JohnRich

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Everything posted by JohnRich

  1. Well, after that recent "Parachutist" cover photo, I can understand how someone might think that to be true.
  2. In skydiving you can move in three dimensions. In most other sports, you only get two. If you can't think of ways to keep from getting bored with that, then you just need more imagination.
  3. Suggestion: Give it back to your husband.
  4. That would indeed be unusual, but not unheard of. It's happened several times, unfortunately...
  5. With no way to log off, that leaves a session hanging out there, which somone else could intercept. As it is now, killing a session within your browser doesn't actually terminate the dropzone.com session. Because if you re-activate dropzone.com, you jump right back in to your previous active session. The only way to actually kill the session is to kill the web browser, and then re-boot it to continue your work. This interferes with other work going on at the same time. Give us a means to log off cleanly. Somewhere.
  6. That's probably one element of it. He states that if he didn't write his own story, that someone else was going to do it without his permission. So he decided to go ahead and do it himself, his own way, to tell the story the way he wanted it told. I can't blame him for that. There can always be a second edition with corrections.
  7. What do you think is "unusual" about it?
  8. That's just asking for trouble. Have you ever seen one of those novelty radiometers? Link: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Crookes_radiometer When solar particles hit that white helmet they'll be reflected off the surface, and then Newton's third law of motion comes into play, which says that for every action there is an equal and opposite reaction. So all those solar particles bouncing off your white helmet will send you into an out of control spin. The only way to stop it will be to pop off your helmet to save yourself. Even worse, if you get into a formation with someone who has a black helmet, then his helmet will absorb the solar particles, while yours is reflecting them. And then you'll spin even faster, just like that radiometer. Have you ever wondered why Twardowski is always spinning towards the ground under canopy making spirals with smoke? It's that damned white helmet of his. I wouldn't advise it...
  9. How come the home page no longer has anyplace to log in? Oh, and there's no place to log off either... Doh!
  10. Re: "Half brakes, tug, tug tug... full breaks. The breaks were sloppy, yet, the landings were gentle.""BRAKES", not "breaks". You got it right once out of three. Wishing you many happy landings on the new canopy.
  11. Yep, you picked up on the poor writing in that small excerpt. The whole book is like that, and doesn't impress me. However, the story itself is gripping. How about how he said that you fall slower in freefall than on static line? I'm sure what he meant was under canopy, because it would be a ram-air versus a round, but he didn't explain that. In one sentence he talks about pulling the "cord", and in another he calls it the "chord". "Chord" is a wing design term, and not something you pull to deploy a parachute. Re: "Ropes". I don't know how much of this was his own writing, or his co-author, which may be a whuffo person trying to translate Kyle's story into language understood by the masses, but botching it.
  12. I'm sure that is true. Chris Kyle is also appearing on the TV show "Stars Earn Stripes", in which famous people get training by military experts in performing a competition involving military skills. Kyle seems like the real deal, and a humble guy too. He explains in his book that he isn't a particularly good sniper, and only graduated in the middle of the pack in his sniper class, almost failing the stalking phase. He attributes his record to the simple "luck" of being assigned to the battle of Fallujah in Iraq, in which the enemy was everywhere, and he had plenty of targets. It's not that he's a better sniper, just that he had more opportunities to take shots.
  13. This question has been addressed many times in the past here. Since you're doing "research", I suggest you use the "search" function to find the answers to your question.
  14. I'm reading the book "American Sniper", by Chris Kyle, the Navy SEAL sniper with the record for the most kills, which he achieved in Iraq. I started out #105 on a waiting list for the book from my library, so apparently it's very popular. After several months of waiting I finally reached the top of the list and got my hands on it. Now don't go getting your panties in a wad - this isn't a thread about guns or war that would belong in Speaker's Corner. My purpose here is to provde an excerpt of the two and a half pages in which he talks about his parachuting experiences. See if you can spot the odd stuff that doesn't sound quite right. Here it is: Begin quote AMONG OUR MORE NORMAL ROTATIONS WAS A RECERTIFICATION class for parachuting. Jumping out of planes-or, I should say, landing safely after jumping out of planes-is an important skill, but it's a dangerous one. Hell, I've heard it said the Army figures in combat, if they get 70 percent of the guys in a unit to land safely enough to rally and fight, they're doing well. Think about that. A thousand guys-three hundred don't make it. Not a big deal to the Army. Oh-kay. I went to Fort Benning to train with the Army right after I first became a SEAL. I guess I should have realized what I was in for on the first day of school, when a soldier just ahead of me refused to jump. We all stood there waiting-and thinking-while the instructors tended to him. I'm afraid of heights as it is, and this didn't build my confidence. Holy shit, I wondered, what's he seeing that I'm not? Being a SEAL, I