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Everything posted by mdrejhon

  1. mdrejhon

    Boogies in Canada [Help me find them!]

    Skydive Gananoque has their annual boogie too -- where there are two turbines on the dropzone at the same time. NouvelAir in Toronto has one too. Might want to reach out to them...
  2. Damn right, exactly! That's why I said tunnel+jumps. There's unamious agreement that tunnel alone won't make you a good jumper. Most of us now already agree that tunnel+AFF/ISP is generally better than AFF/ISP alone. And tunnel is now a good component of freefly training. This is potentially no different: Imagine, basically, someone who already has 500 or 800 or 1000 jumps, but is now interested in tunnel-assisted wingsuit training. Wingsuiting is something I want to take up in a couple to three years, and by then -- there'll already be knowledge on whether tunnel is a huge boon (or not) to wingsuiting, much like it was for tunnel+AFF. People used to (and still do) fly far away to get to a tunnel to help enhance AFF/freefly before SkyVentures were within driving distance. Likewise, in a similar fashion, I'd want to fly to Sweden (when I feel ready to commit to wingsuit, about 2020-ish) to get some wingsuit jumps+tunnel training since it appears to economically checks out (at Canadian prices). Assuming that by then, there's been rave reviews (by trusted jumpers) for a training progression... Also, boomerang back to original question: Anyone here considering tunnel+jumps for learning to wingsuit?
  3. Now that wingsuit tunnel instruction is apparently becoming practical -- they have wingsuiters (who's NEVER jumped before) flying untethered after just 20-30 minutes time. After the tests of their prototype, their big wingsuit training tunnel is opening September 2017. Just like combining tunnel+AFF/ISP -- I'm VERY seriously considering combining tunnel+jumps for wingsuit instruction, as the economics actually check out (at least for Canadian skydivers). One weekend I've never wingsuited before, and then next weekend, I'd be outwingsuiting several jumpers at my DZ in specific wingsuit skill-categories at my DZ... As a training question -- "tunnel+jumps" for wingsuit training is uncharted topic territory like "tunnel+AFF" used to be. Now it's common for many new skydivers to travel to a tunnel for an AFF jumpstart. Most training questions are often occuring in this forum. And most instructors pay attention to this forum. So that's why I am asking here in General: Are any people on here considering combining wingsuit tunnel+jumps for wingsuit training?
  4. mdrejhon

    World's first inclined wingsuit tunnel

    As I'm slowly researching how to learn to wingsuit (sometime within 2 years), I discovered this. They apparently report they've begun construction of the 'big' wingsuit tunnel, based on a decommissioned military wind tunnel which they are now disassembling to build the 'bigger' wingsuit tunnel. Concept art of the one opening September 2017 With a (plexi)glass diagonal floor! ... Though in reality, the bottom part will be padded where beginners will be able to train, with the more skilled being permitted to back higher over the glass slope) Also Skydive Mag has an article: I'm actually quite tempted to make wingsuit tunnel coaching part of my wingsuit training. Getting 30 minutes of wingsuit time in just one day is something I can't easily do from an airplane considering I also have to find & pay for a wingsuit coach. Apparently, it looks like I can fly relative completely untethered in the tunnel -- after just 30 minutes of training, even being a base for an instructor to gently dock on. They now have people doing that -- who's never jumped before, no jumps/BASE -- now flying untethered after just 20-30 minutes! And after further training beyond, successfully expertly doing 2-ways challenges, including flying verticals around others, according to pictures on their Facebook page. Never made a jump, never BASE'd, but outwingsuits a lot of wingsuit flyers now... (well, to an extent...Much like tunnel rats in skydiving, has 'certain' deficiencies, but you know what I mean -- they still have certain rad skillz that's easier to fill the gaps in) Just like combining tunnel and AFF/ISP -- I am now considering combining tunnel+jumps for wingsuit coaching by ~2020 if I could make a vacation to Sweden -- I'd actually go to Sweden just for this! Although tunnel is not everything (can't be a good bigway jumper after AFF, for example, but such students now jump almost straight into 4-ways after just a few tracking practice jumps...And y'know, canopy, canopy, safety, safety) -- Which means theoretically, the weekend after having never wingsuited before, I could even be ready for basic 2-way wingsuit (after practicing safely 'closing the space' without excess speed over extreme side-by-side distances) much sooner than I would otherwise would. If I account for the extra expenses (intro wingsuit rentals + instructor) and the driving gasoline for repeated wingsuit instruction -- at the higher Canadian skydiving jump rates -- it actually seems to work out cheaper for me to just visit Sweden first. Including the airfare too! There would be multiple wingsuit rentals I can try out that's included in the tunnel-per-minute rate. I'd already now know which wingsuit purchase is suitable for me (Goldilocks, not too intro, not too extreme). In Canada, it's $15/min for solo tunnel. This barely costs more. It's expensive, but the economics actually works out for a Canadian to do a dedicated trip for a one-day 30-minute or one-weekend 60-minute (broken into multiple short flights) -- very compelling... I'm going to definitely keep an eye on these developments.
  5. mdrejhon

