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  1. Funny someone mentioned standing close to an edge, just to prove to yourself you could. I remember climbing a little rocky "tor" at the top of a mountain and standing looking over the edge... 30ft drop then an 800ft slope. My stomach felt sick, and I was standing in a way I knew if I became unstable I could fall backwards, not over the edge. But when I said to the person beside me that I was afraid of heights, they just looked at me like I was nuts and said, "Are you mad, what are you doing climbing up and standing here then?" "Because I can. Fear can be conquered".
  2. I did a search and this hasn't come up (with my search terms) for at least a year. Personally, I am afraid of heights. I have a curious variant of it though. First discovered it by climbing to the top of the sports hall gymnastics frame (the one on the wall). I could look down and not be very worried, but if I looked out across the roof, knowing how high up I was, it made my legs go jelly! Looking out of the plane, however, the ground is just "cartoon distance" away. Even at 3500ft it doesn't look "tangible" and my sense of "fear of heights" does not compute it's in danger. I was more scared on the PLF fan trainers in the DZ hangar! Fear of falling to my death is another story! Paul
  3. Speaking of putting your hand in the fire.... I suppose it could be seen as ironic to some that someone once suggested I jump out of a perfectly good feckin plane and ... I did that! :D
  4. And should someone on here tell me to go and stick my hand in the fire, I'm going to do it aren't I? ... and No. 3 from the list please.
  5. Still from what I gather DP on your third jump is extremely good progress! You must be doing alright! Personally I didn't even remember I had a parachute on my first, was convinced I was going to die for 3 seconds. 2nd I focused on that to stop my fear turning me into a flat stiff petrified board! 3rd I'm going to worry about keeping my head up and my eye on the plane which hopefully will lead to an arch! So keep doing what your doing, it seems to be working :)
  6. Standard snail mail spam is easier to deal with. 1. Collect a load of it. 2. Look through it for a "Postage paid" envelope. 3. Wrap the rest of the heap of junk mail in a bag. 4. Add 5Kg of lead. 5. Stick the pre-paid envelope onto it 6. Post.
  7. paulca


    Is it worth wearing gloves early on in learning? I'm figuring they would add safety for my hands, in the unfortunate event I get my mitts caught in the lines. They should also had grip for grabbing the handle if/when I get to dummy pulls. And damn :(, it ain't going to be "summer" or what passes for "summer" here for much longer. If I sit the whole winter out it will be a £50, full day, retrain. If I was to use gloves and the DZ doesn't rent them out, would motorcycle summer gloves do? They are goat leather, I can easily operate small switches with them. :) Paul
  8. I would agree. There is a lot of information and I respect them not giving it to you all at once. First jump training is, "Here is what you need to stay alive up there.", any more might involve the student (me) forgetting something critical. @yoink I said it was my GF who said she didn't get a gear check. I didn't say they didn't do it properly. I accepted that not tightening my own leg straps on my first jump was MY responsibility, it was here that I was told otherwise. The time I lifted the pack without a slip round the lower riser I got a gear check immediately afterwards. I am not forming opinions on Internet posts, I am forming an opinion based on being at the DZ in a rig watching what is going on around me. If my opinions lead to wrong conclusions then that will be because I am a student who has only jumped twice and I only have my 'feelings' to go on. The reason I asked here is I do not know how these things work with DZs. I/we were afraid if we even mentioned, "I don't think I had a gear check last time.", that the incident book would come out and our instructor pulled over the coals and official inquiries and all that ho-ha. So I was asking if it could be done discretely. I will also edit the post title to remove the last 2 words in agreement with that point of yours.
  9. I wanted to reply to this specifically. On my first jump the plane had engine issues the lift before. The pilot was sorting that out with a screw driver, then test flying and then said he wanted only 3 on the next load JIC. With all this going on I had too much time sitting in my rig brooding. The ground women who usually does the checking is running around like a headless chicken changing jump loads and jumper numbers, doing radio checks and altimeters.... calmly and quietly shouting (in that way women can!) at the other instructors for not bothering to help out. But... I had a feeling I had to keep stepping on to keep my nerves in check, but it boiled down to... "I am in their hands right now. I hope they don't forget something." I hated that feeling, the feeling of being completely in someone's hands when that someone looks like they currently have too much on their plate. I knew the solution is to learn how to look after myself, but ... it was jump no. 1.
