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    Parachuting club of Jyväskylä
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  1. I don't know about the culture and regulations on opening altitudes in the USA, but those altitudes sound perfectly normal - or at least "not dangerous" to me. In my country (Finland) the regulations say that you have to be under fully inflated canopy at 600m (2200 feet) - when I had a Pro Track it constantly showed opening altitudes of 550-650m when I was jumping my Cobalt (I pull at 2700-3000 feet). If you have a snivelly canopy, you still have a plenty of time to react to malfunctions, because you are constantly slowing your descent as the canopy opens. OTOH, if this guy jumps a very fast opening canopy, the best way to react in my opinion would be to ask him how much he thinks he has time to react to a total malfunction, and to make him count how many second he really has. I teach my student that after they get their licenses they should pull at 3000-3300 feet, which would register in something like 2500-2800 on a Pro Track. When on student rigs they pull at 3600, but after they graduate I really don't think there is any reason to pull that high, and getting used to pull "high" can make things "not good" for an example in boogies where you are not allowed to pull for an example above 2700 or 3000 feet. What I think is more important is the break-off altitude, and that as a low-timer you have enogh time to wave off, track to get sufficient separation and concentrate on opening at the proper,planned altitude. -Kari
  2. Yes. The original poster who bruoght this up mentioned a Cessna 182. I don't know about Dennmark, but here in Finland not counting big boogies and competitions jumping is totally club-based and there is no commercial operator running the jumping, so basicly we even can't pay the pilot without getting into trouble with aviation authorities (commercial aviation) and government agencies (taxes). All our pilots fly just for the fun of it, and they really never complain about it (well, sometimes they complain about their favorite soda or pizza being sold out). The picture of course changes dramatically when the dropzone itself is commercially-run and has a big turbine aircraft. -Kari
  3. Talking about wingloading and the student program in Finland - our student program is 38 jumps, and the first possible jump on your own gear is jump number 25 and that requires the authorization of the instructor. I'm talking about the S/L program, because virtually all students are trained in the S/L -progression, we have only a handfull of AFF student in only one club / year. Usually people get their license at about 45-55 jumps, then jump a few dozen jumps on borrowed gear and buy their first rig at about 70 jumps. The wl limit for licensed skydiver below 250 jumps is 1.34. Personally, I would like to see more conservative aproach when people select their first main, but unfortunately they tend to go to 1.2-1.3 -range in the wingload. I think this is mainly because the market for used gear is not that big here, and new gear is expensive because of taxes and tolls (think about US prices, add roughly 35-40%) so people want to choose gear they are likely to jump for several years. I don't think we have exceptionally good mentoring - expect that majority of our dropzones are small clubs with small Cessnas, so there are not that many people landing at a time, and there is always people observing the landings, so you do get feedback, want it or not - same thing with downsizing after student gear, there is always someone watching. And those student jumps are by the way made with huge stundent gear (Navigators, Mantas and Raiders mainly). -Kari
  4. Has anyone flown the Blade, it sounds very interesting...?
  5. I agree that failure to fire when supposed to is far more serious situation, but misfire isn't "just 2 out" nowadays - taking into account the popularity of freeflying I can easily imagine a few situations were a misfire -malfunction can be as deadly as "no fire" -situation...
  6. I got to agree with Jussi. All thumbs up for L&B but the truth is, that if people demand a replacement for their screwups (and they will - loudly - when the word is out that they will replace lost units) we will feel those replacement in the price of the unit. It's all fine and great customer support if the replace a broken one after the warranty period, but hey - if you lose your canopy after cutaway do you complain to the manufacturer and expect them to send you a new canopy? Or if you crash your car? Insurances are for that, not manufactures. It's all fine as long as it's customer service, but people will certainly abuse this if this is their company policy. -ka
  7. Depending on the seatbelt -configuration and other things the capacity is 16-22 jumpers I think. Climbs very nice (faster than Otter) and many operators claim that the costs are very reasonable. But heck, they are renting the planes so I guess that's all they can say without ruining their business. I have jumped a LET410 in Estonia, where Skydive Estonia rents the plane from the Estonian coastguard. I'm in a hurry right now so no links, sorry :( -Kari
  8. As Erno said, this has been covered many times, do a search in the forums. My experience (lowest exit with my Cobalt 95 loaded at about 1,6 is 2300 feet) is that Cobalt doesn't take so much altitude when opening at sub-terminal. No worries, I do hop'n'pops all the time from 3300 feet with up to 7-10 second delays and I'm always under fully flying canopy over 2000 feet. -Kari
