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Posts posted by pchapman

  1. 56 minutes ago, evh said:

    So... this  "certification" is not even valid for skydiving? 

    Don't get your certifications mixed up. The poster you quoted was quoting one sample airports helmet standard.

    The G4 helmet is certified to the French AFNOR "Skydiving and Wind Tunnel Helmet Standard XP S 72-600"

    The Tonfly TFX for example is certified to that same standard, plus EN966: 2012 + A1: 2012, category HPG for AIRBORNE SPORTS
     I'm not sure why you would be all against a hang-gliding/paragliding/microlight airsports standard -- unless you came up with some very specific technical objections based on actual facts. (Hooknswoop provided a link to some EN966 info)

    EDIT: Standards can be frustrating because one can't always download the actual standard (without paying a lot of money for them). More searching on the web would be needed to help understand how XP S 72-600 compares with other prior standards, what things are emphasized or not.

  2. I'm just trying to understand how the US system works, and a quick skim of the SIM hasn't clarified anything for me:

    Is anyone supposed to write a report if there's an incident or accident to a USPA member? A local S&TA has the responsibility?

    Are individual jumpers supposed to write anything up? Is any report writing requirement generally followed, or does that just depend on the DZ culture?

    For comparison, I'm in Canada where under the CSPA each jumper is supposed to fill out the Accident/Incident/Malfunction report form in case of an incident or accident, or even if they have a malfunction. At the national level, reports are summarized & anonymized and I believe destroyed -- Something like the US system I think.

    If a student is involved, the instructor would write the report. Some DZ's don't push the issue for minor stuff, so I'm sure plenty of plain old mals never get reported. Other DZ's are more insistent on having the reports handed in to be passed up the chain. A jumper's report on their own incident might not be all that informative, especially if they don't want to take the time or are inexperienced. Certainly if students are involved, and liability is higher, reports are highly likely to be made, or else the legal defense fund that a school may optionally contribute to, won't be in effect for that incident.  At the DZ I'm at, the DZ takes the reports, passes them to the CSPA, and keeps copies of the reports, which are summarized at the start of next season, for the experienced jumpers and instructors to learn from.  It is in effect a local safety feedback loop, a sort of Safety Day kind of thing.

  3. I'm not sure what their current system is, but the one I'm familiar with is the D-6 which is or was a common Russian paratrooper rig. There the drogue is static lined on exit, with the drogue attachment basically at the top of the pack behind one's neck. A rotating disc release mechanism can be activated by a KAP-3 style mechanical AAD, or by ripcord. The drogue then pulls the main canopy out.  The whole system allows one to have a relatively light and large main canopy yet jump at very high exit speed.

    A few pics from my system are attached. (I posted years back on DZ, but the new dropzone.com system has made the old photos disappear)

    CIMG6801a D-6's drogue.JPG

    CIMG6408a D-6 rig drogue release.JPG

    IMG_4171a D-6 on approach (crop).jpg

    • Like 2

  4. 7 hours ago, Bogatyr said:

      There may be a school in Toronto that may take me but I have been warned that they will charge me for a "Tandem" jump then say I need to do more of them and drag this out and say they don't think I am qualified -

    I would hope local DZ's wouldn't try to drag things out. Although there are no bad DZ's in Ontario, yeah I can see some being wary.

    Some people stick with the sport and some don't, some students need more jumps than others. So who knows what would be needed.

    In Canada, it is normal to have to do one other type jump before doing a PFF course. So you would in any case do a Tandem or Static-line or IAD jump first, to get used to jumping and demonstrate that you, like any newbie, could follow basic instructions. (Static line and IAD are similar.)  There is the occasional DZ that has a waiver and does PFF from the first jump (eg SWOOP, Grand Bend I guess). Also some that do a Tandem Progression where one does a few tandems before moving to PFF with only one instructor (eg, PST, Burnaby, Gananoque I think). Others do what I described as the standard PFF, including the one jump before the full PFF system (eg Skydive Toronto, Niagara maybe).  So there is a fair bit of variation in accepted methods.

    I remember doing PFF with someone banned from the UK system (above age 55 to start) while at Skydive Toronto, and we got him graduated, although the guy was pretty stiff, which made it take longer to learn to fly stable. As to what decisions an instructor would make with you, who knows what they would think after meeting and working with you.

