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    Vigil 2

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  1. If you have a Vigil and have access to the Vigil interface, you can download on a computer the last 16 minutes of your last jumps, therefore at least 10 jumps. The download gives you the actual graphs of those 10 jumps. Those graphs show the curves, vertical distance versus time. If you print those graphs, with a rule you can figure out the end of the straight part of the free fall just before the deceleration part (a curve). When the deceleration is over, note with a rule the begining of another straight line with a slope less than the free fall one. It is the part of your canopy descent. Report on the left side of the graph on the vertical axis (vertical distance) both the end of the free fall part and the begining of the second straight line (descent). The distance between the 2 points marked on the vertical axis (graduated in feet), indicates the actual opening vertical distance. If you have a Protrack and its interface, you can do the same exercice by downloading the data of your last 10 jumps including the graphs. I did it and can tell you that my former canopy (a Sabre 2-170) had an average (out of 10 jumps) opening vertical distance of 384 feet while my Katana 170 has an average (out of 10 jumps) of opening vertical distance of 600 feet (way smoother). IMO this method using graphs of basic physics the most accurate. Learn from others mistakes, you will never live long enough to make them all.
  2. As long as your lines are not going past the edge of the bundle (sausage) and around, you should be OK. When it's the time to put the flaked canopy on the floor, to keep my D lines in the pack center, I also grab them thru the fabric from the bottom until after I have layed the canopy on the floor. While I am laying on the folded canopy, I feel the lines thru the fabric and if they are spread, I bring them back in the center thru the fabric. Learn from others mistakes, you will never live long enough to make them all.
  3. You can do a dive exit both way. 1) Toward the nose, if there is a left side door, keep your right hip and shoulder slightly higher in order to get a good presentation to the relative wind and leave the airplane on the left leg. A good trick is to keep eye contact with the left wing tip. Keep arching. Pretend you are parallel to a 45 degrees imaginary geometrical plane passing over the wing 2) Toward the tail with a left side door, leave the airplane on the left leg and lower slightly the left shoulder and keep arching. You have no choice to use that kind of exit when doing a large formation and being number 10 or more to exit the airplane. If this is a Twin Otter, on a large formation, you can put 5-6 people outside of the door and 3-4 in the door facing those outside. On smaller airplane, 3-4 people outside and 2-3 inside facing those outside. Then in that case if you are number 6-7 or more to exit, you have to use the exit toward the tail Learn from others mistakes, you will never live long enough to make them all.
  4. Before all recent fast canopies like Walkyrie, Velocity and all cross braced canopies, the Katana was the choice of the swoopers. If you talk to experienced swoopers, most of them started with a Katana. I have a Katana and made more than 700 jumps on it. So far, it is my best canopy ever. Not a single malfunction (and many packers packed it, rookies and experienced). I had a few times opened it when my track was not completely finished, it was rough but relatively smooth considering the circumstances. Otherwise, openings are always smooth with an average of 600 feet to open, evaluated from 10 jumps using my Vigil 2 data with interface. If well packed and if after PC launch you take the box position and look at the horizon, it likely will open on heading. Otherwise, expect ½ turn to several ones that you can control by shifting your weight the other side of the turn ie, if it turns left, lift up your left leg, that makes you have the weight on the right side, insist a bit and the canopy will stop turning. If not, use your toggles. OTOH, the Katana has a long toggles range and that makes any move smoother and more precise. What I like the most is that the Katana is very docile when applying some input (8 inches) on toggles but if you want something not so docile, pull progressively one toggle one foot or more and you will see that the Katana is a canopy quite exciting. Do that above 1500 feet since the recovery arc is 400 feet. And one of the best features, due to the 18 degrees deflection angle, it goes down fast, and gives you the speed for an incredible flare. Learn from others mistakes, you will never live long enough to make them all.
  5. Contact EG suit. He made mine, custom size and design. OTOH ParaGear is still offering the Frapp Hat. You can check on line or get their catalog. Learn from others mistakes, you will never live long enough to make them all.
  6. I agree with you. I have myself a Protrack for many years and it works perfectely every single jump. I use it for my logbook backup, total accumulated time, number of jumps...etc. Larsen & Brusgaard, the manufacturer is also fantastic whatever you ask them, they are the fastest to be back to you. I have also another beeper, a TimeOut for more than 20 years and still working. I wear them both in my helmet. I recommend this to all cameramen. Learn from others mistakes, you will never live long enough to make them all.
  7. On a Vector 3, if the 2 side flaps biding tapes overlap as seen on the picture, everything is fine. Learn from others mistakes, you will never live long enough to make them all.
  8. Hello Guys Here is another picture of Mister Douglas taken (if my memory is good) in early 90s at Quincy Illinois, at the WFFC. Cheers Learn from others mistakes, you will never live long enough to make them all.
