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Everything posted by betzilla

  1. call Para Concepts - they make them
  2. huh. Interesting, Mark. I was taught that the internal pocket (on rigs that had them, like Vector 2's and older Vector 3's was to store "previous" data cards. I've never seen it stated nor implied that we are to keep an additional current packing card inside the reserve container. Granted, I've only been rigging for a piddly 11 years, haha. I don't really see pencil-packing as a 'problem.' I see it as tacky, to be sure, and it's always people with a strong feeling of entitlement who do it, as it seems. I sort of take it for granted that a certain percentage of jumpers are going to pencil, and I pack every rig knowing that it may not see the inside of a loft again until the reserve has been used, even if that's YEARS from now.
  3. The Jedei has lots of devotees (that is, people who jumped them LOVED them), so you shouldn't have too tough a time selling it to the right buyer. Good luck!
  4. I've seen mesh backpads (not just the mesh that is on infinities, but also spacer foam from other mfrs) with little things stuck in them. Depending on the particular thing (gravel, twigs, etc), it can be pretty tough to get it out of the mesh. If you use a drag mat when packing, that shouldn't be a problem. If you don't, just be sure you're packing on a surface that's clear of debris, and you should do just fine!
  5. if it were an actual step-through or riser flip-through, the slider would have to be twisted. But I do see the crossed lines, and it looks to me like it was assembled incorrectly.
  6. swabbing the hardware with some rubbing alcohol will often clean it enough to stop the slippage too. Sounds too simple, right? but it works
  7. I saw the reserve bridle setup a couple years ago on a Mirage freebag that came through my loft (my lips are sealed as to how it got there, haha). The bridle mod is almost exactly like the wings boost system, as I recall. We didn't have an RSL equipped rig to pack it into, so I didn't see anything but the bridle itself. If I recall correctly, a collins lanyard is not part of this particular setup (or wasn't at that time). It would definitely be sweet if Mirage would, oh, I don't know, inform their dealers of the new option, so we could help our customers make an educated decision.
  8. I have a servo motor on my 20U at home (I requested a regular motor, but the dealer made a mistake and sent me the servo motor). I worried it wouldn't have enough power, but it's fine. I have it cranked almost all the way up though, and still just use my lightning quick reflexes for control ;)
  9. Yes! I used an excel sheet to manage the school gear when I was the rigger at a couple different big DZ's works like a charm. I never got good enough with excel to have it send out emails, but that sounds really hot! I like the idea of switching over to a fully electronic format, especially since my workplace can then have those records on file as well....
  10. wow, I'm surprised by this. I used to do a fair amount of business with them, and always had a good experience. They were quick, affordable and the quality was very good. Obviously your experience is very different from mine. I hope your situation is resolved soon!
  11. The first machine I bought when I struck out on my own as a rigger was a Consew R2053. You wouldn't know the difference between it and the 20U, except it's a couple hundred bucks cheaper. the only thing annoying is that the pigtails swirl in the opposite direction of *every* other machine I've ever used. Nice little machine.
  12. PD, Icarus and Parachute Systems, I believe...
  13. I jumped one at 1.2 or so as I was working my way back down to my own gear after a year long layoff. I liked it. You won't get "maximum performance" out of it, but it will still be a good test run of the canopy. I'm not a swooper at all, even on my own CF2 loaded at about 1.6. I love the way it performs as a regular canopy, and I find that it has a ton of flare power even with a non-front-riser approach. Openings are soft, and although it has a tendency to open off heading, in 700+ CF2 jumps, I can count the number of times I've had line twists on one hand. But yes, on a lightly loaded CF2, avoid turbulence...
  14. practice practice practice. I use a cypres screwdriver (the world's most versatile rigging tool!) to push/pull the folds into place on the top and bottom when I turn the corner. Helps a little most of the time.
  15. I'm a pretty big fan of following instructions. But as you know, there are a LOT of people who really have a hard time even reading, let alone following, written instructions. somebody posted earlier that they have a reserve on which the first box wasn't marked at assembly. Did you know that PD reserves used to only have 39 boxes, and the label used to say to mark it every time the reserve is RE-packed? And yes, the card should stay with the reserve, but lots of people don't know that....
