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jcbfly

Is the Stiletto obsolete?

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I've been demoing a Stiletto and really liking it after only 4 jumps. The Stiletto seems like a nice next step for me after having done a bunch of jumps on Pilots. They are similar in that they both have a flat glide and fast toggle response but the front risers are a lot more usable on the Stiletto and the Stiletto has a stronger flare - especially at the bottom end. It seems like the Stiletto could keep me amused for many jumps, but I'm wondering if there are any more modern designs that have similar characteristics? Is the Stiletto such a perfect design that it's simply stood the test of time, or is it obsolete?

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Most jumpers that (think they) want a stiletto are wannabe swoopers. For that purpose, the stiletto pretty much sucks and there are way better options for that these days (sabre 2 for instance). A stiletto is fun to fly though, if you don't wingsuit and don't swoop, why not get one?

ciel bleu,
Saskia

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For your and other amusement it could be perfect. ;)

You can start wondering why most people jumping something else and not Stiletto.



An inaccurate, and ignorant statement.

There are an amazing amount of Stiletto pilots out there.

It's a good canopy (not to my personal taste though) but it does it's job remarkably well.

Again, it's all about what the pilot is looking for.
Performance Designs Factory Team

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Most jumpers that (think they) want a stiletto are wannabe swoopers. For that purpose, the stiletto pretty much sucks and there are way better options for that these days (sabre 2 for instance). A stiletto is fun to fly though, if you don't wingsuit and don't swoop, why not get one?



A Sabre 2 is in no way close to the caliber of a stiletto :S
Look out for the freefly team, Smelly Peppers. Once we get a couple years more experience we will be a force to be reckoned with in the near future! BLUES!

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Most jumpers that (think they) want a stiletto are wannabe swoopers. For that purpose, the stiletto pretty much sucks and there are way better options for that these days (sabre 2 for instance). A stiletto is fun to fly though, if you don't wingsuit and don't swoop, why not get one?



A Sabre 2 is in no way close to the caliber of a stiletto :S



True: a sabre 2 is a much BETTER swoop canopy than the stiletto.

ciel bleu,
Saskia

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No it isn't... very short recovery arc, non elliptical, was designed for novices and intermediate jumpers where as the stiletto was desgined for swoopers and expert canopy flyers
Look out for the freefly team, Smelly Peppers. Once we get a couple years more experience we will be a force to be reckoned with in the near future! BLUES!

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No it isn't... very short recovery arc, non elliptical, was designed for novices and intermediate jumpers where as the stiletto was desgined for swoopers and expert canopy flyers



Sigh. Ask any pro-swooper then, if you don't believe me.

Sabre 2: quite long recovery arc, semi-ellip. Designed for intermediate to advanced jumpers, part of the PD swoop path: sabre 2 -> katana -> velocity.

Stiletto: very SHORT recovery arc, making it dangerous for swooping, designed for advanced skydivers because of its roll and turn rate. NOT part of any sensible path to becoming a good (safe) swooper. Going from a stiletto to a katana isn't advised, let alone to a velo.

But what do I know :ph34r: I'm sure with 125 jumps you know much better.

ciel bleu,
Saskia

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No it isn't... very short recovery arc, non elliptical, was designed for novices and intermediate jumpers where as the stiletto was desgined for swoopers and expert canopy flyers



Hahahahahahahahaha!

There he goes again!

:D:D:D
"The ground does not care who you are. It will always be tougher than the human behind the controls."

~ CanuckInUSA

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No it isn't... very short recovery arc, non elliptical, was designed for novices and intermediate jumpers where as the stiletto was desgined for swoopers and expert canopy flyers



Hahahahahahahahaha!

There he goes again!

:D:D:D



I mean he trolls fairly decent. At least I hope so. Otherwise he's just sadly, sadly misinformed.......or very stupid.

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No it isn't... very short recovery arc, non elliptical, was designed for novices and intermediate jumpers where as the stiletto was desgined for swoopers and expert canopy flyers



Sigh. Ask any pro-swooper then, if you don't believe me.

Sabre 2: quite long recovery arc, semi-ellip. Designed for intermediate to advanced jumpers, part of the PD swoop path: sabre 2 -> katana -> velocity.

Stiletto: very SHORT recovery arc, making it dangerous for swooping, designed for advanced skydivers because of its roll and turn rate. NOT part of any sensible path to becoming a good (safe) swooper. Going from a stiletto to a katana isn't advised, let alone to a velo.

