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I have complete confidence in my skills and abilities, add to that the fact the I don't take unnecessary chances and am conservative by nature.
But when I hear that someone died because someone at an AAD factory forgot to install a cutter, or that a loop wasn't fully cut, then it warrants looking into the best product that has a better track record in order to increase the odds as best I can in the event I need to rely on an AAD.
It's just like driving - I have COMPLETE confidence in my skills, it's the other idiots I have to share the road with that concern me. Same with skydiving - I can't control wreckless behavior on the part of others - I can only hope to identify those that exhibit it and stay clear of them. But in the unlikely event that I have to rely on an AAD then I want the most effective system possible. That's why I research everything I buy, which is the reason I posted the OP in the first place.
What's right isn't always popular and what's popular isn't always right.

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Trying to answer multiple questions .....

A sliding (not hand-sewn) Racer reserve closing loop was recommended by Airtec when they first approved Cypres installation in Racers. John Sherman did not packing sliding loops, so he banned them from being packed by FAA riggers.
Cypres-pattern loops require an extra step to prevent them from sliding out prematurely, but are waaaay easier to replace.

Lodi loops are just half of an adjustable Racer reserve closing loop. LL are copied from TSE 1-pin Teardrop which was approved during the early 1990s. Teardrop uses a domed, aluminium pilot-chute cap on its 1-pin Pop-Top (exposed pilot chute cap). There is only 1 reserve ripcord pin and it lays against the wearer's spine.
Reflex received its FAA TSO during the late 1990s with the same closing loop as Teardrop and a domed composite PC cap. The domed shape is the secret to creating sufficient volume for pilot-chute mesh and fabric while keeping ripcord pull force less than 22 pounds (10 kg).

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I do think having a controlled line dispersement will have more positive results every day of the week.



Postive results of what????
Slower openings for sure. Maybe not by much but definitively slower than a two stow freebag because each stow causes a bit of deceleration during its release.

All the other manufacturers use the 2 stow freebag without any issues and use the safety stow to its fullest advantage. This advantage is completely removed when using a Speed Bag.

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Oh and if you want to include videos of people dumping into a rats nest and expecting a great result thats probably the worst outcome for any manufacturer to try to get out of.



I put these videos up because it shows the advantage of a two stow bag with the possibility of getting the canopy out of the bag if you do have that scenario over your head. This is real life stuff because it happens more than one would think. That possibility goes away when you use a Speed Bag.

I task you to show me one video of a Speed Bag in the same set of circumstances that also has the same outcome.

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But there are MANY out there who have never put their hands on our system much less have been even close to educated about or system that have a very LARGE opinion about our system.



I know this leaves me out of the MANY because I am very educated on the Racer and the Speed Bag. I might not personally pack them for use but I do get my hands on them while training riggers.
Also,I started educating myself with Racers in 1990, helped test drop/jump the Racer Tandem in 1992, and have owned many Racers in the past.

I have 11 or 12 reserve rides on a Racer, but they all had the two stow freebag. I stopped jumping and packing them when the Speed Bag came out.
This is where I get a LARGE opinion..from lots of experience.

With that said, I would still pack them today if they had the old two stow bag.

MEL
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Skyworks Parachute Service, LLC
www.Skyworksparachuteservice.com

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But when I hear that someone died because someone at an AAD factory forgot to install a cutter, or that a loop wasn't fully cut,



Certainly your concern about two cutters depends on whether one thinks the chance of a problem is near zero or not. Twice near zero is still near zero.

I still would take a trip to Arizona or Nevada, even though my chance of getting the often deadly hantavirus might go up five or ten times compared to Ontario. Still, it is near enough to zero that I'll travel.

Or, heck, your chance of having a fatal freefall collision perhaps triples if you do a 4-way instead of a 2-way. But if one picks the right partners and jump, most of us do dare to do more than 2-ways.

Those issues of cutters and loops were not randomly distrubuted. Nobody says "oh, that can happen to any AAD". These were specific incidences with:
(a) An AAD which at the time did not have 100% xray verification of cutters for a second line of defence while it does now (Vigil). While another major brand always had verification (Cypres).
(b) An AAD brand (Argus) now well known to have an issue with cutter hardness and loop cuts, especially with the earlier cutter designs, and is very rare on the market now.

These are known possible issues with AAD's, with mitigating factors applied, so the chances of them happening again are much smaller now.

Sure, that doesn't mean other units can't have issues we haven't seen yet. But cutter failure seems a pretty small danger.

