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  1. The Great White North Boogie starts January 17th, 2007 (Wendesday) and goes through Sunday the 21st. There are usually anywhere from 40-60 New England jumpers there each year. They have a Super Otter and a Casa. Definitely a great long weekend of jumping. -- My other ride is a RESERVE.
  2. Yes, thank you for catching that. Sport PCs should also be thrown laterally into clean air. -- My other ride is a RESERVE.
  3. I'm sure he is, but he (not the student) chose to do a "chair position" front flip from the plane which put his students legs in that bent 90 degree position on exit which contributed to their instability when he cam eout of the flip. He started the bad jump cycle, no one else. That's great, not everyone would do that. I give you guys alot of credit for learning from the experience. "Arm chairing" aside, there is alot that can be learned from footage like this. It is a text book example of the carnival ride tandem gone bad. I have 1100 tandems in 4 years, so I think I pretty current on tandem protocols . We can all get students that are capable of taking us for a ride periodicaly, but we can also all do things as TIs to MINIMIZE the chance of it happening, and MINIMIZE the degree with which it goes out of control, by 1) doing stable exits into the relative wind, and 2) using the appropriate altitude and time we have to get stable BEFORE we throw the drogue. In this "arm chair" review, he did neither. This actually made me laugh. if you have witnessed enough drogues and bridles hitting someones feet that it qualifies for "if I had a buck every time...." status, then the TIs you work with need to be retrained on throwing drogues. 15 dropzones, hours reviewing tandem footage, 100s of instructors, I've seen it maybe twice, both times, unstable drogue toss and lazy throw. I'll reiterate this from my earlier post, Tandem Instructors must throw the drogue as strongly as they can LATERALLY, not behind them like they do on a sport PC. If you throw the drogue away from you LATERALLY, it will be much less likely to be sucked back in the vacuum, and much less likely to "hit feet"....... -- My other ride is a RESERVE.
  4. I'm doing some research, and would like some input on this subject. I have been told that there are tandem instructors out there that do not give thier students a ripcord. Why not? Thanks in advance for your input. -- My other ride is a RESERVE.
  5. I don't really consider the northeast US (NJ, NY, MA, NH) very low COL, but I will agree, none of them live in mansions. The only point I was trying to make was/is that it is very possible to make (and save) a decent amount of money in our sport, enough so, even to buy a house, even in say, an avergae COL area, but like any other career, it's not going to be handed to anyone. If you want it, you have to go out and bust your ass for it. -- My other ride is a RESERVE.
  6. Numbers way too low. As a part time TI, I was constently making 8-10k a 1/2 year season, working weekends only, most of which was earned at the peak 3 months of the season. We had a full time instructor, and he only did AFF and Video, and he made 24k-25k during that same half a season. If you are disciplined & motivated you can make a decent amount of money, and I know more than a rare exception of skydivers that bought houses with skydiving money. -- My other ride is a RESERVE.
  7. Yes, the TM had his hands full. After the jump, I'm sure one of two things happened once the passenger left: 1) The TM joked with the videographer about how poor his student performed causing all that stuff in the video to happen (not learning anything from it), or 2) The TM evaluated what he could have done better to prevent that from happening again, like better prejump training, doing stable exits instead of flips, etc (ie, learned something from it) and made changes to his operating procedure on future tandem skydives. Which do you think happened when the student left, 1 or 2? On any skydive, you get out of it what you put into it. At a glance: 1) Neither instructor nor student had a helmet 2) Student did not have an altimeter or ripcord 3) Instructor did a "chair position" flip out the door which actually put his students legs in the poor position they were in during their unstable no drogue freefall. 4) The instructor threw the drogue unstable into dead air. He had ample altitude to regain control of his student and his skydive before drogue toss, but he chose not to use that time and altitude, and as a result almost through the drogue bridle around his ankle. I agree with you sdctlc, every TM out there will inevitably get "taken for a ride" by a student eventually, but there are a number of things we can do to decrease that likelyhood, and decrease the effects of it when it does happen, by making safety our #1 goal, through proper preparation, proper training, proper execution and professionalism. October 2006 Parachutist Mag "Safety Checklist" mentions the "carnival ride"mentality of some tandem instructors today. This video is an excellent example of that mentality and shows just what sort of things can happen when a tandem skydive is not treated as an educational learning experience. -- My other ride is a RESERVE.
