Joellercoaster

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Everything posted by Joellercoaster

  1. If only we could be sure that was true! Manufacturers can't even be relied on to agree how the surface area of a canopy should be measured.
  2. One very effective way to get what you want here would be to join/found a 4-way team. Find three other serious, motivated people (and a regular videographer if you can), get a proper coach, and off you go. It's the fastest way I've seen for people to keep their skills learning curve properly steep, early on in their careers. Even if you only do it for a single season, your flying and understanding will be so far ahead of where you are now, and ahead of the people at your level who fun jumped all year. -- "I'll tell you how all skydivers are judged, . They are judged by the laws of physics." - kkeenan "You jump out, pull the string and either live or die. What's there to be good at?
  3. It's all very well making it clicky, but it still doesn't make the link work. -- "I'll tell you how all skydivers are judged, . They are judged by the laws of physics." - kkeenan "You jump out, pull the string and either live or die. What's there to be good at?
  4. This is true, but it's not practically preventable by you as an average jumper. One of the risks I accept (along with several of the preventable ones I mentioned, honestly) when I go for a jump is that I have no idea how to maintain a plane. I think we're having a great time arguing semantics and we probably don't really disagree... my original problem is with people (deliberately or otherwise) blurring the line between luck and care in skydiving. -- "I'll tell you how all skydivers are judged, . They are judged by the laws of physics." - kkeenan "You jump out, pull the string and either live or die. What's there to be good at?
  5. I didn't say they were glamorous. But easy: Don't want to be killed in a canopy collision? Land far away from the other people, and jump at a DZ with enough space to do that. Don't want to be killed in a freefall collision? Don't jump with other people. Don't want to walk into a propeller? Always approach a plane from the rear. Don't want to hit the tail? Always exit with care. Don't want to wrap the tail? Look after your gear in the plane, check your pins before exit, and as before, exit carefully. Don't want to die a landing accident? Land away from other people, fly a big canopy carefully, and only jump in perfect conditions. Check the spot before you get out and stay in the plane if you're not happy with it. These things are easy to eliminate. Not glamorous, they won't make you popular, but they are easy. Yes, not doing these things is a mistake, and mistakes happen. But they don't just happen, like some kind of random dice roll. Telling people that skydiving is a crapshoot might be cool, but it's also untrue. If it is, then so is leaving the house (look before you cross the road), so is cooking dinner (don't leave the gas on), so is having a bath (don't fall asleep in there drunk). We all assume some level of risk, and different skydivers tolerate different levels of risk. Some of us tolerate a lot! But the only really non-negotiable risks are plane crashes, hard openings and the one-in-a-million double mal scenario. -- "I'll tell you how all skydivers are judged, . They are judged by the laws of physics." - kkeenan "You jump out, pull the string and either live or die. What's there to be good at?
  6. Exactly two of these cannot be reduced to zero simply. Hard openings are a real thing. Very rare, but real. Main/reserve malfunction is a real thing, but I think the chances you mention are off by a factor of several thousand at least. Millions of skydives get made without it happening. The rest are very easy to avoid. Not necessary glamorous. But easy. You talk about it like skydiving is some kind of rolling of the dice, like all of these things "just happen" to skydivers. They don't. Also, you missed "choking to death on DZ hamburger", "being struck by lightning standing in open spaces", "accidentally drinking Jet-A1" and "being trapped under the DZ vehicle" as risks. -- "I'll tell you how all skydivers are judged, . They are judged by the laws of physics." - kkeenan "You jump out, pull the string and either live or die. What's there to be good at?
  7. This happened to a friend of mine not once but twice with his cordura BOC, resulting in reserve rides both times. The pilot chute material wadded up at the mouth and stopped it from extracting (and he's a strong dude). He liked the cordura and was aware of how to pack it but it turns out not all packers are... in the end he just replaced it with a Spandex pouch I think. -- "I'll tell you how all skydivers are judged, . They are judged by the laws of physics." - kkeenan "You jump out, pull the string and either live or die. What's there to be good at?
