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    Skydive Midwest, Racine, WI
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  1. Eric was a personal friend and mentor. We worked together at JSC where his efforts at making skydiving safer for everyone were tireless. His dry humor, willingness to share his vast pool of knowledge, and his larger than life persona will be missed terribly by everyone who knew him. Eric, my friend, it was good knowing you. Blue skies forever. _______________________________________________ Fat Drunk and Stupid is no way to go through life
  2. Hell yeah.... I did my final evaluation jump with my wife (an experienced jumper) as my pax! We both loved it. _______________________________________________ Fat Drunk and Stupid is no way to go through life
  3. I have had severe lower back issues since childhood. A disease known as Scheurman's (sp?) results in a softening of the vertebrae, and resultant misalignment and bulging discs etc. Constant chiropractor visits help. The canopy ride and the landings are non-issues to me. However, the arching required for formation skydiving induces severe pain. I spent some time in the wind tunnel several years back, learning the mantis position. The pain after 30 minutes in the tunnel prevented me from continuing, and I was unable to walk/sit/stand/shit for weeks. It was agony. I have since given up FS apart from the odd fun jump with friends, and am trying freeflying instead. I also recently got a tandem instructor rating. Neither of these cause me any pain whatsoever. As has been said on this thread already, it totally depends on your individual condition and pain threshold. Probably a good idea to get some professional advice from someone in the medical profession, in addition to getting people's input on this forum. Good luck and hope you are able to participate in and enjoy this sport as much as we all do. _______________________________________________ Fat Drunk and Stupid is no way to go through life
  4. I have had problems with BA at Heathrow. I tried carrying my rig on as hand luggage, and was told it was not allowed since the airline had experienced problems in the past with 'parachutes inflating' in the cabin. No....seriously.....'parachutes inflating' is the exact expression used. After I stopped laughing at the moron, I explained to him why it was not possible for anything to inflate in the cabin, but the damage was already done (by me laughing at him). Several other so-called 'experts' were called, and all came to the same conclusion. The 'parachute might inflate' and endanger the lives of the passengers and crew. You think you're dealing with intelligent people, and then they come up with such nonsense. I had to check my rig. Fortunately it was tucked away in my rig bag for protection. I don't fly BA anymore. I have never had a problem with any other airline, other than if I exceed my carry-on weight/size. _______________________________________________ Fat Drunk and Stupid is no way to go through life
  5. There are no stupid questions....only stupid's mine Take into consideration that there are many variables and many different factors that could effect the severity and speed with which any malfunction or abnormality happens. These will naturally dictate how one should best react for that specific instance. These are my opinions only: An unstowed toggle is NOT a malfunction, but rather an abnormality. An abnormality, if not corrected in good time, can lead to a malfunction. An unstowed toggle is simply a toggle/brake that has come unstowed from the way it was packed. All that is required is a reach up and grab of the toggle, and to take hold of and release the other toggle at the same time. Depending on the wingloading and canopy type, a spin can be induced either very fast, or gently at first, picking up speed the longer the situation is left unchecked. Flaring with both toggles is about as much as one can do to help bring down a slider. If it still does not come down all the way, I recommend a canopy control check to determine whether the canopy can be controlled and landed safely. If it can NOT be controlled safely and properly, then get rid of it...IF you have enough altitude to safely execute your reserve drills. I can only hazard a guess as to the 'snap' sound. Highly likely it was a mind snap, but could also be a fast velcro release, or the sound of the toggle coming unstowed and stopping against the ring. Could also be a slider coming down, a canopy opening nearby....or...or...or..... you get the idea? It could have been any one of a dozen things. She stated that she thought it was her lines breaking? Best way to confirm that would be to take a look no? THEN decide. This whole incident is such a pity, because a premature toggle release, in most instances, is such a minor thing, and can usually be remedied quite easily. _______________________________________________ Fat Drunk and Stupid is no way to go through life
  6. And I quote from her own email posted before: "Rick says that students aren't taught to repair all simple malfunctions like that becuase they will spend too much time trying to fix it, and not ever cutaway. " Where is it standard practice to NOT teach students how to deal with a toggle that becomes unstowed? That is bloody ridiculous. I used to be a static line instructor, and I ALWAYS taught that, and showed students how to deal with it in the hanging harness. If they could not deal with a simulated spin in the harness, or any other situation....NO JUMP. That was the rule from our CI. Every other static line instructor I know teaches that. I instructed my girlfriend on her first jump, and I jumpmastered her, and I did many instructional FS jumps with her. I don't have a problem with that. (Clearly you might say ) This is a stupid and unnecessary 'accident' that happened because people seem to have operated without regard for due safety. I feel sorry for this girl because she has received sub-standard instruction and guidance, and now she has to live with the pain. This girl simply had no clue what was going on, and no idea on how to even begin to fix the situation. That shows poor instruction. After 9 previous jumps, she could still not check her toggles? She could still not figure out that a spin may very well be induced by a unstowed toggle? She was never instructed properly. It's that simple...and that makes me angry. It is not her fault. Her instructor is totally at fault here because he clearly did not do even a half-decent job. If this post seems inflammatory...that's exactly how I want it to be. I do not post often, but I get really mad when people get hurt for stupid reasons, and I get really mad when the sport gets a bad rap because of it. Merry Christmas everybody. _______________________________________________ Fat Drunk and Stupid is no way to go through life