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  1. SkydiverShawn

    Show Me The Money

    While I agree with much of what you have said, I think that you neglected to add the fact that increased competition (more DZ's) will have the affect of decreasing prices, even with out resale sites. Laws of supply and demand my friend! It is time for DZ's to actively and professionally market, and sometimes re-brand their business, to remain competitive. But in the end, some will lose, just as the mom and pop shops have lost to Wal-Mart and Home Depot. Those that are going to be successful now will need to work toward growth and expansion.
  2. May is highly unlikely, June is more realistic. Capture from their website attached. You will never be more alive than you are the instant you let go!
  3. I would like to post an update to my comments above. Chris and I have been in regular contact regarding the issues surrounding the camera suit...and he has proposed a solution that is above an beyond what I would have expected, from any suit manufacturer. To protect Chris from exploitation in the future I am choosing to not share that here, if he chooses he can. What I will add, I do not nor have I ever believed that Chris, or anyone at Freefall Suits was/is less than honest. He did offer to send my money back, and I am choosing to take the suit instead. This is a new company that is in its infancy, and there are pains with that. It is how Chris handles these few issues that will define Freefall Jump Suits as a company in the future, and when this all comes together for me I will be proud to wear this camera suit. His products are extremely well made and of the highest quality and craftsmanship. As soon as this is completely resolved I will post photos of the suit. Until then I am confident that I am not only going to get what I paid for, but much more. You will never be more alive than you are the instant you let go!
  4. I did... I met Chris and purchased a RW suit on August 4th at SDC Summerfest. Chris is a nice guy with all of the ambition in the world. After additional communication with Chris I realized that the seven week lead time for a RW suit would not work. Chris offered to send my money back, but that never happened. So...I elected to take a camera suit for the money that was paid for the RW suit. No big deal I thought... Chris proposed a design, which I did not really like. I offered an option which would not work, and I finally came up with a color selection and pattern that would work with the materials that are offered. During this time the "computer work" and design was supposed to being completed. So I waited, waited, waited, and waited some more. I contacted Chris in Mid October and asked about my suit. I was told that there was a material issue and that he was waiting on new material and that I should see my suit in November. Ok, so I waited some more. Finally on December 3rd I received the camera suit. I was amped, expecting perfection...and was literally crushed to see that the color pattern was not at all correct, as it was just as Chris proposed and I rejected. The suit also does not have the leg zippers and outside pocket that I paid for and the legs are too long for me to create any tension on the booties, even with thick soled shoes and the rig on. I contacted Chris immediately and was told that he would call me this morning, nothing. I have requested that we agree on a solution by the end of the week (Dec 6th a full four months after I paid him). It looks like I may need someone to make the alterations that I need. Does anyone know of someone that can help me, maybe in the Chicago area? I guess I will get to voice my opinion when he shows up at SDC next summer, and you can bet I will be telling everyone about this experience, even if I do it in front of his booth and every Boogie I attend. Chris...if for some reason you read this and would like for me to edit, I will. I would be glad to let everyone know of the resolution we come to that makes us both happy. You will never be more alive than you are the instant you let go!
  5. I think they actually set this to be ten days. Starting on Friday for ground school and possibly a jump then you have a weekend plus a week. This is more than enough time fro training, jumping, and debriefing. But, everything that goes into an A-license and the jumping is not for everyone to complete in that time frame. Some people need a little more time for personal emotional reflection between jumps or to work through issues that develop in flying. You will never be more alive than you are the instant you let go!
  6. I bet he could answer this differently: What has been your worst skydiving moment? I had a drogue-reserve entanglement that kept the reserve slider stuck all the way up after a container lock on a tandem. I spent terrifying time trying to bring the knot down the reserve lines in order to get the slider down. At the time, I had fewer than 100 tandem jumps and did not understand how it would be possible to container lock a Sigma tandem rig. My ignorance put me and my passenger in a potentially fatal situation. Thankfully, we both walked away with only bumps and bruises. You will never be more alive than you are the instant you let go!
  7. This is quite simply the best large DZ I have been to. The Nelsons have provided everything a skydiver could want in one convenient place. RW, Freefly, Wingsuit flying, Big Ways etc...this place has it all!!! The experience of the other experienced jumpers far exceeds that of any other DZ in the Midwest. The staff is professional and courteous. The DZ has great camping, food/drink at the Tiki Hut, a pond for fishing and swimming. The area has plenty to do off the DZ as well. Oh, and don't forget Summerfest! Best Boogie ever.