  8. You're on the right track. But instead of looking at it as an alternative to downsizing, you can think of it as an additional risk to avoid while downsizing. Downsizing and changing platform should be done separately, and some people don't ever change planform. Ellipticals can be a pain in the arse and require more care and feeding (and frankly, risk) than people can be bothered with - the juice is not worth the squeeze. But having decided to change planform (I get that your Katana is merely an example, could be a Zulu or a Crossfire or whatever, and you're not thinking about doing it now anyway), you should definitely do it in a size you are already well experienced with. If in the future you do decide you want something more aggressive than what you have now, it should almost certainly be a slightly smaller version of the class of thing you have now -- "I'll tell you how all skydivers are judged, . They are judged by the laws of physics." - kkeenan "You jump out, pull the string and either live or die. What's there to be good at?
  9. There's an I/E and CCI here who is still called Crazy Legs. DjangoWorldWide, as you've found (and Bill points out), difficult moments are very soon overcome by the euphoria of the ensuing triumph And to anyone reading this who is doing AFF or thinking about it: there is zero embarrassing about having multiple jumps to get past an AFF level. Zero. Just part of the process. I admit the money hurts though. -- "I'll tell you how all skydivers are judged, . They are judged by the laws of physics." - kkeenan "You jump out, pull the string and either live or die. What's there to be good at?
  10. I'd say 95% coached and 5% own time. If you're trying to get better, you're crazy to not get coaching all day long. The additional cost is tiny (sometimes even zero) compared to the increased benefit. Getting in the tunnel to hoon around with mates is fun, but it's really expensive fun and you're not going to learn much. -- "I'll tell you how all skydivers are judged, . They are judged by the laws of physics." - kkeenan "You jump out, pull the string and either live or die. What's there to be good at?
  11. It sounds like you are intending to freefly, rather than do much belly? If so, I am just starting the freefly journey as well and can't comment too much about suits. But: 1. Running skins or bike shorts are good to keep warm, and also good to keep your jumpsuit from sticking to you. I (and my wife and teammates) wear them when the tunnel is cold, and when it is hot too for different reasons. Jeans are not a good long-term idea. 2. Are you talking about pads integrated with the suit, or things you want to wear underneath? Padded suit elbows and knees are great for beginners (I have them and am grateful, I still come out with bruises) though not as protected as dedicated pads. While I've seen people wearing knee pads under suits for 4-way, it's not really a big deal either way. (My 4-way suits have padded knees though, FWIW.) Have fun, don't overthink too much to start with, and tell us how you get on! [edit: tunnel fitness is a thing, for sure. Definitely put some effort into general fitness before you go - as mentioned upthread, it depends on how spread out the time is across the day, an hour even with rotations is a big ask for someone with not much tunnel, but four 15-minute blocks with breaks for debrief will be sore but fine.] -- "I'll tell you how all skydivers are judged, . They are judged by the laws of physics." - kkeenan "You jump out, pull the string and either live or die. What's there to be good at?
  12. This is, genuinely, the answer. Flying with a rig on is harder work, as various extremely experienced (tunnel and sky) people have pointed out. I've flown a fair amount in the tunnel with a (real, wrapped) rig on, and honestly it's a pain in the ass (which is why we do it). But it's a very small part of the difference. The fact is that the sky is extremely forgiving. Spaceballs are interesting in that they require you to fly extremely precisely for short bursts, but if you fuck up and cork a little or skate around, you just reach out or recover, and you're back. If you, freely god, have only ever flown in the sky, you have never needed to correct those little inaccuracies. If you do those things in the tunnel, while carving or doing some cool transition, it's a different story. And at high power HD speeds, the consequences are bonecrunching. Look closely at those 1999 freefly videos. The godlike, thousands of jumps ones. They are, compared to modern freeflyers, all over the place. Once you're looking for it you will see it. The difference is the walls and floor, not the rig. -- "I'll tell you how all skydivers are judged, . They are judged by the laws of physics." - kkeenan "You jump out, pull the string and either live or die. What's there to be good at?
  13. [edit: *sigh* never mind.] -- "I'll tell you how all skydivers are judged, . They are judged by the laws of physics." - kkeenan "You jump out, pull the string and either live or die. What's there to be good at?
