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scottf1887

So how old is too old for a used rig?

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I'm fairly new to jumping (45 jumps) and am looking at buying my own rig. I've been surfing the classifieds for months and have noticed some great rigs with a DOM from the early nineties. I know what I want (RSL, AAD, etc) and I'm finding what I want in newer and older systems. What is the shelf life or exp date of a container? I'm not too concerned with the canopy because I'm more concerned with jump numbers than age but is there any thing wrong with buying a 25 year old container with only 200 jumps? Thanks!

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Yeah, I'm definately having it checked out but is a vector 2 container from 94 ever going to "expire"? I'm a military jumper and I know our rigs have a shelf life to include the container so do I need to worry about a container ever being out of date regardless of the condition?

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Mine is an 89 Javelin. It's needed some TLC from my rigger, especially in the velcro areas, but other that that no issues. As long as your rigger says it's airworthy, you should be good to go.

One thing you may want to discuss with your rigger is whether it is, or can be easily modified to be "freefly friendly." Older rigs weren't necessarily designed with that in mind. That may not be a concern to you now, but consider whether it may be something you'll be interested in the future.

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Honestly, make sure you don't pay too much. Consider this: you can buy a brand new 2014 Vector III for $1790. & let's say that a container is typically good for 20 years more or less? So if you factor in 19 years of depreciation, I would say that container is worth about $89.50. Or if you'd like to use 25 years instead, maybe its worth as much as $429.60. Maybe some accountants can chime in? I dunno ... but I wouldn't pay ANYMORE than $500 for the '94 Vector II you are thinking about buying.

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scottf1887

Yeah, I'm definately having it checked out but is a vector 2 container from 94 ever going to "expire"? I'm a military jumper and I know our rigs have a shelf life to include the container so do I need to worry about a container ever being out of date regardless of the condition?



I don't believe they have a use-by date, like the AADs do. AADs are only good for a decade or so. But if a rig (and canopy) from the 90's only has a couple hundred jumps on them and were reasonably well cared for, they'll be in practically new condition.

Always get a rigger to inspect the gear before you buy it, though. If the person is unwilling to ship the gear to a rigger, that's a warning sign. Personally I wouldn't be inclined to do business with someone who wasn't willing to ship to a DZ's rigger for an inspection. I'd be too suspicious he was trying to pull some shit on me (If the deal is too good to be true it usually is.)
I'm trying to teach myself how to set things on fire with my mind. Hey... is it hot in here?

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divertech

There is a 20 year shelf life on containers.



True but not true. A Talon made by Rigging Innovations has no 'life' but a Talon made under licence by Parachutes Australia has a life of 20 years.

The reserve in my gear was built in the 80s and is still legal. [:/]

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I have a friend who jumped a Sweet(sweat)Hog , and that was only 3 or 4 years ago. It was so old (and worn) that the free bag fabric started wearing out.

That is too old for a used rig, lol!
"The restraining order says you're only allowed to touch me in freefall"
=P

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divertech

There is a 20 year shelf life on containers.



Wait, whut?

You cannot make a general statement like that. Some countries have life limits (Germany i believe has a 15yr life limit on rig and canopies), some manufacturers have limits (or want you to send it to them for checkup/recertification), some riggers have limits of their own. For instance over here you can basically jump anything you want, as long as the H/C and reserve pass the repack checkup and your rigger is comfy packing it :)

ciel bleu,
Saskia

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There is a 20 year shelf life on containers.



Negative!
At least for the most part here in the US.
I think the new Strong tandem system has the first legally binding life limit out there right now as they just completed a new TSO with it.

Also a Vector II (or a Vector III for that matter) does not have a life limit on it. It's airworthiness is determined at the time of each repack.

See attached.


MEL
Skyworks Parachute Service, LLC
www.Skyworksparachuteservice.com

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If buying new isn't out of the question, most manufacturers offer significant discounts for serving military members. I'm in the Canadian Army. I contacted Sunpath recently (Javelin containers) and if my memory serves me correctly they offer a 30% discount on the base price of a new container.