But what do I know :ph34r: I'm sure with 125 jumps you know much better.



as a current sabre 2 pilot right now...the recovery arc is very short. i know i only have a fraction of the jumps you have, but i also knwo i dont have to come out of a turn as high as most swoopers do.
IHYD

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It was a few years ago...so maybe things have changed, but PD sent me a demo Sabre 2 to try out ,and warned me of the recovery difference between it and my Stiletto. To be honest, I didn't notice much of a difference. I put 20-30 jumps on it and was doing the same approach (90 and 180 carving front riser) at the same altitude as my Spinetto.

Can you swoop a Stiletto? Sure. Is it the swooping machine that the current cross braced, super long diving canopies out there today are... Nope.

It is a good wing, but an old design that pre-dates most of the current swooping styles and skill sets. From what i have seen and read, the Katana has a lot of the same benefits as the Spinetto (eliptical flight characteristics, fast turn rate/responsive, nice openings when they dont spin up..hehe), with a more modern setup for high performance canopy flight with a steeper trim and longer dive recovery.

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Posters,

The OP wasn't asking if the Stiletto was a 'good modern day swooping canopy'. In fact, they made ZERO reference to swooping. Not every canopy pilot wants to swoop, and not every post here is a swooping post.

If you want to discuss the ST as a swooping canopy, there are other threads on that topic.

Stick to the topic of this thread.
Performance Designs Factory Team

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If you're willing to stray from the "standard" manufacturers, I believe there are several canopies on the market that have similar flight characteristics. Fast turn rate, relatively flat glide & fun to fly.

I'm not the right person to spell them out of course but IIRC: Mamba, Nitro/Nitron, Alpha.

I could be wrong on any or all of the above, I haven't flown any of them (but I'd like to, I love trying out canopies), YMMV. ; )

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Most jumpers that (think they) want a stiletto are wannabe swoopers. For that purpose, the stiletto pretty much sucks and there are way better options for that these days (sabre 2 for instance). A stiletto is fun to fly though, if you don't wingsuit and don't swoop, why not get one?



A Sabre 2 is in no way close to the caliber of a stiletto :S



I agree, a Sabre 2 is much better! It's got a longer recover arc and they don't spin up on every third jump.
Truth is the distilled meaning of facts, for any truth refuted by a fact becomes a fallacy.

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You know, I love the Stiletto.

I jumped it back in the day and loved it, but then put a few jumps on the Vengance and eventually owned a Katana for a while (whilst working at PD). Now that I'm perpetually sort of un-current, I'm jumping a nice big safe Pulse (which in some ways is the baby sister of the Stiletto), because it allows me to cram a size bigger canopy in my rig fairly easily.

In my opinion, the Stiletto is a timeless classic much like a good pair of jeans. It is flat, it has a sweet glide, responsive and fun.
And no, it's not a canopy that will win you any swoop comps - but then again (and incompletely unrelated news) I have seen Scott Miller out-swoop Velocity pilots using a Navigator 220....

So, if you like the Stiletto, have at it. There is a reason it's still being manufactured in the numbers it is, and a reason Craig Girard and many of the Airspeed guys and gals have zillions of jumps on it - and STILL jump it. it's a solid design.

You'll just have to deal with the fact that a handful of people on dropzone.com won't think of you as a shit hot swooper... but then that's what therapy is for ;)
Blue Skies Magazine

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No it isn't... very short recovery arc, non elliptical, was designed for novices and intermediate jumpers where as the stiletto was desgined for swoopers and expert canopy flyers



Sigh. Ask any pro-swooper then, if you don't believe me.

Sabre 2: quite long recovery arc, semi-ellip. Designed for intermediate to advanced jumpers, part of the PD swoop path: sabre 2 -> katana -> velocity.

Stiletto: very SHORT recovery arc, making it dangerous for swooping, designed for advanced skydivers because of its roll and turn rate. NOT part of any sensible path to becoming a good (safe) swooper. Going from a stiletto to a katana isn't advised, let alone to a velo.

But what do I know :ph34r: I'm sure with 125 jumps you know much better.



If you're going to play that game, let me add this: With 10401 jumps, on 241 types/sizes of parachutes I know that you are talking out of your ass on this subject. Ian is spot on.
----------------------------------------------
You're not as good as you think you are. Seriously.