    Two iFly Toronto's! (Whitby and Oakville)

    There's a 2nd iFly under construction in Toronto! In the east. We are familiar with iFly Toronto West (Oakville), But this is iFly Toronto East (Whitby) under construction. Facebook: iFly Toronto Whitby Summer-Fall 2017, I believe!
  6. Very good points. Many GPS chips can be reprogrammed at higher or lower rates, but you are right: the limitations of the watch architecture may provide hardware (power management) and software limitations (vendor API). I deploy my coding to a whopping 18 smartphones on my job, but they are work-only devices. The GPS refresh rate of some high powered smartphones are so good that maps scroll realtime at low latency with low predictivity, while others are so low and erratic. I wonder if anyone has tested a dozen or two smartphones, to see if any have GPS refresh rates (and altitude accuracy) programmable to be sufficient for mid-air tracking.
  7. I see that the Microsoft Band has come out. Only 199 dollars. Cheaper than a skydiving altimeter! I observe it has built-in GPS and a full color screen, and able to go to 14,000meters. It can upload data to a smartphone. In theory, a simple app could make it act as a secondary altimeter, but I am especially interested in app-developable wearable GPS screens. It would be cool to mod one of the new smartwatches on the market, to behave as a wingsuit/tracking flight path recorder, with potentially real time angle/speed feedback (e.g. Color change or flashing) on the display, especially as I can't hear beeps/audibles due to my deafness. For an independent programmer, one could make an app to run on them for skydiving purposes! And a companion app for a phone, to display data in a skydiver-friendly format.
  8. Congratulations to Alan for pulling off something that may someday be within reach of skydivers' bucket lists! Perhaps someday, in a decade, this could fall to the cost of five figures, like the price of a car, with the rental of lightweight spacesuits currently being developed for the tourist space industry -- and be safe enough for a good four-digit jumper to do.
  9. mdrejhon

    Skyventure Toronto!

    My friend Scott has flown in the tunnel! The tunnel is undergoing tests. Not open yet, still need drywall and drop ceilings, but the tunnel operates! You heard me -- the Toronto tunnel operates!!!!!!!
  10. mdrejhon

    Skyventure Toronto! They finally got electricified, that part of install went really really slow by our friendly electric company. The building structure is essentially complete enough to rev up the fans after a few more things, so I bet they'll begin testing shortly. The up and coming tunnel instructors are already training at Skyventure Montreal now. Here's a photo from last November. (They are ahead of this stage now at the moment.)
  11. mdrejhon

    Skyventure Toronto!

    I am at the 1st Canadian Indoor Skydiving Championship (March 9-10) and Alan, the owner, announced over microphone to a hundred people, that next year's (2014) indoor skydiving championship is going to occur in Oakville. He knows something we don't -- probably the lease is already signed but they never took the sign down; and are intending to begin construction soon after snow melt. Could be a different Oakville lease, but that's what he said -- "Oakville" -- so there must be lots of due diligence already done; getting all the city approvals necessary before lease is signed. He's the key stakeholder of iFly Toronto too, so it's now up to the city of Oakville to expedite things along.
  12. mdrejhon

    Skyventure Toronto!

