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Everything posted by riggerrob

  1. Yes, Aerodyne's coloured line attachment tapes make it easier to learn how to Pro-Pack. A few of my customers marked their LAT with toluene-based felt pens. Those canopies lasted hundreds or thousands of jumps. I never saw a difference in wear patterns or longevity. Similarly, I have repacked dozens/hundreds? of reserves with contact info written on wide, white bridles. Never saw any difference in wear patterns.
  2. riggerrob


    A couple of Rogallo reserves were certified in former Warsaw Pact (communist Europe) Telka and PZ-81. I have both in my closet.
  3. riggerrob

    eRacer pilot manual

    Which canopies were in the Emergency Racer?
  4. riggerrob

    Do Canopies Naturally Turn Upwind?

    A canopy will turn a full 360 degrees, given enough time and altitude. Built-in turns was a problem during the 1970s and 1980s, but as manufacturing tolerances improved, bailout-in turns got smaller and smaller. OTOH Jumpers are inherently unbalanced ..... assymetrical. For example: my right shoulder is smaller (weaker) than my left shoulder. An unbalanced human will induce a slow turn. The canopy is flying in a block of air and only cares about airspeed. The canopy has no clue that the block of air is sliding across the ground. Since it has no magnetic compass, the canopy does not know when it changes heading relative to the planet. Most turns - during landing flares - are caused by uneven toggles.
  5. Oregon Aero sells helmet liners that absorb significant amounts of shock. They are made of several different densities of Astronaut foam. As to why modern skydivers wear full-face helmets .... back during the early 1990s belly-flying competitors were turning serious numbers of points with teammates' knees swinging past their faces with mere inches to spare. With full facial protection, they could confidently fly a few inches closer to the centre of the formation, shaving a fraction of a second off the time to build the next formation.
  6. riggerrob

    W German Bronze paratrooper wingss

    Does anyone have a spare pair of West German Paratrooper Wings from the mid-1980s? Either cloth or metal will work. I earned Brinze Wings while jumping in Altenschstad (sp?) during February of 1986.
  7. riggerrob

    A bigun.....

    If you have back issues, forget about becoming a TI. Lots of TIs retire after a year or three because of bad backs, bad knees, bad shoulders, etc. I have found that hanging more than 400 pounds of human meat under a tandem is difficult. Since I weighed 180 or 190 pounds for most of my jumping career, I only took students up to 220 pounds (100kg). The difference was that I took big students all day, so manifest kept me in the fast rotation and I consistently did 8-12 jumps per day. I have only jumped with one student who weighed 270 pounds. Most of his extra weight was muscle! He was a retired rugby player, with thighs like tree trunks! So I was not worried about breaking his leg bones. We had a fast freefall, hard opening and ended with a firm slide landing in wet grass. Once I had proven my machismo, I cut back to students no heavier than 220 pounds. Most of the schools - that I have worked - limit students to 220 or 230. Most were too embarrassed to charge a fat tax. The plus side was that big guys tip better and often buy the video.
  8. riggerrob

    "The Right Wally" Video

    During the 21st century 'bounce and blend' revived as digital camoflage
  9. riggerrob

    Direct Line Attachment vs. Flares

    Jalbert Para-Foils pre-date both Para-Flite and Django. Domina Jalbert patented double-skinned, ribbed, ram-air canopies during the early 1960s. Jalbert used large flares to attach lines and smooth the airfoil. Jalbert eventually licensed North American Aerodynamics to use his patents while building Para-Foils. A side benefit is that large flares stabiliz airflow near the stall, so Para-Foils dominated precision landing competitions for decades. Even newer PA canopies designed by John Eiff (Challenger Classic and PD Zero) resemble Para-Foils from a distance, but when you get close you see only 2 keels per rib. Ribs still use 4 or 5 suspension lines, 2 lines (A & B) are attached to the front keel. Keels do an even better job of smoothing airflow near the stall.
  10. riggerrob

    Tension knots

    If you still have 28" of loose lines, try stowing the remaining left line group in a small rubber band on the left side of your d-bag. Same on the right side. Distance - of un-stowed lines- from the d-bag to top of risers should end up the same. As little as 6" of un-stowed lines is okay with this method. This method works great with static-lines because it lifts risers slightly earlier and slightly reduces the risk of a main riser snagging on the a corner of the reserve container. Armies tie (80 pound break cord) risers to d-bags for the same reason.
  11. riggerrob

    Does this sound right?

    At a minimum, 1 AFFI should stay at the landing field, watch the student land and debrief them. Some busy DZs assign a specific instructor to steer students back by radio. They are also responsible for accounting for all jumpers and ensuring that they return to the packing area.
  12. riggerrob

    Skydiving and shoulder dislocations

    Back in 2008, I dislocated my right shoulder during a plane crash. My achromatic-clavicular ligament tore completely and I sprained the top end of my biceps. It healed slowly, but I gritted my teeth and worked at physio-therapy. I did my first solo jump 6 months after the accident, but it was 8 months before I could resume doing tandems. But it was a full year before my shoulder quit aching and limiting my movements. The shoulder has not dis-located since the initial accident. Now, a decade later, my ACL has resumed aching and I have resumed physio-therapy.
  13. riggerrob

