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  1. benlangfeld

    Storing training videos

    First up, I did search the forum and found mostly references to storing miniDV tapes, so maybe it's time to bring this topic up again I have a growing collection of video (both inside and outside) of training jumps currently stored on a 1TB USB hard drive. That the drive might get lost or damaged concerns me, so I began looking into options. First up, the things I'm looking for are: * Indefinite storage - not looking to delete these * Cloud-based (a-la Dropbox/iCloud/Google Drive/Amazon S3/etc) * Doesn't occupy space on my devices' local disk * Cached locally for re-watching in the short term * Easily ingested * Easily indexed and viewable from various devices (iPad, iPhone, someone else's computer) Dropbox and similar services don't cut it because they simply mirror part of the contents of a local disk, and I don't anticipate having enough disk space (at least continuously attached to a computer) for these videos. Typical backup solutions fall in a similar bucket, and don't do a whole lot for making individual videos easy to find and watch without doing some sort of restore operation. Uploading to YouTube might be an option, but it's a very slow and manual process, and simple things like grouping the inside and outside video from the same jump is onerous. The best option I have found so far is the Apple Photos app, which has an "optimise local storage" feature which holds only low resolution versions of media on local disk, and full resolution on iCloud storage. The collection of images is available on a Mac, in a web browser, and on iOS devices and the full resolution versions are downloaded on demand and cached locally for some period. On the other hand, the downsides of this are that one is somewhat locked-in to Apple's product (there's no metadata export function), and the iOS apps don't permit viewing or editing metadata (eg jump number in the video title). So, what does everyone else do to store their hundreds or thousands of training jump videos? Are there any better options out there?
  2. benlangfeld

    EPs: Look up before pulling reserve?

    I know I'm getting into heresy here but I've always pulled my cutaway then went to my reserve. I've never done the one hand on each handle thing and I've never understood any advantage to it but plenty of disadvantages. But then I've never looked at a handle. I took Pat Works' advice and practiced until I knew where they were. On my fourth malfunction I'm convinced I'd have bounced if I hadn't broken two rules. One, never cut away a total. But I did and when the reserve launched the main released. It wrapped around the reserve but the risers were disconnected to they just sort of wound that way too and were tossed aside. It left some pretty good burns on the reserve but I was ok. The second was looking at the handles. I was going through a grand and head down terminal. If I'd had to tear my eyes off the ground to find my handles I'd have gone in. No two ways about it. As it was while my mind was being overloaded at the sight of treetops flying away from each other my hands pulled my R2s then the reserve. Always cut away a total. Always cut away a pilot-chute in tow. Reserve opening shock is highly likely to dump the main d-bag out and if it's not cut away it will unstow all the lines as it falls away and then tangle with tension and cause a problem. If it's cut away it will fall away with risers and lines together and not reach any line stretch. Even if it entangles it won't have any force and won't affect the inflated reserve. A friend of mine has only just got back in the air after having this exact scenario which had him in a wheelchair for almost a year. He pitched his reserve with a PCIT without chopping and the reserve opening shock dumped his main which inflated and tangled around his foot. The asymmetry of the pull on his body sent his reserve into twists from which there was no recovery possible. It's simple. Execute your EPs exactly as you've learned and practiced and don't try to rethink the decades of accumulated experience and knowledge when you have a mal. Any advice to the contrary is bad advice. I don’t think you should be so confident about that. I am Aware of at least one case of a PCIT to reserve deployment where the reserve did not fully inflate, but the shock did let the main out. Two partially inflated canopies saved the guy’s life. Had he chopped his PCIT he would have died.
  3. benlangfeld

    Altimeter Combos

    What kind of helmet mount? I've heard of the color-light based altis but I get the impression you are talking about something else. Take a look at the attachment.
  4. benlangfeld

    Collapsed Slider Still Noisy?

    The flatter wing.
  5. benlangfeld

    Collapsed Slider Still Noisy?

