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  1. Seconded! All credit to Caroline for a really good event. Looking forward to seeing Matt's editied version of the skydives. Should be good. Mind you he did have some damn fine material to work with Have fun Ollie.
  2. Cheers Gus I didn`t realise that this subject has already been discussed. All the best mate Ollie
  3. I notice that on Sibsons Website ( they claim to be the "safest dropzone in the UK". Discuss! Is this statement valid? How do they work that out?
  4. Clearly not! It has been shown time and time again that tandems do need wind limits because commercial pressure can cloud their judgement on safety issues.
  5. Interesting Bill. Do you think the risk of doing an intentional cutaway outweighs the benefit? I`d be very interested in your opinion. Cheers, Ollie
  6. Thanks for the info Dave. I`ll forward this link to those who are currently looking to introduce a similar system for the BPA. Thanks Ollie
  7. I am genuinely interested in hearing from people who have had a large number of cutaways, particularly those with low jump numbers. At the DZ earlier this month, we were discussing why it is that some people go for 3000 jumps before their first chop, and others have had several before their 500th jump. I`d like to look at this from an educational point of view - so information such as experience level, canopy, container, deployment mechanism and packing technique would be very useful, as well as what the nature of the malfunctions were. Cheers Ollie
  8. A flat turn allows you to alter the direction the canopy is facing while keeping the "wingtips" as level as possible. This means your descent rate remains low, and avoids the pendulum effect of contacting the ground before the canopy has had a chance to resume level flight following a normal toggle turn. It is particularly useful when making a turn at low altitude, for example to avoid an obstacle or another jumper. In my opinion, its a skill we should teach as a requirement for A License. I know the BPA are currently considering adding additional canopy coaching to the syllabus. Best to ask your instructor, but in the meantime, more information can be found at: I also recommend: Hope this helps, Blue skies Ollie
  9. I see this with a lot of newly graduated students and asked myself the same question. I reckon it is because more and more people are graduating from AFF, and some have never exited an aircraft that low before. Of course with RAPS, your first several jumps were from low altitude - how "low" just depends how long ago you did it!
  10. OK - Imagine the scenario. You dilligently disconnect your RSL at 1000 feet (when you should be flying your canopy - but thats another question!). You then have a canopy collision at 999 feet. You now no longer have the benefit of the RSL and your reserve will take that bit longer to deploy. That time might well make the difference, my friend. The SIM may very well state that you should not cut away below 1000 feet, but what about when that canopy you never saw collides with you 999 ft? Or 998 ft? I know what I`d do. Fact is, this is a grey line, and when the adrenaline is flowing, you may act first, and think later. Each situation is different, and what the "correct" course of action will vary, but please, if you have an RSL, get the benefit from it, and don`t disconnect it. The only justification you state for disconnecting the RSL is one of convenience and saving $40. Is this really a valid reason?
  11. Sorry - this doesn`t make sense. I think that one of the main benefits of an RSL is in the case of a low altitude canopy collision. The few seconds that the RSL shaves off the time required to deploy your reserve may very well save your life. I agree that in an ideal world you would not cut away below your "hard deck", remember that in times of extreme stress even very experienced skydivers have cut away low for this very reason. A cut away is a conditioned response and in the heat of the moment, you are left with little option, and may act automatically. Whether this is the right or wrong decision is another matter, but by disconnecting the RSL, you are denying yourself one of the key advantages it brings. Not to mention the obvious risk associated with people messing around unhooking their RSL when they should be looking for other canopy traffic. With larger aircraft, and consequently more and more people on increasingly fast canopies landing in small "cool" areas, we need to encourage people to be more heads up, not give them extra things to worry about. If you have an RSL and land in high winds next to a busy road and need to chop your main, do, and get your reserve repacked. Don`t trade off safety for convenience. Stay safe Ollie
  12. Quite simply a superb bit of kit. Especially considering the low price, compared to a Mirage or a Javelin.