    There is some concern in skydiving that harder openings are more dangerous for old people. While we all recover from things a bit slower as we age, a rogue hard opening can be rougher or more dangerous to a quite old person. Heck even I with 30 years in the sport wonder when "the right time" will be to retire. That said, there are certainly a bunch of 60+ jumpers out there.


  5. 4 hours ago, billvon said:

    Agreed.  You can likely still find people choosing exit separation using the 45 degree rule with the permission of their DZ's as well, and you can find people turning by using their hands as little rudders.  That does not necessarily mean that those things are a good idea.

    Certainly.  Still, something being commonly accepted, even by DZO's, at multiple DZs, is at least suggestive that it meets current standards of acceptability, without being proof that it will stand the test of time. Humans, amazingly enough, are not infallible.

    Perhaps you could argue something more specific, such as suggesting a maximum wing loading policy for novices that you support, and the reasons for it? At how many jumps is a 1.1 wing loading acceptable, for someone flying their canopy competently?

    (@Rsaarson:  1960's style hand turns are turns made using only the hands, angling them but not not moving the arms... A waste of potential turning power.)

  6. Thanks for the correction.

    Using the "minimum" numbers rather than "middle of range", that would allow a 200 canopy for a 209 lb exit weight jumper, at 60 jumps (or maybe 50 jumps, depending on whether one interpolates or not).

    Jclalor suggested 100 jumps minimum, based on the chart's minimum values, based on a strict reading of weights. (That 210 lbs is above the 209 lb column, and thus one must use the 220 lb column, rather than interpolating or saying 'a pound here or there doesn't matter'.   So there are different ways to interpret the chart.)

    Either way, the point still stands: I bet one will commonly find novices in the real world, with the permission of their DZ's, at slightly above 1:1 wing loading before 40, 50, 60, or 100 jumps.


  7. Interesting point jclalor.

    But it looks like Germain's chart is pretty conservative here.


    It suggests that at around 210 lbs exit weight, the smallest size a first jump student could use is a 230. (Not the ideal, but the minimum.) And then never go lower than that until 100 jumps, where the jumper could finally downsize to 1 to 1 wing loading. 

    I'm at a DZ with a notoriously conservative DZO, and even there a jumper of 210 lbs would be allowed as a student to downsize as far as a 190, provided more or less that a number of jumps were made on each size canopy down to that point. Newbies elsewhere must surely also be going as high as 1:1 loading, and past that. People don't buy their first rigs to be at only 0.9 loading....


  8. 14 minutes ago, RonD1120 said:

     My point is that he tries to use scripture as a textbook. It is the inspired work of the Holy Spirit. Without the recognition of the Holy Spirit, the words lack true edification.

    You must be born again of Christ. 


    That's what makes Christianity so maddening.  There's all this pick and choose going on from it what the rest of us expect to be some manual, based on the frequency Christians keep referring to it. As soon as you try to pin someone down about something in it, they get all slippery and either say you aren't interpreting it right or that you CAN'T interpret it properly as you haven't accepted Jeebus into your life. So they get to interpret all they want, but you can't pin them down because you're not worthy of doing so. Them Christians are indeed holier than thou.

    I've never gotten a decent answer on why the Christian god is such an evil son of a bitch in the Old Testament, according to modern standards of morality that we consider so much more advanced. So is the Old Testament crap to be ignored, or not? (And only revered as a historical artifact.) Why would anyone embrace Christianity with such an insane god to follow? There are enough other gods out there, pick a better one!

  9. 1 hour ago, JerryBaumchen said:

    Hi Peter,

    Re:  '. . . being certified to super-vague 1949 standards.'

    Then you should include Vectors & Racers; just to be fair.

    Jerry Baumchen

    PS)  Read NAS 804; nothing vague there IMO.

    Keeping me honest as usual.

    This is getting more technical than needed for the thread:  NAS 804 & TSO C-23b have the problem of giving weights and speeds to test at, that are supposed to give a 5000 lb test load, given a certain type of 28ft flat circular canopy of the era. That's clear and in the NAS 804 specs.

    As I understand it (but 'just as a rigger' and not as anyone ever involved in TSO testing) the problem is that if one tests with a different canopy, one might get lower forces at the specified weights and speeds -- thus putting a lower maximum test load on the equipment than intended. I don't know if that was actually something that happened with harness/container testing, but it was rumoured to be an issue with some of the lightweight round reserve canopies certified under those standards. 