    I've been surfing the Net, and accidentally found the location of Skyventure Toronto, in a sort of a landscape blueprint: The address in this sheet seems to be: iFly Toronto 2007 Winston Park Drive Oakville, Ontario The satellite map for the location is: Note: Do not vouch me 100% on this, because I also did hear that they had to hunt for a new location at one point -- leading to a delay. But it's nice to see that they've went as far as landscape planning and contacting Oakville city planning.
  13. mdrejhon

    Felix Baumgartner Sets Skydiving Record

    Congratulations, Felix! My highest mere skydive at 6 KM only requires a simple airplane and some oxygen. Your jump from 37 KM required a spacesuit and a visit to supersonic territory! When can I sign up to jump from a Virgin Galactic spaceship? :-)
  14. Yeah -- the specific criteria question often comes up and the question of whether it is inclusive or exclusive -- it is similiar to the Deaf World Record skydive (deaf people only), the Women's World Record skydive (women only), or the POPS World Record (age 40+ only) skydive. There's speciality groups of all kinds that like to get together to do something -- and there's the Women's vs Men's leagues, the Paralympics/Special Olympics -- or the local Retirement Residence bowling league, etc.
  15. We made the Huffington Post!!!!!!! Our group, including Carolyn Chow whom we recruited to help organize the Record at Rainbow Boogie 2012 at Skydive Chicago, we managed to nail the Gay Way world record this early Monday morning -- a 15-way (after a lot of Hurricane Issac weather holds on Sat andSun). Cheers, Mark Rejhon
  16. mdrejhon

    Parachutisme Nouvel Air

    They recently had an amazing Mission 100 big way event, the Canada Record big way Skydive event, (happened to be Friday 13th, July 13, 2012). I participated in the big way attempts, and the dropzone vibe has changed significantly. This 102-way successful record blew past the old 59-way record. In the past, they seems to have had a somewhat high priority on tandems, but it seems to have changed, especially with the recent rise of Skyventure Montreal (first Skyventure in Canada, very closely affilated with the Lemays -- Canada's 4-way Team Evolution from Nouvel-Air) and the growing pool of experienced skydivers. I'd give them a try, it's a lot of fun during a good boogie event or big way camp that they do more often now. They have now become the big way central of Canada.
  17. mdrejhon

    Cypres 6 week wait time?!?

    BTW, my Cypres2 will be due for replacement in about 3 years from now. Given SSK is the higher priced of AAD's and they pay for the most advertising of AAD's, I would presume they can afford to provide some sort of a guarantee for fedex'd units: "21 calendar days or the servicing is free!". An automatic email or text can be sent, when the clock begins ticking. (so SSK isn't blamed for rigger delays in rigger-to-SSK couriering) If the army buys lots, save some of that revenue as a reserve, to hire more staff for servicing to make sure they honor the guarantee for some time into the future :-) Or provide a clause that Cypres2 can announce "Code Red Backlog". During this moments, units that are subsequently sent in, do NOT get the "21 days or it is free" guarantee. (Units already sent continues to have that guarantee). This provides SSK protection against loss of revenue from servicing during unavoidable backlogs and staff shortages, while providing an incentive to quickly eliminate the "Code Red Backlog" announcement from their website, so the guarantee is reinstated.
  18. mdrejhon

    Night Jump Gear - Strobe

    Fixed it for ya. (makes your post accurate to SIM) When I nightjumped, I did sort of what you did -- I attached the strobe to top-rear of my helmet where it points at the canopy, so I don't get blinded by it. I only turned it on under canopy. I used glowsticks for the freefall part, which is the 'steady' light source you describe (and in the SIM) I agree, blinking lights during the FREEFALL is bad, it's hard for humans to judge distance from a blinking light (according to tests on blinking vs steady bicycle lights) -- important for a long diver diving at night RW. Ideally, steady-light glowsticks on arms and legs, so body size can easily be approximated from quite a distance at night. SIM doesn't say this, but it's highly recommended for night RW, especially night SCR.
  19. mdrejhon