  9. The bungee version won't work at very low sub-terminal speeds, so on hop'n'pops you will notice a slight delay which might feel like a pc hesitation. The bungee-will also lose it's elasticity in time, and it will start to lose it's ability to collapse, and the pc may re-iflate during radical manouvers. You will be fine with the bungee version - the only thing to remember is the delay on sub-terminal jumps - and wingsuit-jumps are not recommended. Personally, I would change the pc to a kill-line version as soon as it starts to show any wear, but immediate change is not necessary if you feel comfortable with your gear - but if the thing bothers you, go ahead and change it - after all you got to have 100% faith in your gear. -Kari
  10. At my DZ you can :) But it is not the one made by Atair. I don't remember the manufacturer right now and Google search turned out nothing, but I think the manufacturer was European. The canopy is basicly a Sabre rip-off, with IMHO quite poor flight charasterictics, the flare is "strange", it feels as the steering lines were made of something elastic..."pull the toggle...wait...wait...now something is happening....". Didn't like it at all. (135 loaded at about 1.1). -Kari
  11. I have jumped a Stiletto and Cobalt at about the same wingloading (~1.6) - ok, it's still fairly light and I'm a small guy so the sizes are 97 and 95, respectively. Openings - both are soft, but the Stiletto was much more prone to turning 90 or 180 during the opening. This can also be due to my inexperience at the time, but I definitely feel more "in control" during the opening of the Cobalt. Also the owner of the 97 keeps getting turning openings from time to time - on the Cobalt turns are much more uncommon. Turns: Stiletto turns fast - 107 turns about as fast as my Cobalt 95. It also has more oversteer and feels more twitchy - harness turn on Stiletto were much more aggressive, the Cobalt goes where I want it to go - easy and quick to steer but also goes straight like on rails. Front-riser pressure is lighter on Cobalt - I can't really give a fair comparasion on the recovery arc becaus I don't have that many jumps on a Stilettos and I wasn't doing very agressive approaches with them. Glide on a Cobalt is impressive. The canopy is solid on deep brakes and flies very flat. On flare the bottom end is more powerfull and the flare is easier to control. The only thing I don't like on the Cobalt is it's behaviour after toggle-turns - after a fast 720 and letting up the toggle _all the way up_ the canopy has quite much speed, and it sort of "flares" - it won't keep going down but returns to level flight very quickly, and for a short while the toggle pressure is ridiculously light, and the canopy feels quite unstable - I once got into linetwists by initiating a turn to the opposite direction after "just" a 360 toggle turn. I know this is true for every canopy, and radical manouvers can result in linetwists but I think this more noticeable on my Cobalt compared to other canopies I have flown. There is no similiar effects after front riser turns - the canopy is solid as a rock and if I control with smooth and progressive inputs with the toggles instead of quicly returning to full glide after a turn the behaviour is hardly noticeable. I haven't flow either of the Crossfires (or how many different there are - the pre- and post-mod and the "2" at least...) but what I have heard my description can be more or less aplied to Crossfires also. -Kari
  12. It is not about if the canopy is elliptical or not - as others have pointed out even the Navigator is "slightly tapered". All new canopy models for a last few years have been somewhat elliptical - no matter what is the target audience. A Hornet or Sabre 2 loaded about 1.1 will do just fine. Modern designs also give a slight boost to safety by having a stronger flare and better opening-charasteristics and glide than older "square" ones - it's all about the other design variables and wingloading - not strictly if the canopy is "elliptical" or not. About the original question - you will get as many recommendations as there are people recommending - buy something in the "easy beginner canopy" -range - at leas Spectre, Sabre (2), Hornet, Thriathlon and Safire are all good modern choices. Stay away from older (especially F111) canopys - even if somebody is trying to sell you one as "a killer deal". It is better to learn on a ZP canopy right away. 190 would be fine size for you, you'll probably can do a 170 if you can jump a 190 for a few jumps, have some talent when it comes to learning to fly a canopy and get some coaching. -Kari
  13. I have now about 10 wingsuit-jumps with my Cobalt 95 loaded at about 1.6 - I was a bit worried when I transitioned to Cobalt after jumping with my friend's Sabre for the first couple of jumps with the suit. So far I have had nothing but beautifull openings - never had an end-cell closure and always precisely on-heading - I could say that the opening with the suit are even better than without when I have an occasional end-cell closure on one side or the slider remains up for a few seconds and I have to perform a deep flare or pull the rear risers to get it down. So I would not worry about wingsuit-jumps if you are current with your Cobalt and know how to harness-steer it (or actually know how to *not* steer it by shifting your weight evenly when un-zipping the booties). -Kari
  14. And pull-out is a definitive no-no for wingsuit-jumps so if you are planning to try skyflying in the near future, get a throw-out. -Kari
  15. Don't know about that - I'm loading at about 1.6, and my friends have jumped it on loadings from 1.5 to 2.2 and have had similiar results to mine. -Kari