  14. My understanding is that it keeps the properly adjusted leg straps from sliding towards your knees where you would be more likely to fall thru. Of course it is not a weight bearing piece, it just keeps everything in the right position. It's worth pointing out (apologies for further thread necromancy) that this is what the chest strap is for, as well. It's definitely not a load-bearing part of the rig, which can come as a surprise to a lot of people. It's just there to keep the main lift web, which is what really supports you, in the right place around your body. -- "I'll tell you how all skydivers are judged, . They are judged by the laws of physics." - kkeenan "You jump out, pull the string and either live or die. What's there to be good at?
  15. I just did exactly that. Upsized both main and reserve. Wendy P. +1 Me three. I'm not super current at the moment, so the Stiletto has gone in the cupboard and I have a Sabre 150 for a while. I'm enjoying just cruising around, it might stay all season... -- "I'll tell you how all skydivers are judged, . They are judged by the laws of physics." - kkeenan "You jump out, pull the string and either live or die. What's there to be good at?
  16. The Sabre2 is a very common recommendation for that job. -- "I'll tell you how all skydivers are judged, . They are judged by the laws of physics." - kkeenan "You jump out, pull the string and either live or die. What's there to be good at?
  17. Maybe it would help if you explained the nature of the grief the swoopers are giving you. In principle, there is nothing wrong with a person flying a Katana - otherwise I am certain PD would not still be selling them. And yet... some people should not be flying one. You might be one of those people, or you might not. You've given us nothing to go on, other than you have jumped some other canopies (no information on how much, or how well it went) and didn't die. Without that, this is a silly thread. -- "I'll tell you how all skydivers are judged, . They are judged by the laws of physics." - kkeenan "You jump out, pull the string and either live or die. What's there to be good at?
  18. I would agree totally with Degeneration - I've jumped Odyssey 120, Crossfire2 119 and they are very similar - snappy turns, steep dives, quite a lot of oversteer, fair amount of care and feeding required on opening. Generally a hoot to fly at that loading (1.9ish) but can absolutely bite. A Sabre2 120 is a totally different beast... easier to fly straight and deal with on opening, slower to roll into and out of turns (though my swoopy friends claim they swoop really well, I couldn't really comment). Disclaimer: PD do not recommend loading them as high as I did, and indeed most of my jumps are on 135s at 1.7+. Very much a matter of taste? [edit: you asked about flatness of glide, I'd say the Odyssey flies flatter in a straight line. But once you start turning and diving, all bets are probably off.] -- "I'll tell you how all skydivers are judged, . They are judged by the laws of physics." - kkeenan "You jump out, pull the string and either live or die. What's there to be good at?
  19. Yes! I thought it might have been a post of his too but I wasn't 100%. Ordinarily I would have an attribution for the quote, but the signature limit on dz.com doesn't give me enough room. -- "I'll tell you how all skydivers are judged, . They are judged by the laws of physics." - kkeenan "You jump out, pull the string and either live or die. What's there to be good at?
  20. I don't think anyone has addressed this in the thread yet so I'll have a go. The word "elliptical" is certainly a marketing term, so you should take it (and literally anything else you read in a canopy blurb that's not a technical spec or a hard jump number recommendation or a max weight) with a huge grain of salt. But! It does have some use as a term used by skydivers to classify canopies, so I'll have a go. Ram air canopies started off rectangular - and some of them still are: Navigator, Silhouette, Triathlon are all still made and still popular. Some people (including me sometimes) still jump the original Sabre, though it's not made any more. Colloquially, we call these "square". Then manufacturers discovered that if you tapered the ends, they would turn faster (and thus dive harder) and fly more efficiently, and maybe quicker through the air due to reduced drag. This is the "high performance" part of ellipticality. When tapered in a small way, this contributes mostly only good things to an otherwise square canopy - snappier turns, better glide and possibly flare (although it tends to make openings a little more wandery). Some manufacturers refer to these as "lightly elliptical" or "semi-elliptical", and they include wildly popular canopies such as the Sabre2, Pilot, Safire2/3, S-Fire, Spectre and many others. Confusingly, some manufacturers refer to things in this class as "elliptical" or even "fully elliptical", though it's not common. Tapering beyong this point keeps upping the performance factor in terms of speed and roll and agility, but now you are starting to pay for it. Quick to roll and dive can mean quick to get into trouble - and highly tapered canopies have a tendency to oversteer and/or stay diving once you stop pulling things. If you get cut off in the pattern under your aggressively tapered Mamba, you need to have your reflexes under control and not yank on a toggle to evade, or you might find yourself in a bad place you're too low to get out of again. They are also definitely more prone to bad behaviour on opening! Popular canopies in this class include the Stiletto, Mamba, Zulu, Crossfire2/3, Katana and X-Fire. This is what people generally mean when they say "fully elliptical", or simply "elliptical" for short. There are lots of different shapes in this class, but they all have a noticeable taper on one or both edges. NOTE: Some places have hard jump number requirements attached to canopies in this group, and for strong reasons. (All modern cross-braced canopies are, of course, fully elliptical. But those are a whole 'nother thing.) There is a lot of subtlety I'm missing out here - the models in my groups don't all fly alike and there are plenty or other factors involved, like steepness of trim, reliability of opening and recovery arc, that differentiate them. But, I hope this has answered your question about the word and how it's generally used, a little more directly. -- "I'll tell you how all skydivers are judged, . They are judged by the laws of physics." - kkeenan "You jump out, pull the string and either live or die. What's there to be good at?