had to make a good showing-or at least not look like a wimp. Once he was taken out of the way, I closed my eyes and plunged ahead. It was on one of those early static jumps (jumps where the cord is automatically pulled for you, a procedure usually used for beginners) that I made the mistake of looking up to check my canopy as I left the plane. They tell you not to do that. I was wondering why when the chute deployed. My tremendous sense of relief that I had a canopy and wasn't going to die was mitigated by the rope bums on both sides of my face. The reason they tell you not to look up is so that you don't get hit by the risers as they fly by your head when the chute opens. Some things you learn the hard way. And then there are night jumps. You can't see the land coming. You know you have to roll into PLFs-parachute landing falls - but when? I tell myself, the first time I feel something I'm going to roll. The first. . . time. . . the f-i-r-s-t . . . !! I think I banged my head every time I jumped at night. I WILL SAY I PREFERRED FREEFALL TO STATIC JUMPING. I'M not saying I enjoyed it, just that I liked it a lot better. Kind of like picking the firing squad over being hanged. In freefall, you came down a lot slower and had much more control. I know there are all these videos of people doing stunts and tricks and having a grand ol' time doing HALO (high altitude, low opening) jumps. There are none of me. I watch my wrist altimeter the whole time. That chord is pulled the split-second I hit the right altitude. ON MY LAST JUMP WITH THE ARMY, ANOTHER JUMPER CAME right under me as we descended. When that happens, the lower canopy can "steal" the air beneath you. The result is . . . you fall faster than you were falling. The consequences can be pretty dramatic, depending on the circumstances. In this case, I was seventy feet from the ground. I ended up falling from there, and having a couple of tree branches and the ground beat the crap out of me. I walked away with some bumps and bruises and a few broken ribs. Fortunately, it was the last jump of the school. My ribs and I soldiered on, glad to be done. OF COURSE, AS BAD AS PARACHUTING IS, IT BEATS SPY-RIGGING. Spy-rigging may look cool, but one wrong move and you can spin off in Mexico. Or Canada. Or maybe even China. Strangely, though, I like helos. During this workup, my platoon worked with MH-6 Little Birds. Those are very small, very fast scout-and-attack helicopters adapted for Special Operations work. Our versions had benches fitted to each side; three SEALs can sit on each bench. I loved them. True, I was scared to death getting on the damn thing. But once the pilot took off and we were in the air, I was hooked. It was a tremendous adrenaline rush-you're low and fast. It's awesome. The momentum of the aircraft keeps you in place; you don't even feel any wind buffeting. And hell-if you fall, you'll never feel a thing. End quote Note: "Spy rigging" is where ropes are thrown out of the helicopter and the soldiers on the ground clip themselves to the ropes and are lifted up dangling on the end under the chopper and carried away.
  15. Wow, something useful on Youtube. Thanks Bigun. I was thinking that the top part was part of the same unit as all that hydraulic stuff on the bottom half, and I didn't want to mess with the hydraulics. This video shows that it's a really easy part swap. I need new wheel hubs on this vehicle too, and that's where the sensors are for the ABS, which could be giving bad readings causing the warning lights. This truck has 186,000 miles on it. I'll be replacing the wheel hubs next month, and hopefully that will eliminate the warning lights. If not, now I know that the ABCM module is an easy replacement that I can do myself.
  16. So that's what was going on - I thought the acceleration felt a little sluggish! Heck, one photo at 35 mph ain't nothing compared to texting at 60. MattyB: Good tip - thank you, I'll keep that one in mind.
  17. Ask some old timers if they'll make you a cake.
  18. So what are you buying that is "just like a skydiving canopy"?
  19. A finger-trap is a method of joining one line into another, by passing one line through the weave of the other and into the hollow sheath inside that line. It's named after the Chinese finger-trap toy in which you insert a finger in each end of a woven tube, and when you try to remove your fingers, the weave just tightens up and your fingers are trapped. This same principle is used for joining many parachute lines, because the tension on the line helps hold the joint together. You secure the finger-trap joint in position by sewing a bar-tack over it, which is a zig-zag stitch in a tight pattern. You have to be careful to make sure the needle is passing through the line tucked inside the other, by not making the stitch length too wide. Chinese finger-trap: http://dmsblog.burtongroup.com/data_management_strategie/2009/10/enterprise-it-the-chinese-finger-trap.html Finger trapping: http://www.towmeup.com/splicing.html Bar tack: http://3.bp.blogspot.com/_1WM_Is5Jrl4/SpiZ7rZKg6I/AAAAAAAAAwk/cBYLwlxY5ls/s400/Billiken+003.jpg
  20. If the slider sits on top of links at the top of the risers, and there is a tube protecting the lines and links at that point, it can be a tight fit for the steering line to pass through all that. And then when you get to half brakes you hit the "cat's eye" finger-trapped in the brake line, though which you pass the toggle to stow the brakes when packing. That thick lump at the cat's eye can bump up against all that stuff up there with the grommet, slider bumper tube, lines, etc. I'm in the habit of pulling the slider down over the riser bumpers to get it out of the way of all that, and allow for free travel of the steering line. If all my terminology doesn't compute, get an experienced jumper to show you with the rig.