To each our own.

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It makes me apprehensive to have to worry about two cutters having to work properly instead of just one. I've heard reports of missing cutters and loops not being completely cut. Bad enough with just one loop, twice the odds of such failures with two loops.



But at the same time a missed cutter is not an excuse with a pop top container as the cutters are located on the back pad and you can literally look through the grommets on the back pad to see the loops going through the cutter.
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Yes.
I love packing Racers, as I find them to be the easiest.
I also love to teach other riggers how to pack them. After one of my lessons, riggers usually say things like, “Wow, I had no idea it was that easy to pack a Racer!” Every rig has its idiosyncrasies. It helps learn “the tricks”. All you must do, is ask someone who knows, then all rigs become easier. If a rigger tells you that this rig or that is hard to pack, it is evidence that he/she hasn’t bothered to learn.

The adjustable closing loop means you don’t have to guess at the loop length. You adjust it after the loops are pinned, while kneeling on the pilotchute. If you have done a good job maintaining the division of the molar pack job, it is easy to get a good seal around the edges, and you will have a low pull force.

The only time you will find a pilotchute standing up too high, is when too much canopy fabric is allowed in the middle of the bag. Rigger education is the best solution to this problem. There is the occasional problem of a rig being overstuffed. Put the correct sized reserve in your container. Overstuffing is unacceptable for all brands of containers, for a variety of obvious reasons.
I can state categorically that there has never been a fatality or a delay in reserve deployment due to the SpeedBag. I personally have 41 intentional cutaways over the years, testing Racer components and canopies. Fourteen of these cutaways were on the SpeedBag. They were all sub-terminal deployments, probably the most severe test for any system. Any reserve can open quickly when the pilot chute has the advantage of high speed. Producing a 2-second reserve deployment at low speed is remarkable and is typical for a Racer.

The SpeedBag does not slow reserve deployment. It ensures an orderly line deployment before the canopy hits the air. The SpeedBag performs the same function as a full stow diaper, for those of you who know round parachutes. Line dump is real, and yes, it has broken people’s necks, and destroyed parachutes. The SpeedBag is not just for the “head-down” community. Belly flyers have hard openings too. Not all manufacturers are still using the bungee stow method of locking the bag. At least one other manufacturer has gone away from the bungee and pouch to a bag with flutes to prevent line dump.
The SpeedBag has never “locked up” as some believe (incorrectly). When you fall away from your reserve pilotchute starting at 18 feet per second – especially a high drag pilotchute with large hole mesh, like a Racer pilotchute – you are creating a huge amount of force. Think about your weight, plus gear, traveling 18 feet in one second, away from your air anchor (pilotchute dragging about 200 pounds). For me, that’s about 155 pounds running at 12.3 MPH pulling the lines off my reserve bag. Additionally, that bag is yawing and pitching slightly, and the velocity of the mass is increasing. The bag effectively controls the line dump, until the last stow, but will get snatched away from the canopy as the canopy exits through the path of least resistance. See https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UahzuoTzBl8
As for the AAD cutter failure argument. Whether you have a 2-pin rig or a 1-pin rig, if a cutter is missing or fails you have no activation in either case.

Once again, every time I teach a new young rigger how to pack a Racer they say, “Well that wasn’t so hard.” That’s especially true of student riggers, with no preconceived notions. Do drop in to Parachute Labs the next time you’re in DeLand, Florida. We’d be glad to share the knowledge!

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I'm talking about the blade inside the cutter cylinder. Is that visible with the eye or is something else needed to see if it's there?
What's right isn't always popular and what's popular isn't always right.

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I'm talking about the blade inside the cutter cylinder. Is that visible with the eye or is something else needed to see if it's there?




Get over the blade thing. It happened once. It is never ever going to happen again. You can believe me. I'm a truck driver.
Always remember the brave children who died defending your right to bear arms. Freedom is not free.

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As for the AAD cutter failure argument. Whether you have a 2-pin rig or a 1-pin rig, if a cutter is missing or fails you have no activation in either case.