  10. I had a think about this on the drive home from work just there. I have a plan to turn what might be a complaint into a positive, pro-active step forward instead. I/We will ask, 1) Can you show us how to check a rig is good? 2) Can you talk us through a gear check? ... and if we don't feel we have had one, we will ask, can I have a gear check. Thanks for the suggestions. Paul
  11. It's supposed to be part of their procedures for students. Because... (a) They usually just say, grab and rig, lid and suit and come over, and (b) they don't teach us how to do a gear check to ourselves or each other. Not yet anyway. This is why we don't want to rock the boat. There is only one DZ in this country. The next is a good 100 miles away in the republic of Ireland. EDIT: Point taken about asking if you haven't yet received a gear check.
  12. You may remember my first post here where I said on my first jump nobody checked my leg straps were tight. Well, my second jump I found no rigs in the student rack (left open to the world, unlocked), so I lifted one of the post packing table. No packing sign off slip, no indication it was actually ready to jump other than it "looked" packed. I meant to ask, but... forgot. Luckily it was grand, pulled to the right a little, but worked fine. My girlfriend and a friend of ours did their 4th and 5th jumps respectfully on Sunday and while this information is second hand, I trust it. First, the pack that our mate lifted off the shelf had some of the deployment bag showing out from under a flap! He just picked another. Then neither of them got a gear check, the JM just tugged their chest straps after putting on the altimeter. The rigs were not checked the ADDs not checked, leg straps not checked, nothing. Both jumped and both rigs worked fine. Trouble is they were not planning on taking up the student plane (206) as it was being used for a demo at 4 o'clock and worse yet the pick up van was needed for said demo to pick up the jumpers, so it needed to leave ASAP. In short, they fumbled together a jump master, a left over tandem, these 2 students and sent the plane up. Everything was rushed. When my GF told me this and I remarked I'd received several PMs on here about just my legs straps, that maybe she should raise this issue, at least informally about not getting a gear check. I also wanted to draw attention to the fact, and you may correct me, but packed student rigs should always have a packing slip attached or some other indication that they are READY TO JUMP. The student rig rack should also be locked! It would not be too hard for a kid or bad person to simply fiddle with them, intentional/malicious or not. We don't want to rock the boat, so, do you think it's possible to have just a quiet word with one or more members of the team to raise these concerns without the hassle of starting a whole stewards inquiry etc. and making everyone's lives difficult? Paul
  13. Never did a tandem, but I'd support this advice based on my first solo jump. All that bravado from the OP would quickly vanish with the sound of the plane and the faces of the other jumpers leaving you all alone thousands of feet up. Your life, your hands, your mistake, your price.
  14. I may stand corrected but the "cabin pressure" on an average airline flight at cruise is maintained around 7,000ft to 10,000ft. So similar pressure change. It is slowly increased during descent over 20-30minutes. So... not so similar rate of change :) If you have ever had your ears not pop on the way down to land in an airliner it's definitely very sore but usually non-damaging. Makes a damn good fart noise when it does finally go. Descent is usually easier to deal with as you can force equalize the inner ear by holding your nose and forcing air up your sinus cavities. Just like blowing your nose, except you don't let the pressure release into the hankie. Worst is you end up with a snotty mitt. You could also try to not equalize your ears on the way up! Don't swallow, don't yawn etc.
  15. From a newbie on static line, there is nothing quite like sitting beside the (lack of) door on a Cessna 206, knowing you are attached to the plane. Taking off from a full throttle + full brakes run up and clearing the trees at the end of the runway, with the plane creaking and groaning, by mere feet. Seriously there is a large tree either side that you look UP at! No belts, 'cept your static line, worn out carpet, gaffa (duct) tape holding the plane head lining in place, etc. The plane itself is on it's second engine it's that old. 6 people on a 4 man plane. My GF on the last jump she did, sitting in the door position, had to be grabbed by the guy behind her as the pilot decided a non coordinated 60 degree bank was appropriate! She said she really felt like she was going to fall out! Myself sat in across from the door position hated the pilot when he got the shout, "10 to the right!" and promptly stamped on the rudder pedal to achieve this, rocking everyone around. All part of the fun. Now for the serious question... It was not part of our formal training, for that we were told, just listen up to the jump master, he will decide. But a qualified diver on one of our lifts, when the plane was showing signs of sick engine that day said, "700, 800ft if the engine dies I'm out, pull the reserve it opens faster." Now I got to thinking, I'm on static line, at 800ft is it likely to deploy the main in time? If I jump and do my emergency drill I'm certainly dead. So jump and immediate reserve and accept the fact I'm going to land with reserve and potentially a just deployed main entangled... I'll live, probably. What would the best approach be? (Well obviously, it IS: Listen to the jump master/dispatcher and he will decide!). but I'm curious for your opinions.