    Reserves Smaller than Main

    Agreed! That debating point made sense back in 1980, but is irrelevant for canopies designed during this century. Back in 1980, a half dozen different manufacturers used a half dozen different canopy measuring methods. Eventually, PIA published Para-Flite's method and it was fashionable for a couple of decades. Para-Flite measured chord from the tail to the top leading edge, easy on rectangular canopies. That became problematic when tapered ( elliptical, swept-wing, Schuemann, etc.) canopies became fashionable during the 1990s. By 2001, most major manufacturers had adopted Performance Designs' method of measuring chord along the bottom skin. Now that most manufacturers use the PD methods, comparisons are simpler. Please do not use mere numbers to compare (early 1980s-vintage) Ravens (Swifts, Firelites, APS, etc.) reserves with modern Optimum, Smart, etc. reserves because they are in totally different generations.
  14. riggerrob

    Todd Shoebotham Talks Pilot Chutes

    To avoid inserting fingers too deep in pilot huge handles: rednecks use duct tape while electricians use gaffers' tape and snobs use wine corks.
  15. riggerrob

    Rapide link vs Slink on bridle connection

    Maillot Rapide link barrels create an extra wear point that frays your bridle. OTOH soft links eliminate one wear point.
  16. riggerrob

    Rigger Study Materials

    The FAA Parachute Riggers' Manual is the best English-language book. Strong's "25 Jump Inspection" Manual (Dual Hawk Tandem) is excellent for teaching inspections. Also tell them to start copying manuals for all the gear that is popular on their DZ. To that end, I usually start a rigging course by asking students to name popular gear on their DZs, then tailor the course to match the gear they are most likely to work on. Following that same logic, I start the lecture on AADs by asking which AADs are most popular at their home DZs. If apprentices only mention modern electronic AADs, then I teach Cypres-centric course with brief mentions about how Vigil differs. More often, I assign a student to research a technical question and report back to the class tomorrow morning. The Australian Parachute Federation's master list of Service Bulletins, Airworthiness Directives, Technical Bulletins, etc. is the best single source for post-production fixes. French-speaking apprentice riggers should start with Eric Fradet's book: "Materiel d'au jour d'iu" (sp?).
  17. riggerrob

    H/C materials

    1. Stiff fabric is usually MIL SPEC/PIA SPEC ballistic cloth. However, since it is purely a stiffener, a dozen other bulky, stiff, heavily latex-coated fabrics will perform the same function. Maybe ask a luggage repair shop. Look in the Para-Gear catalog. 2. Cypres window clear plastic is available from automobile upholstery shops, Para-Gear, etc. It is similar to the clear plastic used to make windows on convertible tops for cars, boats, luggage tags, etc. Just remember to buy a grade that is flexible enough to allow you to tap Cylres buttons.
  18. riggerrob

    Question about older vector 3 vs newer vector 3

    Magnetic riser covers and Skyhook option.
  19. riggerrob

    RRMS/Transverse Myelitis

    How many jumps do you have? Early in the learning process it is easy for all that adrenaline to deplete blood sugar reserves and leave you exhausted. Snacks help, but the long term solution involves learning how to control your arousal levels. As for MS specifically, the latest issue of "Economist" magazine recommends COPPERTONE sun block for its ability to delay onset of MS symptoms.
  20. riggerrob

    Question about log book and A lic

    Consult your local instructor.
  21. riggerrob

    Precision 365 Tandem line trim

    Just measure the slack on the old lines ...... before you cut them off. Something like 2 inches slack on B lines, 3 on C and 5 on D. It is not rocket surgery as long as you keep things symmetrical. Overall line trims on Precision 365 and Icarus 365 are the same. I have even sewn Icarus line kits onto Precision canopies and they fly great!
  22. riggerrob

    I love you moderators

    Yes! Thank you moderators for keeping this forum neat, civil and on track.
  23. riggerrob

    Skydiver's Anonymous

    Reminds me of a book entitled "Positive Addiction." The author (a medical doctor) said that humans crave endorphins, adrenaline, dopamine, etc. in varying degrees. If your day-to-day existence does not produce enough "feel good" endorphins, you need to engage in recreational activities that stimulate production of endorphins. Endorphin generating activities may include barroom brawling, BASE jumping, marathon running, petty crime, skiing, warfare, etc. The author recommended adrenalin sports as positive ways to generate feel good endorphins. For example chosing marathon running over morphine injection is a "positive addiction."
  24. riggerrob

    Custom art on rig

    Consult a container manufacturer to determine which paints affect nylon fabric the least. Maybe DuPont. Nylon is tough stuff. The greater risk is paint adhering to a pair of flaps ..... gluing them together ........ delaying opening. Also consult your local rigger. Bring your can of paint when you visit.
  25. CASPA debated this question long and loud during our Annual General Meeting in February 2017. We decided to allow tunnel fliers to compete under rules written by CSPA judges (e.g. Rena Gallo) and that they could purchase FAI Sporting licenses through CSPA. On another motion, CSPA delegates voted against selling CSPA memberships to tunnel rats because of fears that under-aged athletes might sue CSPA if injured. That debate ignored he notion that most tunnels carry far more insurance than CSPA. The "no" side of the debate was lead by two Ontario DZOs who want CSPA to change BSRs to include 16-year-old tandem students. Holy hypocracy Batman!