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Valkyrie Lineset Improvement Notice

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A complimentary lineset for canopy serial numbers 000001 – 001044.

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After four years of development, testing, and design we released the Valkyrie in early 2015. Since then, we have been extremely humbled by all the amazing photos, messages, and positive feedback we’ve received about the Valkyrie. It has been one of our most successful products ever. It amazes us to see what you, the jumping community, have done with them!

However, over the last several months we’ve received word from some Valkyrie owners about premature line wear. Some customers also report a higher-than-average rate of tension knots. We appreciate this feedback and take it very seriously. Over the last few months have been working diligently to understand and address this issue.

We started by looking for trends and common factors. We considered canopy size, wingloading, components, jumping environment, packing technique, deployment technique, and many otherFlock_VK-3281 variables. We had just as many reports of people getting 500 jumps from a lineset as those who were only getting 200. Even more puzzling, we never saw any of these issues during the lengthy development of the Valkyrie.

The quirky nature of this issue made it very difficult for us to understand and address it. However, after months of additional testing, we believe we have found an improvement to the Valkyrie lineset that reduces the likelihood of premature line wear or tension knots.

First, we have made some changes to the 500 Orange Vectran lineset. The most obvious of these changes is that we replaced the 500 Orange Vectran outside A/B lines with 300 Orange Vectran instead. While it’s somewhat counter-intuitive to put a lighter weight line in a high-wear area, it helps to know that the outside A/B lines on the Valkyrie are very lightly loaded during the opening. A lighter weight line in this area is helping to reduce the possibility of uneven tension and “line whip,” which also reduces overall line wear. We also made a few less obvious adjustments to both the 500 and 300 Orange Vectran linesets. These lineset changes will NOT affect the flight characteristics of your Valkyrie, but it should make your lineset last a bit longer and protect you better from tension knots.

For those who would like to have another line type entirely, we now offer 500 HMA on the Valkyrie. Due to the characteristics of HMA, there was no need to mix the line weights – all of the suspension lines are made from 500 weight line. We developed an HMA lineset because some jumpers may like the soft feel and slightly lower drag that comes with HMA, or maybe they prefer the aesthetics of an uncolored line. Performance wise, there isn’t a noticeable difference. The new HMA and Orange Vectran linesets are both great, reliable options. Your choice comes down to personal preference between the two.



http://blog.performancedesigns.com/vklines/

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Tension knots on 500 OV could be due to dampness after swooping the water?.... PD recommend not to use 300 OV at terminal...so if you have a quirky opening at terminal on 300/500 Ov even though the A-B lines are not supposed to be heavily loaded.... so why give the option of 500 HMA..?
A bit more going on here...me thinks ?
Also....a few mods to 300/500 OV ....all seems to have come in a short space of time...after all the testing beforehand..?
Only my opinion....and i am an avid PD canopy pilot..!

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The theory I've heard from a few people is that the wear and subsequent furriness of the vectran causes the tension knots. HMA doesn't get as furry before it's time to change lines, it tend to break without showing as much visible wear so, likely the issues with furriness and resulting tension knots are less of a problem.

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danielcroft

The theory I've heard from a few people is that the wear and subsequent furriness of the vectran causes the tension knots. HMA doesn't get as furry before it's time to change lines, it tend to break without showing as much visible wear so, likely the issues with furriness and resulting tension knots are less of a problem.



.....................................................................................

Good point about "furiness!"
Back when Dacron lines were fashionable, we replaced them when they got furry because the incidence of tension knots increased dramatically with furry lines.
Desert dust complicated the issue, causing even faster furriness and more tension knots. Desert dust also abbrades suspension lines much faster.

As mentioned in the recent Thai fatality report, some videographers are making a thousand jumps per year on 300 suspension lines and pulling more Gs during their landing pattern than during opening shock. No wonder the (Russian jumping in Thailand) videographer broke a 300 pound line.

Hardcore competitors only expect 300 pound lines to last 300 jumps, so re-line their canopies on a regular basis.
We doubt if videographers are replacing 300 pound lines very 300 jumps.
I suspect that Performance Designs' latest announcement (complementary line sets for the first thousand Velocities) is a response to videographers making "more than 300" jumps on 300 pound line sets.

Which reminds me ...... There is an early Velocity in my loft. I will have to double-check the serial number.

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I suspect that Performance Designs' latest announcement (complementary line sets for the first thousand Velocities) is a response to videographers making "more than 300" jumps on 300 pound line sets.

Which reminds me ...... There is an early Velocity in my loft. I will have to double-check the serial number. Isn't this announcement about the newer Valkyrie canopy design rather than the velocity.??:)
i have on occasion been accused of pulling low . My response. Naw I wasn't low I'm just such a big guy I look closer than I really am .


