betzilla

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Everything posted by betzilla

  1. I think this would depend on the type of hook knife -- I was really irritated to have one confiscated until I considered that the "hook" was big enough that I could have lopped off a fingertip with it. The TSA has been cool with me when I've taken my stuff through security, for the most part. I'd just recommend that you allow some extra time, because if you're cutting it close, you'll look nervous, and if you look nervous they'll wonder what you're up to, and it all goes downhill from there. If you are relaxed and willing to shoot the shit with them about skydiving, they will probably not be too jerky about it. I generally carry my gear on if I have connecting flights (if I'm going to get separated from my luggage because of too tight a connection, I'd rather that luggage not be $10k worth of custom skydiving gear!). I check it if I have a direct flight, and I make sure I've arrived at the airport with plenty of time for the baggage handlers to get it to the plane.
  2. I packed one in 2013. I don't recall having any negative feelings about it.
  3. A bungee won't keep you from falling out of the harness backwards. Your own muscles will do that (and any rig that fits well enough for you to deploy a canopy safely in will fit well enough for you to stay in it with your leg straps scooched forward a bit under canopy). BUT... if you want a bungee on your rig, it's a really easy thing for a rigger with a decent sewing machine to add, for probably well under $20.
  4. Lawyers have a high rate of misery compared to other professions. A 2-second google search revealed that attorneys have the 11th highest suicide rate by occupation. I'm sad that people immediately piled on the OP. I suspect skydiving has saved a LOT of people from depression, and I think there is HUGE value in people sharing openly about their struggles with mental health. That's undermined when people are jerks to each other when they could just as easily say nothing.
  5. The grommets don't need to stay "together." They need to stay up against the stops (which are apparently offset a little on that canopy, as they are on many other designs). While I'm pushing the air out of a canopy, I put my knee up against the grommets and hold them against the stops. You can check and reposition the grommets right through the tail fabric when you start making your S-Fold too. You'll get better at it as you gain experience packing that canopy.
  6. The 193 referenced in the Wings size chart is a PR 193, not an optimum. The equivalent optimum would be a 218.
  7. The G4 comes down lower at the back of the head than the G3 does.
  8. one thing I have done with my packjobs that has helped quite a bit, is to spread open the center cell of the nose, before I wrap the tail. In theory, and I think in reality also, lol, this helps ensure that the center cell inflates first, and the canopy then pressurizes symmetrically. Give that a shot and see if it helps. Good luck!
  9. Para Gear no longer carries these. But I second that they are great!
  10. for my night jumps (twenty years ago. damn), I literally duct tapes a mini-maglite to my wrist, pointed at my handmount. It worked great and cost me nothing. It had pretty minimal cool factor though, lol
  11. !!! Keep in mind this means you need to be extra vigilant that your pouch is in good shape, to guard against premature deployments. If your pilot chute slides into the pouch more easily, the same will be true for it sliding out. There is always a trade off. Really nice looking rig though!
  12. It's soooo normal to be nervous - as a student skydiver, every jump requires you to get way outside your comfort zone! Tunnel time might not help you with the nerves themselves, but it WILL help you with the freefall stuff the nerves are keeping you from visualizing. And it will help you with general confidence (which MIGHT help with the nerves!).
  13. yep. It's doable, but not much fun. PR126/OP143 (and below) is where the one-size-up OP doesn't really pack the same size as the smaller PR, at least in my experience. That becomes more pronounced as you get into smaller and smaller sizes...
  14. I'm pretty stocky too - 5'4" and a little on the heavy side. I'm also a pretty damn good skydiver. It's much more a mental game than physical. Join us!
  15. parachutemanuals.com is such a great resource!
  16. Aerodyne now sends their handles out with the cables needing to be cut by the assembling rigger. While this is annoying, they do come with very clear instructions regarding how to determine the correct length and trim the cables to it.
  17. It does make a difference - sometimes a significant one. First step would be to reach out to Icarus (j@icarusworld.net) and find out if you've got the factory-size slider or some other goofy thing (you never know what you're really getting when you buy used gear - people make all kinds of modifications and maybe the previous owner of your canopy wanted slower openings for whatever reason. who knows?), and go from there. J is quite responsive - you'll probably hear back from him right away. Good luck!
  18. I take a decongestant before my first jump of the day during allergy season, because if I'm at all congested, I'll have trouble with ear pain. Sometimes I have to take another later in the day, sometimes one dose does the trick. You might find it helps you as well...
  19. yup. I did exactly the same thing a couple times as a student, except I just drive right on by. Didn't even turn into the parking lot, lol. It's pretty normal.
  20. nope. Just the optimum (and that won't be any fun).
  21. Johannes, will you share your findings with us once it's complete?
  22. yep. Years ago, for a customer who needed mid-season service.
  23. That sounds like it's getting into fuzzy legal territory, like postdating a check. Doesn't the FAA view packing data cards as legal documents? I get the willies when I even see one signed in ink other than black or blue, lol. I don't like packing rigs when the AAD will be due for service before the repack expires, but I've done it, making a note on the data card saying something like "Cypres requires service before xx/xx/xxxx." Overall, I've found that almost all customers are happy to plan their AAD service at the repack, because they'd rather save the ten or twenty bucks it would cost to remove/reclose, then install/reclose - they just need a little help remembering and planning, and it's easier (less hassle) to comply with service requirements on your regular repack schedule than not.