    North Korea

    I heard that Koryo Tours (the biggest travel agency catering to westerner tourist wanting to see NK) does give "special tours" to those people paying extra $$$. A few rollercoaster enthusiasts asked for a special tour of North Korea's communist-style amusement park, and they got what they asked for. It's surprising! So, if you have the $$ (unusually large amount) and you're not an American (since that's probably illegal), you could ask Koryo and see what they can do for you... They already have a dropzone (see davelepka's photos above). I saw a bunch of NK photos on Flickr, and it's rather eerie, interesting. Controversial mind you, but very interesting to watch the evolution over the last ten years. [Background info about ongoing NK developments, interesting to tourist POV. Not starting anything political -- just some interesting background info useful to tourist POV] They are one of the world's most tightly controlled societies. But from the changes in the photos on Flickr, they seem to be on some very early verge of something new, much like China's changes starting in 1980's. Tourists from the Western economies are mentioning that NK has changed a lot in the last 10 years. Though they finally have their 3G mobile phone explosion (94 percent of NK's 24M population now has 3G signal, over 1M subscribers, growing fast), and the mobile phones are finally even spreading to the rural NK poor because NK's countryside now has good 3G reception, and generally slowly starting to discover the 'outside' world (NK citizens texting in their country-only texting network, about secret meetings to meet to watch bootleg DVD's of western TV shows. Very few have access to DVD players, so DVD-watching is often a very large social affair in North Korea) and discovering what Westerner lifestyles are like, despite tight filtering -- to government chagrin -- only recently. Leaks are starting to slowly occur. In fact, just about barely enough computers have now shown up in NK schools/instutions, that a few NK citizens are meeting at them to do file sharing, by sneaker-netting files between electronics devices (i.e. cellphones/MP3 players), sharing foreign audio/video media between intensely curious NK citizens, and easily-hidden microSD cards readable by now-suddenly-available cellphones. Interesting developments. Although scary-tight society, NK seems on the cusp of being 'enlightened'. Anyway, meanwhile -- tourists are also being allowed to do more than they used to, and with fewer guides/minders than in the past, apparently -- I suspect it won't be long before a rich tourist is allowed to skydive in NK (after some payoff to an NK-approved tourist agency) probably within 5 years -- at least as tandem -- from the patterns I'm seeing in Flickr tourist photography of NK's slow changes and what they're starting to let tourists do, and they do already have a dropzone. People fascinated by Perestroika developments of the 1980's, should start popping their popcorn now. Since NK has at least one dropzone and at least one tandem rig, what this means for the OP, given a neutral/enthusiac tourist, it's probably realistically expect that said person to recreationally skydive in NK well before the end of this decade if they begin the process now (if one tried very hard to make it happen). I'd imagine one would do it in steps -- visit first to their 'extreme sports' stuff like amusement parks and whatever they've already let tourists do. This gives them the opportunity to do some "networking" about seeing what the leads are for the not-yet-tourist-allowed activity, and establishes a tourist relationship that contributes to state coffers. Then during next visit, successfully convince an agency to arrange a tandem. Then actually visiting for a tandem and doing the jump, also showing them their own skydiving license. And then on their third visit to NK, revisiting another month or two, actually do their solo skydive (to give time for the bureaucracy to grinds along to allow it to happen) -- Might not let them bring your rig, but might "rent" them one for the right price. Given a determinedly enthusiac visitor with lots of money and lots of patience, obviously. At least, so the pattern goes in how NK travel agencies "seem" to work these days for unusual tourist requests... All theoretical, of course, given sufficient money offered. If you're lucky, one might be able to pull this off in just two visits, rather than three or four. Maybe not. But it seems unusual requests are starting to be granted to rich tourists nowadays, as they all know NK's famous thirst for funds. And their photos/youtubes are always interesting. Not condoning it, and USA prefers you not send tourism dollars to NK, and we all hear about the controversies. But one can be fascinated by new photography/videos (and NK being curious/witnessing outside tourists tends to be a good thing in slow enlightment process). NOTE: Easier challenge first (and rehearsal) is to skydive in China first. Only recently, it's become possible for tourists to skydive in China. (Beijing Shahe Airport, at least) Very pricey, I heard. Watching with popcorn, though, from a distance. Student of history. (Merely vacationing in NK is an extreme sport!) It's all interesting to watch, no matter the controversies.
  20. IIRC, in 2006, a mid-air collision also occured at the 400-way World Record, but that was when the base was funneled (the world's biggest funnel). No injury, it was also superficial contact. There is a safety tradeoff. I think it enhances safety only when the bigway is 200-way or bigger, because the big way has to breakoff synchronously. The tricky situation arises partially because mega-size big ways have a breakoff altitude range (i.e. target breakoff 7500 with a harddeck of 6500 feet -- basically delayed breakoffs if the formation is stable and nearly complete. It's safer to be a stable formation at 6500 feet than a massive funnel at 7500 feet. The option is there to signal break off early if it's a mess, funnel, or early jumps -- videographers wearing radio to talk to the people in the freefalling base, for example.) so people can't rely on their audibles -- people have broke off early while the last person docked, so breaking off on audible is generally discouraged during 200-way and bigger, and alternative mechanisms are done. Otherwise, large Records is no longer possible. That said, I would imagine that many would agree that the final pullout could probably be skipped -- it is mostly not necessary when the formation is now only a 40-way (i.e. the inner part of the base of a 200-way). The pullout is needed when outer people can't see the base anymore, like in a big 200-way (i.e. Florida State Record) I think modern pullouts in big ways are more carefully planned, to ensure that this scenario is unlikely to happen. This includes the whole chain like choosing the appropriate parachute and proven packjob -- as well as the way it is pulled. In many cases, the person is to keep holding in the base while a person docked behind pulls for them and then backs away a bit. This ensures that the person does not lose balance, float around, or drop below. The deployment 'rips' the person out of the base. (With preplanned safety procedures for unlikely high speed mal cases, late base funnels, which hopefully we don't want to see ever happen!) That said, the pullout procedures seem to be more rigorous nowadays, especially after 2006 during the world's biggest funnel (one of the 400-way attempts). Sometimes, people are informed of the breakoff harddeck where they go ahead and breakoff if there's no signal from the center. (that's where audibles should be set to) There is so much logistics behind mega-size big ways (200-way and bigger) that begins to involve flexible breakoff range (target breakoff and harddeck), radio-wearing organizers and videographers, break-off team technique (flocking for a few seconds), and more.
  21. Fellow RainbowSkydivers Kat Haney (SDC freefly organizer) and Carolyn Chow (Gay Way World Record organizer) will be there! Also, it's now the time to check your airfares -- we recommend as a good way to compare airfares. Skydive Chicago has a great campground. More info found at
  22. mdrejhon