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riggerrob

I need to look at the label close enough to determine whether it is a Velocity or Valkyrie.



Um, no. Way easier than that. For example:

Does it have stabilizers? Velo.
Does it have tail ribs? Valkyrie.

And of course, there's always the big logo outside each end cell.

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Seeing how 300/500 OV has been used on Comp Velocity since it was released...I am surprised none of the wear issues/tension knots have not shown up or been mentioned by owners.... I know stock VC came with 300 OV.... but a lot of people ordered with 500 OV... as well as PD offering HMA as an option..! Just an observation of mine... :-)

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The explanation I've heard is that the VK is a faster wing and causes more issues but, given how the VKs openings are so staged compared to the VE/VC, I'm not really surprised that there'd be less chance of tension knots on the VC/VE. In summary, what PD said (Luck's post above). It's not a simple matter of saying "same lines: same problems" there are a shit-tonne (metric) variables.

I've yet to have tension knots on my VK and have had 3 line sets on it now.

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I changed my first lineset at 150-ish, most people (my rigger, experienced peeps, PD) thought there were 50 more jumps in my lines but, I wasn't happy with the way they looked (looking really furry) so, I changed them. Standard OV500 for the second set, those were the ones I changed super early for #REASONS. I'm on my third set, probably about 100 ish jumps, the lines look pretty good so, not going to change them for a bit.

So, your point is valid but, the devil is in the detail. A lot of my jumps are in sandy/dirty environments (Elsinore, San Diego, Oceanside) so, I don't expect to get a bunch of jumps on the lines. 150 is a little low, somewhere north of 200 on OV500 would be expected in these environments but, I'm also a scaredy cat with lines. I'm likely going to try the HMA500s and see how they go.

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Thanks for the info.... and you know your canopy better than anyone else... if you think it needs relining... who his anyone to argue...? Better to be safe than sorry.. $ vs life... no chance !
I've been told HMA is lower drag than vectran but does not show wear as much..? I'm surprised PD never offered HMA as option in the beginning..?
I've jumped 4 different size VK's 79-96 and I have never experienced tension knots....have you ever had problem ?

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Ive had 3 tension knots on my valkyries original lineset.
1st one was at 355 jumps. At that time there was significantly more wear to the outside A lines compared to the others. Obviously at this time there were not any other reported cases so we put the tension knots down to packing error.

2nd tension knot happened at 385 jumps. At this point we realised something was not right. We decided to change the outside A lines. My rigger didnt have any OV so we put on some 500lb hma. We also rubed candle wax along the other lines to help with the fuzziness. This seemed to solve the issue for awhile. Now while the lines did look slightly fuzzy, they did not look terrible.

3rd pressure knot was at 520 jumps. The outside hma line we put on was fine but the ov lines were now significantly more fuzzy. But comparing to my velociry at 500 jumps the line wear was the same. If these lines were on my velocity i would definitely have carried on jumping them without a second thought.

Knowing what i do now i would have probably only done 350 jumps on my valkyrie before relining. While the candle wax helped for a 100 jumps it did not solve the problem and was a pain in the ass rubbing it in every 10 jumps or so. Im now on my second lineset. I ordered a spare pair of outer AB lines when i ordered my lineset. Those went on after 200 jumps. Im at 280 jumps on my current lineset and am watching the opening very closely for the signs of a tension knot. But i must say again that the lines themselves do not look like they need replacing yet. So i would suggest that if u are looking at the wear on your valkyrie lines that u dont compare them to those of your velocity.

I must take my hat off to PD for listening to their customers and making a valient effort to keep them happy and safe.
I have chosen the hma lineset as a replacement and will happily follow up if there are significant changes as the lines wear.
I will say that im not to concerned if i still only get 500 jumps out the hma lineset as long as i dont have to deal with tension knots again. I can tell u that they were 3 incredibly scary situations that i would never like to repeat.

Blue skies,
Dave
Ready...Set...Go..!

SkydiveSwakop

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As someone who is about to buy a VK, I really hope they have figured this issue out. On an all purpose canopy I expect around 400 jumps out of a line set. I don't think that's unreasonable. 150-200 is pretty bad unless you're flying comp lines on a petra or something similar.

Daniel, when will you be installing the HMA500's?