    And of course all those harnesses stay together just fine in practice -- even if one can point fingers at them for still using such an antiquated certification basis. (The Sunpath Javelin folks, on the other hand, spent the big bucks to recertify to a newer standard and specific weights too.)

  10. Hey jerolim,

    You may be technically correct but it isn't helpful to a newbie to give them a million options that don't matter much at their level.

    It's like a novice driver asking, "Are Toyota's any good?" and saying, "Well, you should understand more about how they forge their crankshafts, because it's dangerous if that breaks!"

    The newbies doesn't need to give a shit about how the reserve pin is swaged. They really don't.

    Not when choosing a brand. Yes, if a particular rig is being inspected, if there's some substitution or damage or something, that's something for the owner & their rigger to look at.

    The geometry of the 3 ring similarly doesn't matter in that all the major manufacturers have things sorted out and they are functional. Details don't matter if the details are correct in the first place.

    How much the corners are stitched is also useless info for a newbie, as there is no objective guide to anything like that, nothing that says "Vectors score an 8, Infinities score a 7 on a magical combination of deploys-easily-when-it-needs-to-but-not-too-easily-when-it-shouldn't ".

    I could go on.

    Yes, riggers can argue all they want if they have strong opinions.

    If one wanted to have super strong opinions on rigs, different riggers would ground just about every rig out there for some reason or other. Vectors' low drag reserve PC's (unless on their side) and huge number of flaps to push through. Wings for stupid mismatch of container and freebag shape and too little mesh on the PC. Maybe the same about the mesh for Infinities. Racers for needless complexity for some reserve pilot chute things in this day and age. Everything but Icons for not having the better leverage mini 3-rings. Everything but Mirages due to having a less potentially sharp AMP fitting replacement. And obviously ground Mirages for only being certified to super-vague 1949 standards. Ground Javelins for their snaggable main container side flaps. And so on.

    You've built gear, you care about all the little details. You and I and other riggers can argue the details out all we want, but give the newbies a bit of a break.   :-)


    • Like 1

  11. I guess the British Parachuting Association still refuses to allow older people to jump if they are not already skydivers. Age limit 55 last I heard, with rare exceptions.  I guess the normal answer would be, vacation in Spain or the USA or similar and do ones training there. But I don't know the details of what is typical, and what insurance or medicals they want elsewhere.

    A Brit gave some details of the age limit, at least as of 2012, in a post:https://www.dropzone.com/forums/topic/731-elderly-skydivers-/?page=3&tab=comments#comment-4063176

    That post also suggested that one doesn't need to be fully licensed elsewhere, before returning home. But it is usually much easier to do at least a significant chunk of one's training at one DZ before switching to a different one. So one might want to at least get through all of the basic AFF stages before returning home.


  12. I don't know that situation specifically, but:

    The Smart has been around for many years before the LPV variant came out.  So if container info says fits model X, it normally means the normal model X, not an LPV variant. Companies are pretty careful to spell out when they are talking about an LPV option.

  13. Such mal scenarios are before my time, but I thought the "into the spin" throw was supposed to be not 'directly pissing into the wind', but just 'somewhat into the spin direction'. Supposedly so it had more time to extend to full line deployment and start to fill, before it started to wrap its lines around you due to the spin. So if in a left turning spin, try to toss 45 degrees left, something like that, rather than say trying for 90 degrees left.

    (Yeah the whole canopy-first deployment method sucks. It should be staged lines first, closer to what paraglider reserves do, or indeed regular skydiving reserves except without a pilot chute. Canopy is bagged, toss it using a handle on the bag, lines pay out from the bag, and once at line extension, the bag pops open.)

  14. Dogmatix:

    "Tough shit for the beginners." People tend not to like newbies coming in and criticizing everything. First, just learn to do things the way they are done...Even if I agree the discussions are perfectly logical about why things are done a certain way, and not some other. Which is useful in understanding different ways to do things in the sport. And it can be cool to dream up new ways to do things. But it helps first to have a really deep understanding of why things are the way they are, and what the pros and cons are.

    Some newly added complexities to rigs, or different ways of doing things, become common in the industry, some don't.

    - e.g., Aerodyne has different coloured line attachment tapes, but other companies don't bother. People learn quickly enough to distinguish between line groups. Yet coloured tabs would help do the job quicker. (And I've used ink on one of my own canopies' attachment tapes).