    Large chrome LEGO® DC-3 plane

    This would be a great lego set to build during bad-weather days at the dropzone. Would be a bonus if it came with a few lego minifigs wearing lego skydiving rig backpacks!
  23. mdrejhon

    what do if pilot becomes unconscious?

    Good one. Like pull/pull at altitude/pull at altitude while stable. Obviously, I'd be making sure the plane was level in stable flight with nothing alarming ahead. I don't know the frequencies on the main radio though, so I'd probably call up on the current frequency and stay on it, unless there was a button labelled "EMERG" or other convenient method of accessing a memorized frequency. If I get a fighter jet escort, I'll know I've accidentally squawked the wrong frequency, radioed the wrong guy, or flew somewhere I shouldn't have. Fighter jet escort flies alongside. (Pilot waves sternly at me) Me? You're pointing at me? Me? (pilot points ahead) Down? At this big military runway over there? OK. Gulp. At least I'll be crash-landing on something big.
  24. mdrejhon

    what do if pilot becomes unconscious?

    Can I squawk both? 7700, then 7600, then back to 7700. Signalling a 7600 would be useful because I am deaf. But then again, a non-responding 7700 would be pretty automatically probably mean a mayday anyway and that ATC should clear the hell out of my path when they see a 7700 flying random paths non-responsively on their screens... It's almost definitely never going to happen, I'm sure, but that little tidbit of sqawk knowledge is interesting. BTW, on the topic of non-pilot flying airplanes, another non-pilot, Colton-Harris Moore stole and crash-landed several airplanes. I think some of us would be able to fy better that, even with somewhat less Flight Simulator experience than he did, having observed more actual pilots flying their airplanes, and some practical basic piloting knowledge from the parachute.
  25. mdrejhon

    Video link to wingsuit landing here

    Just a heads up: Readers of this thread may be interested in this semi-related thread in the wingsuit forum too: Wingsuit TAKEOFF from a ski slope without ramp -- possible? I'd like more people of all kinds of appropriate skills (especially ski jumping skills), to comment.