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The Stiletto is a great canopy. I have 1000's of jumps on Stilettos and am sure that it is one of the best canopies ever made.

The 'problem' the Stiletto has today is that people compare it to X-braced canopies because they are both considered 'high performance'. In that case, the shorter recovery arc of the Stiletto is seen as a short-coming (no pun intended), but what people don't understand is that the Stiletto is not a swooping canopy, and that there's more to high performance than swooping.

The Stiletto is an eliptical canopy with a high (for skydiving) aspect ratio. What this provides is a very efficient wing that creates a lot of lift and has a very high roll rate. If you look at paragliding canopies, you'll see even higher aspect ratios, and that thjey create enough lift to gain altitude in the right conditions. They also have high roll rates, just not as high as a Stiletto based on the size of the wing.

One side-effect of the high lift design is that the Stiletto will pull itself out of a dive at a relatively (by today's standards) low air speed. So once you put the canopy into a dive, it build speed and recover from the dive quicker than an X-braced canopy. This doesn't make it a bad swooping canopy, just not the same as an X-braced canopy.

I swooped on 99% of the 1000's of jumps I put on Stilettos, and so did Az Airspeed for what had to equal 100,000 jumps, and just about every other top jumper for over a decade.

In comparison to an X-braced canopy, it will pack smaller, glide further with the brakes stowed (while you relax), glide much further if you unstow the brakes and actaully try, and swoop 75% as far as an X-braced canopy.

The 'other' high performance canopies, the X-braced models, differ in that they are less efficient and create less lift for a given airspeed, which allows them to dive further and build more speed. They then rely on the X-braces to maintain the shape of the wing at lower airspeeds, so a smaller canopy can support more weight and have a work-able stall speed.

It's two different types of high performance canopies built for two different purposes. Each design reaches it's goals equally well. If you're not looking to do ultra high-speed swoops involving multiple rotations, the X-braced canopy is a waste of your time. The Stiletto, if it fits what you are looking for out of a canopy, is an excellent choice and you will not regret the choice to jump one.

HOWEVER, it remains a high performance canopy, and you need proper training and experience to jump or swoop it safely. While it may not swoop as fast as an X-braced canopy, will injure or kill you just as fast as a Velo or JVX, or whatever.

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As usual, Dave is spot on.

I've only put about 70 jumps on various sizes, but enjoyed them all. The Stilletto is a great all round canopy. Glides brilliantly, dives like a mutha and turns on a dime, but, it was built when different requirements and styles were the norm, and even then it went past them, so people now don't necessarily understand what it's strengths and weaknesses are.

For really good fun up in the sky, a Stilletto is still one of the best wings I've flown. For swooping, there are far better options. In my opinon though, it's far from obsolete.

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I agree, a Sabre 2 is much better! It's got a longer recover arc and they don't spin up on every third jump.



Are you saying you had a Stiletto that "spun up" every third jump? Tell us about that please. You know, things like wingloading, line type, number of jumps on lines, etc.

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I agree, a Sabre 2 is much better! It's got a longer recover arc and they don't spin up on every third jump.



I put ~300 jumps on a Stiletto and had line twists exactly once. My partner has jumped a couple of different Stilettos for 8 years and she gets very consistent openings.

Where does that myth about Stilettos come from?

Stilettos are great canopies and have a niche in the canopy market. But they are just one tool of many that are now available.

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I've been demoing a Stiletto and really liking it after only 4 jumps. The Stiletto seems like a nice next step for me after having done a bunch of jumps on Pilots. They are similar in that they both have a flat glide and fast toggle response but the front risers are a lot more usable on the Stiletto and the Stiletto has a stronger flare - especially at the bottom end. It seems like the Stiletto could keep me amused for many jumps, but I'm wondering if there are any more modern designs that have similar characteristics?


My impression of the Aerodyne Vision was rather favourable as "a better Stiletto than the Stiletto." Same playfulness in flight, but with a longer recovery arc. Unfortunately, if I look at the website, it seems to be out of production. :( Nothing else comes close, IMO.
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Is the Stiletto such a perfect design that it's simply stood the test of time, or is it obsolete?


The Stiletto was a very good design, and it is far from obsolete. The one thing everybody rightly complains about, the short recovery arc, was a design decision at the time - it's a feature, not a bug. :P (It seems designed for togglewhipping, not swooping.)
Johan.
I am. I think.

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