    - e.g. Aerodyne has elongated 2nd rings in the 3 ring system. They clearly improve the leverage of the system, which sometime has been a problem. But no other company has bothered to follow their lead, to get similar rings designed and produced the steel hardware companies.  Maybe that innovation should have become more popular. Who knows.

    - e.g., Wings recently has made main d-bags with bungees, which will last longer than elastics, although can have downsides too. But other companies aren't interested in that, so that remains, for better or worse, an outlier.  Even if you don't have such a main bag, you have the option of Silibands and Tube Stows, as was mentioned earlier, if you don't like rubber bands breaking. But you need to know what can go wrong with those options too.

    - e.g., A few canopies from PD use plastic snaps to hold the slider to the canopy a little bit, during the start of the inflation process. Keeping sliders in place is a serious issue as it can avoid openings that injure people. So will that technique become more common or not? Who knows.

    Become a rigger. Then you can sew stuff up the way you want it. Well, some countries require TSO's and such, but other's don't, so limits on changing one's rig other than the main parachute system vary.

    So I can do things that no company is likely to try to push for everyone. I built a flap system in my main container so foam blocks can be inserted, varying the volume of the container. So the rig can take everything from a non-crossbraced 75, to a 150. That works for me, but isn't likely to spread across the industry even if some company marketed it. A solution for me, but not for the industry.

    Packing a parachute isn't like dealing with software where things can be automated, as you almost seem to wish. 

    Unless you pay someone else, you'll have to deal with compressing a sometimes slippery parachute and compressing the air out of it. And using some sort of deployment system that will keep it from malfunctioning or killing you. You can buy a tool like a Pack Monkey. Again, who knows what will happen with that on the market. It might become somewhat common for newbies and the occasional other jumper dealing with a tough to pack canopy, or fade away. We used to all use pullup cords to close containers, while now the majority of jumpers buy some sort of pack tool that allows pulling harder on the closing loop, more easily. 

    Don't know what to buy? Don't know what's out there? Yeah, it is tough for newbies. Just keep talking to people at the DZ.



    • Like 1

  15. I'll give it a try:

    You "downsized in two ways at once" -- both in canopy size, and by jumping in low wind conditions that you weren't used to. Maybe the instructor didn't realize the latter. (And instructors can never be sure how someone will handle whatever "next step" there is.) So my first instinct is to say just back off one notch to improve the landings. Don't try out the new-to-you 220 when the winds are really low, a situation you aren't yet used to.

    However, it sounds like this is more about your pattern. Missing the LZ and presumably hitting a non-grass runway, or almost doing so, is more concerning.

    So this is less whether you need to do a bit of a PLF because the landing might be a little tough on your ankles. Landing on a hard runway is not a big deal physically if you already have your landings dialled in to be soft, but you may not be at that stage to do so consistently. (What the DZ and any pilots think of landing there, is another matter, and depends on the DZ.)

    Maybe your DZ is tight, but in any case, you probably don't want to mess around with hard runways at this stage. So definitely back off -- even back to the 240 in normal winds --  and work on the pattern, making it consistent. At some point though, you will have to deal with different winds that change your whole pattern planning and descent angles.

    Saving some money is great, and it is nice to get off student and rental gear. But you know that you'll be spending plenty more on the sport in the future anyway. Not hurting yourself is more important than spending some extra while taking the downsizing slower.

  16. 12 hours ago, George Stuart-Ranchev said:

    (I’ve had enough bad run-ins with Bonehead to actively dis-encourage their use), which won’t do anything at all in case of an impact.

    Problems with the company? Or the actual helmet?

    I have a 24" head (long front to back) and went with a Bonehead Aero XXL a few years back, because it was said to be about best available for large heads, something that actually fit. The popular G3 XXL was too tight.   When one is almost at the max size for a helmet, one does unfortunately get stuck with the thinnest padding. (I know there's the skepticism about carbon fibre & fracturing, but Bonehead backs the lightweight carbon fibre with fibreglass for toughness.) 

    Anyway, finally the G4 will be a big step up.

  17. 3 hours ago, billvon said:

    When a woman changes her last name after she is married, do you call bullshit on that too?  After all, she is claiming that her name IS different now, and is no longer the name she was born with - and is demanding you call her by the new name.