  9. Hi To answer your question you can check my last post on GEAR CHECK thread. The alternate method as you call it is when the bridle is seen at the top of the right flap (seen from behind). What is the most important ever, is making sure the bridle (pocket side) is functional. That means if the bridle able to pull the pin. As I wrote it, in any case, pull slightly the bridle from under the right flap (seen from behind) and check if it goes to the pin first. What I say is universal. Always check the functionality, plus the structure (strong enough and to the norms) and the compatibility of any part of your equipement. You can ask a rigger to do it and explain it to you. Now according your picture, it's true, we don't see the marking showing that the pilot chute is cocked. Again a question a functionality. The pilot chute has to be fully open (uncollapsed) in order to pull open your container and extract the parachute assembly. NOTE : Don't only show the people how to do things but explain them why it has to be that way (functionality). That way you deal with people intelligence and soon or later that will help them to take a good decision. I may be looked at as being heavy but we are doing an EXTREME SPORT. Learn from others mistakes, you will never live long enough to make them all.
  10. Hi wolfriverjoe The testing I have been describing happened a long time ago. I t was due to a safety bulletin about possible wrong heat treated harness rings of the 3 ring release. I choose to do the testing at the National Research Council of Canada in Ottawa (aeronautical division). It was something to see this ring stressed to 2500 lbs upward and sideward both sides. People in charge measured the inside diameter using a caliper, before and after the testing.Fortunately for me, everything was to the norms. Learn from others mistakes, you will never live long enough to make them all.
  11. Hello Skytribe I was just saying that just looking at the bridle routing is not enough since that check is no garantee. You have to check if the bridle (pocket side) is able to pull out the pin. To do so pull the bridle a bit from under the right flap (seen from behind) and see if it goes directly to the pin. Learn from others mistakes, you will never live long enough to make them all.
  12. Hello Skytribe I was routing my Vector bridle "out of the top" way as it was the original method and that since my first Wonderhog in 1977. But Murphy's law says : If it can happen, it will. Soon or later, a skydiver will have his rig packed by a packer. In boogies you don't have always the time to debrief, see your jump video, to brief for the next jump and to repack. Then you ask a packer to do it. In 2016, this happened to me. My Vector 3 was packed (by a packer) but was laying on the picnic table while I was waiting for the call. Another jumper looked at the bridle routing which "looked" perfect (out of the top). By getting the bridle out of the bottom of the flap, he saw that the bridle would have pulled on the flap instead of the pin. Unfortunately this jumper said that would result in a total malfunction while the packer was still there. The young packer obviously was mortified. I let few minutes go and went to the packer telling him to take it as a learning and that was OK for me. He stayed away from the DZ for few weeks. Now, he doesn't want to pack my rig anymore. But I am sure that he will never forgot that incident. Therefore, as I said it, when checking my gear, I extract partially the bridle from the bottom of the flap to check the proper routing. Learn from others mistakes, you will never live long enough to make them all.
  13. When showing a video on parachute equipment safety, that implies a responsibility toward the readers. Thanks for the remarks on the twisted yellow cables. About turning the rings to compensate them becoming oval, it is actually unnessesary. I have had the harness ring tested at 2500 lbs, and the measurements of the diameter upward and sideward before and after the test were the same at near 1/1000 th of an Inch. On the other hand undoing the ring and work the ring webbing for suppleness should be done every month. Thanks to all participants Learn from others mistakes, you will never live long enough to make them all.
  14. Hello Cath I have seen your You Tube presentation on how to perform a gear check. This is a excellent idea.I have myself a Vector 3 like you, therefore it was easy for me to follow you. However, I have noticed few things you may have to consider. 1) Your cut away handle seems twisted. The two yellow cables cross each other just above the handle. Not really serious. 2) Your Vector bridle routing method is not the one recommanded by UPT Vector anymore for several years now. Check on Vector site for the new method. 3) you didn't verify the routing between the pilot chute pocket and the pin. ie. Is the bridle able to pull the pin out ??? In your configuration, the brildle coming from the pilot chute pocket could go by mistake under the left flap first (seen from behind) appearing at the top of that flap and going to the pin resulting in a total malfunction. This is why UPT Vector is recommanding another method. It is tricky because everything seems OK just looking at it. Do not hesitate to get the brilde out from under the flap to check the proper routing. 4) you didn't check if your spectra ripcord was moving freely between the pin and the reserve handle. To be done too for steel cable. 5) you didn't check if the two yellow cables were moving freely in their housing between the cut away handle and the 3 rings locking loop. 6) you didn't check your AAD switched on 7) when you have geared up on the ground and again in the airplane you should also perform a gear check since things may have been moved and/or not thighten or misrouted when putting the gear on. check : A) Leg straps tight (2) B) cutway handle and reserve handle in place (2) C) main handle in place and secure (1) D) chest strap routed OK (1) E) helmet secured (1) This is a 7 point check. It takes few seconds. If not clear, you can contact me via Cheers Learn from others mistakes, you will never live long enough to make them all.
  15. Hello Betsy You couldn't be more on the same wavelength. I have seen people packing my UPT Vector main with the MagBag and worried a bit. But so far so good. I like the figure eight stowing but it's not absolutely necessary I hope your life with P.G. is OK. Learn from others mistakes, you will never live long enough to make them all.