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My (very subjective) thoughts on the matter:
The VK (really any Schuemann derived wing) is different. Main difference is that it performs at a level much higher than has been seen by high volumes of jumpers since the VE came out in '99. The guys who tested it were jumping 'X' prototypes and Peregrines and had continuous lineset changes due to 'revs' in the testing process to dial in the final product we the consumers are jumping.
Most of the guys flying Peregrines with 300lb Vectran will tell you they change linesets every 150-200 jumps. SUB TERMINAL JUMPS... Sure 500lb is thicker. But we're taking it to terminal and beating the shit out of it.
I know quite a few vidiots/experienced up-jumpers/organizers who take their HMA or Vectran linesets up to the "fuzzy and really need to be replaced level" regularly (on VE's, Xaos's, Etc.) Sure people have been getting 500 jumps on VE's who jump at Grass DZ's, pack inside and never get their lines wet or sandy. Sometimes those lines break on opening and they either land it sans lines or they chop it then reline (Assuming they find it).
The VK is a different machine. You replace tires on a truck every 40,000 mi or so. You replace tires on a race car multiple times during a race. The VK is a Ferrari. It has maintenance requirements that are different than your Katana (or your Grandma's station wagon).
For someone to say that the VK is faulty because the lineset doesn't last for 500 jumps is akin to saying an airplane that get's landed with the gear up, out of gas and 4 years past an Annual is to blame for the Pilot's screwup.
As for the litany of tension knots-I blame the softer Orange Vectran (individual fibers are thinner, compared to the "Natural" Vectran braid) combined with shitty/un-educated packing. Softer lines like HMA and the Orange Vectran require more careful linestows.
I believe a lot of the problems have come from worn out linesets, ill-prepared pilots who would have been better off jumping something less demanding than the VK at the experience-level they first put themselves under one and bad gouge being put out around bonfires about the canopy's packing requirements and opening characteristics.
While I applaud PD for building a "fix" I'm not convinced we needed one.

-Harry
450 jumps on VK's from 96 to 79. WL from 2.6 to 3.4. My current 90 has 325 jumps on it and i have replaced the LCL's within the last 50 jumps. The new "fixed" lineset will hang on the wall in my loft for another 25-50 jumps before I install it. As an aside-I was prepared for the VK. I wasn't prepared for the 9 cell version after 250+ 7 cell jumps. My first jump on a 9 cell Schuemann I chopped and lost. My second I chucked the RDS. 3rd-5th were uneventful. Point is the Schueman Wings are new, have different requirements to fly and have different maintenance needs.
"Sometimes you eat the bar,
and well-sometimes the bar eats you..."

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Nerra

... On an all purpose canopy ...


This is where I have to disagree; to put what angryelf said maybe more succinctly, the VK not an all purpose canopy. Expecting it to perform like one is a mistake IMO.

Nerra

Daniel, when will you be installing the HMA500's?


My OV500s still look ok (and, I'm not the type to leave them until they're sketchy) so, I'll likely order after that. No harm in ordering sooner, just haven't got around to it yet.

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'All purpose' may have been the wrong wording but this canopy is definitely marketed way differently to that of the Peregrine.

First of all, PD lists it under 'mains' along with the VE, Katana, Saber etc, not 'Specialty mains'.

It then goes on to say on the VK webpage... "Whether you're filming tandems all day" and "Great for camera flyers".

That's a little misleading if you're expected to replace the lines every 150 jumps.

As for angryelf's comments, comparing a VK to the VE is not the same as comparing a truck to a race car. The leap is not that big.

The pilot analogy is also weak. It's more like a G4 pilot flying a brand new G5 with the expectation set from Gulfstream that the range is similar to that of the G4 and then the pilot running out of fuel halfway to his destination.

As for blaming tension knots on shitty packing technique and inexperienced pilots, I'd be careful where you go there. You think at 450 VK jumps that somehow you've figured it out and that you're immune. It's this very mindset that catches people out in this sport with any sort of experience.

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I've only done a few handfull of jumps on various VK, Leias and a Petra but from what I've seen and heard from those jumping them regularly they all experienced significantly more tension knots than when jumping with "oldschool wings" like VC, Xaos, JVX.
It's not just a VK phenomenon. The reasoning behind PDs 'fix' can be used for all the new hp-wings imo. Very low pressure during the opening process on the outer lines, them being able to move around more and subsequently hooking themselfes together with other fuzzy lines. Not something you can fix with different packing techniques, if you ask me.

The higher wear some guys experienced is a different issue. On the Vk the flapping slider problem might have its role, too. But on those VKs I've seen/ relined so far the lower line parts where ok but the area above the cascades was the most worn out.
That might have two reasons. Firstly they snivel more, slider stays up longer and has more time to mess with beautiful orange lines.
Secondly on some landings, especially the very fast ones you can hear a high frequency vibration sound. Like a mosquito, that is buzzing close to your ear.
I heard it first from a Helix 71 during a competition. I asked what that was and was told the lines are vibrating, a good indicator for speed and power ;) Afterwards I searched for that sound on other canopies and found it on VKs and another Helix.
And sure enough, on those wings the part above the cascades was fuzzier than on similar wings you couldn't hear this sound from.