    That's about an somewhat arbitrary language label applying to a person, rather than a label that relates to actual physical characteristics.

    (And it involves still "playing by society's longstanding rules" regarding naming conventions. Which might be different other cultures.)

    Of course one can argue what defines someone's sex, and the categories to use.

    But traditionally, the word 'male' did encompass a bunch of physical characteristics of which primary sexual characteristics (their junk) are a crucial component.  Whether or not the term "man" might mean something somewhat different in 50 years, for now, many people will say that a person with male genitalia, with a female name, in a dress, with some hormonal or surgical changes, no matter what their internal subconscious gender self-concept is, no matter what their chromosomal characteristics may be .... is still a man. Or at least more so in that category when using a traditional 2-category system in our culture.  People may not have any problem with that person living their life as they choose, but aren't ready to change what they understand to be the proper use of terminology.

    Society does have issues to deal with when portions of it try to redefine words (for whatever reason). So one gets the debate about "what a person IS" vs. "what a person is attempting to be".


  18. 2 hours ago, Hooknswoop said:

    Lastly, the Micron has magnetic riser covers.  They do not open until deployment.  They open at the same time (unlike tuck tabs), and they open before the canopy comes out of the bag.  Microns have internal riser covers.  Microns have the Shyhook as an option.  Recently did 3 intentional cutaways on a Micron, 2 with Skyhook, 1 without.  Skyhook is amazing.  Microns have a semi-stowless main deployment bag as an option.  Easier to pack and better openings.  The freefly pud main PC handle is nice.

    I don't know much about Vortexes but have packed a few. They also have Skyhooks, magnetic riser covers, optional internal riser covers, optional semi stowless main bag, optional freefly pud.... all that stuff you mentioned for UPT rigs.

    (Yeah it can be hard to keep track of what is available on various rigs, especially if one sees more of one brand than another...)

    The Micron might indeed be better but just wanted to keep things clear here.

    • Like 2

  19. Damn. The parachute opening studies he was involved in, from the 1990s onwards, as a jumper and electronics designer, were interesting. There isn't a lot of civilian, non-commercial work on such stuff, so he became known to me through the things that Parks College Parachute Research Group published.

    • Like 3

  20. 2 hours ago, Maddingo said:

    I still prefer using the ordinary closing tape.


    I'm surprised by that. Everyone is different!

    The old style pullup cords were always Type III tape and very rough on the hands. In recent years, most companies have gone to a softer feeling material that is easier on the hands. Despite that, I find that packing tools, whether full size or extra slim ones, are MUCH easier on the hand and allow pulling a lot harder with less effort and little discomfort.

  21. Guns vs. Vehicles --  "Every time someone shoots a bunch of people in the US, just be thankful we have so many cool guns around that the guy never thought about renting a truck instead!  Although they are harder to get into schools anyway, and aren't as available to the under-25 killer." 

    • Like 1

  22. 49 minutes ago, Erroll said:

    So, what do you think about that?


    So, well, um, you know, what I want to say is, maybe you should know, sometimes we write things in a way that's more like casual conversation. Even if some of what is written isn't strictly necessary.  Things that are a lead-in to what the real content it, somehow trying to be polite by softening the message, not straight out saying the thing one wants to say. Yes it is curious. And not considered useful in more formal writing.

  23. 3 hours ago, JerryBaumchen said:

    As I have posted before, Derek Thomas purchased AeroSports USA.  Jarret Martin purchased Summit Parachute Systems.

    New to me, thanks Jerry. 

    Your answers are useful and in line with what I expected. Just thought you were a little harsh on Lee's brief remark.

    Summit apparently is   https://www.facebook.com/summitparachutesystems/

    And Derek would be the Sunpath guy but it sounds like he hasn't been the owner there for some years, as he now heads up CPS.

    Just for those of us who aren't keeping up with everything in the industry....

  24. Then Jerry, maybe enlighten us? Presumably Lee was talking about chest / lap / back / seat. What are those so-called "categories" officially categorized as?  I don't think Lee was trying to use official terminology. Edit: Or are you saying a change in harness is a Minor change no matter what the TSO? Or that your TSO was broad enough to allow any harness type?    Can you elaborate a little on what you know, rather than just saying "the other guy is wrong"?

    And since it has been a year or so, if it is public now, who did buy the TSO & related stuff from you?