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DiverStump

Using Strong DH tandem rig over 18 years old?

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does anyone know where people are using older Strong Tandem gear?
I have 3 tandem rigs over 18 years old. I have a letter from the FFA that says I can use them. However most DZ don't want to use them because the manufacturer says at 18 blah blah blah..... I need to unload them. They are in great shape you would never guess they are 18 or older. I got a letter from Strong letting me use one till it was 20 years old because it was in such good shape...... I'm no longer traveling doing tandems. I have frap hats, camo pants for students, and 3 rigs with cypress.....
If your not here you can't jump

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Repeating what I said in earlier posts .....

The original motive for 8 year and 13 year inspections finally retiring after 18 years was that Strong (and all the other tandem manufacturers dis a whole bunch of updates during their first few years of production. The initial motivation was to get all the updates done on all the first-generation tandems: reinforce drogue canopy, drogue release cables, stiffer cutaway cables, reinforce drogue, Type 7 main risers, add Cypres pockets, dual main closing loops, reinforce tail of reserve canopy, large mid-flap, etc.

After they got a few 8-year-old tandems in for inspection, Strong realized how brutal the Southern California sand was on gear. It was faded, frayed and filthy after 8 years.

After 18 years, Strong wanted their first-generation reserves retired, because they were now using better fabric, better reinforcing tapes, etc.

As for DZs still using 23-year-old Strongs .... I have heard of a couple of Canadian DZs that really should replace their oldest Strong tandems because they are now ???? years old. Hint! Hint!

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On a related note: how long do you keep student harnesses in service?

Recently, 5 Sigma student harnesses visited my loft.
The worst was faded, frayed and filthy after landing on Mexican beaches. I told the owner that if I touched it, it would need all new webbing and most of the rusted hardware also needed to be replaced. It was cheaper to buy a new harness. The owner replied "I just need to keep it in service for one more season."

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Harnesses should be replaced long before they are impaired in terms of strength and safety. Cosmetically once they start looking ratty it is bad for business and word and mouth.

You could have a brand new harness, a put old ugly elastic keepers on it.

That student is going to be telling friends about how sketchy the equipment was, even though it was brand new!

If it looks worn, or the keepers look worn, they will zero in on it!
"The restraining order says you're only allowed to touch me in freefall"
=P

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if you are using 18 year old rigs, then the problem lies with your business model, not having the ability to replace your equipment within a reasonable period of time.

Stand in court defending your use of an 18 year-old piece of skydiving equipment.....good luck with that.

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