    You'd still have to pull the rings down, at least on rears. At least that's what I see (I don't jump with an RDS) The last time I tried to stow the slider I accidentally pulled a toggle in the process, and the grommets got hung up making it difficult to fix. I feel it just adds additional risk for no reward in my application. I fly a slow, large canopy as I'm getting into WS. There is no performance difference with a stowed slider for me. I fly a Pilot 188 at 0.95 and can feel a difference in lift when flaring with the slider stowed. If you’re popping toggles when pulling it down, you’re either rushing too much or need to tighten your toggle stows up.
  6. benlangfeld

    Tunnel to AFF training BSR change

    Hi [mbailey465], can you explain more please? I am a tunnel flier, not really planning to skydiving per say, but I find it super curious to read about how skills can be translated from sky to tunnel or from tunnel to sky. What do you mean by "flat body position", I arch when belly flying in the tunnel quite a bit, isn't it the same in the sky? thanks! Tunnel coaches will quite often encourage a flatter (arms and legs extended) position in order to keep wind speed down and therefore reduce risk. This is contrary to “arch like a mofo” that you typically hear from AFF-Is.
  7. benlangfeld

    BOD Meeting July 2018

    Actually, the SIM only recommends a C for flying a camera. It is not a BSR.
  8. benlangfeld

    How soon did you start buying gear?

    You could try the Altitrack (, which has an analogue face but is in-fact digital (with the precision benefits of digital) and behaves as a log. As for an audible, yes they are all digital, but you can't see them during the jump so your preference for an analogue face has nothing to do with it. I'd encourage you to try on various models of helmet in various sizes. I tried two or three sizes of both the Cookie G3 (just didn't like the shape of it at all) and the KISS (which fit great). I bought a helmet, altimeters (Viso & Brilliant Pebbles audible), jumpsuit and gloves when I got my A. The jumpsuit and helmet are the most important, because student gear is disgusting. It's normal to buy several jumpsuits as you progress through different kinds of jumps. I bought a short (sleeves and legs) freefly suit to begin with because I just needed something that has been washed this century and I jump at a DZ that is regularly 35C and I was bored of dripping. I then got into FS and bought a suit with booties and big grippers. I use both all the time. If I get into freefly at a cold DZ I'll buy a full-length FF suit, and if I get into camera work, a jacket with wings.
  9. benlangfeld

    BOD Meeting July 2018

    And to stand any chance of doing so you have to significantly exceed the C license requirements in terms of belly skills, so it’s no problem in your case to require them.
  10. benlangfeld

    BOD Meeting July 2018

    As per my question above: if one doesn't intend to compete or become an instructor, why is a C license important? What's wrong with "average fun jumpers" just getting a B license and hanging out?
  11. benlangfeld

    BOD Meeting July 2018

    Why would one be screwed if one is not near a tunnel? The announcement says: There is no requirement for tunnel training, but simply clarification that it is acceptable to the USPA to consider freefall stability demonstrated in a wind tunnel as sufficient to make the second instructor unnecessary (effectively skipping AFF levels 1-3). Are you concerned that this is a threat to students' learning opportunities or instructors' earning potential?
  12. benlangfeld

    BOD Meeting July 2018

    I'm genuinely interested in contributing to some mutually agreeable understanding here, so please bare with me for a few questions: To those who either don't want to, or believe they cannot complete the belly formation requirements for a C license: * Why do you want a C license? * Why is not having a C license a problem for you? To those who defend the license requirements at each level: * Are licenses explicitly intended to demonstrate competence as a well-rounded skydiver, or competence in some specific discipline? * Does the USPA/FAI consider progression in the sport to be linear, or acknowledge that there are multiple paths that may be traversed? * Are the license levels considered to be a convenient shorthand for quickly assessing an individual's experience, or intended to be keys to unlock particular privileges? * Is there an established mapping of privileges to the specific experience requirements to unlock them, without the generalisation of license levels as an approximation? * Is there the potential for a more flexible licensing program to replace the existing rather coarse scheme, such that progression in particular disciplines may be recognised and may unlock relevant privileges without the necessity of demonstrating competency in seemingly unrelated disciplines, or is the A-B-C-D scheme sacred? * Is there a licensing scheme in some other sport from which inspiration is taken, or is the existing scheme entirely home-cooked within the skydiving community?
  13. benlangfeld

    Downsizing for first rig

    What will your wing-loading on the Safire be? What does your instructor think? How are your canopy skills?
  14. benlangfeld

    LB Ares II digital altimeter

    Figuratively. I just meant sell mine and buy an Ares. Nothing official that I know of.
  15. benlangfeld

    LB Ares II digital altimeter

    Thank you! The Ares is quite a bit larger and clearer. I think I might trade in my Viso.