Nancy, thanks for adding your knowledge to the thread. Yes, so long as the 2-pin requires both loops to be cut this is true. But what I've been asking is is it possible to re-engineer the RPC loop setup so that only one loop (at either end) need be cut to free the RPC? I've watched the multi-part video on packing the Racer and it doesn't look difficult; however, I couldn't get a clear enough look at the loop setup system to be able to answer my own question. Maybe I should just put my question on hold until I can see exactly how the system works, particularly with regard to the closing loop system. For example, I'm confused about the part where a metal "tongue-depressor" looking tool is used to tighten something. It looks like he pulls, something gets tightened, he releases his pressure but something is holding it in place and keeping it from slipping back. It would become clear once I could see it all in person and up close.
What's right isn't always popular and what's popular isn't always right.

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1- The difficulty level of packing a Racer reserve or not does not factor into my decision.

2- I do not have to guess at loop lengths.

3- The reserve PC can be standing up too high if the loop slips or the pack job settles.

4- How many of those 14 reserve deployments with the Speedbag were unstable?

5- Line dump resulting in a hard opening is extremely rare, especially for sport gear. I have asked for video of it and I may have seen 1. Of all the videos of openings and hard openings, only 1 showed bag strip. I can get lots of bag lock videos.

6- The locking stows must be released before line stretch, allowing the bag to come off the canopy and begin inflating before line stretch. If this were a major issue, semi stowless main deployment bags would result in bad strip and hard openings.

7- My one and only bag lock was on a tandem. The deployment bag was held closed by rubber bands. If rubber bands can cause a tandem to bag lock, they surely can cause a reserve bag lock. The Speed bag addresses an issue that doesn't exist and creates another issue. This is not a good trade-off.

8- The reason I will not pack a Racer reserve is because the owner (or anyone) can then tighten the closing loop without breaking the seal. If they over-tighten it, creating a high/impossible pull force. At that point there is nothing to show the loop was tightened after it left my hands.

Derek V

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First, you should avoid saying "never" (and "always" as well). Second, I'm not sure what being a truck driver has to do with your believability. Unless you're just being facetious.
Now, if you designed AADs for a living, then you'd be on to something.
Finally, I'm not hung up on missing blades. That was just one example of what can and has, albeit on just one occasion, go wrong. I also mentioned a loop not being fully cut, a charge not fully igniting and thus not providing enough driving force on the blade, and a signal not making it to both cutter units from the controller, perhaps due to a broken or intermittent wire connection inside the cable that goes from the controller to the cutter. It's also possible that a cutter is installed, but it missed the sharpening process that puts a sharp edge on it. There are probably half a dozen failure scenarios that could occur once the controller fires and sends out a signal.
What's right isn't always popular and what's popular isn't always right.

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Second, I'm not sure what being a truck driver has to do with your believability.



Truck drivers are always right. And they never lie.
Always remember the brave children who died defending your right to bear arms. Freedom is not free.

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I'm talking about the blade inside the cutter cylinder. Is that visible with the eye or is something else needed to see if it's there?


You'll never see the blade. the only way you will ever see it is to destroy the cutter, or use the cutter. but at least with a pop top container the customer can physically see the loops going through the cutter just below the pin.
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First, you should avoid saying "never" (and "always" as well). Second, I'm not sure what being a truck driver has to do with your believability. Unless you're just being facetious.
Now, if you designed AADs for a living, then you'd be on to something.
Finally, I'm not hung up on missing blades. That was just one example of what can and has, albeit on just one occasion, go wrong. I also mentioned a loop not being fully cut, a charge not fully igniting and thus not providing enough driving force on the blade, and a signal not making it to both cutter units from the controller, perhaps due to a broken or intermittent wire connection inside the cable that goes from the controller to the cutter. It's also possible that a cutter is installed, but it missed the sharpening process that puts a sharp edge on it. There are probably half a dozen failure scenarios that could occur once the controller fires and sends out a signal.



If your looking at AAD issues then apart from looking at the missing blade issues - look at the potentional other issues. The AAD manufacturers wanted to AAD cutter moved above the pilot chute to shorten the cut closure loop that needed to be dragged through the grommets in the event of an activation, causing some hesitation. What this did for many of the container manufacturers who moved the cutter location was create a potential scenario where if the cutter doesnt cut the loop completely you now have a container being held closed by the cutter/not cut loop. Even if you pull the handle. Having two cutters as a redundancy wouldnt necessary solve that problem.

Some manufacturers said we will not move the location as we wanted to allow manual activation even in the event of a AAD failure.

The AAD failures are rare - so don't focus on the missing cutter. If you have one of two cutters it really makes a very small difference. Two cutter systems are only made by some manufacturers but ultimately its something you have but really dont want to use. The location move is an example of solving one problem and creating another.

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