Illuminati confirmed?
-------------------------------------------------------

To absent friends

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Nerra

'All purpose' may have been the wrong wording but this canopy is definitely marketed way differently to that of the Peregrine.

First of all, PD lists it under 'mains' along with the VE, Katana, Saber etc, not 'Specialty mains'.

It then goes on to say on the VK webpage... "Whether you're filming tandems all day" and "Great for camera flyers".

That's a little misleading if you're expected to replace the lines every 150 jumps.


It's misleading if you're inclined to see it that way. My personal experience is that, most camera flyers fly HP wings. I have several friends who fly Petras as their camera wing because they want to swoop and can do so on every jump. To me, I don't really think PD is far off the mark when NZA has a wing that will not last super long that camera flyers use, that's not even the lines that are failing, it's the material. I'm not trying to criticize NZA here, sail just doesn't last as long as ZP. Not everyone only gets 150 jumps out of OV500 lines. It's definitely been a problem that PD has tried to correct but, I know people who've got a lot more.

I personally replace my lines early compared to what most people say I should. I don't want to take the chance when it comes to tension knots (potentially caused by the opening sequence and contributed to by the fuzzy vectran lines) so, I replace early; I've yet to have tension knots on my VK. I know plenty of people who have, though. I jump mostly in SoCal so, my lines should be expected to wear out super fast but, I load my VK79 @ 2.2 so, lighter loading in theory should give me longer life. Who knows how much, though.

I guess I just don't agree with your reasoning in grouping the VK with a Sabre2 in terms of general use, we're talking about the highest performance wing available to the general public from PD. That's not to say that it's great for the lines to be done in 150 jumps but, I think that we've really not got enough data points on the new lineset to come to a conclusion as to whether the OV500+OV300 outers or HMA500 lines will make a difference for people.

The analogy that I generally use is taking race tires and using them on a fast street car will give you more milage that taking those same tires and using them on a race car. The VK flies faster than a VE/VC there's more wear, that results in reduced longevity of the material.

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danielcroft


It's misleading if you're inclined to see it that way. My personal experience is that, most camera flyers fly HP wings. I have several friends who fly Petras as their camera wing because they want to swoop and can do so on every jump. To me, I don't really think PD is far off the mark when NZA has a wing that will not last super long that camera flyers use, that's not even the lines that are failing, it's the material. I'm not trying to criticize NZA here, sail just doesn't last as long as ZP. Not everyone only gets 150 jumps out of OV500 lines. It's definitely been a problem that PD has tried to correct but, I know people who've got a lot more.

I personally replace my lines early compared to what most people say I should. I don't want to take the chance when it comes to tension knots (potentially caused by the opening sequence and contributed to by the fuzzy vectran lines) so, I replace early; I've yet to have tension knots on my VK. I know plenty of people who have, though. I jump mostly in SoCal so, my lines should be expected to wear out super fast but, I load my VK79 @ 2.2 so, lighter loading in theory should give me longer life. Who knows how much, though.

I guess I just don't agree with your reasoning in grouping the VK with a Sabre2 in terms of general use, we're talking about the highest performance wing available to the general public from PD. That's not to say that it's great for the lines to be done in 150 jumps but, I think that we've really not got enough data points on the new lineset to come to a conclusion as to whether the OV500+OV300 outers or HMA500 lines will make a difference for people.

The analogy that I generally use is taking race tires and using them on a fast street car will give you more milage that taking those same tires and using them on a race car. The VK flies faster than a VE/VC there's more wear, that results in reduced longevity of the material.



I can agree with that. For what it's worth, I just bought a VK, so I very much want this issue to be resolved and am rooting for PD to be successful in doing so.

I'd be happy if I can get 350 jumps on a set of lines on the VK. Safely though, I don't want to be super worried between jump #250 and #350 because the lines look terrible. Is that an unrealistic expectation?

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The only honest answer I can give you is "it depends". I think if you were seeing 500ish jumps out of a similarly loaded VE/VC/JVX the it's reasonable to think the extra speed generated by the VK *should* give you something in that ballpark but, who knows.

I have a friend who broke lines on his Hybrid Leia after, I think, 120 jumps. He's not loading the wing super high but, he jumps mostly in Elsinore. I have other friends who've put 400+ on their Leias and have no problems. In terms of the conversation about line longevity, we usually hear that VKs are bad but not much about the HL, it happens though.

If I'm getting 250ish jumps out of mine in SoCal, I'd imagine that someone jumping in an area with less sand/etc. could get 350 but, again, who knows?

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