  8. And what you can do in the tunnel is only half of the freefall portion. Tunnel can't teach you exits, diving/approaching a formation, tracking, breakoff safety, etc. Tunnel's a useful tool but being a badass tunnel flyer does not automatically make you ready for all types of skydives. I completely agree... Being competent in the tunnel can also dilute ones perspective about the rest of a skydive. Meaning that they get confident is some skills and that confidence can be overstated with regards to the aspects of a skydive you mentioned. The stresses involved with opening the door, climbing out of and letting go of a properly functioning plane can be overwhelming, and there is no way a potential skydiver or student can prepare for that in the tunnel, and that does not account for the stresses at deployment, canopy flight and landing? In fact, three points of a skydive are the most stressful, exit/deployment/landing. Not one of these can be taught in a tunnel. You will never be more alive than you are the instant you let go!
  9. Weight and WL do matter, but really only in the beginning when it comes to a downsizing progression. When you select your first canopy, you should choose a WL that is 'sensible' for your weight and experience. Once that is done, downsizing is strictly a function of skill, experience, and currency. Regardless of what your weight is now, you only need to look at how well you handle your current canopy when making the decision to downsize. That's the only relevant factor. You do not 'need' any particular WL, what you 'need' is to jump a canopy that you can safely handle in the worst case scenario. If higher winds pick up when the plane is on jumprun, and turn into high, gusty winds, and you get blown away from the DZ and have to land off, you need to be on a canopy that you can reliably set down in a potentially smaller LZ with the possibility of turbulence. At that point, it's your skill, experience, and currency that will get you safely down, not attaching yourself to a particular WL. Think about it, your own example illustrates how different DZs and different jumpers will start off on different WL, so to a degree, it's an arbitrary number. To then turn around and take that arbitrary number and make it a 'rule' such that you downsize your canopy because you lost some weight is making a mistake. The number is what it is, but it's not related to your skill, experience. and currency on that canopy/WL. While there are differing opinions about what sort of canopy or WL is appropriate for a newbie, I would suggest that it's a universal opinion that downsizing should be done one size at a time, and only when you've demonstrated competency on your current wing. While the first step might be different for everyone, each step after that should only be one step at a time. Very nice! I appreciate the responses...sometimes it is hard to find an answer to questions like this that are not filled with opinion and cockyness or simply disregard that fact that one might want not only an answer, but a "why" or "why not". Thanks, Shawn You will never be more alive than you are the instant you let go!
  10. What he said! Chris has the best customer service in the industry! He has done absolutely everything possible to make a difficult situation good. I now have a camera suit on order and will be ordering a freefly suit as soon as funds allow! Blue Skies Chris! You will never be more alive than you are the instant you let go!
  11. No kidding! Ha I never thought about it like that! Like I said before I am happy where I am, but in a few hundred more jumps I may try just that. You will never be more alive than you are the instant you let go!
  12. OK I am back with additional question(s) Two scenarios: One - Jumper with 300 jumps has been jumping a 170 for 150 jumps loaded at 1.1 Two - New jumper (small female) with 60 jumps starts on a 170 loaded at
  13. Depends on the DZ. I jump at a couple DZ's that have several families that bring the kids, and they are welcomed. Teach them to respect the DZ, respect the jumpers, and help out where they can and you will be giving them an experience that none of their school friends have. Likely you will also be guiding a respectful skydiver. You will never be more alive than you are the instant you let go!
  14. Zero. Canopy piloting skill, experience and currency are the only things that should influence canopy decisions. Your weight is only one aspect of the equation, and simply losing weight does not make you ready to jump a smaller canopy. Look at your skill level and competency on your current wing, and the one you plan to downsize to on the day you plan to downsize. Everything else is just speculation and not relevant to the reality of you jumping a certain canopy on a regular basis. Then why would there be jumpers with 100 jumps on a 170 and others with 100 jumps on a 190 and equal on every aspect other than "exit weight". It would stand to reason that wing loading should not be a factor for any jumper until they are at several hundred or even a thousand jumps, assuming that all else is equal. I completely agree and I personally am very happy with where I am, but we as skydivers do focus on wing load when deciding on a canopy. Just thinking out loud, not disagreeing... You will never be more alive than you are the instant you let go!
  15. I've got a bit of experience in this realm. My first canopy was a 210sqft loaded at 1.2 or so, and then I downsized a bit later and also gained weight. Eventually I was at a 1.5 on a 190 (same model canopy as the 210). Since that peak I've lost a bit over 50lbs, and my wingload is almost back to that 1.2 (and will be below that within another 6 weeks or so). It is DEFINITELY like being back on my original canopy to an extent, but that said since it's still smaller it's a bit more responsive. I'm a cheapass so I probably won't downsize (unless I just start stealing my girlfriend's 168 occasionally) but if it weren't a finances issue I would definitely consider it. However, it's just like any other downsize, especially if you've become complacent on your current canopy: make sure you're prepared for every situation on your current wing before you potentially make those situations worse on a smaller one. Im sure! I notice a difference with just my weight loss on the same canopy size. I did move to the Stiletto from a Sabre about 50 jumps ago and that I really enjoy. One of our jumpers that has lost the most has really been able to down size and is finally in a 190. You will never be more alive than you are the instant you let go!