  8. A tandem pair falling through the sky before drogue toss creates a conical vacuum above the tandem pair. The longer you go no drogue, the more you accelerate, the bigger the vacuum becomes. Lazy drogue throws can very easily result in the drogue being sucked back on the tandem pair's back, flopping around, searching for air, all the time allowing the drogue bridle to flail as well. That is why it is imperative that when a tandem master throws the drogue, he (or she) throws it as strong as possible LATERALLY into clean air, so that it can inflate cleanly, and not risk getting sucked back onto the tandem pair. -- My other ride is a RESERVE.
  9. Two years ago, I pulled a brand spankin' new Safire 2 out of its bag after being packed for 6 weeks and left in it's javelin container in a cool dry place (a closet). It was a total brick. I was able to pull the bridle and lines tight away from each other and the canopy did not move or unfold. All the goop that is put on it to make it ZP, had hardened and the canopy was a solid hard brick. We had to carefully peel each layer off the brick. The canopy was fine when we were done, but it would have never opened in freefall like that. -- My other ride is a RESERVE.
  10. If your student is injured on an off field landing (which no TI is good enough to 1000% gaurantee it would never ever happen), you are increasing the response time for medical attention by landing off, regardless of what terrain your DZ may have. -- My other ride is a RESERVE.
  11. And if your tandem student injures themsleves in that off field landing, which, no matter how good you may be, you cannot 100% prevent the possibility of, then what? If a tandem instructor can make it back to the DZ, and chooses to land off to land with his video, he (or she) needs to reevlauate being a tandem instructor. Our job is STUDENT SAFETY first and foremost. Landing off, in the event of a student injury is less safe than landing at the DZ. It absolutely increases the time it would take for emergency medical persons to reach your student if needed, and you can never predict when or if it will ever be needed. Tandems are about what is in the best interest of your student's SAFETY and WELL BEING, NOT their video. -- My other ride is a RESERVE.
  12. In terms of liability, it must be pointed out that parents cannot sign away thier childs consent not to sue in the event of an injury. If a 16 yr old makes a tandem and is injured, the fact that their parents may have signed a waiver on thier behalf means nothing in a court of law. If that 16 year old breaks an ankle, they can sue everyone involved, and the waiver will not hold up in court. Anyone that takes up a student under 18 (or whatever the legal age of consent is in thier state, most states its 18, is risking everything they have for that one skydive. Something to think about. -- My other ride is a RESERVE.
  13. Hi Spatula, While I can't speak for the past criteria for it's use, I can confirm that Howard's statement is correct. The Tridem is only intended to be used by potential tandem instructor candidates that have not had a real cutaway. As Howard's picture shows, the primary cutaway & reserve handles are essentially "real" tandem handles in the same place you would find them on a Strong Dual Hawk tandem system. (outboard handles) The rig itself is complex. It's really a beautiful design for it's purpose, but it must also be handled with extreme care in packing it and prepping it for jumping. Additionally, proper training is also required, as illustrated in an above post, an out of sequence handles pull, can result in a real malfunction/reserve ride. If anyone has any other ?s about the Tridem, shoot me a PM, I'll be happy to answer them. (Funny thing is, I just packed it up yesterday and then found this's actually sitting next to me as I type Blue skies, Tom -- My other ride is a RESERVE.
  14. Don't hold back, how do you really feel? I totally understand your point of view, but consider this: As USPA Group Membership is set up now, there is no rule that a dropzone must allow fun jumpers. These tandem-only dropzones are following the rules and BSRs set forth by USPA, and most importantly, they pay their dues. (As much as USPA is an advocacy group for skydivers in the modern FAA world, make no mistake, the USPA is a money collecting machine. Anyone willing to pay gets to play. Personally I think tandem-only DZs are okay, it's a business decision that the business owners are entitled to make. The instructors are "parachutists, and the airfield is a dropzone, so I think they qualify to be group members. That said, if anyone really has an issue with it, get your RD to propose a rule change at the next BoD meeting. "In order to be USPA group member, DZs MUST allow fun jumping". -- My other ride is a RESERVE.