I believe Wings offers 50% for the same, but I haven't spoken to them personally in several years.

The discounts aren't generally advertised, but if you contact them directly they are usually very happy to help.

The only thing to consider if deciding to buy new, is how long you intend to be jumping the canopy size you're jumping now before you downsize to something that will be too small for the rig. Most containers can go up or down a size, so this may not be a show stopper if you plan it right.

Cheers,
Darren
When making the decision to downsize: It's your life, don't spend it all on one canopy

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dragon2

***There is a 20 year shelf life on containers.



Wait, whut?

You cannot make a general statement like that. Some countries have life limits (Germany i believe has a 15yr life limit on rig and canopies), some manufacturers have limits (or want you to send it to them for checkup/recertification), some riggers have limits of their own. For instance over here you can basically jump anything you want, as long as the H/C and reserve pass the repack checkup and your rigger is comfy packing it :)
You are right, I assumed incorrectly that the South African standard was universal (probably too sell more new stuff still I like the idea).;)

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There is a 20 year shelf life on containers.



+1...

One of my vectors is now 21 years old. After the 3rd jump, it's getting pretty loose. Feels like I'm forgetting something when I get on the plane :$;). Last jump I made with it, the right shoulder strap came off my shoulder when I sat up to dump. Caught my attention pretty good, chest strap came into active play at that time. :D Definitely getting a new rig...
We are all engines of karma

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One other thing to consider when buying an older rig, even one in pretty serviceable condition, is whether you intend to freefly (and not only belly-jump), and whether the rig is freefly-friendly (meaning riser and container flaps won't prematurely open when exposed to continuous, direct, higher-speed relative wind). Some of the older rigs are not freefly-friendly by today's standards, presenting an increased risk of a premature opening or malfunction if used to freefly. So be sure to check that out.

.

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I have an old "wonderhog vector" which was the vector 1. It was manufactured in the early 80s. (Don't have the card right in front of me) and when I got it it had a main manufactured at athe same time as well as a reserve manufactured at the same time. It has taken a while to figure out how many jumps it had. I knew it was less than 100 for the whole system but found the documentation and it had less than 20 on the system. I had a master rigger replace the harness so it would fit me and sew on a boc pocket and I jump the comete system as a second rig. Age alone means nothing.
www.facebook.com/FlintHillsRigging

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There is a 20 year shelf life on containers.



May be where you live but not in the US. We have a perpitual maintaince program for all aircraft systems including parachutes. There is an peridoic inspection cycle on all components and during this inspection the unit is certified for service for the next cycle.
When asked by the French government how long our parachutes were good for while they were stating that their parachutes were good for 20 years. Our answer was 120 days as that was the length of our cycle at that time.

There is no life limit in the US even though some are still trying to get one set. I have rigs in service which were built in the early 70's,

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Thanks for all the input on this! As with most first time buyers I've already got my eyes on some new stuff. I'll probably end up upgrading it with a new wings container with their awesome discounts! But if the rig I'm looking at will get me in the sky safely for the next 6 months I'll be pretty happy. It's going straight to a master rigger next week and with the low jump numbers it has, I'm pretty confident it's gonna pass. Right now I'm looking for something that will get me to around 100 jumps (50 more) before I really get into freefly or serious RW, and by then I should have a new container. Thanks again and Happy Thanksgiving!

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I think maintenance history and careful previous owners are much more important than age. I would much rather jump my well-maintained and well-cared for '91 Vector 2 (which already has velcro-less risercovers) than a newer rig that's beaten to bits by someone who doesn't care.

So yeah, get a rigger to check the rig over, and listen to his/her advice.

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One other consideration.... Some riggers have their own standards on what is too old to repack. One local rigger here refuses to re-pack any rig that is old enough to drink.

B| Always check with your rigger.
Birdshit & Fools Productions

"Son, only two things fall from the sky."

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