  16. PD reserves are available in custom color patterns (though it's really unusual for someone to get as crazy as what you're describing). I've seen several two-colored PDRs. So as long as the warning label shows that it IS a pd reserve and a a rigger gives it a clean bill of health, other than it being ugly, you shouldn't have any worries. :) as for the data card not matching the label, stuff happens to data cards - they get lost, or gear gets separated for sale and it goes with the container instead of the reserve (I had one customer whose data card was NEVER with his rig when he dropped it off, so he pretty much always had a card with one pack job on it that said "new data card"). So I wouldn't be too worried about them no matching. If you're concerned, though, you could call PD and ask if they'll do porosity testing on it to make sure the fabric is still in tip-top shape...
  17. That's hard to say without seeing it in its pocket. There's one manufacturer who is making super-mini d-rings, or something like that, I'm pretty sure it's one of those. Can't remember, and I'm not at that DZ anymore, SOOO.... my larger point was that it's a highly individual choice.
  18. this is great discussion - lots to think about. I have a pillow on my current rig, and that's what I visualize and practice for. As a rigger, I have lots of opportunities to pull handles, albeit on the ground, and I have found that because the pillow is what's in *my* mind, that's easiest for *me* to locate and pull. When I am puling handles on rigs that have metal d-rings, my hand tends to slip off it, because I'm not in the habit of hooking a thumb. The very-low-profile d-rings are even worse, and in one case, though I don't have particularly fat fingers, there was barely enough space between the harness and the edge of the handle to get a finger through the space. I recommended that customer practice gripping that handle a LOT before his next jump, and consider replacing it with one that's a little easier to grab. My only cutaway/reserve ride was on a rig with a big metal handle. I don't recall having any trouble at all finding and pulling that handle, but it was years ago, and not a violent malfunction. I will certainly add to my mental EP's, the possibility that my hand slips off the ripcord pillow after I chop, and I need to go hunting... Stay safe, y'all!
  19. Icarus Spain (CIMSA) would say absolutely not. I'm not sure what the boys in NZ have to say about it - I suspect they're ok with it.
  20. Wow, that's crazy! The VAST majority of my experience with soft links has been with the PD brand. While I knew metal on metal can cause problems, I've never seen anything quite like this.
  21. no, it's still a VX, with a JVX lineset. The main downside is that you're going to have to explain that, exactly, to whomever you sell it to
  22. The tacking serves to keep the ring (or tab) inside the riser instead of sticking out to one side or the other, and to some extent, this helps to insure that the link is loaded properly too. Once your soft links have taken a good "set" with the tab or ring where it needs to be, the tacking isn't important at all. BUT Aerodyne's instructions stipulate that they should be tacked, so if you want to be anal, they *should* be tacked (not so with PD Slinks, so don't trash a rigger who doesn't tack those every time!). In other words, it's not important for your safety, but it is important for the sake of following instructions I tend to tack soft links on mains only if the tabs/rings are poking out of the riser - I try to avoid poking sharp stuff through webbing if I can. I will only tack reserve soft links if the manufacturer's instructions explicitly tell me to. I am endlessly irritated by riggers who tack the soft links in such a way that I can't inspect them for proper assembly without cutting their inevitably tiny stitches and possibly nicking the riser in the process. If you're gonna tack it, do it in such a way that the next guy can still check the work, and so disassembly isn't a terrifying process! That was WAY more than 2 cents, haha...
  23. I did that to myself a couple years ago, after hundreds of main pack jobs and several years working in a rigging loft. It's a very easy mistake to make if you're the least bit distracted. Even easier for a new jumper who may not really understand WHY brakes are set the way they are. If the person is repeatedly doing it wrong, that's a pretty bad sign. But every jumper will space out and do it wrong now and then, I think. It's good to keep in mind that anyone can make a mistake
  24. I had a customer who had a Cobalt 150, who had several sets of spare brake lines in his gear bag because his cobalt opened so hard that he kept breaking them. No joke. One opening was so hard that it blew out a bunch of stitching on his fairly new Vector 3 container, which then had to be sent to UPT for big-money repairs. He thought it was normal. I only learned about the spare brake lines when I told him to fire the previous rigger, because hand-stitching the fingertrap on the lower steering lines was ghetto and he deserved better work than that. He blushed and said, "oh. that was actually me."