  21. I can't actually remember who I got this from - someone on this forum, quoting a non-jumper, yes! I was tickled. Coaching on the internet is worth what you paid for it so I won't indulge, here, but: there's a very good reason you are turning when you pull, and your instructors will definitely be able to point it out. It's a simple thing that will go away with practice and awareness - you are really close. (Similarly when you check your alti you turn - body awareness will come.) -- "I'll tell you how all skydivers are judged, . They are judged by the laws of physics." - kkeenan "You jump out, pull the string and either live or die. What's there to be good at?
  22. You'll read more about this kind of thing in the Women Only forum (well worth a look, even for guys), but basically: 1. Skydiving is a sport where progression along the 'cool' axis often corresponds to progression on the 'dangerous' axis. Bigger groups, trickier dive plans, more demanding disciplines. To some extent this is self-limiting - newer jumpers don't get invited on those jumps. Partly because of the safety aspect, but also partly due to not having shown themselves to have the requisite skills to make the jump go well. And partly just because they're new and people don't know them. However, 2. Skydiving is a sport where the majority of the participants are men. Women are not a novelty exactly, but at the charitable end a lot of guys like to tell women how to do things (mansplaining, y'all) - and at the uncharitable end, skydiving women are in short supply and some guys just want women to like them, or want to take advantage of their 'experienced' status to initiate relationships. This leads to rule 1 above, the self-limiting part, getting overridden by guys who should know better bringing girls who are too new to know better on jumps they're maybe not ready to be on. We all want to be cool. It's not just women - as a rookie jumper I got on a few things I probably shouldn't because of my more experienced girlfriend, and sometimes people with a couple hundred jumps bring people with even fewer along and it's the blind leading the blind - but it happens enough to women that people remark on it. There are occasional instances of super-talented women jumping in with both feet and surfing this phenomenon into rapid progression to amazing places, but for the average fun jumping newbie (first few years in the sport/few hundred jumps), it's something to look our for. -- "I'll tell you how all skydivers are judged, . They are judged by the laws of physics." - kkeenan "You jump out, pull the string and either live or die. What's there to be good at?
  23. 's funny. I want to do AFF as well but my daughter is only 13 months old... it's a big time commitment eh -- "I'll tell you how all skydivers are judged, . They are judged by the laws of physics." - kkeenan "You jump out, pull the string and either live or die. What's there to be good at?
  24. This is an interesting thread for me. I'm coming back to the tunnel after a couple of years off, and learning to freefly. I have a bit over a hundred hours on my belly in the tunnel (mostly 4-way) and I'm 42 years old... my wife and I are doing a half hour every couple-few weeks which is not ideal, but not terrible either. My goal is not head down specifically, but it's part of the journey so I feel like I can contribute data. Will keep posted with progress. So far, all I can say is, freeflying is hard and I have some cool bruises Update 1. Time spent: 1.5 hours. Can fly on my back sorta-OK. My wife, who is younger and more talented, is picking it up faster and is starting to learn layouts with a spotter. We're back in on Friday. -- "I'll tell you how all skydivers are judged, . They are judged by the laws of physics." - kkeenan "You jump out, pull the string and either live or die. What's there to be good at?