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  1. In my experience it's easy to do .... but can be hard to 'un-do' without damaging the line. (Especially if it was done sloppily in the first place, going through line fibers.). On coated Spectra it's easier. On Dacron it can be a nightmare. Uncoated Spectra, like a PD reserve, also a nightmare. I have not done it on Vectran or HMA. I've had to replace quite a few LST's/ toggle lines because of this practice. In my opinion it should never be done on a reserve (but always follow mf instructions, obviously.) It's an ingenoius technique. I love it for adjusting PC kill lines in a hurry. But, for me it's too hard undo without damaging the line to use it for toggles. Why not just use a fingertrap, then a knot? I'd honestly rather pick bartack stitches than undo a double fingertrap.
  2. Or, in cover-up mode: http://www.msnbc.com/all-in/watch/john-dean-white-house-is-in-a-cover-up-mode-902528067630 Also reported on Newsmax: http://www.newsmax.com/Politics/investigation-investigation-cover-up-John-Dean/2017/03/21/id/780058/ "Interesting."
  3. Good luck with that. Their website either works, or it doesn't. Mainly for me it doesn't, especially when I have a Glide customer sitting here in front of me.
  4. In addition to the strange brake setting: Please test the fabric on this Swift reserve. I packed some Swifts in my early rigging days, hoping they'd go away. I had some Swift and Cirrus reserves come through my loft in the late 90's to mid-2000s. We sent them back to ParaFlite, and they did not pass their own porosity or strength tests. So they were grounded. Based on this, I won't pack them. I'm glad that you've gotten links to the manuals. But, please test the fabric before you repack this 30+ year old reserve, because the fabric might not be airworthy anymore. Someone's life could depend on it.
  5. One of my rigging customers just ordered a new Cypres from them. He paid something like $1220, and got a free Optima alti with it. Shipment came from Deland, so evidently they have a presence there. No complaints. Fast shipping. Very happy customer. My experience, for what it's worth. -D
  6. To this ^: Semi-stowless is the way to go, in my opinion. You'll still have to get the canopy in the bag (obviously) with a couple of locking stows. But then you can 'figure-eight' the lines: Much easier and faster. I don't like the various "full stowless" bags that only use magnets. It's hard to get the canopy in neatly, and the canopy/container volumes need to match. Less room for error. We've seen a few instances where a magnetic bag snatched onto the the trailing edge of a canopy (landable,) and other instances where incorrectly-packed magnetic bags have caused bag lock (not landable.) I've recommended semi-stowless dbags to my new gear buying rigging clients for a few years now, and they love them. Hope this helps, -H
  7. Question: Is an old military rig legal according to FARs as PEP for a pilot in a Cessna 182? My DZ just bought a 182, and this rig came with it. It's a decades-old military back with no DOM or serial #. Obviously no TSO. It has Capewells, cones, and tons of (? pull-the-dot) annoying-as-hell snaps. Also many pack opening bands. I won't work on anything that's not TSO'd, and I don't have the tools to pack this thing anyway. We'll be getting our pilot a better, more current PEP rig. My question is whether this rig would be legal for a 182 pilot according to current FARs. I read through them, but couldn't seem to find an answer. The former 182 owner and his rigger (very nice guys) swear this is legal. Thoughts? I'd be grateful for any input. -D
  8. Hey Diezel, Many of my people have switched to semi stowless bags, mostly Mirage and Vector. I haven't seen any difference in bulk distribution that alarms me. This time of year here in NC, I'm constantly shortening closing loops. I think most people underestimate the drastic effect that climate conditions can have on pack volume and loop length. Take care & stay safe.
  9. Excellent article! Very well-written. Jim: I loved having you at TSC. You are making a difference. Safe travels to you always. To the author: Quincy Jones is an iconic music producer/composer, but he doesn't take skydiving photos. Please edit lede photo credit to the awesome Quincy Kennedy at SCD - thanks.
  10. I love all of these dimensionally stable line types. What I don't love is how to tell them apart. Is there a way to determine which type of line is on what canopy? I'm especially interested in how to differentiate HMA, Vectran, and Dyneema in the field. Thanks in advance, -D
  11. Interesting that you said this, because the manufacturers were asking me if I could specify the flavor: was it cinnamon, black licorice or banana? (I don't know. Smelled overwhelmingly like caramel/coffee to me.) Evidently some flavors can be corrosive to and/or interact with plastic ... or nylon. The rig is a WIngs, the reserve a PD. Both the most excellent Heather at Wings and the folks at PD have been very helpful with this. But it's a new one for them, too. Obviously when in doubt about any substance: wash it out and test when dry. Any further doubt about degradation to the nylon: contact the Mfg and send it to them for testing. We don't know who spilled the juice on her container. I'm taking care of it, and won't charge her for it because this was an unfortunate accident that wasn't her fault. We do have a new rule: No vaping or vaping fluid allowed in the building or hangar. Outside only. I appreciate everyone's input - thanks. -D
  12. Appreciate it - thanks! Research (Googling ) doesn't show anything harmful to nylon, and manufacturers are looking into it as well. I'm still washing the rig for her because the stuff is oily and the odor is overwhelming.
  13. One of my video people came to me this morning asking me to look at her rig .... someone had spilled 'vaping' fluid all over her back pad. The strong smell was the same that we get in puffs of 'vape' sometimes in the hangar. The substance was very oily. She had blotted/cleaned most of it off before she brought it to me, but her backpad was saturated. I grounded her rig, because I had no idea if this could be harmful to the nylon. I'll be contacting manufacturers in the morning to see what they say. At the least, I'll be cleaning her rig to get the smell out. In the meantime, I'd love to know what you think: Was I right to ground the rig? What would you do? Appreciate any input. Safe rigging, -D
  14. It's because: God. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OPTLXg1fKZ8 I was actually dismayed when someone sent this to me because I was getting into researching the West in regards to water and grazing rights. I thought there were valid logical points on both sides. I naively thought there was no religion involved. But I wasn't aware that Ammon Bundy decided that God told him something, and that's why the little wildlife refuge building is now occupied. Even IF (and I'm not giving him that) he has a point, besides the teachings of his Mormon religion, I also question his methods. Hopefully this will be resolved without bloodshed. I feel for the people of that community, who did not ask for this. On a lighter note: What You Need to Know About the Oregon Militia Standoff: http://www.theonion.com/graphic/what-you-need-know-about-oregon-militia-standoff-52111
  15. I'm with Michael. I'm getting the idea that a lot of people may disagree with me, but here goes